In this week’s episode, Raptor gets her moment in the spotlight and the gang visit a very special planet: Earth. While I greatly enjoyed this as a Raptor-centered episode, the sudden change of scenery makes me nervous about the ever increasing pace of this series.
Of course Earth is super special for a yet-to-be-revealed reason, but shouldn’t our planet have been saved for a later, maybe even the final arc? The pace at which Kyuranger is moving is not helping to assuage my fears that the show will be a dull mess of filler by episode 30. The multiple Malistrates on Earth are also a headache to think about, especially considering that they are not easy to kill. This is the set-up to a several episode-long arc, right at the beginning of the series.
I actually did like one of the moves that the writers made in this episode: the excuse they use for only spotlighting five members per episode. The Kyulette – and the idea that Kyu Energy is limited – is an eye roll-inducing gimmick, but Xiao’s almost fourth-wall-breaking explanation about “budget concerns” brought me back into the goofy nature of this show. Plus, we know that Lucky will be chosen every time - not just because of his Red status, but also his luck.
Speaking of Lucky, he is continuing to grow on me. Lucky’s support of Raptor and his discussion of his new-found dream to defeat Jark Matter showed the simplest level of maturity, but it is enough to make him a much more convincing leader. Xiao is quickly moving into the position of comic relief and while I still find him unnecessary, he has decreased the burden on other characters (like Lucky) to be the silly one. Xiao may also be wiser than he looks. What if he did know that Raptor was the Pink Ranger all along? If that’s the case, I may like him even less.
Raptor is the star of the episode, with the first half of the episode focusing on her softer, dreaming side and the second half emphasizing how cool her wings are as Aquila/Washi Pink. In her defense, her wings are incredibly cool, even if the scene used to spotlight them was totally unnecessary. Her personality when she is fangirling is somewhat jarring because it differs so much from her typical personality, but I kind of liked that. She does assertive well, but that doesn’t mean she can’t also be a dreamer. The Sailor Moon reference ("In the name of Aquila, I will punish you!") was a cute addition that makes me connect even more to her.
Spada’s character development was also very satisfying. Prior to this episode, we only know that he likes to cook. He shows his protective, mature side and acts as Lucky’s foil for most of the episode. But in the end he realizes that he should have been more understanding…even though he was totally right. If Raptor didn’t turn out to be a Kyuranger all along, then Lucky was putting her in grave danger.
But Lucky is always right, right? I am greatly anticipating the moment when he actually isn’t. While Kyuranger’s pacing is concerning, there are still enough loose ends and possibilities to keep the show interesting for quite some time.
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