7 Thoughts about Uchuu Sentai Kyuuranger Episode 4: "Dreamy Android"
The "final" Kyuuranger takes the stage! Before things started would anyone else have believed it was going to be Pink? That's...kinda awesome, right?
1.) Aw, dammit! I said back in my 7 thoughts episode 2 that if they could get past episode five going from planet to planet then it'd be a permanent deal, and almost as if the creative people heard me, they flew right to Earth for episode 4. It's such a bummer, but I knew it had to happen--there was no way they could keep designing alien cultures and people for 50 episodes--the last episode didn't even have a purpose like Jagama, it was just "planet Jark Matter has almost ruined".
So yeah, we're on Earth now where our heroes might actually interact with some of the people they're saving instead of just shoving innocent hostages off screen. And now that they've finally done it, we can all accept it and move on. Y'know, unless they do something even worse like...invalidate the whole nine members thing.
2.) ....And, here we are, invalidating the entire nine member thing! They spent all that time talking about how it was time for a change in the promotional material, and yet we're still going to end up with a "back up" team. And while it was hilarious to straight-up admit it was because they didn't have the budget, that raises all kinds of questions about exactly what the budget for a Sentai series is. I feel like it's been fixed for years--Garu doesn't look too much better than Doggie Kruger, and if we're really getting honest about things Raptor 283 doesn't really look superior costuming-wise to freaking Coron from Liveman. Does all the money really get wasted on the CGI for the mecha?
3.) Setting all that aside, we've learned that Earth is completely, utterly under the control of Jark Matter. To such an extent that it makes you wonder--since all the Sentai exist on the same planet (a fact we've proven time and again), where the fuck are they? Seriously, it gets so bad that at one point the MOTW is literally eating some poor kid's dreams.
It seems like a vast majority of Jark Matter's army is on Earth, draining it dry of Planetium, so it makes me wonder if all the different Sentai teams are waging war on them even as the show tells us about this new group.
4.) All jokes aside about how much I don't like Raptor's design, I actually love her character. She goes on about how she's only "built" to fly the team's spaceship and serve basically as the secretary of the team, but apparently androids dream of being multi-colored sheep, as she really just wants to be strong and help the team fight back against Jark Matter. It feels like we're exploring the idea of well-meaning AI programs between Raptor and Champ--the only problem being that Champ was built to fight and love justice, and Raptor very well might have been built to want to fight as well given what we see later. It's also kind of suspicious that Raptor learned how to fight almost immediately after she transformed, as if the knowledge was "downloaded" to her from the Kyu Globe. Speaking of...
This was a simple but effectively told story of Raptor finally letting go of her restraint and embracing her desire to fight with the team, and it lead to a seriously kick-ass scene of her cutting loose and really embracing her powers. I complained about the budget earlier, but there's more than a good chance they blew it all on that flight scene where she dodges a crapton of missiles in a crowded "abandoned" building. Probably the coolest a Pink has looked since Ninninger.
6.) Well what do you know, my friend was right. Xiao Longbao is clearly not telling us everything he knows. His intel on Earth, sending Raptor down with the team in order to activate her powers...dude's just so filled with fun knowledge that I'd love to know how he learned it all. I don't necessarily think Xiao is "faking it" like my friend does, I just think Xiao is both this freaking goofy and also somehow extremely well-informed about this war. At this point his wily decisions are earning him a spot on the team as its commander.
7.) And for the teaser, it seems as if Orange is finally going to work with the rest of the team. No "budget concerns" holding next episode back--we're going to get the entire nine-member team at once. I'm both excited and scared, because after this we're pretty much done with the "easy" story and they're going to have to start introducing plot points pretty soon, or we'll fall into some really boring territory until the new guys show up.