Recap: Power Rangers (Super) Samurai, Episode, err… Penultimate Episode – The Sealing Symbol

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Xandred laughs and thanks Dayu for helping him return using what could be the most beautiful music that’s come from her harmonium ever. She says she didn’t do this for him, but to repay her debt and for Deker. The centuries of misery she’s suffered has finally come to an end. You should’ve embraced your Nighlok side, Xandred says. But Dayu says she never felt like a true Nighlok.

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No matter, you can join Deker, Xandred says, but a part of her will stay with him. He pulls her close to him and squeezes her tight until she disappears, leaving only a… kimono!?

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The Rangers are shocked as Xandred demands to see the Red Ranger. Lauren appears, but Xandred pooh-poohs this “little girl.” He sends a blast their way, but she’s fine. Lauren tells the others to keep Xandred busy as the sealing symbol takes a long time to write. She hands Kevin the black box and mike the shark disc.

The five Rangers attack, but Xandred easily knocks them around. They try to continue distracting him as Lauren begins writing the symbol.

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Back at the Shiba manse, Mentor/Ji feels accomplished that he’s done all he can to prepare the Rangers for this day.

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DaiGoyou The Light Zord comes to help out the Rangers, but gets swatted away. Jayden finishes off the Moogers and runs to the others as Lauren finally finishes the sealing symbol. She hurls it towards Xandred and he goes flying towards the rock face nearby.

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A relieved Lauren tells her father that she did it.

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Or not. Xandred emerges unscathed. But they notice a white patch on his chest.

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Xandred explains he’s absorbed Dayu’s human side, making him a non-pure Nighlok, thus making him immune to the sealing power. He also doesn’t need Sanzu water anymore.

Xandred unleashes a huge burst of energy toward the Rangers. Lauren demorphs and Jayden runs in to use his symbol power to teleport them out of there.

Xandred laughs, squashes Dayu’s sootball friend and heads down to the Sanzu.

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Back at the manse, the Rangers are dejected. They feel sorry for Lauren’s life having gone to waste.

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Jayden joins her outside as they look up at the sky. She says she let them all down, especially their father. She hands Jayden leadership of the Rangers back as the Sanzu must be ready to burst by now. It’s time to finish what dad started, he says.

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OOH-AH-OOH! On the Sanzu, Octoroo is excited about the developments of the day. He’ll miss Dayu, but also appreciates how her sacrifice will bring them their greatest victory. He asks Xandred if he has any words to say as he drops Dayu’s robe into the water. He merely thinks she served her purpose.

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Lauren holds a meeting with the Rangers and tells them her decision. She knew they’d be happy. Jayden has a plan… take Xandred out with brute force. By absorbing Dayu, the white patch on Xandred’s chest is now his weakspot which they can exploit with a strong enough blow.

Lauren hands Jayden a Shiba Fire Disc which she’s loaded up with all the symbol power she could let out. Jayden says it’ll be tough, but together they can do anything. Thinking to himself, Mentor/Ji hopes they don’t die.

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Next day, Sanzu Riverwater begins flooding into the city and the Rangers head out. OOH-AH-OOH! Xandred and Octoroo arrive aboard the ship.

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The Rangers head to a rock quarry where they look over an army of Moogers. They all mention how happy they are to be there as Rangers. Antonio wouldn’t trade this moment for anything. (Not even a world without Nighloks?) Emily says “There’s no place I’d rather be.”

The Moogers finally realize the Rangers are watching them and they morph. They charge towards the Moogers and begin battle.

OOH-AH-OOH! It’s victory, Octoroo says, but Xandred will only claim victory when the Rangers crawl to him and beg for mercy.

Xandred arrives at the quarry. Jayden goes SUPER! saying he only has one shot at Xandred’s chest. Flanking positions, Kevin says. Mia and Emily in front, him and Kevin “in the rear.” And Antonio in the very rear as they hope to get Jayden as close as possible.

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They run into the army of Moogers and Spitfangs and allow Jayden to charge towards Xandred. He manages to stick his sword right into the patch.

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But Xandred says while it’s not a bad strategy, it’s not going to be that easy. He hurls Jayden back towards the Rangers and the Shiba Fire Disc shatters into pieces.

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Xandred hurls more fireballs towards them and they demorph. He tells them to finally beg for mercy, but if not, then maybe seeing the other Red Ranger on the brink of death will change their minds.

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Episode Thoughts
Definitely the first part of a finale right there. I noticed the last couple of episodes, which I think have been the best of the season (and I consider Samurai ONE season), have not had much Bulk and Spike. I applaud them for resisting the urge to pop them into the scenes of mayhem in the city.

But overall, we saw everything play out. Tasting victory, but then getting it yanked away. Again tasting victory, and again, oops not so fast.

Last week, I was kind of disappointed at the Deker/Dayu ending. But now I am actually surprised they didn’t find a way to end up having Deker and Dayu go back to being humans or some such thing. Saban did love redeeming human-ish villains at the end of seasons.

The episode flowed well. Of course there were the typical Samurai-isms. There’d be moments I’d go from “DAMN, That’s awesome!!!” one minute to “Ugh, *eyeroll*” the next. And what’s with the horrible quality of the dubbing!? They’ve done weird stuff to Rene Naufahu’s voice all season, but this episode you could easily tell which lines Kimberly Crossman did post-production. Very distracting.

But overall a great episode that thankfully leads into the finale next week.

How Much Better Was Sentai Than Power Rangers?
Corresponding Shinkenger Episodes: Act 48 – The Final Great Decisive Battle and Act 49 – A Samurai Sentai Eternally

Why must I always be less impressed with a Samurai episode after seeing the original? And sinceSamurai bit off a chunk of Shinkenger‘s final episode, I ended up rewatching the entire finale. And I cried all over again like I did the first time I watched it. Grr… so affected and so effective.

So I didn’t realize Samurai had decided to include a big chunk of the final Shinkenger episode in this penultimate one. Shinkenger’s penultimate episode ended with them charging into the army of Nanashi towards Doukoku.

Now, having seen a little bit of Samurai‘s final final episode, I know where all that extra time they saved ended up. But I can’t help but think how ending the Samurai episode like the Shinkenger episode wouldn’t be better. I guess seeing the Rangers down and almost out is a better cliffhanger. I can see that.

Now as to what they left out, of course, it was the whole Karou adopts Takeru stuff. It is definitely interesting to see Samurai actually be the more dramatic version of the two with Shinkenger, I’d say, seamlessly weaving in the sight gags and one-liners in addition to the already hilarious, yet strangely touching adoption of Takeru into the Shiba clan. A punchline that would span two (or three if it was mentioned in Gokaiger?) seasons. Samurai can only wish to have landed such a punchline.

“You are a mother!!”

But those lighthearted moments worked and did push forward the idea that Takeru’s relationship with his four retainers and childhood bud has grown so much over the last 48 episodes. It definitely leads into the bittersweet ending for the show.

With the other differences, there was definitely none of the Doukoku/Dayu sexual tension with Xandred and Dayu. And I kind of resent Samurai downplaying Dayu’s friendship with the sootball. I thought that was one of the most emotional aspects of Shinkenger. She only had this little squeaky sootball as company and the moment Doukoku stepped on it in the penultimate episode, I bawled. That was a sad moment and was in line with Japanese Dayu’s more tragic past.

Comparing the two, I am again underwhelmed with how they handled Deker/Dayu since overall, their story was one of the stronger aspects of Samurai as a whole.

Also, Lauren was great at first, but she’d definitely tapered off. Kaoru maintained her kick-ass-ness all the way to the end (and beyond).

Of course there’d be no implied cutting of heads on Power Rangers like there was on Shinkenger. But I was definitely not feeling this “Glad to be here!” stuff with the Rangers on the cliff. The Shinkengers stood on a cliff too, but their conversation was about fighting to the death.

I guess Kotoha cutely saying she’d be entrusting Takeru with as many lives as she has equals Emily happily enjoying standing on a cliff looking at impending doom down below. Hilarious?

One more week. One more week and it’ll be over y’all!


Power Rangers is on DVD!
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