Antonio introduces the Claw Zord which Mentor/Ji/IDunno asks to repair after having been damaged in battle years ago. Fish guy explains his 21st century symbol texting skills which annoys Kevin who isn’t quite ready to accept him into the team because of his lack of formal samurai training and discipline. The other Rangers tell Antonio to show Kevin he’s more serious about being a samurai to get on his good side.
Down on the Sanzu, Dayu tells Xandred that OOH-AH-OOH! Octoroo is off taking care of a new plan that’ll let them escape the Sanzu River for good.
OOH-AH-OOH! Octoroo has a Nighlok steal toys from hilariously overacting children and leave goop behind in their place as a way to have kids all over
Japan New Zealand the country cry their eyes out.
Which is important because human tears help fill the Sanzu River (though we’re not supposed to know that). And once the river overflows and reaches the surface of the Earth, Nighloks can freely roam without having to retreat back through the crevices anymore.
Dayu heads to the shore of the Sanzu and finds unconscious human Decker who apparently has slept there for a few episodes. Poor Decker, if he had let the Rangers fire at him, the spell on him would be broken and he’d be free. She wishes she knew why he saved her. She wonders if he remembers her.
Back at the Shiba mansion, as everyone is asleep, Antonio sets up spy cameras to
stalk watch how Kevin does everything so he can learn how to be a true Samurai.
Antonio watches Kevin practice, workout, write, and read before they both fall asleep. Next morning, Kevin heads out for a run and Antonio follows. They end up in the woods and suddenly there’s strange laughter.
Kevin calls out and asks Antonio if he heard it. Kevin knows Antonio’s been creepin’ since last night. You’re not learning how to be a Samurai, Kevin says, you’re just messing around. OOH-AH-OOH! They find Octoroo and they try to call Jayden to tell, but Octoroo’s put a spell to guard the well from anyone who wants to chime the death knell on his plan. OOH-AH-OOH! Newly mouthed Octoroo tells
Antberry Aunt Berry, the axe wielding, toy stealing, goop leaving Nighlok to chop up the toys he stole to dump into the well for the water to rise up. (That’s not how it works Grandpa.)
Kevin and Antonio morph when Octoroo knows they’re there. He orders finish them off. Because of all of Aunt Berry’s slimey goop, Kevin and Antonio can’t fight properly because their hands are sliding up and down their own swords. (Yeah, I went there.)
Back on the ship, Xandred notices Dayu is not playing her sangen as well as she normally does and wonders what’s up. Nothing Dayu says, but she remembers talking to Decker who tells her he wants the ultimate duel with the Red Ranger. That’s all that matters and he can’t remember a time when it wasn’t his only concern. Dayu asks if he remembers nothing else from his past, and he doesn’t.
At the mans, the other wonder why Kevin isn’t back from his morning run yet. Kevin and Antonio are chased away by the Moogers with Antonio injured. Kevin tells him to stay put and he goes to fight off the Moogers himself until Antonio comes to help.
Don’t treat me like a coward, Antonio says. Samurai do anything to help people, no matter what. They use some teamwork to hold off the Moogers and end up getting the magic axe and tossing it in the well. The other Rangers arrive and they finish off Aunt Berry as OOH-AH-OO! Octoroo retreats into the gaps.
They get the toys back and they return them anonymously to their owners (how they know who they belong to, who knows?).
Honestly, this might be my most favorite Power Rangers Samurai episode yet! It was absolutely hilarious.
Those overacting kids? Hilarious! Antonio the creepy stalker? Hilarious. More OOH-AH-OOHS and HO-HO-HOs? Hi-la-ri-ous. AUNT BERRY!? ROFLMAO hilarious!
It was really just a hilariously all over the place episode. Great to laugh at.
But then I realize… wait, it’s not supposed to be. At least, not like this.
*sigh* And so, Power Rangers Samurai trudges along.
What about that mouth on Octoroo eh? I thought Power Rangers and Sentai had it worked out that PR would get the original suits and costumes from Sentai to use instead of having to make new ones? And even so, Saban couldn’t spring a couple more dollars to pay for two tentacles instead of creating a nonexistent mouth? An incredibly odd decision.
There were some positives though. They fixed the opening credits to use the American footage of Antonio’s roll call instead of Genta’s Shinkenger footage.
And Najee de Tiege and Steven Skyler were actually okay in terms of acting this episode. And with the focus on them, that meant less of everyone else which actually worked out well.
We also finally get to see the villains actually doing something. Octoroo isn’t just some bumbling grandpa, but actually a loony grandpa with a good idea once in a while. Xandred isn’t drunk all the time. And Dayu and Decker may have a past…
Which brings us to our weekly Shinkenger comparison corner.
I think I’m going to change Sentai or Power Rangers? to How Much Better Was Sentai Than Power Rangers? from now on, since I highly doubt I’ll be choosing PRS over Shinkenger any time soon.
Corresponding Shinkenger Episode: Act 19 – Learning the Samurai Disposition
It is interesting that they introduced an original backstory for Dayu and Decker. It is fairly obvious that they were lovers or something in the past, which couldn’t be further from the truth… just kidding, though I pretty much see Shinkenger as truth and Samurai as all lies really.
But I digress…
In Shinkenger, and this is a spoiler, Dayu and Juzo (Decker) are not related at all. And in fact, both, especially Dayu, have pretty tragic pasts which actually are very compelling down the road. Dayu’s story especially makes for some powerful scenes later in the series, and believe it or not, those soot balls play an emotional part in them too. And there’s a deep meaning to that sangen she plays all the time as well. I really liked Dayu’s story in Shinkenger.
So while I’m very… shocked, I guess, that Power Rangers Samurai actually has something original for once, I’m weary at where they’re going to take it. I definitely understand why they’d want to change both Dayu and Juzo’s backstories when translating from Shinkenger to Samurai though because the “truth” isn’t going to fly on American TV.
Also not going to fly… at least on Nickelodeon, is having the villain of a children’s show kidnapping young girls to murder for sacrifice.
The toy plot in this episode was pretty lame, but the alternative from Shinkenger was having Shitari/Octoroo taking these young girls and chopping them up and using their sorrow and despair and pain to help fill the Sanzu River enough to overflow and reach the well. This way, the Gedoshu can freely travel to and from the Sanzu and the surface without having to retreat back into the gaps. Also allowing Doukoku to not easily dry up when on surface because of the Shiba seal.
Definitely heavier and darker stuff in Shinkenger and you’d never expect to have that show up on Power Rangers, but the toys replacing the young girls just made the whole plan pretty silly when in Shinkenger, it was a pretty major plot point. It also forced anyone watching to have to watch children being forced to act.
And though this episode was really more a showcase for the villains’ characterizations, they are making Octoroo out to be some kind of weirdo when Shitari was a wise and smart old Gedoshu who was the brains of the whole Sanzu operation.
Ah well. American kids need to see villains as bumbling idiots I suppose.