Power Rangers Samurai, Episode 15 – The Tengen Gate

Xandred is restless, his power is surging and is rocking the boat. OOH-AH-OOH! Dayu is annoyed, but Octoroo says they have to make sure the other Nighlok’s stay quiet while he absorbs all the power.

With Xandred locked up as he reenergizes, the Moogers are running wild in the city. The Rangers zord up to take care of them. FANTASTICO!

Down on the Sanzu, Octoroo is worried some Nighlok wacko might come and cause trouble while Xandred is… busy with himself. OOH-AH-OOH! Here comes Arachnator hoping to take over in the mean time.

The Rangers are wondering how to stop the Sanzu River from continuing to seep through the gaps. Mentor/Ji/The guy in grey suggests “the black box!” that contains a talisman created by the first Red Ranger that can unite the power of all Rangers into one. But it was never completed, no one ever knew how. They suggest Antonio, he’s the Bill Gates of Samurai technology after all. But Kevin says he doesn’t have the mastery of symbol power yet, and Jayden doesn’t want him risking his life.

Oh, what the hell, let’s give it a shot Mike says.

Jayden gives in, so they go to retrieve the black box which is being protected by the guardians of The Tengen Gate. They see a memorial commemorating the place where the first Samurai Rangers battled the Nighloks.

Lothor Sensei Watanabe Daisuke (or Daisuke as spelled by the captions), is the elder guardian and welcomes them. The four Rangers are led inside while Jayden stays behind. Daisuke asks if he’s told them his secret yet. Looking at the memorial, Jayden says he hates lying to them, but… he won’t fail them.

“I’m sorry Jayden, but it is your responsibility to be the Red Ranger.”

Arachnator pops up from the gaps with some Moogers, in search of Jayden so they can force the sealing power from him to seal Xandred once and for all, allowing him to take over the Sanzu.

Kevin and Mia admire a scroll. Daisuke tells them it is an old folk tale. A woman had made a deal with the Nighlok king to save her “beloved,” but instead was tricked and both were turned into Gedo Nighlok. *boponthehead*

The Nighlok King cursed the man and made him wander the Earth alone forever. *boponthehead*

Mia: “It’s strange, it’s almost as if I’ve met this woman before.” *smackyouupsidethehead*duh*

Meanwhile, Decker is being broody in the hills and Antonio jumps out of the bushes hoping Decker will finally try his Baby Barracuda Fish Kebabs. He had promised, after all.

Antonio sets up and starts cooking as Decker has no choice but to sit and give it a try.

Back at the Tengen Gate, Daisuke brings out the black box The Black Box, “the most powerful weapon ever conceived.”

In the kitchen, one of the guardians is making tea and when he turns his back to the cups, a hand comes stretching out of the gaps to poison them. Meanwhile outside, Arachnator and a couple of moogers pop in.

The tea is served and Jayden is the first to drink… and the first to keel over in pain. *gasp* “The drink! Is poisoned!”

One of the guardians/monks runs in to tell them about the Nighlok outside. Jayden grits his teeth and tells the others to go take care of it. They morph and Mia calls Antonio for back-up. Antonio tells Decker he has to leave, but to enjoy the food.

Daisuke tries to give Jayden medicine, but OOH-AH-OOH! mouthedOctoroo pops up and laughs at them. He asks for the Red Ranger sealing symbol.

Antonio arrives as Mia and Mike demorph from Arachnator’s blast. Emily and Kevin tell Antonio to go save Jayden instead as both of them demorph as well.

Jayden is crawling away as Octoroo continues to try and shake the sealing power out of him. OOH-AH-OOH! Decker watches as Antonio arrives to save his friend. FANTASTICO!

On the Sanzu, Dayu is calling for Octoroo when Xandred suddenly calls out to her. He’s recovered from the surge and now wants to get revenge against Arachnator for going against him. He reaches through the gaps to pull him back to the Sanzu as the four Rangers are out cold.

Antonio fights with Octoroo, but OOH-AH-OOH! Decker shows up, puts Jayden over his shoulder and flies away with him. Antonio is devastated!

Xandred unleashes his revenge on Arachnator, causing huge creatures to rise up on the shores of the Sanzu. OOH-AH-UH-OH Octoroo says as he arrives.

Meanwhile, Decker is absolutely giddy that he can finally have his “divine” moment with Jayden… a duel that is.

Episode Thoughts
Another good episode. Bonus points for no Bulk and Spike of course. But a solid outing all around. I guess I’ve gotten used to what Power Rangers Samurai is by now. I don’t necessarily like everything I see, but I’m used to it now.

Puns, stiffness, overacting… same thing every week.

As for the rest of the episode, they couldn’t have been any more obvious about that “folk tale” if they tried. Mia is a Nighlok!?! Her parents? Maybe Emily and Mike! No, no. They pretty much spelled it out, though it was pretty obvious already in Episode 13.

It is still odd and awkward seeing mouthed and un-mouthed Octoroo in the same scenes. And even more awkward when the mouth moves only half the time when he talks.

And a nice treat to see Grant McFarland aka Sensei aka Lothor aka a hamster guesting on the show.

How Much Better Was Sentai Than Power Rangers?
Corresponding Shinkenger Episode: Act 23 – The Rampaging Gedoushu

It is interesting to see the first truly original aspect of Power Rangers Samurai. No, not the mouthed Octoroo, but Decker and Dayu’s backstory. A spoiler for those who haven’t watched Shinkenger, but Decker and Dayu were not past lovers. Though their separate histories were equally painful and tragic, they weren’t lovers. It’s at least effort on PR’s part, but still cliché.

Funny how one of the few things that would’ve made sense to directly translate is one of the few things they decide to change.

Also interesting to note that Samurai made the decision to cut the scene between Decker and Antonio short. In Shinkenger, Juzo actually ate Genta’s sushi before Genta ran off to help the other Shinkengers. And before going off to follow, he turned back to eat the other sushi because he actually liked it. It would’ve been a nice little moment for Decker (and Rick Medina) to have that scene in Samurai. Especially for PRS, who’s apparent main goal is to drop in comedy at the most inappropriate moments, it was a surprising choice.

Shinkenger‘s episode was still miles better than Samurai and that’s thanks in large part to the excellent scenes of them at the temple. Interestingly enough, the best part in this episode of Samurai was the Rangers at the memorial of the first Nighlok battle. Shinkenger had much more emotional and meaningful scenes (surprise… not) with the Shinkengers and then later Takeru on his own. The scenes continued to add to the mystery of Takeru’s secret, but were still deep and poignant as well even though at the time, we had no idea what his secret was.

Samurai‘s scene with Jayden and Daisuke was basically… Hey everyone! Remember I still have a secret!

But overall, it was a strong episode. It would be nice to see Samurai continue improving, but I really have no expectations anymore for the rest of the season.

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