Recap: Power Rangers Ninja Steel, Episode 1 – Return of the Prism
Brody explains how ten years ago, the Ninja Nexus Prism fell out of the sky onto their backyard. His father removed its metallic crust to reveal the Ninja Nexus Star inside. He was then able to pull it out.
Later, Brody was outside playing when a monster suddenly appeared. Father entrusts the ninja steel to Brody’s brother Aiden and tells him to hide.
Father runs outside where he meets Galvanax, Ripcon and Madam Odius. Galvanax demands the Ninja Nexus Star and shoots at Father. Father uses the Star to block the attack and he suddenly transforms… into a Power Ranger?!
Father battles Galvanax and is able to knock him down. But Ripcon grabs Brody, distracting Father and allowing Galvanax to deliver an attack that forces him to demorph.
Father drops the Ninja Nexus Star and Galvanax picks it up. But Father won’t let him have it. He grabs his sword and slices it six ways. Father disappears, but in his place was the Ninja Nexus Prism. Brody looks inside to see the six Star pieces transform into six Ninja Power Stars.
Galvanax tries breaking into the Prism, but it is impossible. They take the Prism and Brody back to the ship.
Fast forward back to the present. Brody is on Galvanax’s ship as a prisoner, doing labor along with friends Redbot and Mick.
Brody tells Mick it’s time they come up with an escape plan. But they are interrupted by Ripcon. Mick turns himself into a mop.
Ripcon mocks Brody being a ninja, but Brody shows him a neat trick. Ripcon is not amused and says Brody may be a ninja, but his father was a Ninja Master and look what happened to him.
Madam Odius orders Brody and Redbot to bring the Prism to the stage of Galaxy Warriors, a televised competition pitting monsters against each other for the chance to try their luck at the Ninja Nexus Prism.
Hosted by a horribly disfigured Baron Nero from the ToQger galaxy Cosmo Royale, today’s competition is won by Korvaka from the Ninninger Galaxy. But when Korvaka reaches into the Prism, he just gets zapped back and sent to the hospital.
Galvanax is very frustrated he hasn’t even gotten one Star in ten years. Madam Odius suggests he make new Stars. Ripcon thinks that’s absurd and Madam Odius cannot be trusted.
But Madam Odius explains that the Ninja Steel which covered the Prism when it fell to Earth can be melted down to create new Power Stars. Galvanax decides they will go to Earth to find it.
Brody believes his brother Aiden might know where to find it. He, Redbot and Mick make plans to get off of the ship.
It’s a normal morning on Earth at Summer Cove High School. Preston gets off the school bus and invites everyone to his magic show later. Hayley (and her dog) helps Calvin who’s trying to get his truck started. And Sarah glides to school on her real, actual hoverboard.
Preston invites Sarah to his show. She thinks that’s very sweet of him.
Sarah registers for her first day at a new school and is quickly greeted by Monty and Victor Vincent. Victor confidently introduces himself as Class President and shows Sarah all the trophies in the case that supposedly have his name on them. Except one, which Sarah notices, says Dane Romero.
Victor notices Sarah’s hoverboard and he hops right on. But he doesn’t seem to be very familiar with how to work it as it takes him zooming through and out of the school.
Victor interrupts Preston’s magic show after he had just turned himself into a blue dragon. Leaving Preston in just his underwear, the dragon costume covers Victor’s face and he ends up getting tossed in the trashbin.
Preston thanks Victor for ruining his show. Victor says Sarah’s hoverboard needs adjusting. “Your brain is what needs adjustment!” Sarah says. She adds that he should apologize to Preston, but he and Monty just scoff and walk away.
Preston asks if the hoverboard is okay and she says it’s no problem since she built it to be as “tough as a freight train.” Sarah offers to help Preston clean up.
Galvanax’s ship has arrived in Earth’s orbit. Brody, Redbot and Mick put their plan to escape in motion, but Bashers find them. Ripcon tries to stop them, but Brody, Redbot and Mick have thrown the Prism and themselves out the garbage shoot and are now falling to Earth. Redbot uses his jetboots to save Brody from a hard fall. Mick turns himself into a rubber ball.
Preston says he wants to be the best magician of all-time. Sarah’s dream is to set a speed record on her hoverboard. Their cleaning up is interrupted by the falling debris and they decide to go check it out.
Galvanax is incensed. He orders Korvaka to retrieve the Prism.
Brody and Redbot are fine on solid ground, but Mick is nowhere to be found. They are easily found though as Korvaka arrives and kicks Brody to the ground. Brody won’t let Korvaka take the Prism back so they fight. But Brody doesn’t seem to be much of a match for him. He tries to use his communicator to connect to the ship’s computer and it works. But the computer says there is no way he can defeat Korvaka alone.
Good thing Sarah and Preston come flying in. They are able to crash into Korvaka and knock him out for a little bit. Brody explains the Ninja Power Stars to them. Brody notices the Stars are glowing, so he reaches in and is able to grab the Red Star!
Preston and Sarah decide to reach in and are able to grab the Blue and Pink.
Brody remembers how his father turned into a ninja superhero, a Power Ranger! He tells Preston and Sarah to follow his lead.
Korvaka gets back on his feet. The three of them hold out their Power Stars and morphers appear in their other hand. They brace for Korvaka’s attack and they suddenly morph into Power Rangers!
“It’s some kind of mystical metamorphosis!”
“I feel powerful! Like I have the strength of ten freight trains!”
They fight Korvaka with their new Ninja Star Blades and finish him off with their new Ninja Blasters.
They go hide the Prism under a pile of rocks. Brody fills Preston and Sarah in on the rest of his backstory. He says he and Redbot have to get going. But Preston and Sarah say they’re in this with him. They’re Power Rangers now and they should work together.
Brody says they should start at his house and see his brother Aiden. But suddenly, the Prism rumbles under the rocks before it flies away.
Episode Thoughts and First Impressions
Okay, first of all…
WTF did they do to Baron Nero’s face?!?!?! Nope. No no no.
I saw the screencap posted early Saturday morning and I was absolutely shocked. What’s everyone got against Nero? First leaving him hanging and not having any of his roll call fun all the time and now giving him a horrific facelift. Yikes!
I was happy to hear at least something from ToQger was making its way into Power Rangers, but wow! It makes me really sad and upset, tbh.
But what can you do if Bandai and Saban or whomever else thinks American kids have never heard of trains before.
ANYWAY… aside from that glaring insanity, I think Ninja Steel started off pretty well. I’ve tweeted how I’m much more excited for this season and the new Sentai season than I am about the Power Rangers movie. And I definitely enjoyed this premiere even if it was far from perfect.
First, the good. I think overall the episode felt fresh and different. The little backstory was done well and it was an easy way to introduce us to Galvanax and his crew as well as what their immediate goals are.
I think the best part of the episode though was the way Preston and Sarah were introduced. It was very easy to relate to them. Both were fun and likeable. And their scenes at school were nice contrasts to the more elaborate and kinetic scenes up in space.
Speaking of Preston, I’ve followed Peter Adrian since he was first in the running for Megaforce. And seeing Peter, a fanboy like me (though with considerable more talent, of course) get the chance to live the dream; I’m just so happy for him.
And speaking of Mighty Morphin, I think Chrysti Ane gave Sarah a little bit of a spunky Kimberly vibe with a little bit of Time Force Jen thrown in. Very nice. Will Shewfelt did a good job as well with Brody who got most of the premiere’s material too.
A big Welcome Back to Kelson Henderson. It feels great to be reminded of the Disney Era in a way. And speaking of, again, I definitely recognized Fearcat Mig. Others may have a huge problem with recycling the costume. But any indirect or direct callback to Operation Overdrive, I’m down for.
Now on to the iffy stuff.
First, seeing Redbot be pretty fun made me kind of sad thinking about how fun the adapted Buddyroids would’ve been in a Go-Busters adaptation. =(
There was definitely a little too much exposition. Or exposition that maybe was not as stealthily slipped into the dialogue as it could’ve been.
This was a very full episode with not much time to breathe. And we didn’t even fully meet Calvin and Hayley. I think maybe it could’ve slowed down a little bit.
While the random choice of zords in Ninninger didn’t bother me as much as it did others, I did enjoy the clever way the zords are being tied to each character here on Ninja Steel. Though one freight train reference was cute, the 2nd time felt very forced.
Now to more Ninninger comparisons.
The “Ninninger Galaxy” line is great. I assume it’s only a one-off nod. But it would be awesome to have more monsters from that galaxy and maybe even others like the “ToQger Galaxy” or “Shadow Galaxy,” if you know what I mean.
Interesting, though understandable choice to turn Kyuuemon into female Madam Odius. I hope Madam Odius gets as big a role in the endgame as Kyuuemon eventually did.
Also good to see the Finishing Shuriken of the End aka the Ninja Nexus Star right off the bat as well as the 6th Ninja Star.
Overall, I enjoyed the premiere and am looking forward to the rest of the season. Starting off with basically a clean slate and a premise completely different than Ninninger should yield interesting results!