Recap: Power Rangers Dino Fury, Episode 16 – Ancient History
While the Rangers are training and Ollie enjoys a PB&J sandwich, the Gold Ranger teleports down into the command chamber unannounced. He demorphs and though Solon gives him a warm welcome, Zayto is quite the opposite.
The Gold Ranger, Aiyon, introduces himself and takes Ollie’s PB&J sandwich. Zayto asks how he could have survived the Great Sporix Battle. Aiyon tells the story of how they had ejected from the Megazord into pods, but his pod fell into the ocean. 65 million years later, the Green Morphin Master appeared to him to say he was needed in order to protect Earth from Lord Zedd.
The Rangers say Lord Zedd has been gone for ages and they realize the Nexus Prism must have been looking for Aiyon so it could inform the Masters.
Anyway, Aiyon asks about his Mosa Zord which Solon has not yet found. Izzy notices the cold expression on Zayto’s face and says they should be happy to have another member of the team.
Aiyon says he would love to be part of a team, on one condition: he become the leader. The others say Zayto has been a great leader. But Aiyon gets into Zayto’s face and says there’s a lot they don’t know.
Aiyon continues to flash back to when he and Zayto were the closest of comrades. When The Forces of Evil™ were nearing Rafkon, their people created Sporix Beasts to fight alongside them. However, the people in charge had not done enough testing and Zayto, as leader, did not voice out concern about the untested virus-looking Sporix blobs despite Aiyon suggesting he do so.
When the Sporix Beasts were about to be shot out of a canon, Aiyon attempted to take matters into his own hands. But it was too late. Zayto stops him, the Sporix Beasts were released and they ravaged Rafkon, killing most of its peoples.
With an angry-faced Izzy looking on, Amelia gets in Zayto’s face and scolds him for not telling them about this story.
Anyway, a Sporix pops up downtown and the Rangers have to leave. Zayto promises answers later.
They arrive to see Mucus shooting at people. But Mucus is able to spread fish oil all over the place. Zayto says he’s got this, but he does not. He slips on the oil and slams into crates to which Mucus pins him to. Ollie and Amelia try to back him up, but also slip away.
Aiyon tells the others to follow his lead. He shoots at a crate and uses it as a surfboard to navigate the oil slick and to shoot at the Hengemen. That gives Mucus enough time to wait for Slyther who has commandeered a boat.
Back at the command chamber, Aiyon says what just happened proves Zayto is unfit to be leader. Zayto doesn’t defend himself and just leaves. Aiyon takes charge and demands they find his Mosa Zord. Ollie thinks they might find answers with the data his mom collected.
The Rangers leave for Buzzblast to look at that data. Zayto stays behind and apologizes to Solon for not telling her about the Sporix. Solon says it’s alright since Zayto trusted his superiors. Zayto says he should’ve trusted Aiyon and thinks perhaps he really should step down as leader.
Solon says a true leader knows when to stand their ground or when to step aside. And that’s a decision only Zayto can make.
Meanwhile, Mucus and Slyther dismantle the boat for its parts which they use to fix up Sporix Beast Wreckmate who will help them find the Mosa Zord so they can destroy it.
Solon calls the Rangers when Wreckmate shows up downtown. They hurry over as Mucus serves Wreckmate some ice cream.
“No!!! My creams!!!”
Aiyon shoots the cream out of Wreckmate’s hands. Wreckmate shoots at Mucus who keeps tossing ice cream at his face.
Zayto teleports in and Aiyon scoffs at the audacity of Zayto to actually show up. Zayto says he just wants to help and says he knows when a leader should step aside. Aiyon takes that at his promotion, which the other Rangers nod in agreement to.
The Rangers morph and battle Hengemen. Both Zayto and Aiyon upmorph and compliment each other on their skills. Wreckmate embiggens and the Rangers hop into the Megazord with Aiyon taking the lead.
But Wreckmate knocks the Megazord into the water. Zayto says the water is going to shut down their systems at any moment. They ask a cowering Aiyon for his plan, but he doesn’t have one. So they turn to Zayto who says they will be defeated no matter what, so they must abandon their zords and get to safety immediately.
The Rangers teleport away as Wreckmate wrecks their zords. Aiyon admits he was wrong about judging Zayto’s leadership abilities. Zayto says it’s alright and they fist bump.
Meanwhile, the Mosa Zord appears out of nowhere to save the other zords from Wreckmate. Aiyon activates his zord’s battle mode and he and Zayto hop into the cockpit to finish up the Sporix Beast for good, while underwater.
Back at the command chamber, Zayto and Aiyon make up. Aiyon says Zayto should remain leader.
Woah! Slow down with the exposition there! That was probably the biggest expository dump I’ve ever seen on Power Rangers. And yes, that includes the Saban Brands Era.
I think it has to do with the show’s insistence against serialized storytelling. Instead of building up this “mystery” about their past, they just dump it all out within a few minutes. This all could’ve easily filled two or more episodes if written better. And that in turn could’ve really gone a long way to develop Zayto and Aiyon’s characters beyond this plot-driven faux-outrage-turned-friends-forever story. All in 22 minutes.
Probably the worst thing this episode did was give Aiyon such an underwhelming introduction. There’s cocky 6th Rangers. But then there’s Aiyon. And I think the way they introduced him was executed completely wrong.
He just teleports into the command chamber, in normal clothes, does a story time and the human Rangers are ready to cancel Zayto just like that? It felt like we skipped a few episodes in between. And I had to double check I was actually watching the correct episode.
He totally deserves more focus (and a more fleshed out introduction) than what they gave. Especially when it has to deal with the creation of the Sporix Beasts and his and Zayto’s relationship. But nuance and careful storytelling certainly is not something contemporary Power Rangers does well.
The way they just nonchalantly and passively explain that the Sporix Beasts are a Rafkonian creation that ended up wiping out their entire peoples is actually quite hilarious. That’s supposed to be a pretty big deal. But it ended up being a throwaway line. At least, that’s how it felt.
So, I was really disappointed in this episode. (Especially after considering the last episode one of the season’s best.) Not the best introduction to the 6th Ranger. Not the best way to reveal such a huge part of the Red(!) Ranger’s backstory AND the main reason the season (via the battle against the Sporix) even exists today. Overall, not one of my favorite episodes of the season. That’s for sure.