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30 Years Later, It’s Back to Action with the OG ‘Power Rangers’

This week, Netflix released the hotly anticipated trailer for the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: Once & Always anniversary special. Thirty years may have passed since their debut, but when it comes to the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, the more things change the more they stay the same.

You see, their classic nemesis, Rita Repulsa, has returned in the present day, but this time in robot form. When the Yellow Ranger falls in battle against Robo Rita, the remaining Rangers must band together to prevent the creation of a time portal to be used to destroy them in the past, before their team is formed.

Starring original cast members Walter Emanuel Jones (Zack/Black Ranger) and David Yost (Billy/Blue Ranger), the team is rounded out by Steve Cardenas (Rocky/Red Ranger II) and Catherine Sutherland (Kat/Pink Ranger II), both of whom joined later in the show’s run: We’re also introduced to Trini/Yellow Ranger’s daughter, played by Charlie Kersh, who wants to join in the fight for justice for her mom. The actress known for portraying Trini, Thuy Trang, was sadly killed in a car accident in 2001. Also missing from the special are original Red Ranger, Jason — played by Austin St. John — and original Pink Ranger, Kimberly — played by Amy Jo Johnson. Despite rumors, there hasn’t been a formal explanation for St. John’s absence (which is especially odd since he recently returned in the Power Rangers: Beast Morphers series), while Johnson tweeted that she declined the offer that had been presented to her. Meanwhile, Johnny Yong Bosch (Adam/Black Ranger II) and Karan Ashley (Aisha/Yellow Ranger II) are also present, in a mysterious capacity. 

There are a lot of Easter eggs in the trailer for longtime fans of the franchise. From references to other cities in the Power Rangers universe, to Zordon’s shattered tube, to fighting the evil Putties once again in the Angel Grove Gym & Juice Bar — this Ranger homecoming has something for everyone. 

The trailer also poses several big questions: How is Rita evil again (She regained her humanity and renounced evil in the series finale of Power Rangers In Space)? Where did the Dino Zords come from (They were destroyed, but their remnants were used to create the Thunderzords)? Who’s in the Green Ranger suit (actor Jason David Frank, who portrayed Sixth Ranger Tommy Oliver, was not a part of the special. He passed away shortly after it was filmed)? How will Tommy’s absence be addressed (in Power Rangers canon, he is married to Kat in the present day)? I look forward to the answers to these questions and more, when the 55-minute Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: Once & Always special debuts April 19, only on Netflix! 

Premiering on Fox Kids in 1993, Power Rangers was created when Haim Saban melded Japanese tokusatsu Super Sentai footage with stories featuring American actors. Over the past 30 years, there have been over 27 different series and three theatrical movies. The franchise is currently owned by toymaker Hasbro, and new episodes are released exclusively on Netflix. 

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