Originally published on Set The Tape
The latest episode of Power Rangers Ninja Steel, ‘Grave Robber’, is this season’s Halloween special. Whilst not a clip show like Power Rangers Dino Charge episodes, it fails to capture the charm or fun that previous iterations have managed so well.
When given a spooky board game to play, the Rangers (minus Levi) find themselves having to fight against formerly defeated foes returning from the grave. This in itself isn’t a bad concept, and it means that the series is able to utilise more Super Sentai footage that didn’t appear in the previous encounters with these monsters.
Whilst the action sequences of the Rangers are well made and entertaining, the episode is let down by the interconnecting scenes being quite flat and boring. The most charming moment of the episode involving the American cast is easily Sarah prancing through the set dressed as a fluffy unicorn, but everything else very much lacks the charm and humour that I’ve come to expect of a Halloween episode. Though, lacking charm and humour is probably a good way to describe much of Power Rangers Ninja Steel.
Thankfully, by including several fights against monsters that we’ve already encountered in the series, the episode is able to give us some things that we’ve not seen before; some of which you can imagine were cut from the original monster appearances because they were too bizarre to appear anywhere else but in a Halloween show. Calvin being tied to the side of a speeding truck with the unconscious driver about to send the vehicle off the edge of a cliff stands out as particularly special, and contains some very impressive stunt work; and is easily the best action sequence of the episode.
Sadly, the episode lacks in a lot of areas. The bizarre and over the top Ranger sequences really hammer home that the American side of the series is really not up to par. The characters still don’t feel developed so close to the end of the season, the stories feel barely thought through and lack any spark, and the cast aren’t given the chance to do anything to challenge themselves or win the audience over. Fingers crossed that things will improve on the way to the finale and going into Power Ranger Super Ninja Steel next year.
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