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MMPR Equals Mighty Mystery (for the) Pink Ranger!

Written by Matt Lune on Thursday, June 02 2016 and posted in Reviews

MMPR Equals Mighty Mystery (for the) Pink Ranger!

Kimberly Hart returns to the uniform she thought she'd left behind to solve the mystery of her missing parents, in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: Pink #1

Source: Boom! Studios

The setting for this, the first spin off series since Boom! started producing brand new Power Rangers comics set in the 'Mighty Morphin' era, is a bit of a deep cut for casual fans of the show like me. Apart from the odd episode here and there I've not watched any MMPR for years now, so I had to do some research to truly 'get' when, in the chronology of the show, this series is set.

The main book is easier to pin down, because having it set right after Tommy (Oliver - The Green Ranger) is set free of Rita's spell and becomes an extra Power Ranger under Zordon's tuition makes it relatively simple to locate. Not only is that period of the show the most memorable due to it being the first major status-quo shift since the show began, it's also instantly recognisable because the Green Ranger is everyone's favourite Ranger, right? I mean, surely we can pin that down as a definitive fact that he is in fact the raddest of them all? His Zord is a Mecha-Godzilla that he summons from the sea with a flute that is also a sword and if that's not enough then maybe we can't be friends?


Anyway, I digress. As this book is all about the Pink Ranger (who's also awesome) and after refreshing my memory a bit, it's set after Kimberly leaves the team to pursue her gymnastics career two thirds of the way through season 3, to get replaced by Katherine as the new Pink Ranger. There's just enough exposition in the book to bring you up to speed - the narration is by Kimberly herself who eagerly talks you through everything she's doing, and Katherine even gets name-checked at one point too, so you don't need to be the obsessive idiot that I am and run to RangerWiki at the first sign of confusion (although it does help).

Kimberly left Angel Grove after being head-hunted to take part in the Pan Global Games, and Pink #1 begins on the last day of that competition. Her mom and step-dad haven't turned up to watch her compete, and sensing trouble, Kim makes the journey to her parent's new home in France to investigate, inadvertently stumbling upon a mystery that calls her back into action in a fun and interesting way.


I'm a big fan of what Boom is doing with this franchise. It would have been easy to accept the limitations that the show suffered from - both budgetary and the fact that it was made up of new and recycled footage - and based each issue on that same format: fluffy side story, fight with putty monsters, fight with monster of the week at human scale, something-something it's the hardest monster yet, fight with monster at Zord scale, victory, freeze frame joke, credits. 

Instead they're doing what any good franchise comic should, and using the limitless budget of the medium to truly explore the characters and concepts within this world. It's taken something which could easily have been relegated to the realms of precious nostalgia and elevated it to the superhero franchise that we always knew it to be. 


MMPR: Pink #1 goes a step further and begins us on a journey that will - hopefully - explore Kimberly more fully than she's ever been explored before. Writers Kelly Thompson (Jem and the Holograms, Heart in a Box, Marvel's A-Force) and Brendan Fletcher (Batgirl, Black Canary, Motor Crush) are no strangers to well developed female protagonists, and with Kimberly Hart they've sort of got a blank slate. I mean, she certainly had more of a story arc than some Power Rangers, but even then there's not much to her. She likes gymnastics, and is in love with Tommy. As I've already said, I'm not a hardcore fan so any Pink Ranger fans reading this may be ready to flip the tables, but my overall point is that this is a series primed and ready to explore this character to her fullest potential.

The artwork is fantastic, and perfectly suited to a Pink Ranger solo book coming out in 2016. Instantly reminiscent of Babs Tarr via Joelle Jones, Daniele Di Nicuolo creates an energy that tells its own story about who Kimberly is. Her fighting style is way more influenced by gymnastics here than in the show, which makes logical sense and fits the character, and he even does a few throwbacks to some of the Super Sentai poses that pushed my nostalgia button just the right amount.


A mention needs to go to Sarah Stern on colors too; a book with Pink in the title and a character who's superhero identity is defined somewhat by color deserves special attention you know? Stern's work here is great; it's crisp, bright and bold while maintaining a definite pink hue throughout most of the scenes to keep a consistent tone. 

Overall this is a great start to the first solo outing of the Mighty Morphin gang, and I'm looking forward to coming out the other side with a better understanding and appreciation for Kimberly Hart.


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About the Author - Matt Lune

Trapped in a world he never made, Matt is a comic-book obsessive and frequent internet user. GSOH with a vast and mostly useless knowledge of Marvel comics, Matt is currently striving to expand his reading experience into the DC Universe and as much Independent work as his bookshelf will support. Surrounded by dreams of making it big, when he's not on Twitter (@MattLune) he can be found on his own site, AwesomeSourceComics.com.
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