Ryan Parrott’s epic run Mighty Morphin Power Rangers came to an end with a massive clash with the Death Ranger. The results of the battle left Jason Scott without a connection to the Morphin Grid. Now with Jason retired what will both the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers and Omega Rangers do to move forward? And what new threat is around the horizon following the Death Ranger? To answer these questions and more Melissa Flores, who previously worked as a director and writer on Power Rangers HyperForce, is taking over BOOM! Studios’ Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. Let’s find out how this all goes with Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #101.
Writer: Melissa Flores
Artist: Simona Di Gianfelice
Colorist: Raul Angulo
In a flashback to ten thousand years ago, on Earth, as Zordon seals Rita Repulsa and her crew in a dumpster Rita uses a spell to trap Zordon in a time warp.
In the present, while Zordon and Alpha-5 are monitoring activity on the Moon the Power Rangers conduct a paintball training session that Kimberly and Aisha end up winning.
Zordon informs the Power Rangers that they got a distress signal coming from the Moon. While they think this could be a trap by Lord Zedd the Power Rangers decide to check things out.
To get to the Moon the Power Rangers use the Dragonzord’s new Flyer Mode. Before reaching the Moon the Dragonzord is attacked by new versions of the Putties.
After crash landing on the Moon, the Power Rangers are shocked to see Goldar running from a horde of Putties while screaming for help. The Power Rangers split up with Aisha and Rocky going to check out the Moon Palace while the others battle the army of Putties.
Inside the Moon Palace Finster transforms the throne into a monster that attacks Aisha and Rocky.
Tommy, Kimberly, and Matt head to the Moon Palace when Aisha and Rocky mention that something is going on beneath the palace but they can’t get there.
When Tommy, Kimberly, and Matt reach a secret chamber under the Moon Palace they are shocked to find a transformed Rita Repulsa with her heel on a bloody Lord Zedd while someone in the shadows stands behind Rita. End of issue.
There is nothing held back as Melissa Flores and Simona Di Gianfelice begin their run on Mighty Morphin Power Rangers as big and loud as possible. With how intense things have gotten in this series up to this point that is no easy task. But with Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #101 we see that Flores and Gianfelice are more than up for the challenge.
Immediately Flores and Gianfelice show that they are looking to build on everything Kyle Higgins, Ryan Parrott, and others who have worked on BOOM! Studios Power Rangers comics. We get that with the opening scene that shows us the exact moment when Zordon locked Rita Repulsa in the dumpster and as a “final” revenge Rita placed Zordon in a time warp. These actions show not only how intense the rivalry between Zordon and Rita is but that there are a lot of personal stakes that come with this rivalry.
It all works to set up why Zordon in the present day is so worried about what is going on at the Moon since things have been too quiet there. Adding to Zordon’s concerns was the fact they haven’t been paying attention to the Moon as of late because of all the events with the Death Ranger and other things that the Power Rangers have had to deal with. It’s a good use of recent events from the previous creative runs that give importance to why Zordon is so persistent in monitoring the Moon as closely as he does when Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #101 begins.
Along with that Flores establish how well she understands the voices of each member of this Power Rangers roster with a fun training game the team does. The paintball game works well on two fronts. For one we see Flores flex knowing what to have Tommy, Kimberly, Billy, Aisha, Rocky, Adam, and Matt would say when interacting with each other. Second, and more importantly, we get a good idea of the team chemistry they have at this point. The seven of them have been through so much that the chemistry is now there between all of them that they work as well as the original six Power Rangers did.
Establishing this early on transitions well into how quickly things get chaotic when the Power Rangers head to the Moon. Goldar running away in pure panic from an army of evolved Putties is not a sight you ever expect to see. This worked well to create an air of unpredictability that the Power Rangers had to deal with on the Moon. This created a scenario where the Power Rangers did need to work on the fly by splitting up at various points that went without question as the situation continued to change. This is a significant change from where we saw this Power Rangers team during the Necessary Evil storyline.
With how unpredictable things were Flores and Gianfelice delivered the biggest curve ball with the presentation of the returning Rita Repulsa. This isn’t the Rita who returns to marry Lord Zedd as she did in the TV show. No, this Rita Repulsa is back to being the #1 villain around and makes that clear as we see her in a new form while stepping on Lord Zedd who is bleeding out. If this isn’t a statement then I don’t know what is.
The mysterious figure in the shadows was also a nice touch. While we don’t know who this person is it would not be surprising if this is tied to the greater war Dark Specter has going on beyond Earth. It’s been a direction the Power Rangers comic books that have been exploring with all the recent storylines. Diving deeper into the Dark Specter storyline through Rita would add to the unpredictable direction we seem to now be on.
Gianfelice’s artwork throughout Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #101 adds so much to how the story goes over. With how many different characters are in a Power Rangers series it can be tough to nail the different characters’ looks and ways of acting. Gianfelice has no problem with that, as we see with the opening training sequence. From there Gianfelice delivers on the big action from how she draws the Dragonzord Flyer Mode to how chaotic the fight with the new Putties is. And then there is Rita Repulsa’s new design that Gianfelice absolutely nails.
Melissa Flores and Simona Di Gianfelice do not miss a beat with a home run of a comic book in the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #101. Right away a major statement is made with the return of a major forgotten Power Rangers villain that changes the game. How the Power Rangers and Zordon respond to this has me fully invested in finding out what happens next in this series.
Story Rating: 9 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 9 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 9 Night Girls out of 10