Today, we have our review for the first Mighty Morphin Power Rangers issue of the new year. Sadly, we did not receive the review copy from Boom! Studios on time, so we are covering it now. Currently, we are continuing through the Darkest Hour with this issue which follows Drakkon and Ranger Slayer. So, who knows what will happen when these two have reunited? Although, many already know this was a great encounter that leads to a battle of life and death. Anyway, let us get ‘back to action,’ and morph into this review for Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Issue 116!
- Artist: Adam Gorham & Marco Renna
- Colorist: Joana Laguente
- Lettering: Ed Dukeshire
- Writer: Melissa Flores
- Designer: Madison Goyette
- Darkest Hour Logo Designer: Dylan Todd
- Assistant Editor: Kenzie Rzonca
- Editor: Allyson Gronowitz
- Cover Artist: Taurin Clarke
- Hasbro Special Thanks to Irvin Ducournau, Tayla Reo, Michael Kelly & Ed Lane
So, our issue begins with a flashback prior to the Shattered Grid in the Coinless’ Dimension when Drakkon ruled unopposed. As a result, we get to see how the Coinless’ world looked before everything changed for the worse. Specifically, how the cities were before all the various events within the comics transpired. Here, we are presented with conversation between Lord Drakkon, and Ranger Slayer, where he sees Kimberly as his equal. Although, Drakkon is mostly referring to how he wants Ranger Slayer to become his queen. Surprisingly, through this moment we get to see a different side to Drakkon that shows he is still “Tommy.” Although, even if this “Tommy” has a romantic interest in Kimberly, his actions stopped any chance of her loving him. However, from this conversation it is interesting that even Drakkon would admit this, or show any signs of rejection.
Following this scene we return to the present day, where Drakkon has returned home and is being hunted by Ranger Slayer. Especially, since Ranger Slayer was corrupted by Dark Specter several issues ago in Unlimited: The Coinless special issue. Interestingly, we learn that the Dark Specter’s red eye control affect is not just exclusive to a Ranger’s helmet visor. Yet, while it is a great visual for the helmets, it also shows readers who has been corrupted. Overall, the red eyes were a good decision by the creative team involved with crafting The Darkest Hour event. Whereas, we then briefly return to the other Rangers who are trying to retreat from Safehaven. Surprisingly, their plan has somewhat worked, but I know they have not completed their mission. Also, Kiya seemingly may have gotten her last laugh at Drakkon, as she destroys the Master Arch. Furthermore, I have to point out the trope of “cool guys do not look at explosions,” when Kiya does this. So, I give props to the art team for how they illustrated this awesome page spread for Kiya.
Now, I am going to dig into the heart of this issue, which is Drakkon’s and Ranger Slayer’s fight. So, their battle is well paced throughout the issue, and I was never bored by the action or dialogue. Like from this battle, readers can further see the complexity of Drakkon’s and Ranger Slayer’s relationship. Here, Drakkon killed his universe’s Rita, and continued the cycle of abuse by enslaving Kimberly, as “his” Ranger Slayer. Yet, Kimberly has worked to fight against the abuse, while Rita continues to bend to Dark Specter’s will. However, due to Dark Specter’s corruption, Kimberly has seemingly accepted her fate of being a slave. However, when their final blows are exchanged, there is an interesting callback to the Shattered Grid. Specifically, when Ranger Slayer fired an arrow into the prime universe’s Tommy to restore his memories, if I recall correctly. Although, this time Drakkon uses the Dragon Dagger powered by the White Tiger Power Coin to save Ranger Slayer. Therefore, it proves that this Power Coin is incorruptible, and might be the only thing to stop Dark Specter.
Unfortunately, I do not know how I should feel about this reveal to a certain extent. For example, this plot point makes sense, as the White Ranger powers were established as being purely good energy. Although, with it being the focus, it makes me concerned if this story will become Tommy-centric. Personally, I am tired of Tommy being the most important character when compared to the other MMPR members and teams. Like I understand the character is super popular, but the comics should be establishing everyone to feel just as important. Especially, when looking at the television series, Tommy’s best moments depend on each fan’s perspective. Although, Boom! Studios does try to elaborate why Tommy is special versus the television series which did nothing. So, at least we are not too damned by the “Tommy show,” if it has to be that case.
Overall, I do enjoy this issue even though my opinion moments ago regarding Tommy where rather negative. However, this event is not finished yet, so my expectations and opinions may change as things develop. Hopefully, as the Darkest Hour progresses I am proven wrong with my “Tommy show” assumption, and others get to shine. Whereas, I barely mentioned Dark Specter’s reaction to the Master Arch’s destruction because he quickly acquires an alternative method. Coincidentally, it is a rather simple and villainous fix, but I will discuss it when more details are available. So, fans please expect to learn more about this when issue 117 releases next month. Anyway, I am Ben Odinson, and I am out of here for now!
Final Score: 4 Power Coins out of 5