Dying trying to come up with an essay topic for KDS’s mod – if only I could tell Rei to go the easier route and just take the Chemistry mod. This is perhaps the most frustrated I’ve ever felt doing a mod, though prolly it’s just at my ineptitude to do anything (lol).

And because this has unashamedly turned into a Power Rangers/Super Sentai space: caught up with Shinkenger over the weekend. Very on point, very amused by how Samurai is essentially a terrible, pirated copy of Shinkenger.

Also meh, because watching clips of Samurai has spoiled Shinkenger for me, so Takeru’s secret is no longer very exciting ~~. But decided to watch how it was carried out in Samurai (because why not? tho Samurai is truly a v v v shit season, I would say worse than Megaforce), and went to the comments section and got unnecessarily pissed off by this comment:

lame

Because:

i) “Not to be sexist” is the worst way to ever begin when you’re just about to make a sexist comment – it doesn’t automatically make you sound more objective and informed and worldy~~ right before you make your dumbass remark.

ii) There has NEVER been a female Red Ranger in the franchise – besides A-Squad Charlie, who let’s face it, doesn’t exactly count since she just shows up for 5 minutes in Endings and does nothing much but blow shit up. Even so, I was insanely excited when she appeared because ‘omg Female Red!!!’. So there’s literally 0 evidence for why having a female Red is “a terrible idea”.

iii) Um – wow good job at remembering Time Force Jen, and then retracting your statement about being wrong about “female Power Rangers as leaders”. Defo not sexist at all in initially thinking that there shouldn’t be female leaders. Let me also name a few more seasons in which female Rangers/characters were cooler than/as good as their Red Ranger team mates: Mystic Force (because what sort of shit Red Ranger turns completely to darkness when it seems like he’s losing??), Mighty Morphin’ (cheap shot because Rocky is adorable, but not a fantastic Red), would even say that Dino Charge is veering into that category since Tyler isn’t the conventional Red and isn’t a leader per se (but that’s also testament to the strength of writing this season?).

To be fair, it’s rather silly that I’m getting so annoyed by a comment made a year ago on a random YouTube video by someone I’ll never actually meet in real life. But as someone who’s followed Power Rangers for years, who was friggin’ over-joyed when there was a Female Blue (because to 12 year old Rei, that meant everything – if girls can be Blue Rangers, they can be any colour, and not just Pink or Yellow – and how amazing is that !!!), who saw how excited the fandom was about Camille Hyde playing Shelby (because how is it that there’s never been an African American Pink until Dino Charge, and how is it that I never noticed either?) – gender representation and media representation are important. And to have a fan (or I guess, an ex-fan, since Lauren as Red and Megaforce turned him/her away from the franchise) dismiss that is just disheartening.

Perhaps it’s because I’ve always thought of Power Rangers as empowering – naiive, I know, since it’s made with the intention to sell toys. But, to me, there’s a certain duty of the show to promote certain types of values and morals (in a sense). For one, Zordon’s ‘Never use your power for personal gain’ and ‘Never escalate a battle (unless Rita forces you to)’ has become enshrined as Law in the fandom. It’s hard to quantify the extent of its impact, but Power Rangers taught me that girls can be badasses and cool as fk – I remember looking up to Cassie Chan (first Asian American female Ranger!) when I was a kid, and wanting to emulate her.

A few hundred years late to the part, but I guess that’s the crux of media representation: that it shows us new ways in which we can understand our own reality and imagine ourselves, functioning like Lacan’s mirror-stage in a way. Despite being an NM student, I’ve been rather skeptical of the power of media representation and the issues surrounding it, but I guess all I needed to do was just look at my own relationship with Power Rangers and realise that it’s actually quite legit (#dumbReimoment).

And that’s why I’m pissed that there are actually people in the Ranger fandom that don’t want a female Red. Imagine how amazing it is for little kids (I was going to type ‘viewers’, but c’mon, let’s be real about Power Rangers’ demographics) to see a female Red (and not just in passing like the Lauren/Jayden arc – a legit female Red who’s there at the start, who’s led her team successfully into battle, who’s capable and strong).

That’s why I’m hoping that Toqger would be adapted. On top of it possibly being my favourite Sentai season, I also really want to see how Saban handles the colour swaps throughout the whole season: a male Pink?? a female Green?? – imagine the possibilities (literally since Toqger’s go to phrase is: IMAGINATIONNNNN).

On another note, this is a reason why it frustrates me sometimes that people laugh at Power Rangers/Super Sentai, or my interest in it. Yes, it’s a kid’s show; and yes, it’s terribly shallow and silly at times. But there’s so much to explore in the two shows that’s as legitimate as an analysis into anything else. What’s also difficult about looking at Power Rangers is that a lot of it depends on Sentai footage, which means we can’t get a female Red until Sentai gives us a female Red – and that opens a whole new can of worms.

See, cross-comparison between the two shows is legit k? All the haters can just gtfo (*side-eyes the people who judged me when I said I would have done a Power Rangers/Super Sentai cross-cultural analysis on presentation of violence for Senior Sem if it weren’t limited to Singapore*.

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