By Jared Jones
Andy Dwyer’s will be done, it looks like Lionsgate Entertainment (in collaboration with Saban Brands) will be rebooting our favorite Saturday morning show from the 90′s, Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers, into a film franchise. Why? Because originality is dead, and “toys” are the new “ideas.” Honestly, we probably should have seen this coming the minute they announced a Peeps movie. Or a Barbie movie. Or a movie based around a goddamn Disney ride.
My bitterness aside, a new Power Rangers movie does provide us the opportunity to redeem the egregious casting mistakes that become all the more apparent with each retrospective viewing of the series. And I know what you’re thinking, “How will they ever replace that blue guy who kind of looked like that other guy from the Backstreet Boys?” But trust me, Lionsgate executives who are surely reading this, my suggestions should put your worries to rest…
Black Power Ranger: Samuel L. Jackson
Look, kids don’t want some PC, Saved by the Bell, Beaver Cleaver bullshit in their television shows anymore, let alone their movies — when they’re not trading each other’s prescription pills like Pokemon cards at recess, they’re mainlining bath salts and having blood orgies before the age of 12. As such, the only way a Power Rangers movie is going to survive in today’s movie landscape will be if it opts to reboot it in the dark, gritty vein of the Christopher Nolan Batman movies (or every superhero movie that’s come out in the past five years). Have you even seen the new TMNT trailer? It uses an Inception BRAHM over a Nickelodeon studio logo, for Christ’s sake.
Forget high school. Forget that stupid CP-30 rip off robot. Set the new Power Rangers movie in the seedy underbelly of the Red Light District and cast Samuel L. Jackson as the black, no, the *blackest* ranger. When he’s not handing out righteous ass-whoopings and keeping the White Ranger in check, have him spout off lines ripped directly from that Juggernaut Power Rangers parody we all know and adore. Although the folks over at Capital One would have you believe that Mr. Jackson has slowly morphed into an female librarian from Planet 9 (see above), a role in the new Rangers flick would be just enough to remind everyone that he is still a bad motherfucker.
White Power Ranger: Donald Sterling
What? It’s name is the WHITE POWER RANGER. Besides, if there’s one thing kids love more than demented superhero movies, it’s cheap laughs and in-jokes based around controversial pseudo-celebrities. Scary Movie 5 made nearly 80 million dollars worldwide, so suck it.
Red Power Ranger: Channing Tatum
Long considered to be the “leader” of the Power Rangers, the Red Ranger is perhaps most memorable for possessing the charisma of a shit sundae melting in the Arizona sun (perhaps “memorable” is the wrong word to use, but being that it has no antonym that I know of, I must use it nonetheless). That being the case, I can think of no actor more capable of pulling off stilted, emotionless line-delivery than the star of Dear John, The Eagle, and Step Up 2: The Streets.
Sure, Tatum was the bomb in 21 Jump Street, yo, but I’m still not convinced that this dude could act his way out of a local improv group if given two months to prepare. Casting him as the Red Ranger would all but guarantee a $150 million box office return and more soaked theater seats than an army of Shamwows could ever possibly mop up, though, so get on it, Lionsgate.
Blue Power Ranger: Jason Bateman
Aside from looking like that one guy from Backstreet Boys (what was his name?! Ben? Bradley?), the Blue Ranger was the most whitebread, nerdy, spectacles-testicles-wallet-and-watch motherfucker of the whole bunch. He’s a comic relief who doesn’t have any business possessing the kung fu skills he has, so why not cast Pepper Brooks himself in the role of Blue Ranger and just have him do that Jason Bateman-y thing we all love for 90 minutes? You know, the thing where does a double-take before making some snide comment under his breath? Also known as that thing Matthew Perry always does? Yeah, that thing.
Pink Power Ranger: Daphne from Scooby Doo
There’s not much you can say about the Pink Ranger, really, other than the fact that she was a “subordinate member of the team” (just quoting the Power Rangers wiki here). Like Daphne from Scooby Doo, the Pink Ranger would just blindly follow whatever scheme her fellow Rangers had dreamed up at the drop of a hat, no matter how ridiculous or half-cocked they seemed. Riding a motorcycle into space with no destination truly in mind? Pink Ranger’s in. Allowing the White Ranger to take on Goldar and Scorpina by himself? Sounds like a plan. Fighting an an army of mutant black Rangers? That’s a “ye” from Pinky.
Essentially, the Pink Ranger was a mindless drone, an SS guard in pink tights, who served no other purpose than to occasionally block a laser attack from hitting a member of the crew who actually mattered. So why bother paying an actress to flail around like a fish out of water when you could just animate one.
Yellow Power Ranger: Asa Akira
If there was ever a more egregious oversight in the Power Rangers universe than it’s blatant racism in terms of costuming, it’s the complete lack of sexuality given to its female characters. Amy Jo Johnson? Cute as a button. Thuy Trang? A bonafide fox. Casting these women only to hide their bodies beneath layers of horrendous 90′s attire and full-body Ranger suits was a goddamn travesty on par with Benghazi (or at the very least, Hurricane Katrina). A kids show MMPR may have been, but in a world where 9-year-olds are already downloading Angry Birds fetish porn on their Ipads, it makes perfect sense to cast an adult film star Asa Akira as the Yellow Ranger. And not just because she’s Asian.
As with the Pink Ranger, the Yellow Ranger is described by Ranger wiki as being “a subordinate member of the team” but also “usually the teams’ morale booster.” Asa Akira, on the other hand, has become infamous for boosting the morales of sad, lonely men with her “award-winning asshole.” We recently learned that Asa can take a punch (choke) from the likes of UFC legend Chuck Liddell, and her extensive background in combat (water)sports means she’ll require far less training than the average Hollywood starlet who flinches every time she breaks a fingernail (off in someone’s urethra).
Do you see any problems here, Lionsgate execs? Because all I see are dollar signs. And assholes. But mainly, dollar signs from all the money your Power Rangers movie will inevitably rake in on account of these brilliant casting choices. You can thank me when I bill you later.