The 2017 Power Rangers movie is the very definition of a reboot. In the new trailer that debuted out of New York Comic Con, Dean Israelite’s ensemble superhero flick based on the cult toy and TV phenomenon from the ‘90s reinvents the technicolor icons from the ground up.
Besides being darker and moodier, here are all the significant changes the new [Power Rangers film has made to the classic TV show you remember tuning in every day after school.
1) The Power Rangers are NOT friends
Right when the trailer begins, we meet team leader Jason, who is not a karate-teaching A-student but a troubled and reckless youth. We then meet the other Rangers who have nothing in common except Saturday detention, making Power Rangers kind of like a superhero Breakfast Club.
These aren’t the tight-knit, five-person clique we knew from the ‘90s. They’re not model students nor the best of friends. They’re disparate, and the Power Rangers movie will see them forced to come together as one.
Here’s the first shot of Jason, being reprimanded by his blue-collar dad for wrecking his pick-up truck. It’s not made clear by the trailer, but somehow Jason is forced to spend every Saturday in detention “just to graduate,” and that’s how he meets the rest of his multicolored companions.
2) The Command Center is now underwater
In the TV show, the Rangers’s Command Center — their home base of operations — is located in a remote area of the California desert. In the film, it is now located underwater, making it much harder to access and less vulnerable to attack. Although, the Power Rangers’s HQ was also underwater in Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue, and it was still invaded. So, will this be a problem?
3) They have actual superpowers now
Although the Power Rangers are superheroes, it’s never been explicit what they could do. Their Power Suits (more on those later) gave them superior strength, speed, and durability than the average person, but we never actually saw them perform great feats.
Now, they do. It’s still not clear how their powers work, but even in human form, the Rangers exhibit superpowers like strength, invincibility, some serious long-distance jumping, and some kind of telepathy exhibited by Jason in the cafeteria.
4) Jason and Kimberly hook up
Alert the shippers: Jason and Kimberly become an item! This is a radical change to fans who have long known of Kimberly and Tommy, the Green Ranger, as an item. Tommy doesn’t appear in the film, but perhaps he will in the sequel. Is there a Twilight-esque love triangle already brewing?
5) “I’ve killed Rangers before.”
Whoa, Rita! Elizabeth Banks’s Rita Repulsa is much more sinister than the original empress of evil from the TV show. In one part of the trailer, she appears saying she’s “killed Rangers before.” Besides the explicit word “kill” — Power Rangers was a very, very kid-friendly series — it also hints at a greater mythology.
In the TV show, Zordon — the wise alien wizard who mentors the Power Rangers — hinted several times that other generations of teenagers have fought evil as the Power Rangers, but fans never learned who they were. Could Power Rangers at last bear witness to the mythic Power Rangers of ancient times?
6) Is there no more morph sequence?
With this just being a trailer this is speculative, but there appears to be no more need for a “morph sequence.” You know what I’m talking about: It’s when they shout “It’s morphin’ time!” and then call upon their Dinozords (“Mastadon!”, “Tyrannosaurus!”) to become superheroes. Director Dean Israelite has said the costumes in the film are more alien and latch on to their bodies. That’s true in the trailer, but is shouting out dinosaur species now a relic of 1993?
Saban’s Power Rangers arrives in theaters March 24, 2017.