troperville

tools

toys


main index

Narrative

Genre

Media

Topical Tropes

Other Categories

TV Tropes Org
random
Franchise: Super Sentai
Offical series logo starting from 2000's Timeranger

Super Sentai is a long-running live-action Japanese Sentai Tokusatsu franchise by the Toei Company based around a Five-Man Band of transforming heroes armed with Humongous Mecha.

Unlike most American shows, each season is treated as its own series, introducing a new team, new costumes, a new setup, and new mecha. Each series has a unique Verse disjointed from the others, and the teamup movies are considered non-canon, though they appear to occupy their own side universe. The 35th anniversary series Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger is the first series to take place in this universe where all Sentai exist.

Since 1993, each Super Sentai series from the previous year has been adapted for American and global audiences in the form of Power Rangers, using a multi-ethnic cast and splicing in the combat and mecha footage (often with many changes). This changed to two years after the 2010 hiatus in which a "reversion" of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers was aired instead of an adaptation of the previous year's Sentai.

To date, the franchise has undergone the following series:

And the "unofficial" series, produced by Toei but explicitly not a proper installment:

The addition of mecha to the series was made with the third installment, Battle Fever J, which was originally intended as an adaptation of Captain America in the spirit of the Japanese live-action version of Spider-Man (which also featured a giant robot). This is actually where the "Super" in "Super Sentai" comes from; for years Goranger and J.A.K.Q. were just called "Sentai" and not counted in chronologies until the 20th anniversary with Ohranger.

Super Sentai is usually contrasted with Kamen Rider, another tokusatsu franchise by the same corporation, with a similar deal but no mecha and far more serious stories. The two franchises met (canonically) on-screen for the first time in an episode of Kamen Rider Decade featuring the Shinkenger team, with Decade making a brief cameo in a Shinkenger episode beforehand.

Before Power Rangers, the USA Network had run several episodes of a Gag Dub of Dynaman, dubbing ridiculous dialogue in place of the original.

Recently has been appearing in the SH Figuarts and Super Robot Chogokin toylines.

And May 2012 saw the release of Kamen Rider X Super Sentai Superhero Taisen, a full-fledged crossover between the two franchises with 240 heroes joining forces. The star on the Super Sentai side will be Captain Marvelous/Gokai Red, with the other Gokaiger (particularly Joe Gibken/Gokai Blue and Don Dogoier/Gokai Green) and the Go-Busters playing a prominent role. One year later, Kamen Rider Super Sentai Space Sheriff: Super Hero Taisen Z was released, with the main Sentai stars being the Kyoryuger, Yoko Usami/Yellow Buster, and Gai Ikari/Gokai Silver.

See also the arcade game, Super Sentai Battle Dice O.


These series provide examples of the following:

  • All Up To You: Most of the single shot episodes involve the character getting focus that day needing to save the rest of the team from the Monster of the Week.
  • An Asskicking Christmas: It's nearly a norm now that there will be a Christmas episode... and monster ass-kicking WILL still occur.
    • With the New Year's episode next week following the norm.
  • Artifact Title: The Super Sentai arcade game Dice-O, so named because each Ranger's attacks were represented by six-sided dice. When the game was upgraded during Gokaiger's run, the dice were replaced by a roulette shaped like a ship's wheel.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: The higher you get up the villains' chain of command, the more powerful they generally are. The leader of the Sentai also tends to be the strongest fighter.
  • Awesomeness Is Volatile: This is the simplest explanation as to why the rangers' Transformation Sequence and kickass posing triggers spontaneous explosions.
  • BBC Quarry: In fact, Brazilian fans nicknamed a recurring fight location "Toei Quarry".
  • BFG: The "Team Bazooka", which comes in one of two flavors. Sometimes it's a combination of all the team members' personal weapons (the first example of which is Battle Fever's Pentaforce) while other times it's a standalone weapon (the first example being Maskman's Shot Bomber). Though J.A.K.Q.'s Big Bomber is a BFG, it's not usually considered a Team Bazooka because it's a literal cannon and the separate pieces can't be used as weapons)
    • As of Gokaiger, 11 shows have use the combining weapons version (Gaoranger had the same concept applied to a BFS) while nine use separate bazookas (including the aforementioned Big Bomber). Three more teams use one of each, while the other eleven use alternative methods of finishing off a monster.
    • Gokaiger Goseiger 199 Heroes introduced the Super Sentai Bazooka, formed from the powers of all the teams and requiring ten Rangers (two full teams) to wield properly.
  • Badass: Lots. Usually, it's the leader, the second-in-command and the sixth ranger who fit the badass role perfectly.
    • World of Badass: Almost every hero and villain are badasses to some extent. Some series, such as Maskman and Kyoryuger, take this Up to Eleven.
  • Big "WHAT?!": There is at least one of these scenes in an episode per series, usually induced by the hero group moving their faces up to the camera (as if they're facing the person in question) and simply yelling "EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEHHHHHHHHHHHHH!?"
  • Boss Subtitles: A tradition that started with Bioman, ended with Magiranger, and revived with Kyoryuger, in which nearly every villain, whether they be a monster of the week or one of the main bad guys, would have their name displayed during their first appearance. The same goes for the heroes' and villains' mechs.
  • Broken Faceplate: In deadly serious battles, the villains will sometimes land a hit that cracks open the rangers' helmets, partially revealing their faces.
  • By the Power of Grayskull!: Each Sentai team has its own henshin call.
  • Calling Your Attacks
  • Camera Abuse: Starting to see use as of the 2000's, enemy explosions generally cause the battlefield "camera" to shake violently, in an attempt to hide the twitches and slight movements by heroes and mecha during finisher poses.
  • Card-Carrying Villain: Many of the villains openly proclaim "evil" as their ideology.
  • Cerebus Rollercoaster: Applicable to individual series and the overall franchise - Ohranger to Carranger, Go-onger to Shinkenger, etc.
  • Conflict Ball: In pretty much all the Crossover movies, the two reds will find some reason not to get along.
  • Color-Coded Characters
    • Red is the Hero and leader
      • One exception for this is Mirai Sentai Timeranger, which had the (female) pink ranger as general leader of the team and the (male) red ranger only acting as field commander during battles.
    • Blue and Green trade off between The comic relief and super serious, though it's usually blue who is the serious one and green the goofball.
    • Black is usually the tough guy, possibly the lone wolf. Also applies to yellow if it's male.
    • Yellow if it's female is usually masculine.
    • Pink tends to be the feminine one.
    • The Sixth Ranger tends to be the lone wolf, but may be the goofball in some cases. They often come in nonstandard colors; the one most commonly associated with them is Silver.
  • Crossover: Since Ohranger vs. Kakuranger, Toei has released a crossover movie each year that teams up the previous year's Super Sentai team with their direct predecessors.
    • Before that, there was a JAKQ vs. Goranger movie, which serves as an epilogue to the J.A.K.Q. Dengekitai TV series.
    • The first episode of Kousoku Sentai Turboranger was preceded by a retrospective of the last ten Super Sentai shows before it. The Turborangers appeared in the special, along with the ten preceding teams from Battle Fever to Liveman (Gorangers and the JAKQ team were not part of the special, since they were only retroactively considered part of the franchise in later years).
    • Super Sentai World was a short 3D movie shown at amusement parks focusing mainly on the Kakuranger team, that had them teaming up with the previous four Sentai teams (Fiveman, Jetman, Zyuranger, and Dairanger).
    • The milestone crossovers, Gaoranger vs. Super Sentai (25th anniversary commemorative, which featured a Dream Sentai consisting of Big One, Red Falcon, Mega Pink, Ginga Blue, and Go Yellow, as well as a cameos by all the other Reds up to that point) and Boukenger vs. Super Sentai (which commemorated the 30th anniversary, but was less broad in its coverage than the Gaoranger one, using heroes and villains from the 2000s series, as its Dream Sentai team consisted of Hurricane Blue, Abare Black, Deka Break, Magi Yellow and Magi Shine, and Aka Red).
    • Taken Up to Eleven with the first episode of Gokaiger, wherein all 34 teams fight together. Gokaiger's entire premise is of a crossover nature as well.
    • The crosover between Kyoryuger and Go-Busters also includes the previous dinosaur teams Zyuranger and Abaranger.
    • Then there's the arcade game Dice-O (and its successor, Dice-O Deluxe), in which you can build your own dream team of Sentai heroes and have them fight against other heroes or villains from various Sentai series.
  • Custom Uniform: has varied in use over the years, sometimes crossing over into the realm of Limited Wardrobe, but nowadays, it's par for the course.
    • In terms of the Sentai suits themselves (not counting the girls' miniskirts), this is pretty much the norm for extra warriors. While each member is (or would be, if they were monochromatic) differentiated by their helmets, extra rangers get a few more tweaks on their suits (like the Kiba Ranger in Dairanger, who wears a black vest over his suit while his teammates' vests are white).
  • Department of Redundancy Department: Many of the names use both Japanese and English, sometimes meaning the same thing.
  • Deus Exit Machina: A lot of times, Sixth Rangers are often away for crucial fights.
  • The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: In the Dice-O video game, normally using rangers from different teams in a Finishing Move results in random quotes and grunts from those rangers taking the place of the usual phrases used during the finishimg move. If you use the intended team, you'll get the quotes. If you mix up the order of the rangers from the usual one... they'll still use the quotes, but they'll be said by different rangers compared to what usually happens in the show. See these variations of the Big Bomber for an example of this in action.
    • In the same vein, the Gokai Galleon Buster is a special card that can be used by any team; the animations are the same regardless, but each character uses their own personal Ranger Key.
  • Elemental Powers
  • Evolving Credits: Usually happens when a new Big Bad takes control of the villains, a new member joins the team or when they get a new Mecha and/or Mecha combination.
  • Five-Man Band: Although the dynamic varies from series to series, Super Sentai tends to follow a specific formula:
    • The Leader: Red Rangers. Even when not the leader, Red Rangers are always The Hero.
    • The Lancer: Blue Rangers; but can also include any type of 'Lone Wolf' (Gekiranger) or those with authority issues (GoGoV). Black and Green are the second most likely to play this role. This is also the most common role for Red Rangers who are not the leader of their respective teams.
    • The Smart Guy: Green or Black; or any member who relies more on brains and analytical skills. This is the second most common role for Yellow Rangers .
    • The Big Guy: Yellow Rangers; or any member who favors brute force and direct offense. Blue Rangers are the second most likely to play this role.
    • The Chick: Pink or White Rangers; usually the token female, or the Girly Girl half of the Tomboy and Girly Girl. The more developed examples may serve as The Heart of their respective teams.
    • The Sixth Ranger: Gold or Silver Rangers, or any ranger whose uniform includes a metallic color or armor. White Rangers and Bangai (extra) heroes are the second most likely to play this role. It should be noted that being a Sixth Ranger is not a numeric designation but rather marks them as a supplementary member.(IE-Abare Killer, the Sixth Ranger of Abaranger, was actually the fifth member of his team.) Among Sentai Teams; Sixth Rangers tend to serve as secondary Lancers (Dragon Ranger of Zyuranger) Big Guys (Kiba Ranger of Dairangers) or Smart Guys (Gokai Silver of Gokaiger).
    • Kid-Appeal Character: In a series where The Smart Guy isn't really the smartest of the group, this is where the Kid-Appeal Character comes in. The main feature of a Sentai Kid-Appeal Character is that he's relatable by children, either he's really good with kids or most importantly, he's the youngest of the team or between the men, making him more relatable to kids, but way too competent to be considered a Tagalong Kid. This may overlap with The Smart Guy, but not always. Very much justified since the intended audience of Super Sentai are mostly kids, so they're going to need someone relatable. Some characters of this type overlap with other main roles than The Smart Guy.
    • Plucky Comic Relief: A few teams have one. The Plucky Comic Relief is usually bent on getting into humorous situations and can be set as an alternative to the Kid-Appeal Character or sometimes overlapping with The Big Guy.
  • Fleeting Demographic Rule: There are some original themes here and there, but sometimes the creative team rehashes past themes. So far, there have been a few Sentai themes that have been used more than once, like cars (Turboranger, Carranger and Go-Onger) and dinosaurs (Zyuranger, Abaranger and Kyoryuger).
    • One theme that's often explored are Animal Motifs: starting with Sun Vulcan, we've had Liveman, Jetman (which used a bird subset), Gingaman, Gaoranger, Gekiranger (to a lesser degree, as the series explores mostly Kenpo), Go-Onger (half of it anyway, as the Engines are basically vehicles that look like animals) and Go-Busters (if only because of the Buddyroids).
  • God Mode: This varies from era to era, but especially in recent years, it's common to see the team getting through entire battles without even getting a single scratch until around episode 3.
  • The Good Guys Always Win
  • Good Is Not Nice: Some series have some characters that are good, but are also jerks. Turned up to eleven in Gokaiger, where 60% of the team (50% with the Sixth Ranger) has a dickish demeanor.
  • Henshin Hero: They mostly don't use the word itself, instead opting to use phrases that include the the (english) word "change". However, the Ohrangers and Magirangers say it, and the Shinkengers have it written on their Shodophones.
  • Highly Conspicuous Uniform: appropriately, overlapped with Highly-Visible Ninja in Kakuranger and Hurricanger.
  • Hot-Blooded: The number one defining trait of a Red Ranger, though there are aversions, like Ryu Tendou and Takeru Shiba.
  • Humongous Mecha: Introduced in Battle Fever J - and, conversely, introducing the "Super" to Sentai.
  • In the Name of the Moon
  • Law of Chromatic Superiority: Not to the extent of Power Rangers, but the Reds definitely have the advantage, usually getting extra weapons and vehicles. Taken to the extreme with Abaranger's AbareMax, in which AbaRed takes some of the power from his partners, AbareBlue and AbareYellow, to gain a Super Mode.
  • Leader Forms The Head: Varies depending on the show.
  • Lighter and Softer: When compared to Kamen Rider. But not as light and soft as Power Rangers... sometimesnote .
    • Darker and Edgier: A few of the shows do feature a somewhat heavier tone than most, however, most notably Jetman, which was at least as dark as the original Kamen Rider towards the end.
      • Ohranger was also supposed to go the Darker and Edgier route until real-world disasters (including the sarin gas attack) forced the studio to quickly change it.
    • Super Sentai has bounced back and forth on this for decades. The franchise took a big turn for the Darker and Edgier when it grew a massive beard in 1985's Dengeki Sentai Changeman, a status quo that lasted through 1991's Choujin Sentai Jetman. Sentai of this era was at least as dark and edgy as any Kamen Rider series short of the first 13 episodes of the original. Super Sentai then shifted to Lighter and Softer with 1992's Kyoryu Sentai Zyuranger (which coincided with Noboru Sugimura taking over as head writer) and again with 2001's Hyakujuu Sentai Gaoranger (Sugimura was long gone by then). While a small handful of individual series since Zyuranger and Gaoranger have been Darker and Edgier than those two, (2000's Mirai Sentai Timeranger, for example) the tone of the 1992-2000 era is lighter on average than the 1985-1991 era, and the average tone of the 2001-present era is lighter still.
      • Part of the lighter tone recent Sentai has had in general is due to its being in a Sunday morning time slot (geared towards kids) since 1997, as opposed to a Wednesday evening time slot (more family-oriented).
  • Long Runners: 2011 marked 35 years of Super Sentai, with 199 Heroes uniting all of them (an expansion of the Legend War at the opening of Gokaiger's first episode). Unlike its companion franchise, Kamen Rider (which reached 40 years in 2011 and had its reunion in the OOO movie Let's go Kamen Riders), there has been a new Sentai series almost every year since the beginning, with the exception of 1978 (Battle Fever J, which was considered the first Super Sentai for years, aired in 1979).
  • Meaningful Name/Punny Name/Theme Naming: PLENTY, if you're really knowledgeable in Japanese and each specific theme.
  • Media Watchdog: Around 1983/84 Super Sentai series received serious retools in how the action scenes played out due to being specifically targeted by Moral Guardians for violent content due to being directly targeted at children.
    • And again in the early 90s, after all the adult and graphic content present in Jetman.
  • Mini Dress Of Power: Every female ranger since Maskman (plus the girls in JAKQ and Denjiman before it; Fiveman and Dekaranger being the only exceptions after), over their regular bodysuit/leggings, which allows one to tell which (usually yellow) rangers were gender-swapped when the series was converted to Power Rangers. Even when they did not have them, sometimes the suits had designs reminiscent of swimsuits (as seen in Bioman and Changeman).
  • Mood Whiplash: Aside from Wham Episodes interspersing with BizarroEpisodes depending on the series, there's also the fact that the ending theme is quite upbeat pretty much most of the time, creating the effect when an episode ends in a dramatic note.
    • Worse when watching online or on DVD - the original TV broadcast would have commercials between the final scene and the end credits.
  • More Dakka: If a series introduces a second mecha, it typically runs on this. Larger combinations of two or more mecha also tend to add lots and lots of firepower to the original.
  • The Multiverse: While it was suspected and widely believed for a long time, Ninpuu Sentai Hurricaneger: Ten Years After left Continuity Snarls involving Shurikenger and one of the villains that seems to have confirmed this. How it works:
    • Each team generally has their own universe.
    • Goranger and JAKQ share a universe between themselves along with Kamen Rider and Kikaider.
    • Denziman and Sun Vulcan share a universe between themselves; said universe is also where the Space Sheriff trilogy takes place.
    • The crossovers all exist in the same universe and, barring some changes, is basically combining all of the other universes. The events of Gokaiger happens in this universe.
    • Akibaranger heavily implies at the end of Season 2 that it is also part of the Super Sentai multiverse, but in a weird place.
    • There is a shared afterlife between every universe.
    • Finally, some seasons have multiverses of their own, such as Go-Onger (the eleven Braneworlds) and Akibaranger (the "real" world, Delusion World, and Saburo Hatte's World.)
  • Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Villains tend to have names that translate into this, as well as the team mecha's.
  • Near Villain Victory: The last few episodes of any given series will see the Big Bad on the cusp of absolute victory before their inevitable defeat.
  • No Ontological Inertia: several cases of whatever damage the villains have caused being completely undone after their defeat. More specifically, afflictions to civilians seemingly disappear afer the MotW is brought down the first time, even if it's Not Quite Dead AND still able to return as a giant.
  • Obvious Stunt Double: This is why the majority of female rangers have skirts on their outfits, to hide the the fact that most of the in-costume work is done by stuntmen.
  • Only One Name: Generally used to mark characters who are outsiders to modern day Japan, like the Zyurangers, Timerangers (except, obviously, for Tatsuya and Naoto), or Goseigers. Exceptions to this rule include the Maskmen, the Dairangers (who use titles rather than surnames, e.g. Tenkaseinote  Ryo) and the Toqgers (whose case can be chalked up to their Laser-Guided Amnesia).
  • Passing the Torch: A symbolic version. Starting with Dekaranger, the closing credits of each series finale ends with a short vignette of the current Red Ranger shaking hands with the Red Ranger of the next series.
  • Pink Means Feminine: The series often had a girl in the group wearing pink. Nowadays in teams without a Pink Ranger, it's often the Yellow Ranger instead. For bonus points, when the girl is the White Ranger, she tends to have pink accents in the uniform (examples being Jetman and Gaoranger, while Kakuranger is an aversion; notably, Changeman had both a Pink Ranger and a female White Ranger, and the latter's uniform did have details in pink).
  • Primary-Color Champion: Red and Blue Rangers are constants, and all but a very small handful have a Yellow. This is especially obvious whenever they use the Three Plus Two format.
  • Product Promotion Parade
  • Ranger: Many Super Sentai heroes aren't technically this by name, but they're all generally this in description. Vul Panther from Taiyou Sentai Sun Vulcan happened to be a ranger in the military sense before he even got his powers!
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Averted, unless Ranger Keys or the ToQgers' line changes are involved. Of the twelve colors that have been used (Red, Blue, Yellow, Green, Pink, Black, White, Silver, Gold, Orange, Violet and Gray), pink is the only one reserved solely for women. Red (Hime ShinkenRed ), blue, yellow, green (Mele), white, silver, gold (DekaGold), orange (DekaSwan) and violet (the second KyoryuViolet) have been used by both genders. As of Kyoryuger, black and gray are still male only.
    • Played straight in Gokaiger VS Gavan, which has a scene in which the entire team (even the men) changes into pink warriors - complete with no Mini Dress Of Power for the boys.
  • Red Is Heroic: All seasons have a Red Ranger, who is almost always the leader. Even when he isn't (as in Kakuranger and Timeranger), the POV is mostly centered on Red rather than the leader.
  • Rookie Red Ranger: Naturally, considering that the trope comes from Power Rangers.
    • Not really, Dairanger was the first of either series to feature this trope. Lost Galaxy was the first Power Ranger series to feature this with it already also been featured in Gingaman as well. In Space subverts this trope though.
  • Scarf Of Ass Kicking: All of the series from Battle Fever J and Goggle V. Akibaranger uses them probably as a Mythology Gag.
  • Sentai: Of course.
  • Sixth Ranger: Along with Power Rangers, Trope Namer. A once-a-year tradition that began with Zyuranger, although J.A.K.Q. and Liveman both featured additional members introduced mid-series, while Bioman and Maskman experimented with the idea of a sixth member in the form of a One-Shot Character. Some of the more recent shows that begin with just three members on the team (such as Hurricaneger and Gekiranger) have more than one additional warrior in order to round out a team of five. At some points it gets crazy; Hurricaneger ends up getting a sixth member anyway, the fifth member of Abaranger is counted as a sixth due to showing up at the usual time for a sixth to appear and joining really late, and Go-Onger has two official sixth rangers and, as of now, is unique in that regard, as other teams with more rangers choose one to be the sixth and make the others extra rangers, most notably Dekaranger, Magiranger, and Kyoryuger.
  • The Smurfette Principle / Two Girls to a Team: Almost all of the early shows up to Kagaku Sentai Dynaman only had one female ranger per team. Taiyou Sentai Sun Vulcan didn't even have a female member at all, just a supporting character who assisted the team from the sidelines. Choudenshi Bioman in 1984 started the tradition of having two full-time female rangers at the same time, going back and forth between periods where the franchise would return to having just one female per team (1988-1989, 1992-1994, 1998-2003) and then going back to having two again (1990-1991, 1995-1997). Almost all the teams between 2004 and 2012 have featured two full-time female rangers with the exception of Gekirangernote , while the second girl in Go-onger ended up being an extra ranger who joins the team mid-series. The latter formula would be repeated in 2013.
    • During its early seasons, Power Rangers would gender flip the yellow rangers when adapting Sentai shows with just one girl in order to have two girls for each each season, resulting in five male yellow heroes from Super Sentai being changed into female characters for Power Rangers.
  • Space Police: There was Signalman from Carranger and years later we had a Space Police Sentai in Tokusou Sentai Dekaranger. And then the Gokaigers teamed up with a Space Sheriff who kicked off a whole other Toku legacy.
  • Strictly Formula: Not just individual episodes, but the series themselves.
    • Around episode 10 there will be an unbeatable Monster of the Week necessitating a new Humongous Mecha combination.
    • The Sixth Ranger appears around Episode 17note . note 
    • Roughly Episode 20 will involve the villains having another extra strong Monster of the Week, which will require the heroes to get another Humongous Mecha in order to defeat it.
    • The vicinity of Episode 30 will get the villains the ability to create stronger Monsters of the Week.
    • Anywhere from Episode 42-47, the villains get their own Humongous Mecha that's every bit as strong as the heroes'. In some cases, this is the last battle.
    • In the final 3 episodes the teams base (if they have one) will be destroyed (though their tech crew and mentor will be able to escape in time) and they will lose the ability to transform until the very final battle.
    • Also the team almost always use the same equipment year after year with different names and slightly different looks and design. (All members carry a sidearm that can transform into a melee weapon. All members have personal weapons, Red almost always has a sword, and the others vary but usually at least one member has a stronger ranged weapon and another has a spear and one member will have a very weird weapons like a flute or fan or something. The team always has a big cannon to finish off the monster off on the ground. The trademark Humongous Mecha always has a sword to finish off monsters, but Mid Season upgrades and combinations of the two will focus on firepower instead.
      • A few series have deviated from this. Most recently:
      • Magiranger had staffs that transformed for the male members into personal weapons,
      • Gekiranger had two personal weapons for each of the core 3 members.
      • Gokaiger had the rangers have identical swords and guns.
      • Go-busters did the same as Gokaiger for the core 3.
    • Also fights follow similar formulas year after year. Monster attacks civilians. Team has initial face off against the monster in which it uses its gimmick against the team which disables all members except the character getting focus that week and they need to retreat. Focus character researches weakness/gets confidence back/does some other Character Development thing. Round two, focus character beats up the monster and frees the other members. The use the team attack to knock the monster out. Make My Monster Grow. Mecha battle. Scene with group at the end.
    • Certain plots will happen once per series
      • A Monster of the Week will attack brides, forcing the heroes to go undercover as a couple getting married that or one character will simply either dress as a bride or almost get married.
      • Two of the members will be forced into one body and unable to transform.
      • The villains will create duplicates of the heroes and fool civilians.
      • The heroes will be Brought Down to Normal and have to fight without transforming until they can regain their transformation ability somehow.
      • One of the heroes will become a Fake Defector, usually to save one of the others.
      • The two female heroes will get into a Cat Fight with each other, about factors unrelated to saving the world.
      • The Lancer will try saving the day on his own and have to learn the meaning of teamwork.
      • A Monster of the Week will pose as a human and fool one of the heroes into falling in love with them. The monster may or may not become the mask.
      • One hero (usually but not always male, but almost never the Red) will encounter and fall in love with a mysterious person, who by the end of the episode turns out not to be human and either leaves the show or dies. If it's the latter, cue a cry of This Is Unforgivable at whatever bad guy killed her (or him, if the episode's hero is female) followed by a cathartic Curbstomp Battle. Sometimes overlaps with the above plot, sometimes not. Usually written by Naruhisa Arakawa, who has written episodes of nearly every Super Sentai since 1991 and likes to write this plot into nearly every series he writes for.
      • The heroes may find and befriend a Monster of the Week who doesn't want to harm anybody. They are usually forced to destroy the monster at the end of the episode. It also usually ends up being a Tear Jerker for the heroes and the viewers. However, it may also be a Crowning Episode of Funny and, in this case, the monster will end the episode alive.
      • The heroes fight off Mooks unmorphed while dressed up as medieval samurai. Or cowboys. For the latter's case, this always happen: Most rangers are owning the mooks, but the token cool guy will nearly blast themselves by accident for comic relief. The women of the group will knock down the Mooks using a cute wink (This trend started in Denshi Sentai Denziman, especially the 'wink knockdown'. The comic relief by the cool guy started out by Dai Sentai Goggle Five, and it keeps getting better and better, especially in Dengeki Sentai Changeman. You'll more often see this in earlier Sentai, though, the last time used being in Timeranger vs GoGoV).
      • One Monster of the Week will have an ability to brainwash one of the heroes and make them attack the team. The usual victim is those saddled with the color Blue.
      • A Beach Episode (not counting episodes where the battle just happens to take place on a shoreline).
      • The characters prepare for some sort of festival or event (usually New Year, Tanabata or a summer festival), requiring them to dress in gorgeous traditional clothing
      • The characters are forced to go to Kyoto and/or go back in time to Edo-era Kyoto, complete with gratuitous Scenery Porn. This one has a funny subversion in Dekaranger, where the characters voluntarily pretend they are in Edo-era Kyoto to calm an alien (not an Alienizer) who had a brief freak-out with modern-day Kyoto.
      • The Christmas episodes mentioned in An Asskicking Christmas don't need to happen (Shinkenger didn't necessarily have one - the plot is occupied by the final battle against Akumaro instead - but it was shown that they celebrate Christmas there), but the New Year episodes do (New Year's Day in Japan has a higher cultural significance than Christmas).
      • One of the rangers meets up with an old scientist friend who has made a deal with the villains or has otherwise lost their way while trying to advance their research. Through The Power of Friendship, the focus ranger helps their friend see the error of their ways (often by reminding them of why they pursued a career in science in the first place) and inspires them to redeem themselves.
      • A monster who turns people into inanimate objects, usually dolls.
      • A body swap episode.
      • An Amusement Park episode.
      • An episode in which a parent or grandparent visits and tries to set up an arranged marriage with one of the rangers. Usually, but not always, it will be one of the girls, and in that case the male rangers inevitably pose as suitors to sabotage the interview.
      • An episode with a Monster of the Week who challenges a Ranger to honorable combat, and always ends up cheating.
      • An episode where a Ranger must help a wimpy/bratty/spoiled/bullied child to become strong. Expect at least two of these per season.
      • A monster who traps people in a dimensional labyrinth.
      • It's become common for the episode immediately after the Sixth Ranger's introduction to involve said ranger losing access to their transformation (either having it confiscated by the Red who doesn't trust them, or quitting the team after their first battle), with their continued presence on the team being in doubt until they rejoin permanently at the end of the episode.
      • One of the villains will take a special interest in the powers of a certain monster. They'll often save the monster from being destroyed by the rangers, and then use its abilities in a much deadlier way than before.
    • As for the series themselves, starting with Hurricaneger a 5 year pattern seems to have developed:
      • Year 1: Experimentation (Hurricaneger, Gekiranger, Go-Busters). Attempts to play with and deconstruct the Super Sentai formulas are tried and tested, like rival teams or Darker and Edgier takes. Also, it follows the Three Plus Two team scheme and always introduces new colors to the core team.
      • Year 2: Wacky Stuff (Abaranger, Go-Onger, Kyoryuger). A still moderate "return to form" that plays up all of Sentai's classic corniness by adding even more corniness on top of it, such as a Big "WHAT?!" scene. Included are cartoony elements like the Roger Rabbit Effect or Conspicuous CGI used for Toon Physics.
      • Year 3: Action (Dekaranger, Shinkenger). Now fully back in track with the Strictly Formula for the next three years, it instead puts focus on a "cool" motif that's associated with battle by default, which reflects in the improved combat choreography that gives this series an intense action feel. To Qger seems to have broken this however.
      • Year 4: Fantasy (Magiranger, Goseiger). Where the previous series put focus in action, this one puts focus in mystical powers and abilities. Expect Elemental Powers and less Testosterone Poisoning than usual.
      • Year 5: Anniversary (Boukenger, Gokaiger). The apparently mandatory Homage series that Toei seems to have decided to hold on every fifth year, it features collection elements and Mythology Gags by the bushel, subtlety may vary.
    • Although not an anniversary series in the traditional sense, Kyoryuger contains a lot of Mythology Gags in the show that it teeters on borderline.
    • Gaoranger was a precursor to this type of series; however, its more blatant Mythology Gags were cut during production and ended up as All There in the Manual elements.
    • Of course, with a Long Runner such as this series, expect Subversions to occur from time to time.
  • Stock Sound Effects: Super Sentai is known to reuse some of the same sound effects in multiple series.
  • Stuff Blowing Up: The first explosion in Super Sentai history occurs two seconds into the opening of Goranger. Between the colored post-transformation explosions behind the heroes and the huge detonations of defeated monsters, it's a long-held tradition.
  • "Super Sentai" Stance: The Trope Namer.
  • Swiss-Army Weapon: Most team's sidearms can transform from a gun into a sword. It's also notably the preferred weapon for most Sixth Rangers.
  • Title Scream: A tradition that began with Goggle-V, although they don't scream the full title until Bioman. From then on, prior to Tokumei Sentai Go Busters, only Kakuranger averted this, with something we could call Title Sing (as it is the first line of the opening theme).
    • Go-Busters changed it's OP mid-series and no longer averts this trope.
  • Transformation Trinket: Known throughout the series as Changers, these vary from wrist-mounted ones in early Sentai to handheld ones resembling cell phones in the Heisei Sentai.
  • Translation Matchmaking: Ever since Abaranger, Super Sentai is dubbed in South Korea under the title of Power Rangers (with the exception of Shinkenger, as Korea still hasn't gotten over their cultural aversion of samurai; they aired Gaoranger in its place). Funnily enough, Abaranger and Dekaranger had the same titles as their respective American counterparts.
  • Traveling at the Speed of Plot: Regardless of where they are, it seems the team can always call for their mecha and have it arrive within seconds.
  • True Companions: Every sentai group is this. During the VS crossovers, the starring two teams will become this.
  • Unflinching Walk: A Sentai-only variant of this trope occurs when a new giant robot is introduced, and performs the Unflinching Walk INTO ENEMY FIRE.
  • The Verse: The VS world, which contains every crossover, Gokaiger included.
  • Wire Fu: Used in a lot of the 80s series.

StarstuffSpeculative Fiction SeriesHimitsu Sentai Goranger
SupernaturalTropeNamers/Live-Action TVSurvivor
Super Mario Bros.Franchise IndexTabaluga
Kamen Rider DoubleSeiun AwardTokusou Sentai Dekaranger
Stuart LittleFilms Of The 2000s-FranchisesCross Over
SubspeciesFilms of the 1990sCross Over
Stargate AtlantisTrope OverdosedTales Series
SpawnCreator/Namco BandaiTomokazu Seki
Street HawkSeries of the 1980sBattle Fever J
Superman IV: The Quest for PeaceFilms of the 1980sSwamp Thing
Spider-Man (Japan)Super HeroHimitsu Sentai Goranger
Super Robot Red BaronTokuTattooed Teenage Alien Fighters From Beverly Hills
Super Robot Red BaronJapanese SeriesHimitsu Sentai Goranger
Superman/Batman: ApocalypseFilms of the 2010sSamurai Sentai Shinkenger Vs Go Onger Ginmaku Bang
SupernaturalTurnOfTheMillennium/Live-Action TVRescue Sentai GoGoFive
Kamen Rider SkyriderThe SeventiesHimitsu Sentai Goranger
Super ForceSeries of the 1990sKousoku Sentai Turboranger
The Street FighterFilms of the 1970sThe Sabata Trilogy
Sullivan And SonThe New TensSamurai Sentai Shinkenger

alternative title(s): Super Sentai
random
TV Tropes by TV Tropes Foundation, LLC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from thestaff@tvtropes.org.
Privacy Policy
118348
37