Series: Gekisou Sentai Carranger
Fighting for traffic safety! Gekisou Sentai, Caaaaaaaaaaarranger!Gekisō Sentai Carranger (Extreme Rush Squadron Carranger) is the twentieth installment in the Super Sentai series, airing from 1996 to 1997. It's about a group of idiot workers at Pegasus Garage who use the power of car-shaped constellations to fight a group of idiot aliens called "Space Biker-Gang Bowzock".note As the twentieth installment of the franchise, it's an Affectionate Parody of Super Sentai and all the tropes it has, while being a full Super Sentai series in and of itself. At the time, Super Sentai was under serious threat of cancellation due to falling ratings, and popular opinion is that the executives simply did not give a damn and allowed the writers to do whatever the hell they thought they could get away with... resulting in a series so ridiculous, comedic and inexplicably popular that it saved the franchise.Adapted in the US as Power Rangers Turbo. They attempted to make a serious series out of it at first (using the most goofy monster suits and stock footage imaginable) but gave up halfway.
- Kyousuke Jinnai/Red Racer: The idiot leader; He's a test-driver who usually ignores his duties just to drive his boss' car.
- Naoki Domon/Blue Racer: The Kid-Appeal Character and Friend to All Living Things; He comes up with ideas on car designs.
- Minoru Uesugi/Green Racer: The Big Guy; A salesman who once lost part of his Accelchanger while practicing poses.
- Natsumi Shinohara/Yellow Racer: The Lancer; A mechanic with a legendary wrench.
- Youko Yagami/Pink Racer: The Chick; A weight-conscious Big Eater with No Sense of Direction.
Their allies include:
- Dappu: Their mentor. A young alien boy from Planet Hazard who lost his mother during a Bowzock invasion.
- Signalman: A space officer from Planet Police who serves as the de facto Sixth Ranger.
- VRV Master: The (self-proclaimed) Lone Wolf of Space, who provides the rangers with the VRV Machines. He's also Dappu's father.
- Radiatta Fanbelt/White Racer: The (unofficial, self-proclaimed) Sixth Ranger, a Magical Girl with a car that can become a Mega Neko.
And the "evil" Bowzock.
- Reckless Dash Emperor Exhaus: The Big Bad and the only real bad guy in the show.
- President Gynamo: The "Big Bad."
- Zonnette: The "Dark Chick." However, after she resumes her true form, she becomes the second Chick.
- Zelmoda: "The Dragon."
- Grotch: The "Evil Genius" who stumbled upon Imo-Youkan by complete and utter accident.
- Ritchhiker: The Sixth Ranger and The Starscream.
Recurring Super Sentai tropes:
- All Your Powers Combined: The Giga Formula.
- Brought to You by the Letter "S": "C" is for Carranger
- By the Power of Grayskull!: "Gekisou! AccelChanger!"
- Calling Your Attacks: Parodied in one episode. In the Monster vs. Mecha battle, the villain (SS Paaman) prepares his ultimate attack. Unfortunately, its name is so long that the Carrangers kill him before he can pull it off. (See Shout-Out below for why it's so long.)
- Cool Bike: For the first time in the franchise, no one in the main team had a motorcycle (instead they had go-karts). However, Signalman rode one called the Polispeeder.
- Cool Car: In addition to the aforementioned Speeder Machine go-karts (one for each member), the Ranger Vehicles and VRV Machines that composed the team's mecha naturally filled this role. They also had two sentient cars named the Pegasus Thunder and the Dragon Cruiser.
- Crossover: Carranger vs. Ohranger
- Custom Uniform: A partial version, since the differences were a male version and a female version.
- Eyecatch: Both before and after the break, the eyecatch features a zig-zagging line, which is revealed to be the Vehicle (or vehicles if more than one are featured) of the hero of the episode which stops as "Carranger" appears on one of the straight lines of the pattern in English. In the post-break version, we hear a small piece of the Carranger theme in instrumental. The footage from these eyecatches were used in the second half of Power Rangers Turbo which makes the only Power Rangers season to also use the eyecatches from Super Sentai. From episode 32, the eyecatch changes: the same "zig-zag" and vehicle is seen at first, but only at the start of the eyecatch, where it opens into a split screen showing the Carranger tied to the color/vehicle, as well as both the vehicle and humanoid version of their VRV Machine.
- Finishing Move: The Carrangers all have a unique move, but rely on the Giga Formula/Booster for that last hit.
- Five-Man Band: There are two Smart Guys on the team. note
- Home Base: The Pegasus Garage, in a sense.
- Humongous Mecha: In addition to the heroes' mechas, there was also Braking, the dragon mecha Ritch Ritchhiker used after taking over the Baribarian. It notably gave the RV Robo a run for its money, forcing the Carrangers into getting new mechs.
- A Mech by Any Other Name: The Ranger Vehicles and the VRVnote Machines (which could transform into humanoid forms called "VRV Fighters").
- Combining Mecha: Notable for having the only Super Sentai mecha combination to date that is made up entirely of transforming robots. Also notable is that RV Robo and VRV Robo's limbs are interchangeable, a combination scheme that would later become a staple of Sentai robots in the 00s.
- Red Vehicle + Green Vehicle + Blue Vehicle + Yellow Vehicle + Pink Vehicle = RV Robo
- V Fire + V Dump + V Police + V Dozer + V Rescue = VRV Robo
- Transforming Mecha: In addition to the aforementioned VRV Machines, Signalman's Sirender patrol car could transform into a robot as well, while the Vic Trailer, the giant trailer that stores the five VRV Machines, can transform into a robot that supports the VRV Robo in combat. White Racer's Radiecar Robo (which transforms from a car into a Mega Neko) is a parody of this concept.
- Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: A great deal of episodes, if not all, have terminology relating to roads and driving.
- In the Name of the Moon:Kyosuke: "RedRacer!"Naoki: "BlueRacer!"Minoru: "GreenRacer!"Natsumi: "YellowRacer!"Yoko: "PinkRacer!"All: "Fighting for traffic safety! Gekisou Sentai - CaaaarrrRanger!"
- Law of Chromatic Superiority: The Carrangers don't really have a leader within their Five-Man Band - Dappu (and briefly, VRV Master) basically points them in the direction of the Bowzocks when they appear - until about halfway through, when VRV Master finally gets this into Kyousuke's head. He then gets hepped on the idea, takes it a bit too far, and eventually recovers the stolen RV Robo by himself.
- Make My Monster Grow: The single silliest method of this in Super Sentai history: the Bowzock eat imoyoukan (a real Japanese snack food made from jellied sweet potatoes) to grow giant. Better yet, only fresh, hand-made imoyoukan (and from a PARTICULAR store, too, for even more comedy) makes them grow; factory-made pre-packaged and/or stale imoyoukan makes them shrink instead.
- Mooks: The Wumpers.
- "On the Next Episode of..." Catch Phrase
- Regular Caller
- Secret Identity: The first show to actually do it, in fact - so see below.
- Supervillain Lair: The BB Saloon.
- Theme Music Power-Up: For the Carrangers and the Zokurangers.
- Transformation Trinket: AccelChanger.
- Two Girls to a Team: The sixth Yellow and Pink duo.
- Weapon of Choice
- Handguns: The Auto Blasters. When a catch is pulled, it becomes the Auto Punisher, shooting more powerful blasts.
- Vibroweapon: The ViBlades. note
- Swiss Army Weapon: Car Navick/Navick Shot
- Bifurcated Weapon: Auto Punisher + Navick Shot = Navick Blaster.
- BFG: The Giga Booster.
- Kyousuke: Fender Sword
- Naoki: Muffler Guns
- Minoru: Engine Cannon
- Natsumi: Side Knuckles
- Youko: Bumper Bow
- Signalman: Signizer note
Tropes specific to Gekisou Sentai Carranger:
- Affectionate Parody: Of the Sentai genre.
- Agony of the Feet: Happens to Kyousuke when he meets Pegasus Thunder for the first time.
- All There in the Manual: Parodied; the Carrangers themselves have to refer to the manual in mid-battle to figure out how the Formula Nova and Ranger Vehicles work. This has proven flawed at least once, when a copy of the manual once fell into a fire in the middle of a battle.
- And Knowing Is Half the Battle: In every episode after the next episode preview, one of the characters gives safety tips for pedestrians (of course, 'cause kids are still not legally entitled to drive).
- Army of Thieves and Whores: The Bowzocks.
- Bad-Guy Bar: The BB Saloon, which is the Bowzocks' official hangout spot.
- Banana Peel: RV Robo ends up falling victim to one.
- Beach Episode: 25 starts like this.
- Butt Monkey: Most of the characters to some extent, but this seems to be the white Wumper's only reason for existing.
- By-the-Book Cop: Signalman, so much so he sometimes ends up being a nuisance to the Carrangers. He once let a Bowzock kidnap Ichitaro just because the street crossing light was red!!! This causes him to veer into Lawful Stupid every so often.
- Catch Phrase: Signalman's "Daremo tooranai..."note , which even Ichitaro imitates.
- Chekhov's Gift: The VRV Robo.
- Colony Drop: Exhaus tries to crash Bowzock's base into the Earth. This gets stopped by Signalman and Sirender, of all things, who turn an Earth-Shattering Kaboom into a survivable landing. It gets reversed on him, in the Carrangers' Storming the Castle moment, but doesn't quite kill him.
- Cool Cars: The whole point of the show. (In-show as well, since the Ranger Vehicles were based off of the Carrangers' "Dream Car"... models.)
- Cool Old Guy: VRV Master, with a
bitLOT of Large Ham involved. And while he turns out to have brought them the Victory Ranger Vehicles in VicTrailer, the Carranger's first impression?Naoki: "He's suspicious..."Yoko: "He goes right past suspicious and into creepy..."
- Dating Catwoman: When Kyousuke realizes Zonnette likes him (but not that she likes Red Racer, regardless of who is wearing the helmet), he decides to try and make things right between them. It doesn't work at first.
- Death by Origin Story: Subverted in the very first episode; after Dappu fails to recruit the future Carrangers, he dies at the hands of Bowzock. This motivates them to avenge his death; turns out Dappu faked his death to get them to do so. He even gets up right away and scolds the newly-motivated rangers for not cooperating earlier.
- Finishing Move: Redefined with the RV Robo, which doesn't use an energy sword-style finisher - the RV Sword is, instead, something of a scaled-up Viblade (which seems to glow a bit during use). RV Robo dashes towards the Bowzock while the sky turns dark, starts spinning like a top, crashes into the Bowzock really-pointy-sword-first, then ends up in an awesome pose while the Bowzock explodes behind it.
- Fun with Acronyms: When lined up, the first kana of the heroes' surnames spell JI-DO-U-SHI-YA, as in jidōsha, Japanese for "car".
- Good Is Not Nice/Jerkass: Though they usually mean well, the Carrangers are probably the most genuinely unpleasant people to wear the rainbow colored spandex (except maybe Captain Marvelous and Luka Millfy...). Notable in that they are probably the only Sentai to actually fight against another in a teamup movie for reasons besides mistaken identity or Mind Control by a Kiss of Death from the cyborg Shibolena.
- However the two teams made peace and the Carrangers sacrificed their wish (a vehicle to that can travel the universe) in order to give the Megarangers the necessary power to win their current battle so it's more like they are Jerks With Hearts of Gold
- Heavy Sleeper: Dappu's race goes into hibernation for a few weeks per year, and he does so once about halfway through the show. This causes problems since, being mentor to a group of Idiot Heroes, he's effectively their leader...
- Heel-Face Turn: All the main Bowzock; the only two exceptions are Ritchhiker and Exhaus, who both die.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Subverted humorously in the first episode by Dappu, who played dead just to get the Carrangers to transform.
- Homage: The first team attack the Zokurangers try on the Carrangers? The Zokuranger Ball.
- I Am A Humanitarian: When the Carrangers are cooked into a pizza.
- Idiot Hero: All of them to one extent or another.
- It Is Pronounced Tro PAY: In-universe, due to the way they introduce themselves, it's not pronounced "Carranger" - the majority pronounce it "Caaaaaaaaarranger!".
Red Racer: I am... (starts making the customary poses) Gekisou Sentai Caaaaaaaaaaaaarranger's Red Racer!Signalman: Gekisou Sentai (wobbling his head in imitation) Caaaaaaaaaaaaarranger's Red Racer? What is that?
- Lampshaded in episode 12, when Signalman pulls Red Racer over for speeding and asks his name:
Signalman: Ah! You guys are Gekisou Sentai Caaaaaaaaaaaaarranger? (still spinning his head around)
- And a few seconds later, when Kyousuke's teammates come in a rush to stop him from beating Signalman up:
- Kansai Regional Accent: Minoru, the team's idiot from Osaka.
- Karmic Death: The first Gorotsuki, BB Donpa, a musical themed bad guy, plotted to annoy other aliens into destroying Earth by literally conducting a symphony of honking cars around the Earth. He escapes getting destroyed by the Giga Formula, only to be blasted to bits by his fellow aliens for making too much noise.
- Keigo: Naoki, oh so much. (see below)
- Loves My Alter Ego: Zonnette towards Kyousuke, though she eventually came to warm to his non-Red Racer persona as well.
- Lucky Translation: The title of the resident Psycho Rangers, the Bosou Sentai Zokurangers, comes from the Japanese word for motorcyle hooligans, but also sounds like the English word Bozo, which they are.
- Magical Girl: Radietta Fanbelt/White Racer. Everything from her transformation to her outfit is pure magical girl. Though she does also have a mecha. It's part cat, part car, all cute.
- Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: Natsumi and Naoki.
- Minor Offense Overreaction: Gynamo hates Signalman for not giving him penalty for riding on 1 million kilometers per hour... but just reminding him that he forgot to put his seat belt on.
- "On the Next Episode of..." Catch Phrase: Variation. There is no exact phrase, but there is an exact theme of the phrase in the end of every episode: Traffic safety tips.
- Off-the-Shelf FX: Whenever a ranger is picked up by a giant monster, it will generally be a toy. When monsters grow small, they are also usually shown with toys. (In general, there's a sense that there wasn't as much communication between the production departments as there should have been. )
- Poke the Poodle: The villains are a gang with no regard for traffic laws, and blow up planets for the lulz.
- Perhaps the best example is when we're introduced to the Zokurangers as they go around committing the most heinous of crimes: ZokuRed (SS Paaman) shoots some flowers with his gun; ZokuBlue tramples a sand castle some kids were making; ZokuGreen scares off a couple by bursting through a window; ZokuYellow steals a boy's popsicle; and ZokuPink soils clothes hanging out to dry with earth.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Signalman pulled one of this on the Carrangers in Ep 36. It was actually Exhaus's attempt to frame the heroes.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: More of a "...writes the characterization" — apparently Yoshihiro Masujima (Naoki) really was that overly polite during his audition, and Yoshihiro Fukuda (Minoru) really hailed from Osaka, so their characters were rewritten that way.
- Rearrange the Song: The opening theme was replaced with the rearranged (and Stereo!) "Full Accel Version" after only 13 episodes.
- Recycled In Space: Basically Kousoku Sentai Turboranger lampooning the Super Sentai series itself.
- Lampshaded in Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger where they change into that team, realizing that it's a completely different one. Kyousuke is not impressed.
- Secret Identity: At no point does it seem like they're making an effort to do so on purpose, but the Carrangers' human identities are kept secret - in fact, everyone except Dappu and VRV Master thinks they're aliens. (This is apparently a case where everyone believes the Carrangers are too strong to be human - Dappu out-and-out introduced them as such to the Bowzock in the first episode.)
- Furthermore, this is the first show in the Super Sentai series where they actually bother keeping their identities a complete secret. Amusingly, it's also the one that keeps it best, with no outside characters finding out until the end.
- Self-Parody: As mentioned above, Carranger parodies Super Sentai while also being an official installment in the series.
- Shout-Out: SS Paaman's attempted final attack when giant-sized is a amalgamation of all the previous series' Humongous Mecha' attacks - he gets about halfway through before getting a Gekisou-Giri to the face."THE NAME'S TOO LONG!" *cutcutcutcutcutBOOOM*
- The main villain wants to destroy Earth to make room for a space bypass.
- Braking had a weapon called the King Slugger where it would detach the sharp fin on its head and throw it at an enemy.
- Slept Through the Apocalypse: Dappu would have done this, if not for the timely appearance of VRV Master.
- Space Is Noisy: One villain's plan to destroy Earth is to levitate the cars into space and make so much noise with them that nearby aliens will attack Earth to stop the noise.
- Surprise Party: Subverted in Episode 7. The other Carrangers spend the whole episode preparing Naoki's birthday party. Turns out they were off by a month.
- Tagalong Kid: Ichitaro to Signalman. He has even stood in for him at the Kobaan Base on occasion.
- Team Dad: VRV Master leans towards this in contrast to Dappu. (A neat bit of Foreshadowing too, since he's actually Dappu's dad - although just how, exactly, he fit his head inside that helmet is never answered .)
- In keeping with Carranger's parodic nature, he also likes to do typical "Oyaji" stuff, like Pachinko (in which he apparently does very well), drinking coffee milk, and getting shaves at the barber. Daily. Despite pretty obviously not having any hair.
- The Good, the Bad, and the Evil: In the finale, Gynamo teams up with the Carrangers to stop Exhaus.
- The Psycho Rangers: Bousou Sentai Zokuranger, brought together by Bowzock's #1 hero researcher SS Paaman. Notable for: 1) consisting of barflies aside from SS Paaman 2) Not resembling the heroes in the slightest and 3) getting their own version of the opening song.
- To a far lesser extent, when ZZ Gyuuri and four Wumpers board the stolen RV Robo, the Wumpers correspond to the colors of the usual pilots (with the white Wumper taking Yellow Racer's seat). The blue Wumper even does Blue Racer's Diagonal Spark pose before firing it.
- Theme Naming: The surnames of the Carrangers (Jinnai, Domon, Uesugi, Shinohara and Yagami) form the Japanese word jidōsha ("automobile").
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: Natsumi and Youko.
- Took a Level in Badass: Y'know that Colony Drop further up the page? Guess how it got stopped. Sirender catches it in midair and pushes it back into orbit.
- Also happens to Kyousuke when he finally starts acting like a Red Ranger/Leader
- Trademark Favorite Food: Imo-youkan for the Bowzocks.
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: A hallmark of the series - unless they're actively causing trouble, very few people ever seem to take more than casual notice of the Bowzock. All the more notable when Ritchihiker pulls The Starscream on Gynamo, and he and Zonnette spend the next few episodes doing varied stuff on Earth (even getting jobs at a pachinko parlor - the same one that VRV Master attends, to boot!).
- Glatch, for example, goes out and buys the Imoyokan himself. This is after he himself grew to giant size and stumbled about town.
- Verbal Tic: Dappu who likes to add his name to the end of all his sentences. He even does it with his handwriting.
- So do the Gorotsuki, by constantly repeating their names (excluding the double initials), which even replaces Calling Your Attacks for them.
- Victory Pose: Parodied in one episode where Minoru kills a monster and then decides his pose wasn't cool enough and practices several others trying to find the best one. He gets so absorbed in his task he doesn't notice his henshin bracelet fell off and spends the episode unable to change to Green Racer.
- Villain Song: The show's ending theme is an upbeat song sung from the point of view of the villains, about having a chance to relax after a tough day of getting beaten by the heroes, and wondering if maybe the good guys can let them win next time.
- Weirdness Magnet: Ichitaro and family. Dappu setting up shop in Daddy's shop was merely the beginning.
- "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue
- Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Minoru used to be afraid of lightning after being shocked by an electric eel as a child. He got over it.
- Interestingly, Zelmoda too has the same fear. We don't see him recover, though.
- Wrench Wench: Natsumi. To such an extent that she can dismantle a moving bicycle untransformed, and as Yellow Racer she uses it as an attack.
- Widget Series: The villain designs, the ridiculous plots, the Zonnete X Red Ranger romance... yeah, it counts.
Chouriki Sentai Ohranger Ohre Vs Kakuranger Franchise/Super Sentai Gekisou Sentai Carranger Vs Ohranger