The 17th season of the Power Rangers franchise, RPM used footage from Engine Sentai Go-onger. In an alternate present to the main Rangerverse, the Venjix computer virus has taken over nearly all of the Earth's technological systems and built robotic forces to subjugate mankind. Humanity's last stronghold is the city of Corinth, which is protected by a force field dome, as well as its own elite team of Power Rangers that take down whatever raids make it through the shield. But Venjix technology is continually advancing, and without more forces even the Rangers may not be able to hold on for much longer...RPM was, quite simply, a make-or-break season for the franchise. Disney was prepared to cancel it after Bruce Kalish left the show, but Bandai stepped in to give their Cash Cow Franchise at least one more season. Still, Disney shunted the show - including reruns of past seasons - off their cable channels (particularly their new Disney XD rebranding) and onto ABC, where it was subject to preempting for sports. Adding to the conflict, the first Executive Producer Eddie Guzelian was fired midway through the season over "creative differences" with Disney (most notably, he blew the entire budget halfway into the series). Former Rangers writer and producer Judd Lynn, who was a big part of the series' improving during the Saban days, came in to replace him. Filming took place in New Zealand, with a cast of mostly Kiwi and Australian actors.The season made several references to series tropes and past Ranger seasons, particularly in finally defining the Meta Origin that's been present since day one. It also scaled back the excessive Calling Your Attacks and Stuff Blowing Up that had gotten out of hand in the last few seasons, as well as throwing in a healthy dose of Lampshade Hanging (particularly, hanging 'shades on the attack-calling and explosions).RPM originally looked like the end of the series, with no plans to make more episodes. Disney eventually announced they would continue airing the show, but a Re Cut version of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers as opposed to new material. It was only a while later that Saban announced that they had reacquired the franchise and had begun work on Power Rangers Samurai.RPM would later have a team up with Samurai called Clash of the Red Rangers. Only Scott appears, and even then he doesn't demorph for the entire movie. The Super Mega Rangers will be heading to Corinth in the second half of Super Megaforce.Several RPM actors and producer Eddie Guzelian reunited in a low budget indie horror movie called Blood Punch.
Humongous Mecha: The RPM Ultrazord, which is twice as large as any grown attackbot. What do you expect when a third of the pieces are a whale-jet, and a Mammoth-train with T-rex and Triceratops cars?
Combining Mecha: The are 12 Zords in this show. It takes three to form a single Megazord, they have 4 Megazords that do this, and they can all turn into a single unit called the RPM Ultrazord. So we have Rule of Three multiplied by Four Is Death taken to its logical conclusion.
Mecha Expansion Pack: The Wolf Cruiser and Tail Spinner were briefly played up as this to the High Octane Megazord, until the Croc Carrier debuted and the three could make their own Megazord formation.
And in an earlier Braveheart-inspired flashback, in which Flynn leads a village of aboriginals into battle against genocidal raiders in a third-world country(!):
Flynn: It's a good day to die, eh boys?
But played straight wherever Fresno Bob and the mob is concerned - "ghosted" is the euphemism of choice.
And played even straighter in the finale when Gem and Gemma are "lost"...which is further explained as them being "gone." Similarly, Scott's brother "didn't make it." Apparently you can only say die when the people in question don't actually die.
Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: One of the most epic and thrilling ongoing battles in the series is Kiwi Actor versus Scottish Accent.
The bloopers from the episode "And . . . Action!" feature one with Olivia Tennet as Dr. K repeatedly flubbing her lines filled with Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness. After another flub, she mutters, "So close!"—in her Kiwi accent.
Recruit Teenagers with Attitude: Notably averted. Scott's an ex-soldier, Summer was already a martial artist, Flynn has been every kind of first responder that exists (and a guerrilla soldier), Dillon's a cyborg, Gem and Gemma were the original test pilots for all the gear, and even Ziggy, the guy who wasn't chosen for the team, is a one-time mobster. These kids are actually qualified to charge into dangerous situations.
Wait, wouldn't that make it Mad MaxWITH POWER RANGERS?
Thememobile: Despite the show's usual tendency and the season's theme, averted! The Rangers get around in Cool Cars but with the exception of the GO-ONGER they're normal vehicles, not special Ranger designs.
Cosy Catastrophe: Life inside Corinth looks just like life before Venjix. Except for the random Killer Robot attacks, of course. (So I guess we should say, it's just like any other Power Rangers series.)
All Girls Want Bad Boys: Summer and Dillon, but she does mock Dillon for his lone wolf persona. ("Does brooding just come naturally, or do you have to practice every morning?")
All There in the Manual: Blurbs on Bandai's website explained that RPM stands for "Racing Performance Machines"; it wasn't brought up at all in the show.
Alternate Continuity: Original Executive Producer Eddie Guzelian and the season's Senior Story Editor for both production regimes, John Tellegen, have repeatedly stated that RPM is emphatically not set in the same universe as the preceding sixteen seasons.
Armed with Canon: Also comes word from one of the producers of Power Rangers Samurai, stating that should Saban need a character from RPM for Samurai or any season after, then the season would be pulled into continuity. However, the RPM/Samurai teamup has confirmed that RPM is indeed set in an Alternate Universe.
Ambiguous Disorder: Dr. K, Gem, and Gemma are not well-adjusted people. We blame Alphabet Soup.
Animated Actors: Despite going behind the scenes in "And... Action!", everyone stays in character.
Apocalypse Wow: Shown in the Ranger flashback episodes, especially "Ranger Yellow" and "Doctor K"
Apocalyptic Log: seen in "If Venjix Won". Justified because apparently Dr. K made a log of the events of the series, complete with detailed analysis of the ranger tech they had used, just in case they lost and some humans came across the wreckage of Corinth, so the fight could continue with new people taking up the mantle. This doesn't happen, of course, Dr. K is just Crazy-Prepared enough to have an Apocalyptic Log on hand in case it does.
"Blitz" finally made an attempt to avert this by having "Wishbone Alpha" be a little more complicated than the previous patterns. It's still simple: Flynn uses his time powers to distract the enemy long enough for the Rangers to shoot their BFG at it, but it did have some element of actual strategy to it.
Gem and Gemma (who aren't really known for strategy to begin with) are guilty of this in "Prisoners". We never see what their "Beta Formation" actually is, since the action cuts directly to Zenith Megazord doing the finisher next (one can assume that it was intended to provide an opening for that).
A rousing cry of "Activate weapons!" in episode 26 resulted in a single punch. Meanwhile, episode 28 had "Delta Formation" result in all Megazords doing a simultaneous dropkick.
Back from the Brink: The Power Rangers are involved in a war against an enemy that has taken over nearly all of the world already. This Big Bad seems to favor quantity over quality. Witnessed by despite having legions of Mecha-Mooks which he uses in greater numbers and seemingly with more impunity then any Power Ranger Big Bad ever...They are at the same time the MOST EASILY beaten of any Mooks any Power Ranger team has ever fought, one is even sliced in half BY A CLOSING DOOR ON A SCHOOL BUS.
At the same time, the Big Bad has taken over NEARLY ALL THE WORLD. Despite what this should mean for what kind of resources he has at his disposal, the Big Bad's major plans rarely seem to revolve around the use of more then one monster at a time, which suggests they either require MASSIVE resources to make. Or That the Big Bad is too aggressive, too impatient, and too linear an AI to consider taking the time to build up an army of more then one.
Berserk Button: Don't call the suits "spandex" in front of Dr. K. Not even schoolchildren are safe from her wrath. ("Tights" seems to be OK.) Also, never put a scratch on Scott's car, don't call Fresno Bob "Bobarino," and don't call Tenaya 7 either human or cute.
Big Damn Heroes with Big Damn Zords: Gem and Gemma, almost all the time. Especially blatant in "Prisoners", where they disappear on a "super-secret mission" - which, to all appearances, is "save Scott and Flynn's asses at the last minute".
Big "NO!": Venjix does this on occasion when something goes wrong, especially when a giant building falls on him. Dr. K also does this during her spotlight episode.
Bilingual Bonus: Venjix's insignia (蛮) roughly translates to "barbaric" or "unreasonable."
Which is also the first character of the collective name of the Monsters of the Week in the source material (蛮機獣).
Big Lipped Alligator Episode: In a relatively serious series overall, this is a relatively-ligthearted "Making Of" special that shows how the show is made (well, the parts that aren't just lifted from Sentai footage at least), with the show's characters all staying in character throughout.
Brave Scot: Flynn. "What are you supposed to be?" "I'm Scottish!"
Break Them by Talking: Tenaya 7 sets off Dr. K by reminding her about how she "royally messed up" in spite of her immense intellect.
Bride and Switch: Pulled by the good guys after the bride realises that not only does she really not want to go through with her Arranged Marriage but that she needs a diversion because the enemy has attacked the wedding.
Brick Joke: Ziggy's shadow puppets, mentioned briefly at the beginning of the series, it doesn't pay off until episode 17, when it help distract the guards while they try to scape the Mook factory
Broken Record: Subverted in 'Ancient History' - Doctor K pretends to do this while communicating via hologram. 'After what I've seen...after what I've seen...good, I thought he would never leave!'
Butt Monkey: Poor Ziggy. It seems that barely an episode can go by without the Green Ranger totally embarrassing himself in some way. Best reflected by his first ever morph. Previous rangers, whether they Jumped at the Call, were thrown in the cockpit or even stole their powers, always morphed with a fair amount of dignity and grace the first time. What's Ziggy's first line upon realising what he has become?
Ziggy: Woah! I'm a Power Ranger! I don't wanna be a Power Ranger! I do not want to be a Power Ranger!
He then proceeds to get kicked all over the place.
In "If Venjix Won", Ziggy asks Dr. K why she, of all people, wanted to spend time with him that day. She answers, "It's my birthday, and I wanted to go outside"—echoing the requests she made to her handlers growing up in Alphabet Soup each year on her birthday. (Cue flashbacks.)
A flashback in the episode "Doctor K" has her saying word-for-word part of her introduction to "The Road to Corinth" as she prepares to leave Alphabet Soup—now under attack by Venjix.
Canon Foreigner: Three Paleozord-based Rangers in the toyline. Unlike in Jungle Fury, they never made it on the show.
Can't Catch Up: Ziggy's fighting skills barely even improve till the finale; Gem and Gemma, despite being Super Prototypes, lack the suit powers and civilian vehicles of the core five, then get sidelined for part of the finale before making up for it with a Big Damn Heroes moment.
Then again, while Ziggy's fighting prowess isn't up to par with the other Rangers it is rather effective in its own Jackie-Chan bungling kind of way.
Character Development: Perhaps one of the highlights of the season. Almost everyone, including some of the minor characters, get some development. The characters who get the most development however, are Scott, Summer, Ziggy, Dillon, and Dr. K.
Chekhov's Gun: The experimental blaster in "Ranger Green" (it also returns in later episodes as a regular if not plot-important part of K's arsenal).
Chekhov's Gag: The cannon in the fridge, initially used for a joke in "Handshake", pops back up later that episode as a legitimate (if comedic) weapon. Same thing with the Transformation Sequence explosions in "Ranger Blue".
Cyber Cyclops: Venjix, but only when he's in his computer cylinder.
Cybernetics Eat Your Soul: The Venjix technology within Dillon and a bunch of other people is taking over, and there's no way to stop it.
Cyborg: Dillon. And Tenaya. And half of Corinth...
Dance Battler: Scott incorporates Capoeira and break-dancing into his fighting style as Eka Darville is trained in the art. It's averted in Olivia Tennet's case as, although she is trained in dance, Dr. K doesn't get to do many physical stunts.
The End... Or Is It?: The season finale. The battle is won. Venjix is defeated. The Rangers turn in their morphers and move on with their lives. The world is starting to heal from Venjix's apocalypse. And then we see one of the Rangers' Morphers blinking with a red light, just like Venjix's all-seeing eye, as Dr. K closes the holding case...
Establishing Character Moment: "The Road to Corinth" has several, with Colonel Truman and Corporal Hicks surveying the battle, Flynn hauling in a school bus full of survivors (establishing his heroism), and Summer riding in on a motorcycle with Scott just before the gate closes and the city's shields are activated.
Everybody's Dead, Dave: Nearly all of Earth's population is dead, and the Earth is an apocalyptic wasteland, save for one (possibly more) city.
Even Evil Has Standards: Averted. Fresno Bob is perfectly willing to work with machines that have every intention of destroying all of humanity. Even if Bob was guessing that Tenaya 15 was a woman with a grudge and a thing for head pieces, she showed up with Grinders as her bodyguards. That should raise flags that this woman will kill you.
There's also Paleomax Megazord to the original Megazord (as the brute of the mecha fleet and the only one with a combined vehicle form, rather like the Mega Tank). Heck, it's got the same horns, and the Tricera foot's on the same leg as on the original Megazord. The only glaring difference is the Mammoth chest... though the Mammoth can blow freezing 'steam' just like the Mastodon Dinozord. It has to be a deliberate shout-out on the part of the Super Sentai designers.
The Grinders' mannerisms are quite reminiscent of Cyclobots.
Eyed Screen: Done occasionally through, believe it or not, practical effects instead of just letterboxing the screen.
The Face: Ziggy may not be the one you want talking to outsiders, but within the team itself his social skills are his specialty, as proven by the fact that his strongest bonds are with the antisocial loners of the group (Dillon and Dr. K).
Foreshadowing: The song that Dillon's pocket watch plays is the same song that Tenaya 7 whistles when she is hunting somebody, which foreshadows that she is his sister.
In "Ranger Red", Ziggy points out that Dr. K made a mistake when she reveals that she "miscalculated" the required energy to power the new Croc Carrier. She responds that she's made a mistake before . . . once. It's only four episodes later when we find out just how colossal her mistake had been.
For Great Justice: Flynn in "Ranger Blue" when he suggests to Dr. K that she change the morph call to "Ranger Justice Unleashed!".
Freeze-Frame Bonus: A lot of stuff on Flynn's job records. Though they all say that he lived in Corinth City before the Venjix attacks.
Occasionally, Venjix sends out one attackbot that the Rangers take out pretty quick, but was actually setting things up for the next attackbot. Too bad the Rangers always foil his plans.
Always foil his plans? His defeat might have been a way to effectively let Earth get complacent while sneaking his way into the Morphing Grid. Need we mention the virus ploy. Insofar, it actually looks like everything went according to Venjix's plans.
Dr. K gets a moment of genre savviness when she points out that Summer likes both "the boy next door" and "the tortured and mysterious bad boy" in "Brother's Keeper". She gets one again in "In Or Out" when she brings up the fact that she's their mentor.
Andrews, Summer's butler, sacrificing his life so that she could make it to Corinth before the city's shield's activated.
Hero Insurance: Almost averted in "Ancient History", but Dr. K takes out a policy just in time to avoid being arrested on treason for releasing the Venjix virus. Also seen when Gem and Gemma bust down a door to stop some crooks, and have to repair it later.
Hilarity Ensues: Ziggy is a lovable coward, comic relief guy who accidentally becomes the Green Ranger. He proceeds to be...A lovable, slightly less cowardly, comic relief Power Ranger who bumbles his way through fights. And usually win.
Honor Before Reason: Flynn's flashback montage shows that he puts helping others and saving lives before the following things: his job security (policeman flashback), common sense and resource management (firefighter flashback), and potentially his own life and limb (aid worker flashback).
Idiot Ball: Great job disabling Ranger Black and letting the monster tap into the weather grid, Dr. K.
Tenaya's plan to gas the city in "The Dome Dolls"; one, for being only knockout gasses and two, for having a separate gas for each gender.
If It Swims, It Flies: Eagle Racer notwithstanding, a zord's flight ability is based on its vehicle half, not its animal. So the Tail Spinner zord (half-motorcycle) averts this trope, while the Whale Zord justifies it by being half-plane. Of course, the flying whale wears a lampshade.
And previously in "Control Alt Delete" when Dillon defends himself from a re-brainwashedTenaya, continually yelling that she's his sister and refusing to attack. This could be considered subverted or played straight depending on your reading of the scene - after Dillon's shield is broken and his power levels are scanned and found low, Tenaya stops attacking and walks away without explanation, but the overall loyalty to Venjix appears unchanged.
Improbable Age: Dr. K: she created the Ranger powers, and is no older than 19. She was also dealing with advanced mathematical equations by age 5.
Improbable Weapon User: The cast has weaponized chairs, bubble wraps, shopping carts, veggies, a rental tuxedo jacket, a wedding veil, a violin amp, an umbrella, a giant pole, a building, and a stroller with a baby in it!
The concept is lampshaded in "If Venjix Won", in which Ziggy and Dr. K are attacked by Grinders. The two argue over who gets to use a broken pole as a weapon when K points out that Ziggy has actual weapons.
Don't forget the building, the headquarters for city security, used in the finale.
Instant Expert: Subverted by Ziggy, who's possibly the only Ranger in history to not automatically learn martial arts upon morphing. See also "Three's a Crowd", where the Rangers try to learn how to combine their three already giant combo-mecha into one ridiculously Humongous Mecha, with violent results.
Karmic Death: Think about it. What, throughout the series, usually gets destroyed when the Monster of the Week grows to giant size? Buildings. Now, what do the rangers use to defeat the final Big Bad of the season?
"Handshake" has Venjix's generals snark at the spray nozzle robot and wonder why they never do a Zerg Rush while Corinth's shields are down, as well as asking "Are you going to make it grow now, or wait until the rangers defeat it? Oh, wait, I, uh -" (gets blasted)
The episode "Ranger Blue" begins with a five-minute conversation where the Rangers ask Dr. K why the zords have eyesnote They're high-powered cameras, why there's an epic explosion behind them when they morphnote Residual energy runoff that's necessary to "clear the suit's bio-channels during the morph" and why they scream "RPM! GET IN GEAR!"note Voice recognition safety feature And later Tenaya asks Flynn what his role in the Five-Man Band is. "I'm SCOTTISH!"
Laser-Guided Amnesia: Dillon. And its not going to get any better, considering that they've blown up the 'bot that was storing his lost memories. He is never seen to get his old memories back, though as he said in that episode, he's got something better: new ones.
Leeroy Jenkins: Cmdr. Murdock from "Heroes Among Us." And of course, the "Boom Time" twins.
Col. Truman: I sure hope you know what you're doing.
Dr. K: Why does everyone keep saying that? Of course I am aware of what I am doing! I just have absolutely no idea of whether or not it will work.
And even more painfully straight in "Ranger Green": Ziggy rhetorically asks Dr. K what could possibly go wrong in attempting teleportation, and she actually gives him a list of worst-case scenarios. She even tells him that she was just answering his (rhetorical) question!
Littlest Cancer Patient: A whole orphanage of them, in fact. Ziggy pisses off Corinth's entire criminal underworld for their sake.
Mood Whiplash: The "Terminator meets Mad Max" theme of the show clashes rather badly with both the Power Ranger camp-factor in general (especially in the first episode) and with Go-Onger's ridiculous looking zords and generally silly monster designs. Then again, some find the campiness endearing, apocalyptic background or not. See Pragmatic Adaptation below.
Ms. Fanservice: Tenaya 7. You can actually identify her stuntwoman by her less shapely rear.
Mundane Made Awesome: Dr. K controlling the base venting systems with her violin. It's cool, but bwuh?
And there's some rare Sentai nods as well. Most blatant, obviously, is the GO-ONGER, and when discussing it Summer asks if it was built in1975. Flynn also describes the Falcon Copter as a flying chicken, which it actually was in Go-Onger.
Scott's backstory is similar to that of Kaijou Tsuyoshi, the first-ever Sentai Red. Both are the younger brothers of military leaders who were killed in the villains' attack. Furthermore, the Trumans were both members of Eagle Squad, while Tsuyoshi and his brother were both members of the EAGLE organization.
The PaleoMax Megazord is pretty much an Expy of the original Megazord. Part of it is a mammoth with freezing powers. It's got a very familiar head design. The left foot is even a Triceratops, another distinguishing feature because of the prominent horns. Though Go-Onger and Zyuranger aren't related at all, the sentai creators are aware of Power Rangers, and it seems that they put in a sweet Homage by making what was to have been the last-ever Megazord look just like the first-ever Megazord.
And, in "Forever Red", there was a General Venjix in the Machine Empire. Fanficsplosion in 10... 9... 8...
Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: Shifter's takeover of the Paleozords led to Dr. K figuring out how to merge all the mecha into the Ultrazord.
Even earlier, they needed another energy-thingie, but there was only one ever built, and they can't build another one. Then, an attack bot that can make a duplicate of any object comes along, so Dr. K manages to manipulate events to get one in the base and get the enemy to accidentally make a copy of said energy-thingie. The villain even questions if she actually planned it all this way. * Cue violin attack*
Kilobyte wanted to do something useful so he activated a hybrid to attack the Colonel, not only did it fail but it tipped the Rangers off to what Venjix was planning.
The Nicknamer: Dr. K refuses to call the Rangers by their names, though she tries to change (except for Ziggy) after Gem and Gemma turn up alive and call her out on being impersonal.
Only Sane Man: Tenaya seems to be the only one that notices the inherent absurdity of the villains' usual tactics. She spends most of "Blitz" asking if the absurd plan-o'-the-week has failed sufficiently for her to go take a nap without missing anything important.
Doctor K: A computer virus has built armies of robotic soldiers and taken control of our world. But there is still one place we can be safe: the domed city of Corinth. And the only hope we have left is...
Out-of-Genre Experience: The first half of "The Road to Corinth" feels more like a post-apocalyptic sci-fi thriller than a typical Power Rangers episode.
Override Command: Dr. K tries to turn off Dillon's ranger suit in "Blitz". He somehow overpowers it.
Pass the Popcorn: During Ziggy's "interrogation". Ziggy himself and Gemma also pull buckets out on occasion.
The Password Is Always Swordfish: Partially subverted in "If Venjix Won". The Rangers guess several ranger-related words and phrases as Dr. K's possible computer password, each one failing. It turns out she chose Ziggy's name as her password, presumably thinking no-one would guess because no-one knew that she had feelings for him.
Percussive Maintenance: Handwaved as Flynn intentionally building the Road Attack Zord to shut down from a good whack in the center.
Poor Communication Kills: During one episode, the rangers realize the real objective of Venjix's latest maneuver. Instead of spelling out to the colonel how they're playing into Venjix's hands, Scott yells about how his father is playing right into Venjix's hands and that Attack! Attack! Attack!, suggested and shot down earlier, is the right idea. This costs them the opportunity to derail the scheme before it can begin.
Plug 'n' Play Technology: For all of Venjix's advanced and obfuscated tech, its servers still accept flash drives. And the Whale Zord is a megazord-ready Transforming Mecha immediately after conversion even though Dr. K seems to come up with the idea on the spot.
The whale Zord can be explained easily enough: since Dr. K created both the Rangers and Venjix, it's logical that the technologies would be compatible, hence why Venjix was able to hack the biofield in the finale.
Pragmatic Adaptation: While the show likely didn't have the budget to digitally recolor Go-Onger's silly looking zords, they do attempt to distract from the silly looking appliance-based monsters by having them not talk, but instead just be snarling beasts. Only a handful of MOTWs have had any lines, the rest either growled or made electronic noises. This required quite a bit of editing, as the Go-Onger monsters were extremely talkative and would often do a short monologue (or even a song!) before they exploded; in RPM, they simply cut straight from the finisher to the fall n' kaboom. As for the zords, whenever they have to talk, they just have the rangers inside talking instead.
This has led to some extremely short zord battles; some Go-Onger battles have over half the fight being the monster dancing, delivering monologues or comically running around. Edit that out and it's not much more than "form the megazord and do the finisher."
While this isn't very dramatic, it does make sense given the show's setting - this is THE last holdout of human civilization on Earth. The Rangers can't risk a prolonged Megazord battle in Corinth City, with all the collateral damage that implies, so they immediately go for the one-hit-kill weapon.
Tenaya 7[holding up blaster]: Dr. K, I presume? If you're as smart as they say you are, I'm expecting some pretty profound last words here.
Dr. K[picking up violin plugged into the amp]: Then I'll speak the universal language of music.
Tenaya 7[looks at speaker array]: You are smart![Dr. K then plays a loud chord, sending Tenaya 7 flying.]
The Precious, Precious Car: According to Scott, the GO-ONGER is this to Colonel Truman. Obviously, when the Rangers take it out on a mission Watch the Paint Job soon follows. Scott and Dillon also have moments where they're protective of their cars. Scott once beat a Grinder to death with his bare hands for scratching the paint on his car.
Psychopathic Manchild: Gem and Gemma, who plotted to blow up one of Venjix's factories with human slaves still inside. And clearly have a mental age around five at the most, despite being technological geniuses.
Pyrrhic Victory: Congratulations, Rangers, you have defeated Venjix!note For now. All it cost was 99% of life on earth, and the ecosystem will take millennia to recover, leaving life outside Corinth a living cancer-laden hell for generations. Have fun!
No Endor Holocaust is implied, as Dillon, Summer, and Tenaya begin Walking the Earth in the finale unprotected and they find a place where the environment is already beginning to return to normal.
Another Reveal in "Endgame", half the city of Corinth is made of robotic hybrids.
Reverse Polarity: A slight inversion; Flynn's abilities went haywire in "Ranger Blue" due to a build up of time dilation reversing the polarity of his powers. Played straight, however, in that he fixes the problem by putting his Engine Cell in upside down like a backwards battery, re-reversing the polarity.
Robotic Reveal: "End Game" reveals that appoximately half the population of Corinth City is infected with the dormant Venjix Virus.
Unrobotic Reveal: Tenaya 7. She's convinced she is a robot until she bleeds. The way the cut is revealed is almost mimicking the cliche of revealing sparking wires when Robotic Reveal is used straight.
Samus Is a Girl: Attempted with Dr. K, but it didn't really work: the voice distortion didn't really hide her gender that well, and a leaked trailer spoiled it anyway. It was also spoiled by the title sequence as the opening intro is voiced by Dr K, and the voice distortion isn't used on it, not even in the episodes before the reveal. At least the voice distortion made her sound older, if not really a guy.
Series Fauxnale: RPM was going to be the end for the entire franchise, and it would have been: a truly outstanding and very unconventional season, with the final episode making 700 even. If PR had to end, there couldn't possibly be a more awesome and fitting way for it to go out. As for the series itself, the final arc begins with a Wham Episode even by the standards of a Wham Season like this: you know how Dillon's a hybrid with all this evil Venjix tech in him that may take over him someday? Well, half the city is the same way, with their reprogramming complete, and Venjix just hadn't flipped the switch yet. And now he does.Oh, Crap. All Your Base Are Belong to Us is practically a tradition, and happened repeatedly this year, but... it's never been done like that before.
Spoiler Opening: Both played straight and averted in the first 4 episodes; while Dillon is shown to be Ranger Black from the first episode, Ziggy as Ranger Green and Dr. K's real appearance are hidden until after they've both appeared in the series. Done straight again when a later opening shows Gem as Ranger Gold and Gemma as Ranger Silver in the episode they join the team. Happens again when the Paleozords appear in the opening a full week before their appearance, and RPM Ultrazord three weeks before its appearance. Tenaya 15 appears in the opening of the episode her upgrade is revealed.
Spotting the Thread: In "Ranger Yellow, Part 2", Summer realizes that Tenaya is at her wedding posing as the caterer because "no caterer would put the cake next to a recycled motor oil bin"
Steampunk: The outside of Venjix's base invokes this trope. The interior, on the other hand, is decisively more futuristic.
Stepford Smiler: Two of them, in Gem and Gemma. Probably Type Cs, as it's unlikely that even the most upbeat invidivuals would talk about something like being held captive as test subjects or enslaved for hard labor in a factory of horror without even the smallest crack in their mask. Of course, since they're like that when they first meet K, it's entirely possible that there were even worse events that warped them even earlier on.
Stock Footage: Dr. K's narration in "The Road to Corinth" uses footage from the Ninja Storm episode "Snip It, Snip It Good" when the Blue Bay Harbor council have their debate.
Strong as They Need to Be: Tenaya 7 has been shown to be able to take on all the Rangers at once with regularity, and come out relatively unscathed. Despite this, she fares only just as well against any one Ranger at a time, even if they aren't morphed. Witness her fight with pre-ranger Ziggy, in which he is able to outmuscle her long enough to strap the morpher to his wrist and activate the morph. This can perhaps be justified by Ziggy's hint that she 'enjoys this' and is deliberately not acting on her full ability in order to prolong the 'fun'.
Stuff Blowing Up: This came under some incredibly heavy lampshading in the episode "Ranger Blue". When given the opportunity to ask questions about the Ranger tech, Ziggy asks:
Ziggy: Sometimes when I morph, I can't help but notice this gigantic explosion right behind me for no apparent reason.
This, combined with the fact that gratuitous booms were a Chekhov's Gag brought up later in the episode, has earned them the second nickname of "Ziggysplosions".
Tomato in the Mirror: Tenaya 7 inverts this. She is convinced she is a robot, until she bleeds like a human.
Took a Level in Badass: Ziggy forms an interesting gradual version of this. At the start of the series, he's clearly not a fighter. Pretty much every battle involves him making a mistake or doing something humourous. However, these moments were very subtly phased out. While he continued to be a comic character, by the midway point of the season, he was able to tear through Grinders just as well as any of the others.
Trash the Set: Both the Garage and Corinth Security HQ in the finale.
Trojan Prisoner: Dillon is one in "Beyond a Doubt". He just doesn't know it yet.
Twin Tropes: Gem and Gemma, evident from their very first appearance:
Creepy Twins: No sane person can be that perky all the time after going through such crap.
Single-Minded Twins: Only adds to the creepiness. Though Judd broke up the hive mind just a little bit.
Two Lines, No Waiting: Inverted versus normal Power Rangers series: the Rangers' development as a team and the survival of Corinth form the A-plot, while the monster fights form the B-plot.
Understatement: Dr. K, in attempting to apologize for being so cold to her team, says that she "might have treated some of [them] with a degree of forced emotional detachment, perhaps even bordering on coldness." The Rangers' reaction? Dripping with sarcasm.
Flynn: "Bordering on coldness," you say?
Summer: That's ridiculous, Doctor.
Dillon: You must be imagining it.
What makes it even funnier is that Dr. K doesn't get the sarcasm coming from the Rangers. She says, "No, no, I'm afraid it's true." All part of a Crowning Moment of Funny.
What the Hell, Hero?: After Scott runs off to prove himself to his dad, Gem tracks him down and asks "Isn't this exactly what you're always telling me and Gemma not to do?"
When She Smiles: It's implied that Ziggy feels this way toward Dr K, as he puts immense effort into getting her to smile.
Where The Heck Is Corinth?: Fans have deduced from provided info that Corinth is on the site of Boston, though they had to toy with the coordinates given incorrectly in the show. (Either it's Boston, Greenland, or somewhere in the Indian Ocean.)
Corinth seems to be located in Cancun, Mexico. In "Rain", Dillon turns on the radio and the woman gives the exact coordinates of Cancun as Corinth's location. Reinforced because the shape of the coastline around Cancun is identical to the wire map location of Corinth in the show's intro.
There are also cities named 'Corinth' located in Texas, Mississippi, and Maine.
Wide-Eyed Idealist: Flynn, see Honor Before Reason above. Ziggy as well, as he is convinced that despite the rapid evolution of Venjix technology that he and his teammates will always win because "we're the good guys."
Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Everything that's happened so far is because Dr. K wanted to go outside the Alphabet Soup facility, where she had been imprisoned (under the pretense of a sun allergy) for the last decade. Since it was never intended for the Venjix Virus to spread beyond Alphabet Soup, this also crosses with Mike Nelson, Destroyer of Worlds.
Xanatos Gambit: Venjix's master plan, revealed in "End Game". Remember all those attacks on Corinth foiled by the rangers? All a decoy to distract attention from the real threat: the population of Corinth, most of which have been infected with the Venjix virus and have been slowly turning into hybrids over the course of the entire season so that Venjix can control them and conquer the city. Of course if any of the monsters actually suceeded...
The end of the season leaves Venjix with direct access to the morphers, only one step away from the morphing grid... Sweet Dreams, Earth.