These are what we call the 'YMMV items.' Things that some people find in this work. We call them 'your mileage might vary' because not everyone sees these things in the same way. This starts discussions in the trope lists, a thing we don't want. Please use the discussion page if you'd like to discuss any of these items.
YMMV: Power Rangers Samurai
Awesome Music: The opening theme, as well as several of the background themes.
One big issue that frustrates fans regarding this is this: if they consider Samurai Season 18, that leaves a Goseiger adaptation as Season 19, which would turn a Gokagier adaptation (already an 35th Anniversary season for Super Sentai) into Power Rangers 20th Anniversary. That would leave Power Rangers with a built-in Big Budget Beef Up for their 20th Anniversary in Gokaiger footage instead of the comparatively lukewarm Goseiger footage.
And things got a lot more complicated when plans for Power Rangers Megaforce were announced (based on Goseiger, but to include bits of Gokaiger later on).
Similarly, whether the first episode shown of the series should be considered Episode 1 or 3 given that the episodes telling the team's origin were not aired at the start of the series. There were also arguments over whether this was caused by Executive Meddling reordering the episodes, by some production issue, or by the show's writers; but a little digging revealed it's Nickelodeon's fault.
The RPM team-up "Clash of the Red Rangers" started to split fans before it ever aired. Once it was confirmed that none of the RPM actors were planned to return, some people were already saying that if they don't have the RPM actors available, they just shouldn't bother, while others said that we should just wait and see, since they might surprise us. (Turns out they didn't. A Fake Shemp never-demorphing Scott - and for some reason Antonio (Well, we never see Antonio's face, but he is unmorphed)! - went through Shinkenger movie footage that wasn't used to actually tell much of a story, and was confusing due to yet more out-of-order airing.) However, many RPM fans who went in admitted that Scott's replacement did a fine job.
Complete Monster: Serrator. In "Broken Dreams" we find out he was the one who cursed Dayu and Deker, by tricking Dayu into becoming Nighlok: he said that he would restore Deker in exchange of Dayu becoming a Nighlok and after she accepts, Serrator reveals that he made Deker half-human and half-Nighlok. Dayu realized that Serrator tricked her and he laughed at her misery, this is what made Dayu a miserable and tormented person. Mia after seeing this feels sorry for Dayu and Deker. Also unlike usual Deal with the Devil examples, it is Serrator who came to Dayu and probably did that when he heard Dayu's call for help and wanted to ruin her life and screw her and Deker's lives. In his official debut episode "Something Fishy" from Super Samurai, he destroyed an entire mooger army to show his power to Master Xandred.
The worst part about his tricking Dayu with his Deal with the Devil? He reveals "Kevin's Choice" that he enjoy it! To make it even worse, he pretty much brags about it to Dayu's face.
Switchbeast. To put it into perspective, he goes around town turning innocent people into various objects by trapping their souls into them. He later reveals that unsuspecting humans will get rid and destroy these objects, unaware that there are actually humans there. The entire point of his plan: to have a large number of innocent people (including Rangers, Bulk and Spike) ''killed''. Usually Nighloks want to flood the Sanzu River by causing misery, but Switchbeast wanted to do this by killing innocent people and if Mike and Emily hadn't stopped him, a lot of innocent humans would have been killed.
Doubletone, Monster of the Week from episode "Deal With a Nightlok" is seen as this by Kevin and Mia because he tricked Ryan into giving up baseball by lying that if he did so his father would return from the army. He seemed to enjoy Ryan's suffering
In the eyes of Dayu, Master Xandred became in "Broken Dreams". See Moral Event Horizon entry below.
Ear Worm: The Rebel Rockers' song from "He Ain't Heavy Metal, He's My Brother." See here. Some of the songs Bulk and Spike sing as well could possibly count.
Ensemble Darkhorse: Everyone loves Deker. Antonio seems to be heading in this direction as well.
Evil Is Cool: Serrator. Perhaps the most Bad Ass character in the show. He shows his power to Master Xandred by destroying an entire army of moogers. Later, he gets a Crowning Moment of Awesome during his fight with rangers: he defeats them easily, turns their own attacks against them, and to top it all off, he says that he wasn't even trying.
Master Xandred took the title of the most Bad Ass character in the show from Serrator and makes Serrator look like a mooger. Just watch "The Master Returns" and see what i mean.
First Installment Wins: Samurai is playing on people's nostalgia for the original Mighty Morphin by returning to the original "Go Go Power Rangers!" theme song, the morphing call, and bringing back Bulk.
He Really Can Act: Ricardo Medina. Okay, he's not Oscar-caliber or anything, but he's come quite a ways from Wild Force.
Hilarious in Hindsight: "Party Monsters" was the first real attempt to shake up the Shinkenger formula, by having the Nighloks able to wind up in a "third life", which was little more than a harmless ghost. Actually this had been done in the sentai that came before, Engine Sentai Go-onger, where the recurring villain Hiramechimedes came (arguably) Back from the Dead one last time, as a yuurei or ghost.
There was talk about that the Shinkenger's Super Mode would entail, and a few subscribed to the theory that the kanji on their helmets would double up. Cue the Shogun Samurai Rangers forms, which have the kanji doubled up.
They've replaced Genta's oversized suit and gong from his big arrival at the Shiba house with a suit and shiny tie for Antonio, making it look like he's taking Jayden to the prom.
It doesn't help that both Antonio and Jayden are reuntied childhood friends, if that's indication.
The end of "Broken Dreams" adds a whole new level of Ho Yay when Jayden and Antonio are limping to the bench, panting and catching their breath while saying things like "Every muscle hurts" and "Just like old times."
Others are criticizing it for referencing things that never happened in Samurai but did in Shinkenger, making it closer to They Changed It, Now It Sucks because it's not the same. For instance, unlike Shinken Green, Mike acts rebellious for all of one episode (that we've seen), but Master Ji continues acting as though Mike is still rebellious, simply because of how Shinken Green behaved in the original script.
That sounds more like "Its the same even though now it makes no sense so it sucks" to me. Them "changing" something isn't the problem.
Subverted by Antonio, the Gold Ranger. While he is a Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass and Large Ham like Shinken Gold, he's a different kind of ham than Genta. And he's been recieved somewhat more positively as well.
It's gradually been pushing away from Shinkenger as it's progressed. Among other things, Deker's backstory has been changed drastically.
Moral Event Horizon: In the episode "Trading Places" the Monster of the Week Switchbeast goes around city and turns innocent people into various objects. The point of this plan is that unsuspecting humans will get rid of those objects, unaware that there are human souls in them. This would have resulted in a lot of people being killed (including Rangers, Bulk and Spike) if Mike and Emily didn't defeat Switchbeast. That was the entire point of Switchbeast's plan: to have as many innocent people turned into objects and would have been disposed and destroyed by unsuspecting humans. Usually Nighloks want to make misery, but this time they wanted to kill innocent people.
In the eyes of Dayu, Big Bad Master Xandred crosses this when he sets her harmonium (which was a gift by Deker, when they were married and it was LAST remnant of her love for Deker, who was cursed and lost his memory of her) on fire and attempted to have her memory erased. She even says "I knew you were evil, but this!"
He really crosses it by killing and absorbing her after she revived him.
Serrator crossed it 200 years ago by making a Deal with the Devil with Dayu, turning Deker into a half Nighlok and taking his memories, not telling her that until she's already made the deal. If he didn't cross it then, he most certainly did with his endgame. He wanted to split open the earth, spilling the Netherworld onto Earth, likely causing untold death and destruction all for the sake of becoming powerful enough to rule both worlds.
Narm: The Monster of the Week's big plan is... making a little boy give up baseball... Made even more narmy by Mia's line of "This is what you get for making Ryan sad!" (Then again, he lied that by giving up on baseball, the boy's father would return home from the army.)
In episode 5, "A Fish Out of Water" (really episode 7, but Nickelodeon has skipped the first two), the new zord is a swordfish. When it combines with the Megazord in the obligatory boss battle, the final attack has the mech's usual katana attaching to the swordfish helmet which sticks straight up! Someone should dub it "Narwhal Mode" or take a clip of its head-sword-swinging Finishing Move and synch it to Willow Smith's "Whip My Hair."
"Forest for the Trees" features innocent bystanders wangsting and actively lamenting with a passion usually reserved for the death of loved ones... the fact that its starting raining. It was caused by a Nighlok, but still... (Of course, it was supernatural rain made to cause wangst.)
In one episode, a Monster of the Week tries to bring down Yellow Ranger's confidence, which such lines as "Everyone loves to tease you!" In his defense, he'd already tried half a dozen other insults on her with no effect.
Octoroo's big plan in "The Blue and the Gold"? Stealing toys, which from the looks of it, can pretty much all be easily replaced. Not that that's much comfort to kids who lost their favorite...
Paranoia Fuel: Any crack or crevice can be a potential portal for a Nighlok... Sweet dreams.
In "The Blue and the Gold," the monster was in Bulk and Spike's house while they were asleep, completely unnoticed. Although the "unnoticed" part was partly due to the fact that it was Bulk and Spike it's not hard to imagine that this was how he stole the children's toys (aside from the ones we saw in the park). Let me repeat that: the monster snuck into houses with children in them without anyone noticing.
Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: In a lot of ways, Rick Medina. His Wild Force character, Cole... wasn't well liked, which wasn't made much better after he left the show (especially his appearance on the reality show Kept.) However, between Deker's Ensemble Darkhorse status, Medina's improved acting ability, and the fact that Samurai started improving right after his debut, opinions have changed.
Special Effects Failure: The digital animation sticks out like a sore thumb. On the other hand, one could find it preferable to Shinkenger's.
In "The Blue and Gold," Octoroo's mouthpiece was changed for a few scenes, ostensibly to make it less creepy. The change was discarded almost immediately.
The mecha suits from Shinkenger are looking even more fake than the original Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers/Zyuranger. Seriously, the Megazord looks like it's wearing Styrofoam cutouts while in past series they at least looked metallic.
There's also the Gold Ranger helmet, which switches between practically mirror-coated and more like frosted glass. It even did so in Shinkenger footage, so it can't be blamed on Japan/US prop differences (They probably use the frosted glass one to avoid accidentally reflecting the camera crew in his helmet.)
In "Jayden's Challenge," and likely a few other places, when Kevin jumps into battle, it cuts to a second of Kevin's (obvious) stunt actor.◊ The stunt actor does a pretty good job of hiding his face; unfortunately, he does this with his hands. The problem being Kevin is black and the stunt actor is (likely) Japanese. Previous teams actually used makeup tricks◊ to match the stunties to the actors,◊ with results that can be downright creepy,◊ but that might lean a little too close to blackface for the current team (or they were short for time, who knows?)
Tear Jerker: Dayu and Deker's new backstories. They were husband and wife, but a fire mortally wounded Deker, destroying their house. Afterwards, Dayu made a Deal with the Devil, selling her soul to save Deker's life. To twist the knife, the Nighlock making the deal reveals that Deker will be cursed to wander the earth as a half Nighlock/Half Human forever and will forget Dayu completely. Even Mia feels sorry for them after this. Both are much more sympathetic than their Shinkenger selves.
You know what's worse? The shamisen that Dayu carries was Deker's wedding gift to her... a simple guitar. Dayu's wedding gift to Deker is his Uramasa sword. Now remember when the shamisen was set on fire? It was as if Dayu was losing the LAST remnant of her love for Deker.
The deaths of Dayu and Deker. Particularly due to the fact they're both extremely sympathetic.
They Changed It, Now It Sucks: Samurai started suffering from this early. When the casting sheets went out, the characters had the names Reese, Parry, Baron, Sadie, and Ava. Fans got a little upset when the names were changed to the slightly more generic Jayden, Mike, Kevin, Mia, and Emily. (Much later, it was revealed that the mentor's name wasn't Takeru, but Ji; and later still the Sixth Ranger's name was shown to have gone from Wesley to Antonio.)
"Reese", "Parry", and "Baron" could still work as the respective characters' last names.
The toy designs are also receiving criticism - most understandably in the case of the Megazord, which lost a number of its details in the transition from Shinken-oh, but also for the new Ranger figures, which were given samurai-armor-esque revamps including Shoulders of Doom. This has been given some in-show justification, however (they use the armored form while piloting the zords), and they also made normal Ranger figures.
Though that isn't really the series' fault, as rumor has it the figures were made prior to Saban buying back the rights to Power Rangers, when it was expected that Power Rangers RPM was to be the final season.
They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: Clash of the Red Rangers. Where do we even begin? Well, for one thing, at one point in the story the Samurai Rangers (barring Jayden) are sucked into the RPM-verse by Professor Cog's portal. Now, the idea of a team of Samurai crashing into an After the End setting where humanity is fighting for survival against a virus and its army of machines would make for a pretty good plot. And it would also have been great to see how the Samurai Rangers would work with the RPM Rangers. So, what do we get out of this possibly awesome plot thread? The Samurai Rangers return after being gone for a while, and Emily tells Scott "Your team says hi." That's all we get.
Scott's comment that he wasn't sure the air was breathable is a carry over from Go-Onger more than RPM. The issue of not de-morphing could have been easily addressed by saying that he might not have enough power to morph again or perhaps have a point about a dwindling power supply for the suit. Either point would have given the loaned power disc in the third act greater significance.
This troper couldn't have been the only one who suspected Spike might become the Gold Ranger, considering the comical aspect of Shinken Gold's portrayal in the original, and the subplot about Bulk training Spike to be a Samurai. What a great twist it could have been to have Spike *actually* become a Samurai ranger, and have to hide his role from Bulk, not to mention the indirect MOA it could have been to have the son of one of our original Those Two Guys become a ranger.
Bonus for anyone who remembers the buzz around the Gold Ranger in Zeo; a lot of people speculated it was Skull.
Tough Act to Follow: Coming after ShinkengerandRPMand running at the same time as Gokaiger, you bet it is.
Unfortunate Implications: This early casting call for the show. With the exception of the Red Ranger, every other character is listed under "Any Ethnicity," reflecting the franchise's history of colorblind casting. What's the Red Ranger's requirement? Caucasian. This was fixed in more recent casting calls. To be fair, there may be a reason for specifying race, such as making sure Jayden and family members that show up don't look blatantly unrelated to each other. It also asks for an actress to play 'Princess Megan,' which appears to be Kaoru's counterpart.
Uncanny Valley: Octoroo's American mouth actually made him more creepy.
Not exactly "American"; we get to see Shitari's mouth in Act 46 of Shinkenger and it does look kind of like that. All they did in the adaptation was remove the front tentacles that hid it, but yeah, the results weren't any more pleasant.
Values Dissonance: Inevitable when they're trying to be entirely accurate to Shinkenger.
One example: In "Sticks and Stones," Emily tells the team how she was bullied as a child, and was taught by her sister to ignore what the bullies said. This is a common part of Japanese culture, and, at first glance, seems fit in an American show. Then you realize that it seems to be implied that Emily apparently never told anyone about the bullies. The flashback seems to suggest that only her sister (a Power Ranger in training, mind) helped her out, whereas she could have told her parents, a teacher or some other Reasonable Authority Figure.
Sadly, though, this is more or less in tune with children's shows, where Adults Are Useless. And fairly common amongst bullied children in any corner of the world. Many of them will internalize and not tell anybody for several reasons. Parents, who might not understand how severe the bullying is (or assume that it's a rite of passage in childhood), will likely tell children to simply get over it. Similarly, telling a parent or teacher, who usually can do very little to stop it in the first place, can make bullying worse.
Vindicated by History: Samurai has been the reason many, many fans have looked back on previously disliked seasons (Turbo, Wild Force and Operation Overdrive are frequently cited) and given them a more positive reception, they hate Samuraithat much.
What an Idiot: Octoroo in "Fight Fire With Fire." In order to finish off Jayden, he sends a fire-type Nighlok with a weapon that ignites the fire within a person (the explanation being that, since Jayden's family element is Fire, he will burn up from the inside). Apparently, it didn't occur to him that it was possible for said weapon to be turned against his monster, causing it to burn up instead.