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Comic Book / Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers (2016)

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"It's morphin' time!"

Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers is a 2016 comic book series based on the Power Rangers franchise, specifically the first instalment of the same name. It is published by Boom! Studios and is the first comic in their Power Rangers line, initially written by Kyle Higgins (Nightwing, Green Lantern), while backup stories featuring the infamous duo Bulk and Skull were written by Steve Orlando (Midnighter, Supergirl (Rebirth)).

While the series is based on the core concepts of the TV show — and was initially intended to follow its continuity until right after the introduction of the Green Ranger, where the series starts off — it tells original stories, uses a modernised setting and has a more mature tone and writing.

Following the Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers: Shattered Grid arc, the series focused on a different team of Power Rangers, made up of Rangers from various other teams in the history of the franchise. This incarnation of the series was written by Marguerite Bennett (Animosity, Batwoman).


The subsequent Necessary Evil storyline returned the focus to the Mighty Morphin' team, albeit after a Time Skip of roughly a year, along with various changes to the status quo that correspond to those from the second season of the original show. It was written by Ryan Parrott (Go Go Power Rangers, Star Trek: Manifest Destiny) and served as the final storyline of the series.

After 55 issues, the series ended in 2020. It was succeeded by two ongoing titles, launched as part of the "Unlimited Power" initiative: Mighty Morphin (2020) and Power Rangers (2020), both written by Parrott.


Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers contains examples of the following tropes:

  • Adaptational Badass:
    • Rita is a lot more cunning here than she was in the show, being an expert at emotional manipulation and long-term planning that keeps taking the Rangers by surprise. We also get to actually see her conquering multiple planets via flashbacks.
    • The Dinozords are sea-worthy (the Triceratops has an underwater mode) and space-worthy (Tommy pilots the Dragonzord to the moon).
  • Adult Fear:
    • Issue #11 has Billy and Tommy's parents discovering that their sons are missing.
    • Issue #12 expands on this, with their parents asking the students of their school for any information on their whereabouts while the Rangers are forced to keep silent.
    • Issue #26 has Tommy's mom finding out that her son is dead.
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us: In Issue #7, Rita occupies the Command Center and parks her throne right in the middle - precisely, right where Zordon's dimensional tube once was.
  • Alternate Timeline / Bad Future: The first arc is a result of a villain from one breaking into "our" timeline. In that timeline, Tommy remained at Rita's side even after her spell was broken, and the two of them have effectively conquered the world.
  • Big Bad: Rita Repulsa is the ongoing one until Shattered Grid but Lord Drakkon takes the role for the first arc and Shattered Grid. Finster takes over during the second and Lord Zedd takes over the role in Necessary Evil.
  • Both Sides Have a Point:
    • In Issue Zero Jason and Tommy get into an argument over Tommy's confusion during battle over Jason's orders. Zordon intervenes and tells them they're both at fault: Jason needs to be clearer about orders to the others and to remember that since Tommy just joined, he has no idea what any of the Rangers' tactics are, and Tommy needs to ask clarification when he doesn't know what to do.
    • After Andros, Leo and Maya use a construct of Astronema to get Karone out of her trial before she's killed, Karone lays into them for taking away her choice to be punished for her crimes. Andros points out Karone was going to be punished by being executed for her crimes despite how much good she's tried to do since her Heel–Face Turn.
  • "The Breakfast Club" Poster Homage: This variant cover casts Billy as Brian, Kim as Claire, Jason as Andrew, Trini as Allison, and Zack as Bender.
  • Broad Strokes: Begins shortly after the Green With Evil saga, with the events of previous episodes presumably having happened (various early monsters are shown in flashbacks).
  • Brother–Sister Team: Deconstructed during the Beyond the Grid storyline. Andros and Karone are this, but Andros, being from the Power Rangers in Space era, is way too protective of Karone, despite her being from post-Power Rangers Lost Galaxy and far from helpless despite her powers being drained. Thus, when the Solatrix is stolen, the other Rangers accuse Andros of being the thief because of his clinginess allowing Mike, the real thief, to deflect the blame.
  • Bookends: The final page of issue 55 is payed out similarly to the first page of issue 0, with a head and hand lying prone on their side, a Green Ranger being congratulated by their female creator and the aforementioned Ranger holding their helmet in hand.
  • Call-Forward:
    • Lieutenant Stone is assigned to supervise Bulk and Skull's community service, 2 years before he becomes their superior when they join the Junior Police Force.
    • The reveal that Zack was the first Green Ranger recruit and he's resentful of how powerful he could have been means that Zack wearing the Dragon Shield in the final episode of the first season was the resolution of a character arc that the audience didn't even know existed.
    • With regards to the timeframe, the destroyed Thunderzords and Saba being found in the alternate universe Billy and Tommy are sent to probably count. Issue #12 adds to this with the appearance of Aisha, the Alien Rangers, the Falconzord, the Phantom Ranger, and Ninjor.
    • After admitting she has a crush on Tommy, Kimberly jokes that a relationship between them can't end well.
    • Rita's absence after the end of the Lord Drakkon arc is because she's been tracking down the Wizard of Deception to have him create a very familiar looking candle.
  • Canon Character All Along: The seemingly new Black Dragon from the Drakkon arc appears to be a new character working for Rita. Later on, it's revealed that the Black Dragon is actually a modified, shrunken down Dragonzord piloted by Drakkon.
  • Cartesian Karma: "The Trial of Astronema" is about Karone being put on trial in a Kangaroo Court for the crimes she committed as Astronema, her brainwashed evil alter-ego.
  • Child Soldiers:
    • The Rangers are seen to act more like a military unit than they did in the show with Jason acting like a commanding officer during battle and dressing down Tommy when he doesn't follow orders.
    • Another issue shows that Billy had started staying morphed all the time as a comfort mechanism, and projects a hologram of his real clothes over his costume, though he eventually stops doing so.
    • This is a Justified Trope along with Recruit Teenagers with Attitude: the 1969 Rangers were all adults with special skills, but had so many hang ups, they ended up clashing horribly with each other. The survivors of their mission call out Zordon for doing such a thing, causing Zordon to fall back on here - it was better to have a cohesive team of friends whose skills he can build up over time rather than a team of skills whose friendship he can build up over time.
  • Continuity Cavalcade: The wrap-around for Shattered Grid has almost every single Ranger that appeared in the franchise somewhere, from main team members, evil rangers (Such as the very short-lived and disappointing Dark Rangers under Zedd, and Psycho Rangers), to obscure one-offs rarely mentioned, if ever (Such as Crash and the Creeps, the Cyborg Rangers, and the Nova Ranger.) It even included Chameleon Green from Uchu Sentai Kyuranger, though this was apparently a mistake and was meant to be Camille from Power Rangers Jungle Fury.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • Goldar's story from the 2016 annual mentions Lord Zedd's disfigurement from the Zeo Crystal and Ninjor empowering the Aquitar Rangers.
    • In the "Forever Mighty Morphin Black" chapter from the 2017 annual, among the suits there's one wearing the Dragon Shield, one wearing the Defender Vest, two Ninjetti, and the one from the Pink spin off series. When they're all unmorphed, you can also spot Adam's ancestor from the old west.
  • Darker and Edgier:
    • Than the show it's based on. Averted with the Bulk and Skull/Squat and Baboo two-page backup features, which follow the same tone as the show.
    • The alternate universe even more so compared to this one: Rita eventually took over the world and a Last Stand attempt to give Jason the time to obtain the White Ranger powers ended with Tommy killing him and stealing the powers for himself.
    • Three of the 1969 team members die on their first and only mission. It's not graphic, but it's certainly jarring.
  • Decon-Recon Switch: Many of the typical Power Rangers tropes are taken apart and shown to not work how the show portrays them to, but it still manages to make those tropes work in different ways.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: The Wizard of Deception, a one-off villain from the Season 2 multi-parter "The Return of the Green Ranger" appears in issue 22.
    • In issue 42, we have Darkonda (In Space) Elgar, General Havoc (Turbo) Klank and Queen Machina (Zeo).
  • Easily Forgiven: A story directly plays into this with Karone as she's put on trial for her crimes as Astronema and it's clear many planets she's ravaged aren't willing to ignore her past. She's finally let go when Andros uses a hologram to make it appear as if her "evil side" has been excised from her.
  • 11th-Hour Ranger: Bulk and Skull as the Purple and Orange Rangers, thanks to Zordon using spare change-uh, "Extremely rare power coins." It's even mentioned they briefly had Zords, the "Baconadon" and the "Featherdactyl."
  • Enemy Mine: In Issue #9, Goldar helps Billy escape the Dark Dimension. The reason: Goldar helps Billy in the defeat of Dark Dragon so he can return to Rita's side.
    Goldar: Enemies of our enemies...
    Billy: Enemies of our enemies.
  • Five-Man Band: Just like in the show each of the Ranger's fills a specific role in the team.
    • The Leader: Jason, who gives orders to the team in the field and acts like a military commanding officer. Deconstructed in that this attitude is shown to negatively impact his social life, both with the rangers and in general, and his sense of responsibility has lead to some shades of becoming a Workaholic.
    • The Lancer: Zack, who acts as the second in command to Jason. Deconstructed as he's shown to resent Jason and Tommy overshadowing him but keeping the resentment in check because of genuine loyalty to The Leader and because said leader honestly appreciates his help.
    • The Smart Guy: Billy who is the most academic of the Rangers and is called on to assess mechanical issues. Deconstructed as he feels out of place among the more athletic Rangers, but Trini points out that his technical knowledge is far more valuable than any martial arts expertise he has. The problems of having just one tech guy are also shown, as without him even Trini admits that she only knows enough to keep up with his Techno Babble.
    • The Big Guy: Trini, who's very grounded and mature, serving as the team's "rock" or "backbone" so to speak. She's also a Genius Bruiser as she understands science and technology and she knows martial arts.
    • The Chick: Kimberly, who is more emotionally open than the others and is the only one to unerringly accept Tommy.
    • Sixth Ranger: Tommy, who joined later than the main five. Deconstructed as he is not Easily Forgiven for his actions while brainwashed and the other Rangers have difficulty trusting him, but he and they are genuinely motivated to moving past that and bringing him into the team proper.
  • For Want of a Nail: What led to the alternate universe: After destroying the Sword of Darkness, Tommy chose to refuse Jason's offer to join them and went back to Rita which set in motion plans to slowly take over the world and led to the Rangers' defeat.
  • Future Me Scares Me: Tommy is obviously less than thrilled to find his future self willingly conquered Earth alongside Rita. While their timelines have already diverged, he still wonders if it's only a matter of time before he turns out like that himself.
  • Gambit Roulette: Rita's first plan consisted of several plans that feed into each other and hinge on exact circumstances. So far it goes as follows: 1) Send her Putties to attack Tommy while banking on their defeat so she can collect energy from the Dragon Dagger and rely on Tommy's refusal to reveal that he has been hallucinating her presence to keep them from suspecting her, 2) Use the Dragon Dagger energy to create a copy that can be used to control the Dragonzord and also count on the Rangers further distancing themselves from Tommy either due to his refusal to open up or his revealing his hallucinations, 3) Use the negative emotions that come from the conflict between the Rangers and Tommy to create a new powerful monster.
  • Grey-and-Gray Morality: Karone's story in the 2018 Anniversary issue has her put on trial for her crimes as Astronema. Andros, along with Leo and Maya, interfere and have a hologram of Astronema "killed" so Karone can go free. Karone lays into her brother for taking away her choice to be punished for her actions but her friends point out that the court had kidnapped her to put her on trial, refused to believe that she had changed, and was going to execute her.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Issue #9 introduces a figure who is being called the "Mysterious Ranger", who is a fusion of the Green and White Ranger powers. Later issues reveal that he is called Lord Drakkon and is in fact Tommy from a universe where he stayed on Rita's side after her spell was broken.
  • Hallucinations: Despite being free from Rita, Tommy is plagued with waking visions of her telling him he's a monster and Past Experience Nightmares that sneak up on him.
  • Heroic Sacrifice:
    • In the alternate timeline, Billy died saving Trini during the attack on the Command Center.
    • Nikolai, the Blue Ranger of the 1969 team, jumps into the mouth of a giant Psycho Green to fire off a cannon at pointblank range to make sure the monster is defeated.
  • Human Disguise: Finster creates a new kind of monster that's indistinguishable from humans until it's too late.
  • Jerkass: Zack. He's aggressively suspicious of Tommy after he is freed from Rita's spell. A flashback reveals Rita offered to make him the Green Ranger before Tommy. He refused and escaped, but never told his friends about it. After meeting his alternate universe counterpart, he's advised to tell the team sooner rather than later what happened.
  • Kangaroo Court: The intergalactic court that tries to try and sentence Karone for her crimes as Astronema. Why they count is that this is post-Lost Galaxy, and they basically kidnap her to put her before a court that is already dead set on executing her no matter what. The only witness in the entire proceeding that is sympathetic is Doggie Cruger, because his side of the story and its effects were shown throughout S.P.D..
  • La Résistance: In the alternate timeline, a group calling themselves the Coinless. They are made up of former rangers and their allies, fighting Rita and Lord Drakkon as best they can.
  • Lighter and Softer: The back-up features about Bulk and Skull and Squatt and Baboo are noticeably less darker and more humorous than the main story, containing similar comedic elements to the original show.
  • Loophole Abuse: The Rangers except for Tommy are locked out of their powers and the Black Dragon has control of the Dinozords. How do the Rangers leap back into action? They hotwire their powers to the Green Power Coin's connection to the Morphin Grid, effectively turning them into a team of Green Rangers.
  • The Medic: Trini seems to have taken on this role on the team.
  • Might Makes Right: As shown in the 2016 annual, this is the ruling philosophy where Goldar and his brother Silverback come from.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Saba attempting to kill Lord Drakkon in Issue #24 allows the villain to break free, kill the sentient sword, and escape from Promethea's custody.
  • Noble Demon: Goldar, mainly in the main comic, with Pink showing some shades of it.
  • Off-Model: The first two issues of Beyond the Grid get hit with this pretty hard with many characters bearing little to no resemblance to their TV counterparts and only being identifiable if their name is mentioned or if they happen to wear distinctive/iconic clothing.
    • Though the overall artwork improves by #35 the flashback segments, which take up the majority of the issue, suffer from this again. In particular, human-like faces were done so badly that one panel was mocked by fans for inadvertently making a character look like Hank Hill.
  • One Steve Limit: Averted. The Necessary Evil arc introduces Dayne, a Sirian shipped to Lord Zedd to do his bidding. He shares his name with Earth’s greatest ninja.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: Rita's normal modus operandi is send down monsters and make them grow. Issue #4 ends with a giant monster appearing and shrinking down to fight the Rangers.
  • Original Generation: The series features a Psycho Green during the portion set in 1969. It turns out his original form before making a Deal with the Devil with Dark Spectre was the Sixth Ranger of the Fiveman analog, Supersonic, which was based on Xybria. Being from a team predating Zyuranger, this Sixth Ranger never existed in the original Sentai.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Goldar disguises himself as a human by wearing normal clothes over himself, without any attempt to hide his ape-like face, tail, and golden armor. He gets out fine anyways because everyone just likes his "Goldar costume".
  • Precursor Heroes: Issue #20 reveals that Zordon recruited a team of Rangers back in 1969, right in the middle of the Cold War.
  • Pocket Dimension: The Rangers have one for training simulations.
  • Power Incontinence: In issue #40, Tommy tells Zordon that the White Ranger powers are throwing him off as while he's more agile, stronger and "a little taller", he can't sleep and feels "on" all the time. This is a subtle nod to the hyperactivity of Kibaranger in Gosei Sentai Dairanger, who was a little kid.
  • Purple Is Powerful: In "Unlockly Heroes," Bulk is turned into the Purple Ranger (Skull's the Orange Ranger) to save the team when Rita's monster captures them all.
  • Pyrrhic Victory: The 1969 Rangers complete their mission but three of them die in the process.
  • Ragtag Band of Misfits:
    • The 1969 Rangers. All five of them had certain skills Zordon needed to complete a mission, but they were people from all walks of life who had incredibly clashing personalities, namely two former friends who had clashing views of the Vietnam War and a KGB Agent who was angry he was being led by an American. Sadly, those three end up dying.
    • The post-Shattered Grid team, comprised of Ranger Slayer, Tanya/Zeo Ranger II, Andros/Red Space Ranger, Mike/the Magna Defender, Cam/Ninja Storm!Green Samurai Ranger, and the Heckyl/Dark Ranger. All of them parts of different teams, different powers, different Zords, the works. The last one wasn't even brought over to his season’s Power Ranger adaption.
  • Red Herring: Some fans speculated that Lord Drakkon would be an alternate universe version of Zack, given that Rita originally offered Zack to become the Green Ranger, but he refused. Not to mention Drakkon's Zord being the Black Dragon, however, it turned out that an alternate universe version of Tommy is in fact Lord Drakkon.
  • Ridiculously Average Guy: The 2017 Annual has Rita send Scorpina and Goldar out to snoop around and find any embarrassing secrets on the rangers and humiliate them to the point where they'll never show their faces again. To their dismay, it turns out that they're just normal kids aside from the whole ranger thing.
  • Self-Restraint: Goldar after Rita has him imprisoned in the Dark Dimension for losing the Green Ranger. Goldar has complete control over the dimension and could thus escape whenever he wants to, but he chooses to accept his punishment and remain a prisoner there.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome: Oh yeah.
    • Tommy in the show was seen to be Easily Forgiven for his actions while brainwashed. This is emphatically not the case here as at least Zack and Jason are seen to have uneasy feelings about his involvement with the team.
    • Tommy defies Jason's orders in order to stop a monster that has taken control of the Dragonzord. He succeeds but Jason is still upset with Tommy for taking the risk. The Rangers are soldiers and just because a plan works doesn't mean it will be forgiven if you disobeyed orders to do so.
    • The Rangers are seen to act more like soldiers than superheroes like they did in the show which is a much more likely formula for success in fighting giant monsters.
    • Rita's use of giant monsters and a nearly endless supply of soldiers are seen to have very tangible consequences, with the former causing property damage and endangering civilians and the latter being useful by sheer numbers allowing them to overwhelm the Rangers regardless of power levels.
    • The 2016 annual depicts the stress such battles would take on the Rangers themselves as well as depicting the destruction the battles would cause.
    • The 1969 team shows how well a group of absolute strangers, with clashing backgrounds and personalities, would do when they're suddenly pushed together onto a Ranger team and sent out: they fight among themselves and are caught off guard when facing Psycho Green, having no idea what they're capable of doing since they haven't been trained.
    • Equally, the post-"The Power Transfer" team is in equal disarray as we're dealing with a team that's half old and half new. Adam, Aisha and Rocky have yet to get into step with the old guard and Kimberly, now second-in-command, is cheesed off by the freshness of the new team and heavily misses Jason, Zack and Trini.
  • Setting Update: The series is set in the present day instead of the 90s as in the original show.
  • Storming the Castle: Tommy and Jason take the Dragonzord to Rita's moon palace to rescue Billy from the Dark Dimension.
  • Superhero Paradox: Invoked by Goldar in Issue #5, who claims that Rita didn't start sending down giant monsters until the Rangers started using Zords. Given that each member of Rita's gang is a Card-Carrying Villain, Zack doesn't buy it considering that one of Zordon's rules is to not escalate a battle so the Rangers don't summon their Zords until after Rita has grown a monster.
  • Time Skip: Necessary Evil jumps a year after the events of Shattered Grid, taking place after Rocky, Adam, and Aisha took over for Jason, Zack and Trini.
  • Triple Shifter: The basis of Jason's short story in the 2016 annual. We get to see what an "average" week looks like when you have to prepare for a test, write a paper, teach kids martial arts after school and regularly save the world.
  • Unwinnable Training Simulation: Tommy and Kimberly go through one in Issue #1. It's a mark of Tommy's mental state that he demands another go even after Zordon spells out the "unwinnable" part for him.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Saba trying to kill Lord Drakkon in Issue #24 allows him to escape, which kicks off the Shattered Grid storyline.
  • Villains Out Shopping: In the 2017 Annual, after Scorpina and Goldar fail to get any juicy gossip or embarrassing secrets on the Rangers, they decide to have fun at a carnival before Rita punishes them for failure.
  • Villain World: The other timeline. Rita and Lord Drakkon have basically taken over but for La Résistance.
  • Wake Up, Go to School, Save the World: As in the original series. The comics show more emphasis on the team trying to balance their studies, extra-curricular activities and time with their families while trying to protect Earth from Rita.
  • Wealthy Philanthropist: Issue #17 introduces Grace Sterling, billionaire CEO of the tech company Promethea, who uses her resources to help rebuild cities after the Rangers' battles and seeks to aid the Rangers on the frontlines. She's a former Red Ranger herself, recruited by Zordon back in 1969.
  • We Can Rule Together: Issue #5 reveals that Rita tried to recruit Zack as the Green Ranger before Tommy.
  • Wham Shot:
    • Issue #9's reveal of the Mysterious Ranger sitting on a throne similar to Lord Zedd's.
    • The reveal of who the Mysterious Ranger is, in Issue #11: Tommy.
    • Grace is revealed to be the original Red Ranger in Issue #19.
    • The Promethea HQ shown in Issue #21 HIGHLY resembles Terra Venture. Confirmed as such in Issue #29.
    • Billy finds Lord Drakkon captive in a Promethea lab in Issue #23.
    • Drakkon stabbing Tommy.
    • The shower of teleportation beams as Rangers from across universes arrive at the Command Center for the final assault against Lord Drakkon in Issue #29.
    • Zordon approaching Rita for help against Drakkon in the final panel of Issue #29.
    • Jason, Zack and Trini in their Omega Ranger suits in the final panel of Issue #40.
  • Wham Episode: Issue 25, Lord Drakkon, having just regained his powers from Ninjor, kills Tommy.
  • What He Said: In Issue #12, we have Billy and Tommy stranded on an alternate Earth, on the run from an evil future version of Tommy, and looking to Saba for some answers. What follows is this:
    Billy: "We don't really know anything about you, this Falconzord, or even this Earth. We appreciate what you did, saving us from... well, uh, Evil Tommy, for lack of a better term, but I think we need a better understanding of what exactly we've stumbled into here before we do anything else."
    Tommy: "Yeah. What he said."
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • The surviving members of the 1969 team tear into Zordon for sending a group of strangers, with no training in any of the powers he'd given them, to deal with a threat that they barely understood.
    • In the Omega Rangers arc, they swoop in and defeat Zedd by themselves, seemingly doing the main team's job for them. Zordon, however, is not happy; his Rangers were holding their own against Zedd, but now *someone else* will inevitably replace him.

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