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Series / Tokusou Sentai Dekaranger

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Emergency! Dekaranger!

"S.P.D.: Special Police Dekaranger.
Five police officers who fight crime in cool style with burning hearts.
Their duty is to battle interplanetary criminals hiding on Earth, and to protect and serve the people!"

Tokusō Sentai Dekaranger (Special Police Squadron Dekarangernote ; officially translated as Special Police Dekaranger/S.P.D.) is the twenty-eighth program in the Super Sentai franchise, airing from 2004 to 2005.

In an Alternate History, Earth has become part of the greater universal picture and ushered in a new era where aliens walk alongside humans in everyday life. Of course, with powerful aliens come powerful criminals, and the elite intergalactic organisation tasked with protecting the peace is the "Space Police".

The story focuses on the Earth Branch of the Space Police and its team of Dekarangers under legendary commander Doggie Kruger. Kruger has decided to bring in new recruit Banban "Ban" Akaza, a self-proclaimed "fireball" whose arrival shakes up the team's dynamic. Together, under Kruger's command, this team of oddballs works together to investigate crimes, track down intergalactic criminals threatening the peace, and bring them to justice.

The series is notable for not having a real Big Bad or organized enemy organization; instead, it's composed of a number of individual case files, loosely connected by the presence of the shadowy Agent Abrella (a black market Arms Dealer who supplies many of the villains with their equipment). As such, the series is Reference Overdosed with homages to/parodies of Hardboiled Detective fiction and Japanese Detective Drama shows (many of which are way outside of the target audience's age range). It also set several precedents that have now become staples in Sentai, such as having dancing in the regular ending theme and having the Red be an Idiot Hero Rookie Red Ranger who grows into the leader role via Character Development instead of having natural leadership skills from the get-go.

Partnered with the Kamen Rider series Kamen Rider Blade before concluding its airing alongside the first episodes of Kamen Rider Hibiki in the Super Hero Time block. This series was adapted into Power Rangers S.P.D.

In 2015, a "Ten Years After" Reunion Show (much like the one Hurricaneger had two years before) titled Tokusou Sentai Dekaranger: 10 Years After was released.

Recurring Super Sentai tropes:

  • Bifurcated Weapon: Each of the main five's dual sidearms can combine with each other to form a gun weapon.
  • BFG: Dekawing Robo turns into one for its Finishing Move, the DekaWing Cannon.
  • By the Power of Grayskull!: "Emergency, Dekaranger! (when helmet is about to go on) Face On!"
    • This is occasionally preceded by "Change Standby!"
  • Color Character / Color-Coded Characters: Another "[team prefix] [English color]" Sentai. Though the Five-Man Band play this straight, this trope is subverted in the case of the extras, from the predominantly white DekaBreak, the mostly black Deka Master, the half-white/half-orange Deka Swan, to the silver Deka Bright, with Deka Gold being the only one of them to play it straight.
  • Cool Bike: DekaBlue's Machine Husky and DekaBreak's Machine Boxer. DekaBike is notably a mecha-sized version.
  • Cool Car: The Machine Doberman driven by DekaRed and Yellow, and the Machine Bull driven by Green and Pink.
  • Crossover:
  • Couch Gag: Part of the opening is dedicated to depicting the respective episode's given Monster of the Week. As a result, no two episodes share the same title sequence.
  • Custom Uniform: Each of the Dekaranger uniforms have their roll call numbers emblazoned on the left torso. Tetsu's 6 appears as its Roman version, VI.
  • Eyecatch: The first half of the eyecatch features the "dog" part of the "n" character howling before pulling back to show the logo and the five rangers in attack position. After the commercial the eyecatch features the ranger(s) of the episode shooting the screen. Later, after the debut of DekaMaster and DekaBreak, the eyecatch also sported either DekaMaster slashing or DekaBreak punching the screen.
  • Evolving Credits: When Tetsu joins the squad, he is added to the credits, replacing the scene of the two patrol vehicles and Hoji's motorcycle. In a similar vein, Doggie's shot is also modified after he becomes DekaMaster.
  • Humongous Mecha
    • A Mech by Any Other Name: The DekaMachines (components of the Dekaranger Robo) and the Pat Wings (components of the Deka Wing Robo).
    • Combining Mecha
      • Pat Strike + Pat Gyro + Pat Trailer + Pat Armor + Pat Signal = Dekaranger Robo
      • Pat Wing 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 = Deka Wing Robo/Deka Wing Cannon
    • Transforming Mecha
      • DekaBike -> DekaBike Robo
      • DekaBase -> DekaBase Crawler-> DekaBase Robo
      • DekaWing Robo -> DekaWing Cannon
    • Mecha Expansion Pack
      • Dekaranger Robo + DekaBike Robo = Riding Dekaranger Robo or Super Dekaranger Robo
      • Dekaranger Robo + Blast Buggy = Dekaranger Robo Full Blast Custom
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Every episode's title is entirely in Gratuitous English.
  • Idiot Hero: Dekaranger was the first Sentai series to emphasize this in its Red to the degree it did; while there were newcomer Reds in previous series, it was still a given that they would have leadership skills and the ability to think through the team's strategy. Ban was a pioneer in the sense of being Hot-Blooded to the extent of acting on sheer impulse instead of thinking, with the idea that his immaturity would be more relatable to the audience and that it would provide a good opportunity for extensive Character Development. This was originally a Creator Thumbprint of producer Hideaki Tsukada, but even after his tenure, future Reds like Sousuke and Takaharu would pick up this trend, and the rest is history.
  • In the Name of the Moon - Every member gets to say an entire sentence along with their name and number. Although future series have outdone it since, at the time it was the longest roll call in a Sentai series.
    DekaRed: "One, to hate inhuman crimes!"
    DekaBlue: "Two, to pursue mysterious cases!"
    DekaGreen: "Three, to investigate using futuristic technology!"
    DekaYellow: "Four, the hideous evil of space..."
    DekaPink: "Five, exterminate them with all possible speed!"
    DekaBreak: "Six, it's good to be invincible!"
    DekaMaster: "Cutting down hundreds of evildoers! Hell's watch dog, DekaMaster!"
    All: "S.P.D.! [all announce their names one by one]! Tokusou Sentai Dekaranger!"
    • DekaBreak has another one he uses whenever he acts solo: "To attack wicked evil! To smash the darkness of fear! The Daybreak Detective, DekaBreak!"
  • Make My Monster Grow: Played with; instead of directly growing, each Monster of the Week pilots their own Humongous Mecha. Only a small number of them can grow on their own, although one does grow with the aid of Abrella's bats.
  • Mecha-Mooks: The Anaroids
  • Mini Dress Of Power: Notably averted in the case of the female Dekarangers.
  • Monster of the Week: With some exceptions, most episodes feature a culprit "Alienizer", a term used for an alien felon (usually a Serial Killer).
  • The Movie: Has its own summer movie, Dekaranger the Movie: Full Blast Action.
  • Passing the Torch: Dekaranger begins this yearly tradition at the end of the show.
  • The Narrator: In an unusual twist on the Sentai narrator, Dekaranger's presents the series like a mystery novel, explaining different SPD procedures and equipment, down to Captain Obvious things like explaining Sen's "thinking pose" or Jasmine being an ESPer Once an Episode. This allows for some fun whenever subversions from the usual formula appear ("Umeko is not an ESPer".), or when Jasmine momentarily steals his job and causing him to protest in Tokusou Sentai Dekaranger: 10 Years After.
  • Super Mode: SWAT Mode. Unusually, it's not a particularly unique or legendary form, and is given to any SPD officer who passes its training course; it just happens to be the Dekarangers' Mid-Season Upgrade. Later, DekaRed gets a Battlizer in Magiranger vs. Dekaranger (actually a reverse import from Power Rangers S.P.D.).
  • Transformation Trinket
    • SPD Arms: The starting lineup of Dekarangers has their standard-issue SP License, while Boss has his special Master License, Swan has her Swan License, and Tetsu (and his mentor Lisa) have their Tokkyou-issued BraceThrottle.
  • Two Girls to a Team: A triumphant return of this tradition after a whopping six years of just one heroine per team. In addition to the two main girls (Yellow and Pink, the eighth time this combination was used), the series also had three guest heroines (Swan, Bright and Gold) for a total of five female rangers, enough to match the amount of male rangers.
  • Villains Act, Heroes React: As is the norm for Super Sentai, we generally have a new Alienizer appearing with an Evil Plan Once an Episode, with our heroes then arriving on the scene to stop them. Naturally, it's because they're a police force, so protecting the peace is their job.

Tropes specific to Tokusou Sentai Dekaranger:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: The end of Episode 30 has Faraway become this for Ban after he saves her from being dumped into outer space.
  • Actor Allusion:
    • In 10 Years After, the mic alien is once again played by Isao Sasaki (who also performs the ED of Dekaranger), and the last thing he yells out is "goodbye to Earth." This is the first line of the OP for Uchuu Senkan Yamato, also performed by Sasaki.
  • Aliens Among Us: Since space travel has become normal, a lot of the "humans" on Earth are actually aliens from other planets who immigrated to Earth for various reasons, whether it's to escape a dying or turbulent planet or simply because they wanted to live there. This is such a normal thing on Earth now that there's no need to hide it for reasons beyond blending in better with human society, and some don't even bother. In fact, if someone is hiding the fact they're an alien from the authorities, that actually makes them more suspicious because there would have to be another reason for them to conceal that fact.
  • Alternate History: It's easy to mistake it for 20 Minutes into the Future, but the series does still take place in 2004 (the year it aired in), just one from an alternate timeline where space travel was developed earlier.
  • Always Murder: Most of the cases the Dekarangers solve involve murders, things that might as well be murder, or criminals who have murdered before. It's justified in that SPD will only be called in the first place if the case is on that level, and smaller cases can be handled by the regular police force. Sen's introductory episode involves a petty criminal whose worst crime is vandalism, and it's specifically said that his sentence is unlikely to be all that huge.
  • Anchored Attack Stance: Dekaranger Robo's "Full Blast Custom" configuration outfits it with a "Blast Launcher" and a ballistic shield with mounted Gatling guns. For its Finishing Move, it jams the shield into the ground and uses it as a brace so it can fire the Launcher at full power.
  • Artistic License Law: Fictional Space Police aside, Ban's Cowboy Cop skirting of the rules or other mishaps like Umeko misplacing her SP License (something that you could consider roughly equivalent to a police officer misplacing their ID badge or important security documents somewhere) would probably have gotten the Dekarangers reprimanded or dismissed multiple times over already by real-life standards, but the team is always treated favorably as long as they get the job done and there aren't any significant casualties.
  • As Long as There Is Evil: This is the main reason there's no Big Bad or overarching organization behind the Alienizers; crime will exist as long as society does, and SPD will need to exist as long as crimes do. Abrella tries to taunt the Dekarangers with this fact in the finale, but the team continues to assert that they'll make sure evil will have no future in the universe.
  • Asshole Victim: A handful of cases have these, but special mention goes to the victim/culprit in Episode 38, based on him abducting a young alien, murdering her parents, using her to help commit burglaries, and trying to kill her and Ban while they escape on a bicycle. It's hard to sympathize when Ban deletes him.
  • Base on Wheels: The entire DekaBase can stand up and turn into its own mech, the DekaBase Robo.
  • Beast Man: Several alien SPD officers, including the Dekarangers' own Boss (a canine humanoid).
    • Numa O, the birdman in charge of the entire Space Police, is an Expy of the birdmen who ran the Space Sheriff organization in the early Metal Heroes shows. With the release of Space Squad, a team-up movie with Space Sheriff Gavan, it may turn out there's a reason for that.
  • Big Bad: The closest thing the series has to one is Agent Abrella, a Black Market arms dealer who supplies most of the Monsters of the Week. He doesn't have any particular control over them nor any goal besides making money, but he's put at odds with the Dekarangers because they're making a mess of his business. In the finale, he decides he's had enough and tries to stage a takeover of the DekaBase, basically making him the Final Boss of the series.
  • Book Ends: The series ends with Ban rescuing a child who wants to grow up to be a detective like him, similar to the Alienizer victim Ban had met at the beginning of the series whose dream Ban had taken on.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: During Dekaranger vs. Abaranger, Agent Abrella at one point pulls out an Abaranger infobook to make comments about the different Trinoids they fought.
    • 10 Years After has the narrator protest when Jasmine briefly steals his job.
  • Call-Back: In Magiranger vs. Dekaranger, the Dekarangers stop a giant Alienizer via Formation U2 from taking off with a building with the Ozu siblings and Umeko inside. A similar technique was used in the first episode to stop an Alienizer from terrorizing a bus.
  • Canon Immigrant: Ban gets a "Battlizer" form, which originated in Power Rangers S.P.D. and was reimported into MagirangerVSDekaranger.
  • Car Fu: In Dekaranger vs. Abaranger, the Abarangers steal an SPD squad car to chase after the real villain, who is disguised as a crow. Ranru decides to launch the car off of a ramp to follow the crow into the air. They actually manage to fly through the air for a goodly time, too. The impossibility of this move is given a deadpan lampshade by the Dekarangers:
    Tetsu: What the...
    Hoji: Impossible.
    (the car falls)
    Sen: What goes up must come down.
  • Catchphrase: Finishing a case has the team say "Got you!", followed by "And with that, the case is complete!" and an individualized line for each team member. Some members also have their own Gratuitous English phrases they use on the off-hours as well, such as Tetsu's "Nonsense!" or Jasmine's "Bye-nara!"
  • Characterization Marches On: Earlier episodes have Ban, Hoji, and even Sen going out of their way to get the attention of women they meet on cases, but this fades out as Ban ends up falling for movie-exclusive character Mary Gold, Hoji has an ill-fated romance with a singer named Teresa, and Sen and Umeko eventually develop feelings for each other and get together. This was due to main writer Arakawa realizing that having too many flirts in the cast would give kids the impression that flirting is more important than solving cases.
  • Christmas Episode: Episode 45, which has the Dekarangers dealing with a mysterious present sent to one of them by a Secret Admirer. It also pulls extra duty as a Recap Episode (since the team brings up all sorts of flashbacks when trying to identify the sender) and a Breather Episode (since it's a pure comedy episode right before everything up until the end of the series involves Umeko's heartbreak, Ban's induction into the Fire Squad, and Abrella's invasion of the DekaBase).
  • Color Failure: Sen does one when Gyoku Rou returns and completely fails to recognize him as his former partner.
  • Comedic Underwear Exposure: Ban becomes the victim of this at the hands of a young alien girl in Episode 45.
  • Cool Sword: Kruger's D-Sword Vega, which looks old and brittle until he opens the mouth of the dog on its hilt, revealing its true strength.
  • Cop Show: It's essentially this with a touch of Fair-Play Whodunnit (due to Japanese police having a blurry distinction between police officers and officer-detectives).
  • Creator Provincialism: For all we can tell, the SPD "Earth division" in Japan seems to account for the entire planet.
  • Dancing Theme: The ending theme, "Midnight Dekaranger". It's notable for being the first Dancing Theme as part of the regular TV series instead of being relegated to movies, and started a tradition of most Sentai having dancing themes afterwards.
  • Deadly Euphemism: "Deletion". Refers to a specific form of Deader than Dead, in which an Alienizer is not only executed, but their remains are sterilized so that cloning is impossible (or should theoretically be; in practice, it turns out there are still samples remaining with Abrella in Episode 28).
  • Death of a Child: This is what fuels Ban's motivation, since he'd had to watch a child die and thus wanted to fulfill his dream of becoming a police officer.
    • Episode 34 has Sen bond with a young child named Gin, who's mercilessly killed as part of a game by rich Alienizers. Fortunately, he turns out to have been barely saved by a monjayaki scoop he'd swiped earlier.
  • Dirty Cop: The TV series lightly touches on this with Vino/Gigantes and Heimar quitting SPD and becoming/helping Alienizers, but 10 Years After goes full-force with Kight Reidlich, the director of the Galactic Police Agency, who has ties to the space mafia, has two of his underlings serving as his agents in SPD, and attempts to kill and frame Kruger after he learns a little too much.
  • Disney Death: Tetsu electrocutes Ban's heart in Episode 48 in order to free him from the possession of an Alienizer. The other team members are shellshocked until Tetsu electrically shocks his heart back, revealing him to be Not Quite Dead.
    • The finale also has Boss seemingly killed; naturally, he also gets better.
  • Don't Try This at Home: Episode 17 has Umeko remind the kids watching that they shouldn't be drinking alcohol until they're 20 (the legal Japanese drinking age at the time the series aired).
  • Downer Ending: Episodes 11 and 37, both Hoji episodes, end on this note:
    • Episode 11 has Hoji forced to confront a Broken Pedestal when his former best friend turns out to have become an Alienizer assassin-for-hire because he's Only in It for the Money. Hoji ends up having to delete his own former friend, left with nothing but his "pride" as a detective and a Friendship Trinket as a reminder of their better days.
    • Episode 37 has Hoji's final Tokkyou exam involve deleting his sick girlfriend Telesa's younger brother, who'd become a Serial Killer in the hopes of manufacturing a cure for her. Even worse, it's implied Telesa was on her way to recovery anyway thanks to her relationship with Hoji giving her a reason to live, but the incident results in their relationship being permanently ruined, Telesa joining a nunnery carrying the grief of knowing her brother had become a Serial Killer for her sake, and Hoji declining the Tokkyou promotion, making it multiple counts of All for Nothing.
  • Drunken Boxing: Episode 17's Monster of the Week uses this technique, and Umeko responds by perfecting it herself and using it back at him.
  • Evil-Detecting Dog: When an Alienizer subjects Hoji to a Grand Theft Me and walks into Swan's room, Murphy is the first to start barking and growling at "Hoji", and it's also implied that Doggie's canine senses helped identify him as a fake. The former ends up actually becoming the main solution to the resulting Spot the Imposter problem in the episode's Power Rangers S.P.D. counterpart, with Murphy's counterpart R.I.C. pulling off full-on Pet Positive Identification (the Dekaranger version instead has the team figure it out via Out-of-Character Alert).
  • Eye Lights Out: Happens to Volger in The Movie before getting back up.
  • Fair-Play Whodunnit: The series is a detective show as much as it is a Cop Show (as evidenced by the numerous references to more traditional detective fiction), so a number of episodes use this style of presentation, most notably Sen's introductory episode.
  • Fantastic Racism: Mildly alluded to in Episode 25: elderly alien Haktak often takes the form of a young human girl because she gets better treatment than she would in her true form, and she's cynical about humanity because of their tendency to judge by appearances. Even the Dekarangers aren't immune to reflexively pointing their guns at her when they first see her reveal her true form, which she duly calls them out on. It's implied that this is also the reason so many aliens in Earth society use human forms to get around even though there isn't any need for a Masquerade.
    • ESPers like Jasmine and Hikaru are also on the receiving end of this; they're apparently common enough that people aren't surprised by their existence, but their powers often alienate others and make people afraid of them.
  • Fight Clubbing: Episode 26 has the team investigate one of these. In a nod to the original Trope Namer, the Monster of the Week is even named "Darden, from Planet Tyler".
  • Get a Hold of Yourself, Man!: In Episode 4, Hoji goes into a Heroic BSoD from the shock and shame of having made a single mistake and tarnishing his perfect record. After initially failing to get through to Hoji, Ban gets him to snap out of it by running out and back in... and yelling "snap out of it!" while dropkicking Hoji.
  • Gratuitous English: The episode titles are all in English.
    • Hoji is an absolute lover of these, with his favorite interjections being "Perfect!" and "Unbelievable!" It seems to run in the family, since his sister Miwa also has this habit.
    • Tetsu has his favorite "Nonsense!"
    • Many of the stock battle Catch Phrases, such as "Got you!", are full of these to degrees beyond Sentai's usual.
  • Grand Theft Me: Episode 19 features a Monster of the Week that has the ability to do this with anyone he touches foreheads with; every time he's about to get caught for his crimes, he switches bodies with someone else and runs free while the victim stuck with his body is punished instead. He's apparently done it so many times he can't even remember what he originally looked like, meaning he's actually gotten away with far more crimes than SPD has on record, and his current body is only the latest in a trail of victims he's made to take the fall for his crimes. Hoji would have been his latest victim if not for the fact his teammates knew him too well to mistake the Alienizer for him.
  • Heir to the Dojo: Boss inherited one from his old mentor. Episode 44 has him at odds with his mentor's biological son, who's angry at being passed over for Kruger due to his dishonest ways.
  • Human Aliens: Most aliens living on Earth have human forms they can use to better interact with humans, even though there's apparently no real attempt at a Masquerade. Some of them naturally look like humans with some modifications, like the females of the Zamaza race, who look perfectly human apart from having small horns above the ears.
  • Human Disguise: Being able to assume human form seems to be a common ability for a pretty huge percentage of alien species (of course, the real reason is to cut down on the number of rubber suits that would be necessary).
  • Humanoid Aliens: If they're not using a full Human Disguise or don't already look close to a human anyway, the remaining aliens the Dekarangers interact with are this (with only a very few exceptions)
  • Hot-Blooded: It comes with the job, but Ban does it in spades, and one of the reasons Tetsu joins the crew is to learn the art of this from him.
  • Identical Stranger: Episode 31 has Umeko switching places with an alien princess who looks identical to her, under the assumption that she's being targetted for an assasination attempt. Turns out she's just trying to escape from doing a bunch of silly and annoying ceremonies before she can claim the throne... until it's revealed that one of their aides is planning to have her murdered.
  • Innocent Aliens: The series goes to great lengths to avert Aliens Are Bastards; beyond the numerous aliens who are part of SPD, many of the witnesses and civilians the Dekarangers meet are perfectly normal people who are just trying to live normal lives on Earth. Alien felons are referred to as "Alienizers" to distinguish them from innocent civilian aliens. On the flip side, there are examples of corrupt humans like Assam Asimov from Ten Years After.
  • Insignificant Little Blue Planet: Earth is ultimately just one planet in the entire galaxy, and the series just happens to be following SPD's Earth branch, which still has higher-ups and transfers from other planetary divisions every so often.
  • Judge, Jury, and Executioner: Averted on a technicality. The Dekarangers don't judge the Alienizers themselves, but a special mode on their Licenses sends all known evidence and current bioreadings to "the highest court in the galaxy", which somehow returns a verdict in seconds that the Rangers then carry out. Since the Dekarangers won't be called in the first place unless the Alienizer in question is a serious serial killer-level threat, deletion is usually approved.
    • Even then, the instant Judgment was so controversial that it got a further Hand Wave in the reunion special: the Supreme Court that handles all of the SPD Judgements is on a far different timescale than the rest of the universe due to a temporal distortion that surrounds the planet where it is located. Eight months for them is equal to 8 seconds in real time for Judgement, meaning an average judgment is equivalent to around four years.
    • Episode 19 also has an example where deletion was pre-approved for an Alienizer with a particularly infamous kill count. In this case, the Dekarangers do actually drag him all the way to the detention center, but after he tries to escape by switching bodies with Hoji, Hoji finds himself in a predicament where the pre-approval could easily result in him being mistaken for the Alienizer and deleted on the spot.
  • Leg Cannon: The Dekaranger-Robo's left leg is formed by DekaBlue's machine, whose main weapon is the Gyro Vulcan, a Gatling gun.
  • Lethal Joke Character: Episode 30 has Faraway, a Gonk and token unruly detainee who's a Technopath who essentially disables the Dekabase during herescape.
  • Like an Old Married Couple: Ban and Hoji's relationship reeks of this to the point the other characters love to pick up on this.
  • Mythology Gag
  • Never Say "Die": Functionally speaking, the Dekarangers are subjecting most of their Monster of the Week Alienizers to the death penalty and killing them on the spot, but the word "delete" is used without exception.
  • Ninja Pirate Robot Zombie: Doggy Kruger, who is a humanoid dog police chief swordfighter.
  • Now You Tell Me: When Faraway hacks the DekaBase, Swan reports that the launch systems for the DekaMachines have been locked. Unfortunately, this comes right after Hoji, Sen, and Umeko had jumped into the launch chute and ended up getting stuck in it.
  • Official Couple: The events of Episode 46 hint at a potential future for Sen and Umeko; this is followed up in all sequel material, from them dating in Magiranger vs. Dekaranger up to them finally getting married in Space Sheriff Gavan Vs Tokusou Sentai Dekaranger.
    • 10 Years After adds more to the bucket: Jasmine marries Hikaru Hiwatari, the boy she'd saved all the way back in Episodes 7 and 8, and Boss and Swan finally put an end to years full of Ship Tease and properly confess their love for each other.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: The Dekarangers are almost exclusively known by their code names/nicknames, with exceptions only occurring when they have to use their proper names for legal or professional reasons.
  • Painting the Medium: Episode 45 has the Dekarangers get knocked down by text that appears on the screen when they try to launch their stakeout plan.
  • Parental Bonus: The series is Reference Overdosed with nods to Japanese detective and procedural TV shows from long before its target audience was even born, but would be easily recognizable to adults watching at the time the series aired in 2004.
  • Pinky Swear: Umeko and Jasmine do this in Episode 39, swearing they'll survive the Monster of the Week.
  • Pseudo-Romantic Friendship: Ban and Hoji's heated relationship of being "partners" certainly brings this to mind. Episode 43 has Hoji, under the impression Ban is dead, eulogize his agony with a monologue that sounds quite a bit like a Love Confession.
  • Power Up Letdown: In a meta sense, Magiranger vs. Dekaranger's long-teased Fire Mode turned out to be... just the the Power Rangers S.P.D. Battlizer imported back into its home series. On top of that, most of its best tricks weren't used, in favor of the usual fireball finisher (fired from the tip of the sword.) In PR:SPD it was a Super Mode that allowed for aerial battles and energized slash strikes that could be launched at distant enemies.
  • Rape Is Funny When It Is Hermaphrodite On Male: Episode 45 revolves around the team trying to track down who might be an Abhorrent Admirer of one of their female members, under concerns that she might be being stalked. The alien in question turns out to be a hermaphrodite who has designs on Tetsu, after which the team immediately decides it's not an issue anymore and leaves Tetsu to be practically assaulted by the alien.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Ban and Hoji are the textbook case; colors aside, Umeko and Jasmine fill the role to a lesser extent.
  • Running Gag: Umeko occasionally likes to proclaim herself to be the leader, resulting in everyone pretty much ignoring her on the spot.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Connections! / Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: Episode 34 involves the son of a rich man who believes he can get away with playing a "game" that involves murder. He's confident that he can't be prosecuted, since he believes he can just get his father to overturn his conviction and get the relevant officers fired. None of it works, and Sen gives the Alienizer his just desserts.
  • Secret Test of Character: The team's training to earn the right to use SWAT Mode ends with a test to retrieve a coin from a cave within three hours, but the trek is so harsh that only one member will be able to reach it in time. Since the others want to support Ban's dream of "being the best in the universe", they all tell him to go on without them, and while he initially takes the opportunity, he decides to turn back and help the others even though it results in all of them being late. Despite that, the team passes, because the lesson Ban actually needed to learn was taking the whole team into account instead of prioritizing himself.
  • Senpai/Kōhai: Tetsu considers the Earth Division rangers (especially Ban) as his sempai.
  • Shapeshifter Guilt Trip: Technically Body Snatcher Guilt Trip but the same principle applies when Doggie confronts the body swapped Hoji who transforms into Deka Blue. Deka Master dominates their fight initially, but Doggie hesitates when the alien points out if he kills him Hoji's body will die and they'll never be able to restore him or clear him of his suspected crimes and gets roughly taken down as a result.
  • She Is Not My Girlfriend: Magiranger vs. Dekaranger has Miyuki attempt to leave the Flower of Heaven in Boss and Swan's hands under the idea that, since the Flower of Heaven needs to be supplied with "love" every ten years, Boss and Swan will be able to do the job as "the happiest couple she's ever known". The two try to deny it, but Miyuki simply smiles like she knows better. Of course, she's right.
  • Shirtless Scene: The show seems to like Doggie without his upper uniform.
    • Hoji and Tetsu also go shirtless in Episode 26 as part of their Fight Clubbing.
  • Shout-Out: Dekaranger is best described as head writer Naruhisa Arakawa's year-long love letter to pop culture, especially cinema.
    • The entire concept of the series, the "Tokusou" in the name, the narrator who repeats the same description every single episode (and was once self-parodied in the show), and the birdman in charge of the organization are all references to Metal Heroes, especially the Space Sheriff shows.
    • Episode 13 has Boss's would-be assassin named "Ben G".
    • Episode 14 has a Monster of the Week named "Pherlee of Planet Christo".
    • Episode 19 has a Monster of the Week from the planet "Woojon" (John Woo).
    • Episode 26 has the team investigating a Fight Clubbing ring run by an alien named "Darden of Planet Tyler".
    • Episode 38 is a reference to Speed, with Ban riding a bike that'll explode if it drops below a certain speed.
    • In Episode 34, Sen imitates Columbo when interrogating the Monster of the Week.
    • At the end of every episode, after vanquishing each Monster of the Week, one character delivers a line that's only one word off from a Catchphrase in an old Jidaigeki show that was used the same way.
      • One episode has the Dekaranger Robo stopping an incoming missile by invoking the Barehanded Blade Block (complete with Jidaigeki terminology).
      • Swan's policy of "only transforming once every four years" is a reference to Neruo Higurashi from Kochikame, a police officer who only wakes up once every four years when the Olympics are running.
    • Shout-Out Theme Naming: All of the main characters' surnames are puns on the given names of mystery novel authors:
      • Banban Akaza comes from Agatha Christie.
      • Houji Tomasu comes from Thomas Harris.
      • Sen'ichi Enari comes from Ellery Queen.
      • Marika Reimon comes from Raymond Chandler.
      • Koume Kodou comes from Kodou Nomura.
      • Tekkan Aira comes from Ira Levin.
      • 10 Years After gives us new recruits Mugi Grafton and Assam Asimov, presumably named after Sue Grafton and Issac Asimov. Too bad they're in league with The Mole.
    • Robotic Team Pet Murphy is named after RoboCop's Alex Murphy.
      • Dekaranger Robo also has the original Murphy's spin-and-holster move, although said holster's location in the lower leg seems to be a Patlabor reference.
    • The girls' weapons include small bombs resembling a washer or a pierced coin, called "Zeni Bombs", in reference to the original Japanese supercop, Zenigata Heiji, and his throwing coins.
    • That one song Umeko sang in the first episode? It was taught to children by Remi Hoshikawa/Five Yellow.
    • The episode mentioned in Fight Clubbing is basically when Hoji homages Rocky Balboa.
    • When the team is first introduced to their SWAT Super Mode, Jasmine quips, "Here with a SWAT. Solving problems with a SWAT," a reference to Kaiketsu Zubat's catchphrase.
    • As mentioned below, the Theme Naming for the Algolians comes from Case Closed.
  • Space Police: Although most of the episodes are set on Earth, the team do deal with aliens on a constant basis and go off-world every once in a while for special missions.
  • Spit Take: Ban and Hoji do this at the end of Episode 23 when they realize Tetsu hadn't left Earth.
  • Starfish Aliens: Most of the aliens in the series are Humanoid Aliens, but occasionally you get examples like Lovelians, who look like tree/lobster creatures with long arms and one leg, and Pyrians, which are sentient flames.
  • Strapped to a Bomb: Swan gets put through this in Episode 13 as part of a way to lure Boss out.
  • Superhero Horror: Episode 39 places Umeko in a bizarre nightmare sequence that only continues to get worse the more time passes, with many of the seemingly random events around her are aimed at killing her.
  • Surprisingly Good English: The DekaMachines are dispatched with an announcer that uses well-accented English, although the inflections can sound off at times.
  • Theme Naming:
    • The main Dekarangers are all named after kinds of tea: Bancha (common green tea), Hojicha (charcoal-roasted tea), Sencha (high-quality, un-ground green tea), jasmine tea, Umecha (tea with dried plum).
    • The aliens from Algol in The Movie. Since Algol sounds like "alcohol", the writer decided to name them all after different kinds of liquor: Whinsky, Giin, Brandyl, and Volka (whisky, gin, brandy, and vodka). In the third movie, their remaining brother, Barbon (bourbon), appears.
    • Swan Shiratori: Her surname "Shiratori" literally means "white bird". Those kanji are usually read "haku-chō", which also literally means "white bird", more specifically... the swan.
    • The four Deka Vehicles are named after different dog breeds: Machine Bull (dog), Machine Doberman, Machine Husky, and Machine Boxer.
  • The Needs of the Many: When Abrella hijacks the DekaBase in the finale, SPD sends an elite force to blow it up and prevent Abrella from starting an intergalactic war, knowing full well that this will mean killing everyone in the base. Unfortunately, even this is a doomed plan, since Abrella had predicted this would happen and set up a forcefield trap to obliterate the fleet. Fortunately, Swan happens to have salvaged the DekaWing Robo, and the Dekarangers put up enough of a fight that they can take the base back without sacrificing anyone.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Jasmine and Umeko, respectively.
  • Use Your Head: Jasmine's DekaMachine has a reinforced cockpit, used for (as she puts it) "giving it a thud and seeing how it goes". Usually, it doesn't do much, and she gets knocked for a loop.
    • Umeko also does this using the Dekaranger Robo in Episode 12; she even leans forward in her command chair and got right up in the camera's face to deliver it. Even with her face hidden by her visor, you can tell she's pissed.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Episodes 15 and 16 involve Sen bonding with a Robot Girl named Flora, who'd originally been meant to be the brain of an Alienizer weapon. Sen catches onto the fact that Flora's able to feel emotions like fear and advocates to have her treated like a human, teaching her how to smile and express herself. Unfortunately, Sen's teachings work too well, and she feels so much pain at the idea of the Dekarangers hurting themselves for her sake that she tries to pull a Heroic Sacrifice until Sen convinces her otherwise; eventually, SPD saves and recruits her, with their department analysts concluding she's "more human than humans".
  • Villainous Breakdown: Normally Agent Abrella is a calculating opportunistic arms-merchant, setting up wars so his business will flourish. In the series, he mostly stays behind the scenes and sold Mooks and Humongous Mecha to the Villain of the Week. But when the Dekarangers foiled his plans just too many times, he angrily starts a direct attack on the DekaBase, killing the hundreds of employees working there en masse, thus turning from a cool-headed, cold-hearted merchant into a fuming, bloodthirsty murderer.
  • "YEAH!" Shot: The finale has all eight Earth Branch Dekarangers (or most of them) jumping while celebrating their completed case of stopping Abrella from destroying the police.
  • Zeerust: It's a little more justified than most cases since the series takes place in an Alternate History, so the year is still 2004 and not 20 Minutes into the Future, but it can be amusing to watch the series years later and see that they have technology to allow for intergalactic space travel and communication but are still using flip phones.

Got you! And with that, this trope page is complete!