Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Power Rangers Dino Thunder Series Review


Power Rangers Dino Thunder (2004) was adapted from Bakuryuu Sentai Abaranger, was the 12th installment of Power Rangers. Dino Thunder, while keeping Abaranger's dinosaur motif, had a completely original storyline. In this season, popular character Tommy Olliver returned much to the delight of the power rangers fandom. The series also plays heavily on MMPR nostalgia with Tommy, the dinosaur theme, and teenage characters. Dino Thunder is generally one of the most popular power rangers series due to Tommy's return, as well as a likable cast and solid writing. However, some tend to criticize Dino Thunder as a Disney rip-off of MMPR, as well as for the white ranger clone saga and for Tommy being stuck in morphed form during the middle third of the season. The latter was due to Jason David Frank requesting time off to take care of his dojo in the United States. This is a season that tends to be both overrated and underrated, imo. Many Tommy fans tend to overrate the show just because Tommy is in it while the actual content of the series itself I feel is underrated.

The Good
Tommy serves the mentor position quite well during this series, even though it's odd to think of him having a PHD in Paleontology. However, besides Tommy, Dino Thunder I feel has a good cast. Other solid characters include Trent, Kira, Ethan, and Haley. Also, the acting in Dino Thunder is fairly good, seemingly a rarity in Power Rangers. The villains are solid, particularly Mesogog and Zeltrax. Also, despite Tommy being stuck in morphed form, this actually worked in Dino Thunder's favor. It allowed for some good character development for the other characters while JDF was away. The story was solid, particularly Trent's story with his foster father who happened to be Mesogog. It is a bit of an overused plot but I felt it worked really well here, especially since Tommy had known Trent's father before the series began. Dino Thunder also had a good and enjoyable team-up with Ninja Storm. This series also has one of the better theme songs as well, despite not having the word "go" in it.

The Bad
While most of the characters are solid, Connor imo is one of the most unlikable characters ever in Power Rangers. Connor was the jerkass, annoying, and dumbass all rolled into one. The handling of the White Ranger clone saga wasn't particularly well done. It was a good idea on paper and worked well with the story, but how they handled the Sentai footage was a mess. The other problem was the somewhat anti-climatic final battle.

The Ugly
There's nothing I would really consider ugly about this series.

My Rating
8.5/10- Despite having Connor as one of the more unlikable characters, this series is actually pretty good. I feel all the pros outweigh the cons in this series.

My Favorite Episodes
Episodes 1-2 (Day of the Dino): Solid start to the season.
Episode 4 (Legacy of Power): A clip show of the entire first 11 seasons, and it's Power Rangers' 500th episode.
Episode 5 (Back in Black): Tommy's return as a power ranger.
Episode 6 (Diva in Distress): A kinda cheesy episode but still a solid character development episode for Kira.
Episodes 11-13 (White Thunder): Trent becomes the evil white ranger.
Episode 18 (Bully for Ethan): Good episode for character development and story, despite a chesy ending.
Episode 21 (Copy That): Strong episode involving Trent and his father.
Episode 27 (Fighting Spirit): This one is not only a great episode for Tommy, but the others as well who gather the courage to fight the MOTW without their powers.
Episode 30 (Strange Relations): The end of the White Ranger clone saga, but it ends with a cool battle between the two white rangers.
Episodes 31-32 (Thunder Struck): The Dino Thunder-Ninja Storm team-up.
Episode 36 (A Test of Trust): A clip show, but one that goes over trust issues with Trent as well as the character development the others have received.


  1. Nice review as always. ^__^

    I personally found Dino Thunder to be kinda meh. I agree, Connor is one of the worst rangers ever in Power Rangers. When it comes to his type of character, he needs to mature and have some pretty good development, which I feel there wasn't much of. Thus, he was pretty hard to watch and enjoy.

    Ethan was so-so. I wouldn't say he's noteworthy. Same with Trent. Can't really say his character had anything noteworthy either.

    IMO, Kira was the only solid character in this season. The actress did a pretty good job with her acting and even her singing. And frankly, I felt like she brought her character to life better than the others.

    Tommy was always just a decent character at best imo. I can't say that I think he was as good as Jason, Adam, Kimberly, or Kat. And honestly, Tommy getting a new ranger form doesn't make him a better character than how he always has been. Fans often praise Tommy for having five forms and saying he's awesome cause of that, but honestly, he didn't become a better character. Some forms like the White Ranger made him a worse character imo. So as the Black Dino Ranger, I don't feel like it did much. And him being a teacher made no sense either. lol. And while him being stuck in ranger form did give time for the other characters to develop, it definitely did nothing to help out Tommy's character. Though I will say that what he did in the ep, "Fighting Spirit" was one of the best episodes ever in Power Rangers. Finally, I did actually like how Tommy related to his three students. Even though I wish they could've done something more interesting with it. hehehe.

    The villains in Dino Thunder imo was a stronger element than the heroes were. Mesogog, Elsa, and Zeltrax were all very unique villains. But sadly, the scripts and plots don't really seem to do them justice. In fact, they don't really get to do as much as I think they deserved to. Quite a shame.

    Haley was a good character and mentor. She was very nice and caring.

    The plots in Dino Thunder, I did not find to be all that impressive. Some were plots that were already done before. And frankly a good chunk of those had execution which could've been so much better. Other plots just felt like they just failed to make use of the Abaranger footage. Which imo kinda reminded me of Turbo's execution with Carranger (though not as bad).

    Overall, Dino Thunder just mostly feels like a Turbo meets Ninja Storm (two seasons that I had issues with). Even though I think it's better than those two seasons. So I can't say I really cared all that much about Dino Thunder. Especially compared to SPD, which I thought was much better when it came to dialogue, acting, characters, and budget, and just as a season overall.

  2. Nothing wrong with Connar. Just had to learn a lot.