There's been no shortage of buildup for Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #20, but luckily for fans it more than delivers.
This will be a spoiler-free review, so if you haven't read the issue yet we'll try and hit the highlights without divulging anything big storywise.
Power Rangers #20 has been billed as an issue full of revelations, and it certainly lives up to that premise. Fans meet a new team of Rangers, one of which they've already met in Grace Sterling. One of the most entertaining parts of the issue is seeing these new Rangers meet for the first time, and unlike the Rangers of the present, they all don't get along so well.
The team consists of a secretary supervisor at NASA, a Vietnam Vet, a musician, a Russian soldier, and, well, we really don't know what Daniel does, to be honest. Despite only just meeting them, Higgins manages to establish personalities absurdly quickly, and midway through you're already invested in their wellbeing.
While the Rangers themselves are all intriguing in their own ways, Grace and Zordon steal the show. In Grace's case, her determination and drive are hampered by the era she lives in, but you can see hints of the Promethea leader to come. As for Zordon, well, just because you're an ancient floating head doesn't mean you always make the right decisions.
In fact, Zordon and Alpha 5 are of particular interest, but specifically because of their flaws, not their strengths. They've always been painted as well-meaning and efficient leaders, but what if that wasn't always the case?
Think about it. Drafting five "teenagers with attitudes" would have legitimate consequences if not executed precisely, would it not? This issue puts that theory under a microscope, and you'll view that formula in a whole new light by issue's end.
The book does feature some slick action scenes further on, and those are brought to stunning life by artist Daniele Di Nicuolo. Again, even in a short time these characters feel fleshed out much more than they should, and their vivid expressions and character designs contribute to that impressive feat.
You've already seen in previews that the book features the Green Psycho Ranger, but the issue subverts your expectations at every turn, resulting in more than a few moments that will require you to lift your jaw off the floor.
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #20 delivers an exciting and emotional story full of surprises, but what brings it all together is the attention to building interesting characters, something the book does in spades.
If you miss out on Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #20, you won't just be missing a great Power Rangers book, but on one of the best issues of the year.
Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #20 is in stores today.