Power Rangers is getting a new creative team staring in Power Rangers #31, but that isn't all that's changing, as there will be a brand new Ranger team for the new arc titled Beyond The Grid.
Shattered Grid will come to a close in August, and once September hits there will be plenty of changes for fans to process. Marguerite Bennett and Simone Di Meo will be taking over the series, and ComicBook.com had a chance to speak with Bennett, current Mighty Morphin writer Kyle Higgins, BOOM! Studios senior editor Dafna Pleban, and Go Go Power Rangers writer Ryan Parrott about all the big things on the horizon.
Bennett wasn't giving away a ton of secrets, but one thing she wants fans to know is the new team is focused on keeping the Power Rangers express moving at full speed.
"Even though I can't tell you what's coming, I'm really hoping to keep the momentum, vigor, and emotion of everything that Kyle has set up on this careening course into this whole new world of possibilities," Bennett said. "I won't lie it's a dream come true. It's such a cliché and so childish but so sincere, I can't believe that I get to write for Power Rangers."
There's not going to be a big reset button after Shattered Grid ends, and to Higgins and Bennett that is kind of part of the fun of passing the baton.
"One of my favorite comic runs and transitions of all time is when Brian Michael Bendis was leading Daredevil and he developed this really cool situation where Matt was in prison and Ed Brubaker came on and said, "No, no, no don't put the toys back in the toy box. Keep them out, leave them there. I want to do that" It was just this really natural way of continuing the story that Brian had built," Higgins said.
"Where sometimes new creators like to come in and just blow everything up and undo what has been done before," Higgins said. "That to me, the fans felt like a great continuation of the characters in the series that I, as a reader was enjoying so much. And with Power Rangers, especially with Marguerite coming on, we have an opportunity for a very similar dynamic and experience. I'm looking forward to being able to read it as a fan."
As you can see from the cover, the new Power Rangers team will consist of Ranger Slayer (Go Go), Magna Defender (Lost Galaxy), Tanya (Zeo), Cam (Ninja Storm), a mysterious Dino Charge themed Ranger, and Andros (In Space). That's a pretty epic team, and while they wouldn't go into specifics as far as why they picked them, Shattered Grid's finale will present compelling reasons.
"Well I guess, we can probably frame it from the standpoint of, there are things coming up in the finale of Shattered Grid that are going to make this new team of Power Rangers not only possible but necessary," Higgins said"
"Yeah there's a very specific story reason why it's these Rangers, and you'll find out that they're more than up to task in Marguerite's story," Pleban said. "I can't really say much more than that."
It might be a big shock to see Ranger Slayer in the group, considering she's a villain these days in Go Go. Parrott isn't calling her a good guy per say, but more answers as to why are coming soon.
"I will say that the next issue will reveal, Go Go #11 will reveal a lot of information," Parrott said. "You'll get key information as to understand who the Ranger Slayer is, her relationship with Drakkon, and the second part of the remaining parts of the Go Go Shattered Grid part will basically explain why she is who she is. This is the beginning of her story, not the end of her story."
After Shattered Grid, this will be the defacto team in Mighty Morphin, at least for the foreseeable future. The good news is you can still catch the original team in Go Go Power Rangers.
"Yeah, it will be the one spot where you can see the classic Mighty Morphin Power Rangers team together kicking butt, fighting classic villains," Pleban said. "I will say though Ryan's got a hell of a story lined up for this arc and I'm really excited for people to check it out."
With a group like this, there are plenty of questions that open up regarding continuity, especially when it comes to characters like Andros, who has a myriad of ties to other characters in Power Rangers lore. Beyond The Grid though is set to change some of those perceptions however according to Higgins.
"I think Shattered Grid changes everything and I think that what you know, or what you think you know may not apply anymore after the end of Shattered Grid," Higgins said.
While things are set to change, you can still expect the series to add new layers to the mythos.
"I mean we're literally sitting here talking about an arc coming up called Beyond the Grid that features an eclectic group of Rangers that is so freaking cool," Higgins continued. "Like when have you ever seen that before? Everything we're doing in the book and have built to through Shattered Grid has been about redefining Power Rangers and that's why I'm so excited. I know what Marguerite's planning and it's epic, it's beyond epic, it's Beyond the Grid epic. She is coming in and is going to continue what we've been trying to do for the last couple years, which is being additive to the mythology and the legacy of Power Rangers."
While Higgins couldn't be happier with Marguerite taking over (in big part thanks to Dafna Pleban) before she was brought on board there was a bit of fear about the future of what he's been building over the past several years.
"I have to say I definitely had...it was a little scary for a little while thinking about who's gonna come in, are they gonna want to do what I've been building for here, are they gonna want to blow this up? And when Dafna told me that Marguerite wanted to come on board, I think I literally called you Marguerite, right after I got off the phone with her to talk over everything. I could not be more excited for her to come on board and take over. I don't think fans are really prepared for what's coming next," Higgins said.
Bennett is all in on continuing the book's ability to keep the core tenants of Power Rangers intact while still experimenting and taking chances, and there will be plenty of opportunity for both after the way Higgins leaves things in Shattered Grid.
"We don't rest our laurels and we're definitely taking the challenge Kyle gave us, incredibly seriously and with full gusto," Bennet said. "He really does leave Daredevil in prison as they say. So we have to find a way of doing the narrative equivalent of a prison break."
Granted, Higgins didn't leave her totally out to dry in regards to Shattered Grid, but the ending does have a big impact, with Bennett adding "the landscape of Power Rangers for the last two years is going to be irrevocably changed."
There's a lot to process here, but one thing we know for sure is that the Power Rangers universe is going to be far from boring, and there are plenty of things regarding the franchise to be excited about right now.
"I just love how much we get to play in the universe," Pleban said. "We've been living in the Mighty Morphin universe for two years and I think Kyle has created an opportunity for us to expand the toy box. These characters are really emotionally affecting and it's really interesting to start to bounce them off of each other in iterations we haven't seen before. And you see that with what Kyle is doing with Jen and Kimberly, and Jason and Lauren in Shattered Grid."
"And Marguerite has these really cool interactions between characters that would not normally get to interact in her series," Pleban continued. "We're getting that in Soul of the Dragon with seeing a future of Power Rangers that we haven't had before in a generational story, which is also rare. And then with Ryan's you get the classic teens with attitude, it's very much these are teens in a way that sometimes I think as viewers we don't register because the characters are usually played by much older actors. So you get to really deal with these emotional storylines that are always, you know when you're a teenager with hormones everything is super heightened and I have super powers...to really get to explore that as well."
That also means getting to play with lore and show new parts of Power Rangers history fans have never seen before.
"I'm just really excited because on top of all these new iterations that we're gonna be exploring, we're also revealing parts of Canon that are questions that we didn't know the answer to. And Ryan, Kyle, and Marguerite get to answer those questions in various ways. I think you'll be really surprised."
"Yeah I mean for me to really put a fine point on it, I'm really excited to watch you guys continue to defy expectations," Higgins said. "That's the best way I can articulate it. That's certainly what we were trying to do on the book and with things like Shattered Grid. And I know Ryan and Marguerite are both incredible innovators and together with Dafna, where the brand is going is really exciting to me, because it just continues the tradition of turning left when you're expected to go right."4comments
"And I would say, I think it's just such a testament to how well BOOM! has handled the franchise," Parrott said. "That they have done such a strong, slow burn of guiding hands. It's a very large, very complicated franchise as a whole and I thought they've done an incredible job of knowing how to introduce people, how to slowly get hands on board, to slowly take up the world inch by inch by inch. It's nice to see going forward, it's really exciting that they've earned the right to be able to play with the toys they've handled so well. So I think that's going to be really exciting for fans."
You can check out the covers from Mighty Morphin Power Rangers 31 above, which hits in September. For more Power Rangers coverage you can follow @MattMuellerCB and make sure to check out ComicBook's Power Rangers Hub right here.