Deluxe Turbo Megazord
Review by EVA_Unit_4A
“Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie”
(1997 theatrical film)
An alien wizard named Lerigot is pursued by the space pirate Divatox because he has a key that can open a door to another dimension. There exists a demonic creature called Maligore, whom Divatox plans both to release and marry. Desperate for help, Lerigot seeks out his robot friend Alpha-5 on Earth. Divatox pursues him, and captures former-Power Rangers Jason Lee Scott and Kimberly Hart as hostages and sacrifices to Maligore! When the prisoner exchange goes south and Lerigot is captured as well, Zordon and Alpha-5 reveal that the Zeo powers may not be enough to beat Divatox, and that they have built new armor, weapons, and Zords for the Rangers based on modern Earthly cars and trucks. Equipped with these new Turbo powers, the Rangers travel aboard a haunted ghost ship to pass through the dimensional portal that Lerigot was forced to open earlier, and arrive at Maligore’s forest temple. A fight ensues, and all of the hostages are freed, but not before the giant imprisoned Maligore is released as well! The Turbo Rangers call upon their five Turbo Zords, and combine them together to form the Turbo Megazord. Using this new Megazord and its high-speed abilities, the Turbo Rangers are able to destroy Maligore and defeat the plans of Divatox!
“Power Rangers Turbo”
(45-episode TV series)
Following the events of the movie, Divatox pursues the Turbo Rangers back to Earth and plans her revenge.
After a long tenure protecting Earth for thousands of years, Zordon and Alpha-5 are given an opportunity- due to a growing threat from the intergalactic United Alliance of Evil- to return to Zordon’s home planet of Eltar. Zordon’s long-time friend, Dimitria of Inquiris, however, agrees to succeed his position at the restored Power Chamber as mentor to the Turbo Rangers.
Due to a serious back injury sustained early in the movie, Rocky DeSantos cannot return to the team, and is permanently replaced by 12-year old Justin Stewart as the new Blue Turbo Ranger.
Not much is known about the origins of the Turbo Zords, other than that they were designed and constructed in secret by Zordon and Alpha-5 before the events of the movie. (Zordon claimed that, at the time, the Turbo Megazord was the most powerful Zord ever created!) In addition to their ability to fight Divatox’s giant minions, the Turbo Zords can shrink down to the same size as normal cars so that the Turbo Rangers can use them to get around Angel Grove faster.
When combined into the Turbo Megazord, it has the use of the Turbo Megazord Saber and Turbo Megazord Shield, and has a multi-beam weapon in the chest, the Turbo Headlights Blaster. Its finishing attack is the dizzying Turbo Megazord Spinout- dashing at high-speed towards the target and then spinning around rapidly while holding its Saber out and repeatedly cutting at the target.
Each of the five Turbo Zords features four free-turning wheels, but no other individual functions. Mountain Blaster is the only one of the Turbo Zord to feature diecast metal, for both the light rack on top and knee connector joints.
In an unusual change of pace, the Megazord has articulating shoulders that ratchet every 30-degrees forward and backwards rather than the traditional 45-degrees!
The Turbo Megazord’s Saber can fit into either hand easily enough, but the Shield can be held either in both hands (although the Shield tends to flop in the hands rather easily), or pegged under each forearm.
What is the difference between the Deluxe Turbo Megazord and its original Japanese counterpart, the DX Gekisou Gattai RV Robo from “Gekisou Sentai CarRanger” (1996)?
While several bootlegs have appeared over the years with different materials and decorations, the true ’97 Bandai America release only made minor changes in terms of materials (since the sticker count was kept both low and simplified on the original Japanese toy) and colors. With the exception of Green Vehicle and Yellow Vehicle, the silver vacuum-metalized plastic on the front bumpers of the other three Ranger Vehicles- and the roof storage racks on Green Vehicle, Yellow Vehicle, and Pink Vehicle- were all replaced dull dark-gray plastic. The Blue Vehicle’s silver-and-gold vacuum-metalized plastic, however, was retained on the Mountain Blaster. The silver vacuum-metalized plastic on the Radial Shield and the gold vacuum-metalized plastic on the RV Sword were both changed to plain dark-grey plastic (although the RV Sword always had the PVC blade used for the Turbo Megazord Saber). The silver vacuum-metalized plastic along the wheel hubs and tire walls of all five Ranger Vehicles was removed from the Turbo Zords (Red Vehicle has no silver to begin with).
All decals and diecast metal content was the same. (Oddly, despite having diecast metal, Bandai chose not to add the classic Chogokin label and series numbering it had on past Super Sentai transforming mecha toys; this was probably due to the low metal part-count on the RV Robo.)
. . .
I’ll admit that when I got this toy back in 1997, I didn't put much thought into not getting it; it was kind of a blind pick-up from a Toys-R-Us in Wichita, Kansas [when I flew with my dad to his high school reunion]. By then, I knew that it was going to lead once again to some really great Zord combinations and was a solid design.
There were really only two minor complaints I’ve ever had for this toy.
The first was that the front bumpers and roof racks were not chromed. That was a dead giveaway, and I’d easily have pumped out an extra $3 in to keep that in. The rims and wheel wells? Meh.
The second is a little more finicky than an outright flaw. While the Wind Chaser is correctly proportioned to the other Turbo Zords in terms of being a small sporty white-and-pink two-door coupe, when combined the arms are noticeable too small. When used in a later combination, the smaller proportion is really noticeable! Ordinarily with these transformable Megazords, human body proportions do take a back seat (typically applied to the head and legs), and we just have to go with it. The transformation process for this particular Zord is just fine, but in this case I [still] don’t see any strong reason for having it this small, including being used with other toys later on. I think Wind Chaser/Pink Vehicle could have used a bit more mass and not cost too much more.
(There was a third complaint, but I’ll save that for… another time.)
Yeah, it was a bit simple of a design even back then for both the individual vehicles and their combined form, but it didn't bother me terribly. Previous Power Rangers series had given us some fantastic Zord designs which still stand up to scrutiny 20+ years later, and certainly later designs became much more elaborate in terms of decoration, transformation, and playable features. What’s nice about this toy is that the simplicity doesn't work against it either because, well, modern cars typically don’t come with extendable rocket launchers and wings! Also, the implied context of the RV Robo- which was just one part of a series filled with adorable self-parody, fun-poking and spoofing- was completely stripped from its Americanized counterpart, leaving behind a rather bland (but not necessarily sad) shell of a Megazord.
The Deluxe Turbo Megazord will not go down as one of the greatest designs to come out of the long-running Power Rangers franchise, but it had-and-retains its fair share of dignity and respect.
|Posted 9 January, 2015 - 18:10 by EVA_Unit_4A|