Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Power Rangers Team-Ups

Hey guys. What's up? Happy Belated Birthday to Power Rangers for celebrating it's 25th anniversary. And by celebrating, I thought I would go over every single team up in Power Rangers history.

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A Friend in Need, Pt. 1-3 (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers S3)
This wasn't a good way to start Season 3. The main reason for this 3-parter was to pave the way for another Ameritoku show much like VR Troopers, Saban's Masked Rider, which was adapted from the last series of the Showa Era of Kamen Rider, Kamen Rider Black RX. It only lasted 40 episodes and wasn't that much of a crowd pleaser. Neither was this 3-parter. We actually get some backstory on Alpha, finding out he comes from the planet of Edenoi. Worried that it is in danger, the Rangers (except Kimberly, who is sick) travel to Edenoi and find that it has been conquered by Count Dregon. Once arriving on the planet, they come across the inhabitants, the Edenites, among them being the prince of said planet, Dex, who mistakes the Rangers as traitors. (Don't know how Dex doesn't know about the Power Rangers, given that they're are numerous Rangers on another planets). He transforms into Masked Rider and fights them. When Dregon fires at them, Dex realizes the error of his ways and allies with them, telling them the story of Edenoi's current state and teams up with them to combat the Plague Patrol and the Cogwarts. The music is pretty lacking and sounds dated and don't get me started on how wimpy Dex sounds. The story of the Masked Rider powers are interesting, but sadly never go anywhere. Earlier in the episode, Zedd did mention that he and Dregon had a rivalry, but the latter never mentions Zedd here or in his respective series. So pretty much, this was mentioned all for nothing. Rita & Zedd pull a bright idea and with the Rangers off planet, they send a new monster, Repellator, who is repainted version of a past monster, Silver Horns. Kim, being sick, is forced to morph and combat the monster, but is having a hard time doing so, but fortunately, she gives the monster her germs by sneezing on it through her helmet? Anyways, Bulk and Skull here don't get as much screen time unfortunately, but we do get a closure on their arc on finding the identities of the Power Rangers (It's not good, but it's something). We also get more American Zord footage in Part 3, which was a breath of fresh air (The last time we saw was back in Season 2, Episode 47, Best Man for the Job). All the more, the pacing was practically all over the place. And besides, it's Masked Rider.

Rating: 1/5
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Rangers of Two Worlds, Pt. 1-2 (Power Rangers Zeo)
OK, this is slightly better than A Friend in Need. (Keyword being slightly). This can be best known as the first PR team-up to use footage from the Sentai, Ohre vs Kakuranger, since most team-ups are more original. This was a sendoff for Billy's character, since his actor, David Yost, left the show due to being harassed about his sexuality. So, they wrote Billy's character off by having him rapidly age. This was an effect of him using the regeneration device that was powered by the Ninja Coins back in the Alien Rangers saga. Meanwhile, Rita and Zedd turns Kat's purse she made in art class into a monster known as the Impursonator, who does a number on the Rangers' Zords. The Machine Empire throws their hat into the ring with the Cog Changer monster. Both monsters take control of the Zeo and Super Zeo Megazords and use them to fight each other. This pretty much overshadows the plot with Billy and takes up too much screen time and interactions with the Alien Rangers, which the latter returns, but then again, they were barely the focus in they're own series, so it's not anything new. Bulk & Skull do get a laugh out of the audience when they take their exams to become full-fledged detectives during a monster attack. The fights were pretty good, but this was called Rangers of Two Worlds, not Rita & Zedd vs the Machine Empire.

Rating: 2/5
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Shell Shocked (Power Rangers In Space)
*sighs* Team-ups didn't do so well in their earlier years. Yes, you are not stoned, the Power Rangers, the Space Rangers, specifically, with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Saban used to be involved with a show known as Ninja Turtles: The Next Mutation, which was a show that aired on Fox Kids in '97 that featured the live-action Ninja Turtles, which were based of the film trilogy in the 90s, but was a continuation of the 1987 TV series (🤨). This series also featured a female turtle in the form of Venus de Milo. Sadly, this series was poorly received, only lasting 26 episodes. I have no idea why they crossed over with the Space Rangers, which was doing well at the time. The premise is pretty simple: Astronema finds the Turtles and brainwashes them into being evil. They pretend to save the Space Rangers from a monster and have them take them to the Mega Ship. It's really dumb how the Turtles keep asking questions about the ship and the only one who notices it. Well, given the fact that the others came from Turbo, it shouldn't be that surprising. The Turtles in general just look bad. The dubbing, the animatronics, it's all bad, but hey, at least it's better than how they looked in the Coming Out of Their Shells tour, but the fight they had with the Rangers kicking the Quantrons' asses was pretty cool.

Rating: 2/5
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True Blue to the Rescue (Power Rangers In Space)
After Shell Shocked, In Space had two pseudo-teamups, where they team up with one Ranger from a previous season. The first being True Blue to the Rescue, where Justin, the former Blue Turbo Ranger, made his return. This wasn't that much of a bad episode, to be honest. I liked how it wrapped up some loose ends we got from Turbo. So on a desert planet, Lightning Cruiser and Storm Blaster are held captive by Pirahnatrons, but the former helps the latter escape. Seeking help, Storm Blaster goes to the Space Rangers, but is followed by Astronema, who gets the best of them. Storm Blaster then goes to Justin, giving him a new Turbo Morpher and saves the Space Rangers. After beating Lionizer, they travel to the desert planet and save Lightning Cruiser. I really liked how this was a "where are they now?" type story for Justin, giving him a closure on his arc after staying behind on Earth at the end of Turbo.

Rating: 3/5
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Always A Chance (Power Rangers In Space)
Now it's getting good. After Carlos accidentally injures Cassie in battle, he starts to doubt himself. His predecessor, Adam, comes in and helping him train. This was a pretty good episode that gave focus on Adam and Carlos. I really did like how we got a follow-up on the original Mighty Morphin powers. He uses the Mastodon coin and not the Frog Ninja Coin. This episode really did give us a good moral on how we should take risks on doing whats right, and having Adam morph into the Black Ranger, almost risking his life, it gives Carlos the confidence to resume his Ranger duties.

Rating: 4/5
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To the Tenth Power (Power Rangers Lost Galaxy)
Now this is how you do a team-up. Deviot finds 5 familiar key cards and activates them, reviving the Psycho Rangers. Trakeena orders them to capture the Galaxy Rangers, but when Psycho Red attacks Leo, he is saved by Andros, the Red Space Ranger. The two reds and Mike, the Magna Defender, save the others and are joined by the other Space Rangers. The Psycho Rangers were a perfect choice to bring back for this crossover. The fight that both teams had was awesome, the choreography was great here. After their defeat, the only one who survived was Psycho Pink, leaving a cliffhanger for the next episode.

Rating: 4/5
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The Power of Pink (Power Rangers Lost Galaxy)
The previous episode wasn't heavy on character interactions and this episode fixes that. Psycho Pink survives and betrays Trakeena, going to Terra Venture and finding out the location of the Savage Sword from Kendrix. She and Cassie team up and travel to Rashon, the location of said object while the remaining members of both teams deal with Sting Wingers. This episode is highly remembered in Power Rangers history for being one of the darkest episodes. When the Savage Sword begins to harm Cassie and Terra Venture, Kendrix sacrifices herself by destroying it. The reason behind the scenes was because that Valerie Vernon, the actress playing Kendrix, was diagnosed with leukemia and had to leave the show for treatment, but thankfully, at the end of the show, she was leukemia-free and came back at the end of Journey's End, Pt. 3. But we'll never forget how her death was executed. Cassie was originally going to become the next Pink Galaxy Ranger, but due to a pay dispute behind the scenes, her actress, Patricia Ja Lee, left the show, so they brought back Melody Perkins, who reprised her role as Karone, formerly known as Astronema back In Space, to become the new Pink Galaxy Ranger.

Rating: 5/5
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Trakeena's Revenge, Pt. 1 & 2 (Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue)
This was the second team-up to use footage from the Sentai, this being GoGoV vs Gingaman. This was a pretty underwhelming team-up. There wasn't that much interactions between the Lightspeed and the Galaxy Rangers, and it's all wasted thanks to that little girl. And don't get me started on that old lady who doesn't believe in monsters when she's in a city THAT'S CONSTANTLY ATTACKED BY MONSTERS EVERY SINGLE FAIZING DAY!!!! And how do the Lightspeed Rangers know who Leo is when they weren't even on Terra Venture? Trakeena is played by a different actress, Jennifer Burns. Amy Miller, the original actress, was going to reprise her role, but finding out that a little girl was going to get more screen time than her, she walked off set. And due to a pay dispute, Danny Slavin walked off set, so most voiceovers for Leo was done by another actor. And they used the Gingaman henshin for the Galaxy morph. All reasons why this crossover blows. At least the fight and Megazord battle was cool.

Rating: 1/5
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Time for Lightspeed (Power Rangers Time Force)
This was a step-up from Trakeena's Revenge. The villain they got back for this was Vypra. Out of all of the kickass villains in Lightspeed Rescue, you choose Vypra, the only one who can't even act. Well, at least her acting improved a little bit over time. She joins forces with Ransik to retrieve the Solar Amulet, which when in perfect alignment with the sun, it will turn into a Super Demon known as Quarganon, who was very underwhelming. You build him up to be very powerful and destructive, but he's easily defeated. The morph and the fights were cool.

Rating: 3/5
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Reinforcements from the Future, Pt. 1 & 2 (Power Rangers Wild Force)
Now this was leagues above To the Tenth Power. The character interactions a pretty fun to watch, especially with Taylor and Eric. The Mut-Orgs were a pretty interesting concept, villains who are a fusion of both teams respective villains, Orgs and Mutants. With Ransik serving the role of a protagonist here shows how far he's come and by having turn completely human was a great way to symbolize his purification. The 12 Ranger morph was very awesome and so was the fight.

Rating: 5/5
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Forever Red (Power Rangers Wild Force)
Now this is how you do an anniversary special for Power Rangers. Forever Red had many callbacks and respect for the franchise's 10 year history, like with the reunion of Bulk and Skull, for example. The morph and fight was awesome. 10 Red Rangers joining forces to take down the remnants of the Machine Empire, but they're were some cons for this. Like how did Bulk get back from Miranoi? And especially, Serpentera. Man, did the CGI look bad. This was of course an excuse to advertise a new toy for Bandai, the Wild Force Rider, which Cole uses to take down Serpentera, which was that took out an ENTIRE PLANET! Furthermore, Forever Red was a well-executed love letter to fans that stuck with it for it's 10 year run.

Rating: 5/5
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Thunder Storm, Pt. 1 & 2 (Power Rangers Dino Thunder)
I like how this was a perfect epilogue for Ninja Storm, but being that, the Ninja Storm Rangers gets more focus than the Dino Rangers do. The Wind Rangers turning evil is an interesting concept that makes some pretty good fights with the three Dino Rangers. Lothor and Mesogog interacting was interesting to see, with Lothor being comedic and Mesogog so vile and creepy. After both teams win, the fight the two had was awesome.

Rating: 4/5
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History (Power Rangers S.P.D.)
It was an neat epilogue on Dino Thunder, but not as good as the previous. I really didn't like the B-Squad being dicks to the Dino Rangers and telling them not to fight, but then again, that was they're schtick for this season. The B-Squad would bicker most of the time. This special did feel too fast paced, but the action was neat, especially given the fact that both teams went into their super modes.

Rating: 3/5
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Wormhole (Power Rangers S.P.D.)

THIS WAS POINTLESS!!!!

Rating: 1/5
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Once A Ranger, Pt. 1 & 2 (Power Rangers Operation Overdrive)
*sighs* This is were team-ups for Power Rangers started going downhill. This 15th anniversary special was awfully paced. Thrax, being the son of Zedd and Rita, was kind of confusing. The Overdrive team are just dicks when they lose their powers and just quit? I'm not gonna waste my breath on how stupid this was, so, here's the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eAcdR29ChGc&t. The Veteran Ranger team were pretty wasted on this, but it was good to see these guys again, but when I first saw the Red SPD Ranger revealed to be Bridge, my jaw dropped when I was a kid. They did bring back Alpha 6, but man did his voice sound terrible. He sounds like M.O.E. from Space Sentinels (If you know that show, pat yourselves on the back). Sentinel Knight was pretty much a deus ex machina here. So he can repair the Veteran Rangers' powers, but can't do the same for the Overdrive team? It was neat to here the theme songs, but for some reason, they didn't use Mighty Morphin, despite using the song in Legacy of Power. The morph was neat and the fight was awesome, but too many Harrisplosions. Good choices to come back, but awfully paced.

Rating: 1/5
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Clash of the Red Rangers (Power Rangers Super Samurai)
I remember when I was a kid and was excited for this team-up.....and when I saw it, I was completely disappointed. This special confirmed that RPM takes place in a different universe, but we don't when in RPM. Was it after Venjix was defeated or was it during the series? My guess is the latter. Scott's reason for being morphed throughout the special is really stupid. He wasn't sure what the Samurai Rangers breath in they're dimension? Oxygen is Oxygen. Shouldn't it have been that crossing dimensions can mess with your morphing powers? And don't get me started on how they're was NO RPM Rangers and the editing was terrible. It just squishes the plots of both Shinkenger movies together and it pays off terribly.

Rating: 1/5
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Legendary Battle (Power Rangers Super Megaforce)
*sighs* You know why.

Rating: 1/5
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Dimensions in Danger (Power Rangers Super Ninja Steel)
Surprisingly, after four lackluster team ups, Dimensions in Danger saves the reputation of team-ups. It was pretty much rushed, but it was still enjoyable. Most fans call this a rip-off of Shattered Grid, the storyline from the Power Rangers BOOM! Comics. I can agree, but it gets executed in a way where it feels like its own thing. Tommy using the Master Morpher was a 50/50. It's never explained where he got it, but my theory is that they'll explain it in the Soul of the Dragon novel this November. On the other hand, it was neat to see him morph into all these Rangers, but how can he morph into Mighty Morphin Green, White and Dino Thunder Black? My theory is that those aren't the real powers and are just clones of the actual powers. Kind of like Kamen Rider Decade. The fight he and his robot clone was awesome. I like how they don't shove the teams aside. They actually gave the Ninja Steel Rangers something to do and I really liked how they fit in the Ninninger summer movie footage perfectly. Take that, Clash of the Red Rangers. The morph was kinda underwhelming because it was just an instamorph, but I've been hearing rumors that we're gonna get an extended version of this episode, and I hope they are true. The fight was actually awesome, but the way they take down Lord Drayvon, the main villain, was pretty weak. All the more, this was a great way to celebrate 25 Years of Power Rangers.

Rating: 4/5
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Well, that's it for now. What's your favorite team-up? Reply in the comments below. Next time, get ready for a new episode of Power Rangers Battle Beasts. Episode 15, The Living Lego. Later.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Aquaman Trailer Thoughts

Last but not least are my thoughts for the Aquaman trailer.

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Following the events of Justice League, Arthur Curry, half-human, half-Atlantean, played by Jason Momoa, runs into Mera, daughter of King Nereus of the Xebel Tribe, played by Amber Heard, who warns him of Orm, the ruler of Atlantis, who wants to wage a war against mankind for polluting the sea.


The only way to stop him is for Arthur to unite the seven seas and take his place as King of Atlantis. But it won't be easy as he also has to confront David Kane, a ruthless treasure hunter who wants revenge on Arthur for killing his father. He does that by taking on the mantle of Black Manta.




First thing I want to point out is that I love the numerous designs that are shown through this trailer. It shows that this film has potential for great world building, like with Atlantis, the numerous species that exist throughout the seven seas, etc.


I also love the designs for the characters. Mera, especially, who I find alluring. I guess I have a thing for redheads. Understandable since yours truly is one himself.


The same goes for Black Manta, who both gives something new and respects the original design. When I first saw the Black Manta design, I thought he looked silly with his enormous shaped head, but the way he's integrated into live-action makes it work, as the head is backed up by his bulky-suit.


This trailer boosted up expectations for many fans and it advertised it perfectly. Especially with the music, which is titled "None Shall Live" from Two Steps From Hell. Aquaman makes its way to theaters on December 21, 2019. What are your thoughts? Reply in the comments below. Later.

Shazam! Trailer Thoughts

So, during Comic-Con this weekend, me and other DC fans were expecting the trailer for Aquaman, but first, they gave us the first trailer for Shazam!.

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After being transferred through 6 foster homes, 14 year-old Billy Batson, played by Asher Angel, is brought to his seventh home, where he meets his new foster family, one of them being a superhero aficionados named Freddy Freeman, played by Jack Dylan Grazer. 


One day after school, when Freddy gets beat up by some bullies, Billy comes to his aid and kicks their asses, but they then chase him, escaping through a subway. On said train, he is brought to the Rock of Eternity by the wizard known as Shazam.


The Wizard grants him the power to transform into an adult superhero, played by Zachary Levi, by shouting the word "Shazam!". Now granted these powers, Billy must learn how to control them, with the help of Freddy, to stop a villain named Dr. Thaddeus Sivanna, played by Mark Strong.


So, what I really loved about this trailer is that it shows that this film is more lighthearted and more comedy orientated than the films that came before it, and that gives a breath a fresh air, and the casting helps with that.



I really do like the family dynamic they're showing here because it makes it feel warmhearted. I did hear the this film is following the New 52 comic version of Shazam, so pretty much in the sequel, if it does get a sequel, Billy's foster siblings will likely gain the powers of Shazam and become adult superheroes as well.


As mentioned earlier, the main villain of this film will be Dr. Thaddeus Sivana. As a child, he was summoned by the Wizard to the Rock of Eternity, but was rejected by the latter due to not being chosen. After said encounter, Sivana spent his entire life trying to unlock the powers by using science. It's unknown how he gets his powers as you can see in the trailer, he stops Shazam's punch very easily. I think it's interesting to have a villain whose motives tie into his childhood experiences.


One last thing I like to point out is the numerous easter eggs that this trailer gave us that reference past films. Since Freddy is a huge fan of the Justice League, of course he's gonna have a lot of items that represent his fanboy personality. He has a replica of a Bat-a-rang, a bullet that was stopped by Superman, numerous newspapers that talk about Zod's attack on Metropolis, Doomsday's attack, etc. He also wears shirts with the symbols of these respective heroes: Superman, Batman, Aquaman, Wonder Woman, etc. The ones I listed were seen in the trailer. It could be a possibility that he has shirts of the Flash and Cyborg in the actual movie.


As I mentioned before, this trailer was very fun to experience and I hope the movie is the same. Be sure to check out Shazam!, out in theaters on April 5, 2019. Next, I'll do one more retrospective on the Aquaman trailer.

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Godzilla: King of the Monsters Trailer Thoughts

Hey guys. What's up? I want to note that I haven't been doing that much stuff other than tokusatsu on this blog, so I want to change that by giving my thoughts on these three trailers that were shown at San Diego Comic-Con this weekend. First, let's start with Godzilla: King of the Monsters.

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5 years after the first movie, A paleobiologist working for Monarch named Dr. Emma Russell, played by Vera Farmiga, has found a way to communicate with the monsters, referred to as "Titans", who are being awakened by numerous ecological disasters. She and her daughter, Madison Russell, played by Millie Bobby Brown, are kidnapped by this "mysterious organization" who want to use that method to control the monsters. These monsters being Godzilla, Mothra, Rodan, King Ghidorah, etc. All of these monsters battle it out for supremacy, leaving the fate of mankind hanging in the balance.

Before I talk about the monsters, I wanna go over what the humans will be doing. So, Dr. Serizawa and Dr. Graham, played by Ken Watanabe and Sally Hawkins, characters from the 2014 film, will return in this movie. They will be joined by Mark Russell, played by Kyle Chandler, as they take part in a rescue mission for Emma and Madison. Farmiga describes her character as a "DJ for the monsters", since she can communicate to said beings by using their bioacoustics on a sonar level.



As you can see hear, they're were ancient civilizations from centuries ago that worshiped the monsters, but said beings went into hibernation and were forgotten, but know that numerous disasters have happened, the monsters are reawakening and battle each other for supremacy over mankind.


Speaking of which, the monsters look phenomenal here. It's exciting to see these classic Kaiju getting this cinematic treatment. There are some monsters were we only see glimpses of, like their face in they're covered by the breathtaking scenery.

Here's pics of Mothra, where we can see Madison touching Mothra, and her wings:



Rodan rising out of a volcano and fighting jets:



And the arch-nemesis of Godzilla, King Ghidorah:


And thankfully, that's only scratching the surface. Confirmed by the director of the film, Michael Dougherty, there will be more monsters in the film other than the ones we saw in the trailer. That's what makes me feel optimistic for this film because I know they don't want to repeat the mistakes they made in the last film like whenever Godzilla is about to fight the M.U.T.O., it always cut to the humans, which got really repetitive, or how dark the fights were.


I really did love the visuals that this trailer gave us, with the monsters attacking, Godzilla's atomic breath, and Ghidorah's lightning. Godzilla: King of the Monsters will be out in theaters on May 31, 2019. Next, I will give my thoughts on the Shazam! Trailer.

Friday, July 13, 2018

Kamen Rider Zi-O Revealed!

Hey guys. You should know the drill by now, whenever scans hit for the next Ultraman, Kamen Rider, or Super Sentai series, I will go over their scans. So recently, the scans for the next preceding Build has just arrived. I introduce to you to the Kamen Rider series of 2018-19, Kamen Rider Zi-O.


Now most fans are calling this series "Kamen Rider Decade 2". It is understandable why because this series will celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the Heisei Era of Kamen Rider, which started all the way back in 2000. It is rumored that our hero will travel through time to meet other Kamen Riders that preceded him and gain their powers to stop a oncoming threat, which is yet to be revealed.


Our main hero will use the Jikuu Driver belt, which is activated by the gimmicks for the series, Ride Watches, which resemble stop watches with the Rider's face in the center. By inserting the Zi-O Ride Watch in the left slot. Then, you would press the top button, and turn the belt like an hourglass, and the user, who is unknown, will transform into Kamen Rider Zi-O. Our secondary Rider, Kamen Rider Gates, will use his own Ride Watch and Jikuu Driver to transform.


The RideWatches can be placed onto the RideWatch Holder, but can be compiled into the RideWatch Dizer (continue below).


Our Riders' sidearm will be known as the Jikan Grade, which can, of course, transform from sword to gun.


The Ride Watches also resemble past Kamen Riders, which Zi-O and Gates will collect. By inserting the Ride Watch, which will generate ArmorTime!, which is where the Riders can access forms based off of past Riders! Zi-O will use forms based off of Build and Ex-Aid, while Gates assume forms based off Ghost and Drive.


Here are some more pictures, but one thing that I should point out is that one each Rider's belts, is says a year, which Zi-O's belt says 2018, while Gates belt says 2066. Could that mean that our secondary Rider could be from the future?

 

Here are some other RideWatches. There's Fourze, Faiz, OOO, Genm, Ex-Aid, Ryuki, Brave, Rogue, Mach, and Meteor.


Our secondary Rider's weapon will be known as the Jikan Zax, which can change from an axe to a crossbow. He will later obtain the Decade RideWatch, which can access Zi-O's Decade form. It can also make a third slot, where you can combine another RideWatch with the Decade RideWatch. In this form, he can also use the Ride HeiSaber, which can harness the powers of past Riders.

 

Here are some more RideWatches: there's Build, Ghost, Drive, Ex-Aid, Den-O, Kiva, Blade, OOO, Ryuki, Faiz, Fourze, Kabuto, Hibiki, Wizard, Agito, Gaim, Kuuga, and Double. He will also be able to use other RideWatches which are based off of past Rider arsenal: there's the Faiz Phone X, Taka Watchroid, and Suika Arms Watchroid. As mentioned before, the RideWatches can be compiled in the RideWatch Dizer.


Now as you know, every Rider has to have his own motorcycle, and that's where the Ride Striker comes in.


Our main Rider will also possess a giant mech, the Time Majin! It is also said that this will the means to time travel.

So, that is it for today. Kamen Rider Zi-O will makes it premiere on September 2, 2018. Next time, I know I said I was gonna go over Power Rangers team-ups, but duty calls, next time, time for a new episode of Power Rangers Battle Beasts, with Episode 16, The Living Lego. Later