Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Writer: Marguerite Bennett
Artist: Simone Di Meo
Colours: Walter Baiamonte
Lettering: Ed Dukeshire
Release Date: 26th September 2018
The Morphin Grid has been repaired, Lord Drakkon has been defeated and the universe has been saved thanks to the Power Rangers. But things can never be as they were before. The Promethea, the future Terra Venture of the Lost Galaxy Rangers was used in one desperate attempt of all free rangers to attack Drakkon, but now it and any Ranger on board have been spat out in a distant part of the universe, a place with no connection to the Morphin Grid. With their powers failing, can Rangers from across time and space come together to get home or will new threats destroy our ragtag team?
I’ve been hyped for this idea since it was first revealed. Six Rangers from across the franchise forced to work as a team and, yeah, this is awesome. There’s a palpable sense of dread and despair as our heroes try and fail to find any kind of life and slowly realise just how little power and supplies they have. Barely any Morphers, no Zords and definitely no Megazords. A truly hopeless and desperate situation
Writer Marguerite Bennett delivers a really refreshing change for the book. We’ve gone from the classic six in Angel Grove in the safety of the series canon to the edges of space with characters that feel mortal and feel like they might die if things go wrong. It makes this book incredibly gripping as things look truly hopeless.
I’m happy to say though that the first issue does a great job in setting up new character dynamics and roles. Grace Sterling, the Red Ranger from a secret battle in the ‘60s where not all the Rangers came back fits well into a jaded, military style mentor figure for this team, while characters like Heckyl and Andros get good characters moment that set things up for later.
As good as the writing undoubtedly is here, the art and colours by Simone Di Meo and Walter Baiamonte pushes this book over the edge. The Rangers all look gaunt and battered after the battle with Drakkon, which really helps to emphasise just how rough and broken our new protagonists are. And just to send the bleakness into overdrive the colours are dark and atmospheric throughout, which just helps the mood beyond measure.
Look, I give out praise like this very rarely, but even if you don’t care about Power Rangers at all, pick this one up. It’s a bleak masterpiece to set the stage for an emotional but hopefully rewarding arc. This is Power Rangers at its best and it’s truly spectacular. As a jumping-on point for new readers this is great, as a book for long-term fans this is great, as a great read for people who just like good superhero sci-fi comic this is great. Read this. It’s going to be building on probably the best story in the franchise’s history to deliver something that truly earns the title “Beyond the Grid”
The writer of this piece was: Jonathan Mullen
Jonathan Tweets from @JonathanDMullen