Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers #34 is written by Marguerite Bennett, illustrated by Simone di Meo, colored by Walter Baiamonte and Francesco Segala, and lettered by Ed Dukeshire. It is published by BOOM! Studios. The book follows the blistering conclusion to the “Beyond the Grid” storyline as we find our new team of Rangers confronted by the mysterious Praetor, who seeks the Solarix that Ari-aka the Solar Ranger-is carrying. Turns out that the Solarix contains a piece of the Morphing Grid-aka the energy field that all Power Rangers tap into. With their abilities supercharged, the Rangers head out to do battle with the Praetor.
I feel like the creative team isn’t getting enough credit for the work they’ve done so far. They not only had to follow on the heels of a previous creator who’d spent two years shaping the book but also deal with the aftermath of a massive event storyline meant to promote the 25th anniversary of Power Rangers. And on top of that, they’re using a team of Rangers that only hardcore fans would know about. Yet they still manage to craft an original, engaging story.
Bennett handles the massive action sequences, that the book is packed full of, and the emotional beats with equal grace. She understands why the Power Rangers have lasted for 25 years; first and foremost they are a team. Only by working together do they manage to beat back the Praetor, even when he tries to use their deepest fears against them. And they genuinely care about each other. Whether it’s Ari intercepting a blow meant for Mike (the Magna Defender), Kimberly (the Ranger Slayer) rallying the team, or Andros (the Red Space Ranger) reuniting with his sister Karone.
All of this is captured perfectly within Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers #34 by Di Meo and guest artist Francesco Mortarino. Their artwork grabs the reader from the first page and refuses to let go-especially when the Rangers use the power of the Solarix to summon their respective Zords. Seeing the different spaceships and animals crackling with energy is the reason splash pages were invented. Di Meo and Mortarino also have a recurring motif of drawing the Rangers with their helmets half covering their faces, allowing us to see their emotions.
Colorist Walter Baiamonte, with assistance from Francesco Segala, brings the artwork to life with both psychedelic and trippy colors for the Rangers. The is particularly true during the Zord fight and in the harsh, angry red for the Praetor. Color is important in a Power Rangers story, and Baiamonte’s work is invaluable to the final project.
In addition to the main story, there is a side story featuring supporting characters Blue Senturion and Ninjor written by Ryan Ferrier and illustrated by Bachan. Longtime Ranger fans may enjoy it, but I feel like other readers will be put off by the sudden shift in tone. Overall, Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers #34 proves that the Rangers are in excellent hands with Bennett and Di Meo. Whether you can name every single Power Ranger, or only have a passing familiarity with the franchise, you’re bound to love this book.
Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers #34 will be sold on December 19th wherever comics are available.
Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers #34
Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers #34 proves that the Rangers are in excellent hands with Bennett and Di Meo.
Collier “CJ” Jennings is a freelance reporter and film critic living in Seattle. He uses his love of comics and film/TV to craft reviews and essays on genre projects. He is also a host on Into the Spider-Cast.