Only more woke.
As children born in the 90s, they call us millennials. And as millennials, I’m sure a majority of us – if not all – have watched the all-time favorite action series among people our age, Power Rangers. You may have seen Power Rangers Ninja Storm, Power Rangers Dino Thunder, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, and Power Rangers Time Force etc. (Yes, there are a lot of versions of Power Rangers.) Also, if you have never seen Power Rangers at all in your life, who hurt you?
To be honest, when it was announced that there will be a ‘pivotal’ LGBT moment in the Power Rangers movies, I was already anticipating for yet another ‘shelving’ moment, what with the controversy over the Beauty and the Beast ‘gay’ moment, which wasn’t even that gay at all. Let’s take a moment to appreciate that the smart people won and us poor Malaysians finally got to watch that magical movie. (I cried.)
As a person who absolutely hates pink and all colors that are as happy as pink, it is surprising to me to find that my favorite Power Ranger is the Pink Ranger, Kimberly, and the Yellow Ranger, Trini, comes second. Perhaps it is because I am a self-proclaimed feminist who is very much appalled at the intensity of homophobia in this country, but I truly enjoyed watching these two girls find themselves as heroes while also building a strong friendship with each other. If any one of you has watched the movie, then you all must have enjoyed the scene of Kimberly and Trini having a playful war with a fork in a diner as much as I did. To all of you who haven’t, what are you waiting for? And sorry for the tiny spoiler.
Of course, it is certainly not just because of this that I enjoyed the movie. While Power Rangers have always been a very diversified series, this movie has brought the whole franchise back into the spotlight with more diversity. There is a white man, a woman of color, a woman of color who is also a lesbian, a black guy with autism, and an Asian dude with a slight attitude problem who is not nerdy at all. This movie challenged all stereotypes with blinding light, and I thoroughly love the middle finger that it has shoved in every bigot’s face.
Plus, watching the Power Rangers fight the villains while the theme song ‘Go Go Power Rangers’ play in the background brought back so many childhood memories that I literally squealed. If you are one of the people who were in the theatre with me, I do not apologize because I reserve the right to be excited about it.
While Power Rangers may not be screening anymore, I am still very proud of this movie. As a child who grew up knowing nothing about stereotypes and feminism and the struggles that are still plaguing the LGBT community, I got the chance to watch one of my favorite teams of superheroes fight the bad guys while being incredibly diversified. I mean, this is almost as good as getting to watch Hillary Clinton become the first female presidential candidate in US, telling us that there is nothing wrong with being different.
Now I’m just waiting for Hayley Kiyoko to be announced as the Green Ranger in the sequel.