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Monday, July 6, 2015

Carranger Episode 3 Review: Make A Silly Face!

With Carranger for today, we get the training episode along with Red not realizing the importance of teamwork and a monster who awakens the true evil of your household appliances!
Super Sentai is known to have training episodes and since this is Carranger, the show has its little spin to keep this scene interesting thanks to the acting. There is just something funny about the faces and the noises the team is making during this. It is so over expressive that I can’t help to laugh. Also Minoru just hogs your attention the most since he is the try hard so far. Minoru has the best faces and the camera knows this and I love during the tire dragging moment you see Minoru come into the scene in one of the camera angles. Even the camera likes to make little surprises here and there.
The monster for this week is one of my favorites of the series because he has this unique personality and a unique power compared to other monsters in the series and the franchise. RR Ri has the power to change peoples’ personalities and his plan to make people insincere. Right off the bat I love this guy when he sees a woman and politely says “hello” to her. Of course the woman went off running away and Ri knew it would happen. Also what helps is that the woman screams, starts to run, stops for a moment, screams again, and then completely bolts it. The scene would be basic if the lady just straight up fled, but in Carranger they give that extra little touch to get your off guard like usual. I then love how the woman flees to her house as she tells her child about the monster as the boy asks what he looked like. Right away the monster appears in the house and for some reason I was expecting applause like it was a sitcom when he entered like he did.
The reactions keep on getting better as this is our first look with the boy, Ichitaro who is the best kid character of all Sentai. Ichitaro’s first reaction to the monster was more of a shock than actually being scared. To me it felt like how the audience would react to what just happened. Also the boy sticks around and watches for a while, again not scared, but just being surprised by what he is seeing. Then the monster uses his hammer to change emotions, but it hits a vacuum instead… oh this is going to get good. Before getting to what happens we take some other scenes with the villains and the heroes. Somehow they can even make the suited monsters be over expressive. Because Zelmoda learns he could lose his position of Deputy Leader as he goes “Oh my god!” and putting his hands over his head.
With the hero side of things we learn what is happening over the house as Ichitaro comes to his father to tell him what is going on. It seems that Ri’s hammer can change the emotions of anything else as the vacuum wants to destroy humans! This gets the father to not call the police or anything, but to settle it himself. The Director is simply treating this as if there is a rodent in the house and as man of the house he will take care of it. Again the faces are getting my attention again as the Director leaves his mouth is slightly open for some reason and when the team gets mad at Kousuke for not coming along you can see Youko puffing out her cheeks. Before I was writing this review I did not know what the main gag was, but I know what it is now and that would be facial expressions. There are just so many and they happen in so many scenes that it has to be on purpose. Again a show like this is being rather experimental with comedy gags and it works because back then and even now this is not all that experimented with. For the most part silly faces and over the top acting is found in “so bad it is good” entertainment. Here though it is on purpose and it does not shoot itself in the foot. There are times when being purposely over the top just will not work and some recent independent American films can show that.
So the team of four goes to fight Ri and I love how these guy fight. This is the first time where a great part of the team’s motif is showing off. The Carrangers’ actually perform attacks that represent cars! Recent Sentai has not been good with keeping themes and motifs like this and Carranger is simply one of the best with that element. We got Green Racer sliding on the floor and sliding in below the monster to attack him, representing a racing car. Blue Racer performs Hairpin Kick which references a tight turn, Yellow performs Checker Chop which is her doing chopping motions in the way of a checkered flag, and then the most obvious one, Wheel Spin Kick from Pink. She literally is just rolled up into a ball and spinning on the floor that way like how a wheel spins. Not only does this keep the action interesting, but it gets me to laugh too because who knows what these guys can pull off next.
We then get to back to Kyosuke’s car fet… I mean love for cars as he fixes the classic that his boss has. He takes it out for a run because he always wanted to ride a classic. He quickly learns he needs to put little desires like this aside as he sees the team getting beaten up and the car he admires gets affected by the Spirit Change Hammer. Even basic Carranger fans know of the face that Kyosuke makes in this episode. I bet if you just search up this character that face will come up. Then even the car gets over expressive as it becomes extremely tacky with flowers everywhere, big lips, and a weird mesh of colors. We then get the speech from Kyosuke saying that he needs to remember what being a Carranger is about even though this is episode three and him not learning it fully is quite understandable. Then even Dappu calls him out saying he should just get to fighting and stop talking to himself. 
The big fight happens and it is similar to the second episode where the weapons are being used like Fencer Sword and such. I still love the idea Ri had to make a building go berserk, I wish the mech was in the series because I would pay so much money to see a building attack the giant robot. The day is saved though thanks to Formula Nova and everything goes back to normal which makes the Director say this “Now we’re going to study! Honey call the air fleet!” I have no idea what this means and seeing the man do a little dance while saying this was priceless. The family then sees the Carrangers and gets their autographs and it is to give a boost of pride to these shy heroes. The episode ends with more training and Kousuke getting the hardest one because he was goofing off.
This was a more basic episode of Carranger compared to the previous two. Well while thinking about it the other two are quite basic as well. The first episode was the beginning, the second shown off the glorious weapons, and now we get the leader realizing what he needs to do. Carranger knows the basics though and then throws in many random factors to keep your attention and this works very well. The show is random and sporadic and that is the best thing about it. There is never a dull moment in this show and even if they have to resort to simple gags to do, it simply just works. All of the silly faces just keep getting my attention and there are many of them. This just gives me an appreciation for the craft put into this show in general because looking for details like this is rewarding when they can make you realize something or simply just laugh. The show is giving me some work to do and I am happy to do it. Carranger simply boosts up the basics with comedy and it is excellent with that as this episode gets an “A.”

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