I had a fun chat at the Saban Brands booth at the Licensing Expo. I learned a decent amount about Power Rangers Megaforce and the upcoming 20th anniversary. There are some exciting items planned on the horizon. Most of the information is off-the-record but will be public information in the near future.
As you may have read in the press releases yesterday, Saban Brands is planning a campaign to acknowledge a group of fans to represent the online community and a series of events that will take place next year. At the moment, there is no formal name for the campaign, so I will coin them as “Super Fans”. Saban Brands appreciates the super fans for their support on the forums and other social media platforms. One particular example that they mentioned was the launching of the new PowerRangers.COM website. The website had several typos and mistakes, but fans sent their immediate feedback to get those resolved.
For the 20th anniversary, Saban Brands plans to interact directly with the Super Fans for a wide variety of events and surprises next year. More information about the campaign will be announced later this year.
Yesterday, Ira Mayer tweeted that Saban Brands is acquiring the 4Kids Cartoon Block. This investment is going to open more opportunities to spread the love for Power Rangers. Despite the heavy promotions on NickToons, the viewer count is fairly limited because not everyone has Nick/NickToons. Fans have been able to see Power Rangers (Samurai, Super Samurai, Jungle Fury, Dino Thunder, and Ninja Storm) on NickToons. This fall, Saban Brands plans to show 1-2 Power Rangers episodes every Saturday during the 4Kids block. There will be one dedicated season at a time. More information will be announced later this year.
Saban Brands will be promoting Power Rangers 20th Anniversary in style at Comic Con! Fans that are attending this event will get the opportunity to check out the upcoming Power Rangers Megaforce teaser. The Cast Members of Power Rangers: Super Samurai will make an appearance at the event. Bandai and Mattel will be promoting Power Rangers: Samurai collectibles. Mattel will show off the 20th anniversary collectible cars. Shout! Factory will make an appearance at Comic Con. Saban Brands will be hosting fun activities and exclusive giveways at the event.
I contacted the Saban Marketing team about Power Morphicon on the initial registration day. I informed them that this would be THE venue to promote the anniversary to their fans. Today, I learned that they have been working with Scott for a MEGA presence at Power Morphicon. My hat goes off to the Scott and the PMC Team for providing this awesome opportunity. When I heard this, I immediately remembered how awesome the original Morphicon was with Bandai’s presence. The Cast Members of Power Rangers: Samurai will attend the event. There is no confirmation on whether the Cast Members of Power Rangers: Megaforce will be at Power Morphicon. Saban Brands plans to make a few major announcements, including the Power Rangers Megaforce teaser. Register today for Power Morphicon!
Saban Brands will start teasing about the 20th anniversary at Comic Con with heavy emphasis at Power Morphicon. The official launch for the 20th anniversary is in January. Just to be clear, the 20th Anniversary is not a season. This is a more of a campaign to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Power Rangers. PowerRangers.COM will get a new makeover to promote Power Rangers Megaforce with a microsite to promote the 20th anniversary. This microsite will be used for fan community interactions. The site will be updated frequently with new content and information. Super Fans will have a major role in this process by working together for special events and projects for all fans. There will be a series of surprises and giveaways coming next year.
In 2010, Power Rangers Samurai started a new tradition with the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade. They returned again in 2011 for a fantastic performance. This year, Power Rangers Megaforce will take part in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade.
Both seasons of Power Rangers Megaforce (2013 and 2014) will have 20 episodes and 2 holiday clip shows. This is the same formula used for Power Rangers: Samurai and Power Rangers: Super Samurai. There is no information on a movie special (similar to Clash of the Red Ranger), but I’m pretty positive that we’ll get one.
Power Rangers Samurai Box Sets
Next week, Lionsgate releases the first two Power Rangers: Samurai DVD Volumes. These DVDs have the first eight episodes (including Origins) of Power Rangers: Samurai. Fans have been wondering whether Lionsgate will come out with Season Box Sets for Power Rangers: Samurai and Power Rangers: Super Samurai. The answer is yes in the long run. Saban Brands has also been heavily working with Shout! Factory with a large number of bonus features and interviews for their upcoming products.
White Ranger in Power Rangers 20 Poster?
You may have noticed the White Ranger in the Power Rangers 20 Poster. The episode “White Light, Part 2″ was one of the most popular episodes in Power Rangers and focused a well-respected Power Ranger. My guess to this response is the fact Jason David Frank has played the role of the Green, White, Red (Zeo Ranger 5), and Black Rangers. He was an iconic character in the Power Rangers series. I asked whether the poster had anything to do with the storyline or the Legend War, but they said it was for marketing purposes. I wouldn’t mind this concept being executed in the show or a featured film.
Power Rangers Megaforce
Yesterday, the press release frustated most of the fandom with the announcement of Goseiger. I admit that I was one of these fans. I have only seen the first 15 episodes and dreading to see the rest of the season. I am also not a fan of the Goseiger suits and morpher. The press release may have been ideal for marketing purposes, but failed to the online fandom. After watching the teaser several times doing and communicating with a few members of Saban Brands, I am very pleased with the direction that they are going. All that remains is a matter of execution. There are subtle hints in the teaser that tell you that Power Rangers Megaforce is much more than a mere translation of Goseiger. I am unable to go into the details of the teaser, but you will have the opportunity to see the teaser at Comic Con next month and Power Morphicon in August.
You may be wondering why Power Rangers Megaforce used Goseiger rather than Gokaiger, which was an ideal season based on the successful execution of the anniversary concepts. I wasn’t able to get a solid answer for this question. I spoke with my source today and they had a better answer to this question. Most of our discussion is off-the-record. They are unable to skip a season, which makes sense because Goseiger comes before Gokaiger. Gokaiger fans will be very pleased when the time is right. Unlike the Shinkenger adaptation, Power Rangers Megaforce has gone through an extensive creative process in hopes to deliver a great product for the anniversary. One thing to keep in mind that some decisions are out of their hands. We all know that Nick’s “20 episodes per year” is lame. These are the bottlenecks that they have to work with. Saban Brands have been reading the comments on the forums as one way to get feedback from the fans. I don’t anticipate an EPIC season, but I am looking forward to it. The easter eggs in the two Power Rangers Megaforce Brand teasers indirectly answered that question for me.
Power Rangers: Samurai was successful to the young audience. I have noticed that a majority of the online fandom, which consists of the older audience and Super Fans, were not the biggest fans of the season. I posted my thoughts about Power Rangers: Samurai and how it felt to the show’s true potential. Shinkenger was an amazing season that would’ve worked perfectly. The end result of Power Rangers: Samurai failed on poor execution. Power Rangers: Super Samurai brought subtle changes with a few incredible episodes that gave some life into the show. Why would I want to watch a Goseiger-translated show? I don’t even like Goseiger. Here’s the interesting part: Power Rangers Megaforce will not be like the Sentai version. We’ve heard this before in the past and wonder how is it different now. Power Rangers Megaforce will have an original story that is centered on five high-school teenagers. The concept sounds familar to the first season (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers). The show will still use the traditional Sentai footage, but the story will be completely new and original. Megaforce will actually surprise fans. RoboKnight (placeholder name) will appear fairly early in the season. Power Rangers Megaforce Season 2 (2014) will be “crazy” (direct quote from them). This quote and the teaser were the real kicker for me. I personally think that they need to change the Goseiger names that were in the press release, but it may be possible that those are placeholders for marketing. Power Rangers Megaforce will be the anniversary season and will live up to that concept. Once the Power Rangers Megaforce teaser is released next month, I’ll point out the subtle concepts that will make this a great season (upon solid execution, of course).
Thanks Saban Brands and Elie Dekel for taking the time to meet up and answer a few questions.
EDIT: I spoke with my source, who has more in-depth information about the show and the process. I removed the miscommunicated lines from yesterday. I want to personally apologize for any issues that this may have stirred up. This things are bound to happen when you try to promote a product in the early state of marketing.