Deluxe Zeo Megazord
Review by EVA_Unit_4A
Though Master Vile has retreated to the comforts (read: safety) of his own empire in the M51 Galaxy, at least the Power Rangers have at last been defeated! Severely drained of their own powers while defending Earth, the alien Aquitian Rangers return home. The loss of the Command Center has now left the Earth Rangers powerless and unable to defend their home planet. Just as Lord Zedd and his wife Rita Repulsa are about to declare victory, however, an even darker cloud unexpectedly descends on Earth- the Machine Empire. Led by King Mondo and Queen Machina, their massive robot army makes even Zedd and Rita flee for their lives. Meanwhile, the Rangers fall into a deep tunnel which reunites them unexpectedly with Zordon and Alpha-5 in a new subterranean Power Chamber! Working in secret for months, the Power Coins of old have been cast aside, and they have created new armored suits, weapons, & Zords by using the Zeo sub-Crystal instead. As the Machine Empire begins landing its mechanized troops, a new team of Zeo Power Rangers are sent out to stop them! With the Ninjazords and Shogunzords restored dormant to Ninjor’s temple by the time distortion, the Rangers are without Zords. Therefore, Zordon and Alpha-5 create a new set of Zeo Zords for the Rangers to use against the Machine Empire. In Episode 3, “Shooting Star”, King Mondo begins his invasion in earnest by sending down a giant robot called Starroid. To defeat him, the newly-christened Zeo Power Rangers deploy their Zeo Zords. After a brief battle against massed flying Quadrofighters, the Rangers find their Zeo Zords pinned down by Starroid’s sphere form. By initiating the transformation sequence, the Zords break loose and combine into the Zeo Megazord! A powered-up Zeo Megazord Saber slices Starroid in half, and sends the Machine Empire its first defeat in a long time. In Episode 4, “Target Rangers”, a giant-sized robot monster called Silo drags the Zeo Megazord towards the Sun! The Rangers are told by former Ranger Billy Cranston that each Zeo Zord has a Battle Helmet that can give the Megazord additional capabilities, each with a unique power that can give them an edge in combat when swapped out. With careful timing and use of the five Battle Helmets, the Zeo Megazord returns to Earth and swiftly scraps Silo.
Zeo Zord 1 (No character description, but seems to resemble the Moai stone face statues from Easter Island)
Zeo Zord 2 (No character description, but seems to resemble a dogu spirit from Japanese mythology)
Zeo Zord 3 (A sphynx)
Zeo Zord 4 (Inspired by constellation Taurus the Bull)
Zeo Zord 5 (A phoenix)
Zeo Zords 1 and 2 have golden-brown cords stored in compartments along their front bumpers that can be pulled out and attached to Zeo Zords 3 and 4, respectively. The six black ABS wheels on each freely turn.
Also, since they are the main artillery of the five, they both feature pop-out weapons. Zeo Zord 1 has a pair of non-functional missile launchers, and Zeo Zord 2 has a pair of large cannons that you have to flip up.
The arms are, by far, the most articulated on any Deluxe-sized Megazord or sub-Zord released to date, with ratcheting joints in the shoulders (x3 axis), elbows (x2), and friction-swivels in the wrists (x1). However, because of the Zeo Battle Helmet feature, the head does not move, and the legs are also stationary. A small pair of fold-out tabs under the heels deters the Zeo Megazord from rolling freely. The blade & handle of the Zeo Megazord Saber are PVC, while the guard is ABS.
Though Zeo Ranger 5 (Red) is typically in command of the Zeo Megazord, whenever a particular Battle Helmet is used, he switches positions with the colored Ranger that fits that particular Battle Helmet.
Zeo Battle Helmet 1 (Large artillery cannon)
Zeo Battle Helmet 2 (Features rockets for flying, and dual laser cannons)
Zeo Battle Helmet 3 (Move objects via telekinesis)
Zeo Battle Helmet 4 (Increased strength, fires energy bolts)
Zeo Battle Helmet 5 (Standard helmet, allows use of Zeo Megazord Saber)
According to the show, only when Zeo Battle Helmet 5 is in use can the Zeo Megazord Saber be summoned.
. . .
While Zeo Battle Helmets 4 and 5 are always present on the head and lower torso when in standard configuration, Helmets 1, 2, and 3 can be stored on the back of the Zeo Megazord when not in use (even though they don’t appear there in the TV series).
For those of you wondering what the differences are between the Deluxe Zeo Megazord from “Power Rangers Zeo” (1996), and its original Japanese counterpart, the DX Chouriki Gattai OhRanger Robo from “Chouriki Sentai OhRanger” (1995), they are small, but noticeable:
- The vacuum-metalized plastic on the knuckled claws, knees, and both halves of the Zeo Megazord Saber were replaced with dull-colored equivalents.
- The gold chains originally used on the OhRanger Robo were replaced with gold-colored fiber cords due to US safety regulations.
Otherwise, all molds, paint applications, decals, and features remain intact! This makes a first: previously the decals have been heavily modified since Power Rangers began in 1993, usually by removing the Japanese series’ names and symbols, and replacing them with generic non-brand material (such as the much-cursed lightning bolts).
Fourteen years after its initial release, I find it difficult to remain unbiased in my views of this toy. Since 1996, it has become one of my favorite designs from either side of the Pacific Ocean, and looking back, there really isn’t anything much I would like to change. The waist connection point is a hair flimsy, we didn’t get the chains from the Japanese release like we did with Deluxe Titanus The Carrier Zord, and Zeo Zord 4 lacks in any form of posability, save for the transformation joint in the tail. At the time, the Zeo Battle Helmet idea was a good one, and it remains one of my favorite gimmicks [when compared to later designs since the limb-swap era began in the ‘00s] for the simple fact that it was self-contained, and didn’t require you buying other sets to get the full collection of Battle Helmets. The other big highlight is the arms, which have never been as flexible on any other Deluxe-sized Megazord before or after its release. Having a large amount of vacuum-metalized plastic is also a nice stand-out, while retaining the rugged and block armor style of any Zord(s). I don’t know the general consensus of other fans surrounding the Deluxe Zeo Megazord, but it is still a solid winner in my book even fourteen years later. Highly recommended!
|Posted 13 August, 2010 - 14:15 by EVA_Unit_4A|