The wait is over.
Insight Editions’ Power Rangers: The Ultimate Visual History is finally here after months spent waiting. The highly coveted 256-page book aims to take readers down the entire history of a franchise that’s spent 25 years inspiring people around the world. From the origins of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, to secrets about the most recent Power Rangers Super Ninja Steel, Power Rangers: The Ultimate Visual History covers all your favorites with chapters on every season.
It’s actually fitting that this guide serves as the final major 25th anniversary product to drop, nicely capping off Power Rangers’ year-long 25th Anniversary celebration. And it’s even more fitting that Insight Editions takes fans out with a bang.
One sentence review: this is the single best product of Power Rangers’ 25th anniversary.
The most notable highlight of this all-inclusive guide isn’t just the fact that it spans across all 25 seasons, but the fact that it delivers info you’re guaranteed to not have known about all 25 seasons.
Did you know which actors originally auditioned to be on Mighty Morphin Power Rangers before becoming present-day A-listers? Did you know which Ranger from Power Rangers Time Force was originally planned to die in the season’s finale? Power Rangers: The Ultimate Visual History has those answers and more juicy nuggets as it weaves in between all the threads that have sowed together Power Rangers’ history.
This book doesn’t just stop with intriguing factoids. It also answers some of the burning questions Power Rangers fans have been asking for years. Why have recent seasons been split over two years? Why have recent seasons so often reverted to the word ‘Super’? Ask no more. This ultimate history guide has all your answers, directly from the executives who’ve spent years atop the Power Rangers food chain.
Another major highlight of Insight Editions’ incredible creation is the book’s visuals. This book packs high definition promotional photo shoot images, many of which have been incredibly rare to unearth. This book packs never-before-seen images of various props from across the entire Power Rangers timeline. This book packs classic photos of the cast and crew directly from the set, taking readers behind the scenes. And last, but surely not least, this book packs exciting concept art ranging from rejected costume designs, to drawings that breakdown the bases of our heroes and villains.
Did you ever imagine the day you’d see an entire floor plan of Terra Venture? Imagine no more. That day is here.
After opening with a foreword note from the original Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Pink Ranger, Amy Jo Johnson, the book immediately details how the Power Rangers came into existence. You may already be familiar with the story of how Haim Saban stumbled upon Super Sentai while bored in a hotel bedroom, and then went on to turn it into a worldwide sensation. But if not, you’ll get the entire tale from start to finish right as the book begins.
From there, the following chapters are dedicated to each of the Power Rangers seasons, one at a time – including individual chapters for the franchise’s three movies thus far (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie, Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie, and 2017’s Saban’s Power Rangers).
Every chapter is structured in a way to describe each season’s plot, before breaking down its primary characters – with quotes from the actors who portrayed them. In between all that, there’s the aforementioned nuggets you probably didn’t know (and some you may have).
While each chapter has some intriguing facts in between its many paragraphs, the extensive recap of each season’s characters can start to feel a little monotonous if you’re a hardcore fan who’s already so incredibly familiar with the show’s history. Those readers will spend a lot of time reading recap about the characters they’ve already come to know, while trying to find the things they didn’t know in between.
And while the book is able to recap Power Rangers Super Ninja Steel in its entirety and give a little insight into the future of Power Rangers Beast Morphers, there’s one major name in Power Rangers history that’s never mentioned at any point in the book: Hasbro. The name of the toy giant that completed their acquisition of the brand in mid-2018 goes completely unmentioned.
That’s not necessarily a bad thing. Since the story of the Hasbro chapter of Power Rangers has yet to be told, consider this book a firm recap of the franchise’s first 25 years – everything from the original Saban, to the most recent edition of Saban, Saban Brands.
And if you’re not here for the TV show, or movies, there’s nice little pullout sheets sprinkled in between the book’s pages geared towards all the mediums Power Rangers has touched over the years: toys, comic book, video games, and more. Learn about how each of these consumer products has evolved from the early days, to the most recent days.
As far as fact checking goes, the long list of references in the book’s bibliography proves that Insight Editions went to great lengths to ensure the accuracy of the information they presented. If you’re a fan who’s contributed in any way to the Power Rangers fandom over the last decade, there’s a good chance you’re referenced in the bibliography section.
After months of seeming like it may never release, Power Rangers: The Ultimate Visual History is the triumphant final product to cap off the brand’s 25th anniversary, and its first quarter century (with hopefully more to come!). This is the perfect book to read, share, and place on your shelf as part of your illustrious Power Rangers collection.
The wait was worth it. Insight Editions delivers a victory, and Power Rangers fans walk out the biggest winner.
FINAL SCORE: 9/10
Power Rangers: The Ultimate Visual History guide is the extensive book you’ve long wanted documenting the franchise’s first 25 years. With juicy nuggets you didn’t know, and stunning visuals you haven’t seen, this book proves to be a must-own for Power Rangers fans who descend from any point in the brand’s widespread 25-year timeline.