There’s something to be said for putting your own stamp on a classic design. And when you’re adapting an older property for a new movie, you certainly need to consider how to take that property and change it for a modern audience. But in doing so, you have to make sure you don’t lose the essence of what made the property in the first place.
The trend in Hollywood movies of late, especially those adapting kids properties like Transformers, Ninja Turtles and Power Rangers, to completely overdesign. The Transformers went from simple transforming machines to hundreds of thousands of moving parts, the Turtles were stuffed with every gadget that money could buy (while losing noses in the process), and now, the Power Rangers.
This morning, Lionsgate revealed what Alpha 5 would look like in the new movie. Here’s a side by side with the original:
On the left: Somewhat cheesy looking, but a classic, kid friendly design. On the right: the fuel to haunt your nightmares forever. And that’s not all. Look at all of the crazy and weird designs on this film:
In every case, the designers are taking things that are classic and stuffing more and more onto them until they are unrecognizable. There’s six legged zords that look nothing like the dinosaurs they’re meant to represent, there’s a megazord that’s now an angel for some reason, there’s suits that look more Guyver than Power Rangers. The only design that looks good on this movie is Rita Repulsa, for god’s sake:
None of this will have any effect on whether the movie’s good. That comes down to the script and the acting and a million other things. But man, no matter what happens this thing will be ugly to look at. And I have no idea why.
Sometimes, you just don’t mess with a classic.