Hasbro’s First Bargain Power Ranger Figures Give Bang for the Buck
One of the dilemmas of the modern toy company is that action figures are getting expensive to make. More than a decade after McFarlane and NECA forced everyone to up their game with sculpt and detail, figures that could once do all that for $10 have to be priced at $20 or more. Since this is prohibitive for smaller children on an allowance, most companies also make bargain figures for around $10, with obviously cheaper paint jobs and less accurate likenesses. Avengers: Endgame has this issue big-time, but in their first year of owning Power Rangers, Hasbro clearly doesn’t want to make a bad impression. They have the Lightning Collection, spanning every iteration of the property and featuring real-scan heads, for $20. However, they also have basic Beast Morphers figures for under $10, and recently sent out some samples for review. Surprisingly, these bargain Power Ranger figures aren’t bad.
I haven’t kept up on Beast Morphers — for me, the Power Rangers are still the Mighty Morphin/Zeo/Turbo characters. But the toys have an advantage over your average movie figures. All Power Rangers wear fairly basic color schemes with simple designs that can “read” from a distance, so you can tell who’s who in a fight. And they’re neither grim nor gritty, so no need for fancy mud splatter or battle damage deco.
Perhaps what distinguishes them the most from typical hero figures is that they have realistic physiques. No super comic-book muscles here, nor are lady-arms one-fourth the size of dude-arms. Just bodies that look like they could be mature teens in spandex.
Articulation is pretty decent on the Rangers. Ball-jointed hips (the Yellow Ranger’s skirt has slits in the side to allow for side kicks), shoulders, elbows, knees, and neck. The villain Tronic differs only in that his hips feature straight cut joints.
Each character comes with two weapons and a large fold-out sword that doubles as a key for the kid-sized Beast-X Morpher (sold separately). When inserted, it unlocks voice samples of the character it came with.
The Morpher also features action sounds and motion sensitivity, and would probably be fun if I were much younger. Fitting it on an adult wrist is not easy!
Hasbro has also released a Titan Heroes-style Megazord for the Rangers. It’s not really to scale with them, and only has basic articulation. But for a simple, chunky robot, it’s kinda fun.
At under $20, with no small parts, the Zord is suitable for any kid old enough not to randomly hit other humans with large toys.
The basic color schemes of the source material really do help a lot. Flesh tones and skin are the hardest things to do on budget figures, and none is needed here. In-scale vehicles might be trickier, as they’ll have to go more expensive, but there’s always Christmas and birthdays. If Hasbro keeps the basic figures at this level, they’ll be doing all right.