I’ve been watching a lot of Power Rangers lately. The whys and wherefores aren’t really important, but it’s just something that you should know going into this. Many people my age grew up watching Power Rangers. Every day, we’d get home from school, put our books down and race to the television to see the latest adventure. Each episode had the arch villain send down a monster to attempt to defeat the rangers so that they could conquer the world. Most of the monsters were downright goofy, although they could give the rangers a run for their money from time to time. It got me thinking, how would the power rangers fare against real horror monsters such as those created by the master himself, Stephen King.
Over the years, King has created a plethora of great villains, so this should be an interesting match up. Rather than pick just one, I’m going to run through a few of the big ones. Human villains like Greg Stillson and Annie Wilkes, while great villains, won’t be included as the rangers primarily fought monsters. For simplicity’s sake I’ll go with the original Mighty Morphin line up as that is the one that most are familiar with. I’ll throw in Tommy Oliver as the green ranger just to make things interesting.
One of King’s biggest villains is Randall Flagg. He is considered by many to be the arch-foe of the King-verse. He has appeared in more than one work and played a significant part in King’s seven book Dark Tower series. A potent sorceror, Flagg sows evil wherever he can and revels in the destruction and tragedy that lies in his wake. We never actually see Flagg engage in hand to hand combat, he does have a variety of mystical abilities at his disposal.
One of Flagg’s greatest abilities is to influence others. He can command animals as well as gain influence over people. As such he could easily use them to impede the rangers’ efforts as they would be hesitant to cause innocents harm.
The thing about Flagg is that he talks big, but is actually kind of pathetic. Even the characters in The Stand laugh at the fact that he doesn’t live up to his reputation. In both The Stand and The Dark Tower, he pretty much goes out like a punk. I figure he’ll cause the rangers a bit of trouble, but then they’ll put their weapons together and blast him to oblivion.
On the one hand, it took a nuclear warhead detonated by God to take him out in the novel (and he clearly survived that) but Mordred had little trouble with him so it’s a tough call. I would venture to guess that the mega-blaster would have a similar result as the bomb though. He’d be destroyed for a time, but would reform later at a different location.
Pitting the rangers against Christine would be an interesting thing to watch. On the one hand, you would think that it’s just a car, and thus, couldn’t be much of a threat. If you’ve read the book though, you know that the evil car is quite crafty. The fact that it has a healing factor makes it that much more difficult to beat. Christine seems like a villain better suited to fight the Turbo rangers, but as I haven’t seen those episodes and the fact that it would ruin the sense of consistency I’m trying to create, we’ll stick with the first six.
Christine has a few things working against her, limited range and manuverability are the two big ones. Sure, the car is fast, but the rangers shouldn’t have too hard a time dodging the car’s charges. Their weapons wouldn’t do much good though, and the car wouldn’t give them time to assemble one of the larger weapons. Maybe if they took their blade blasters and formed that triangle shaped beam that they used from time to time, they could do some serious damage, but I don’t see anything in their arsenal doing any lasting harm.
Even worse, given how prone the rangers are to mind control, it wouldn’t be too difficult for Christine to get a psychic grip on one of them and turn him or her against the others. This would provide a minor inconvenience at best since Zordon seems to have an almost encyclopedic knowledge of remedies for various forms of mind control.
I would suggest that they could just call their zords and stomp on the car, but that would be a total cop out.
Barlow is a major villain who managed to convert an entire town into vampires within a short span of time. Were he to arrive in Angel Grove, the rangers would be in serious trouble as he would likely have a whole army of vampires under his command by the time they figured out what was going on.
Like most vampires, Barlow is a potent hypnotist, once again enabling evil to get a hold of one, if not all, of the rangers. Barlow’s major weakness is that he’s a pretty traditional vampire. As such, his weaknesses are common knowledge. His superior strength would give him a fighting chance against the rangers’ martial arts abilities, but I don’t see him faring too well. It would be a hollow victory for, much like in Salem’s Lot, Barlow would take the town of Angel Grove with him.
Now we come to the big cahuna, the villain who I consider to be King’s greatest, Pennywise aka IT. This extra-dimensional monster slumbers for 27 years and awakens to feed on people, incite violence and generally make life miserable. IT doesn’t have a form, but it when it takes on a corporeal body, it usually takes that of a dancing clown named Pennywise or a giant spider. It’s clear that IT can be whatever it wants as it takes on the forms of other monsters throughout the novel.
What shape the monster dons depends on who’s looking at IT. The monster can read your fears and reflects them back at you. Conveniently enough, Zack (the black ranger) is terrified of spiders. The only way to kill the monster is through an elaborate ritual (and it’s hinted that that didn’t even work), although silver will maim the creature. Much like with Flagg, we never really see Pennywise engage in hand to hand combat, which makes it tough to imagine. The monster’s ability to don different forms does make it a powerful adversary, however. It also adds a psychological element since the rangers would have to confront their worst fears made flesh.
If cornered, IT could easily dispatch the group with it’s deadlights. The book explains that the deadlights are both IT’s home as well as a part of IT’s natural being, looking into it instantly drives you insane.
I don’t really see the rangers winning this one.
The monsters the rangers faced were goofy if not downright stupid. It would be interesting to see them take on a more menacing adversary such as the ones listed above. They would certainly have their work cut out for them to say the least.