Gekisou Sentai Carranger (Racing Squadron Carranger) is a different kind of Sentai, you see after the nightmare that was Ohranger Carrangers was intended to be both a light-hearted series while also celebrating 20 Years of Sentai. As such the Head Writer of the show was Yoshio Urasawa a comedy writer who's written shows like Ranma ½ and more famous Lupin the 3rd (and you thought Ex-Aid was the first show to get a Lupin writer). With Yoshio Urasawa writing the show Carranger is a parody of Super Sentai. Toei hoped that this would help Super Sentai ratings to improve and WOW audiences how did it go over? Eah... it was better than Ohranger if this chart is to be believed.
HOWEVER, Ratings never make a show and as such Carranger over time has been getting more positive reviews by people over time. So then How come the ratings were still admissible? Exactly what is the appeal of Carranger? And finally is it Funny? Buckle up for this is Gekisou Sentai Carranger.
Episode 1: Fighting for Traffic Safety
The show begins in outer Space with a plant named Hazard getting destroyed by a gang of aliens known as the Bowzock. The Bowzock, while they did just destroy a plant, are not really an evil army but more of a Biker Gang with them doing things like stealing, causing a ruckus, and their recruits leave because of reason like family or age. I talked about is in my thoughts about Yu Yu Hakusho post I did some time ago but basically at the time in japan this was a trope in Japan culture because of the events of WWII (look it up). The main villains for the show are President Gynamo, Deputy Leader Zelmoda, Inventor Grotch, and finally the Beauty Zonnette and fun fact Zonnette's actress Rika Mizutani is a Porn Star, during my research that was something I found out when I was looking her up... And that wasn't the only thing that went up during my research!
After blowing up Hazard they look for a new plant to blow up, and it's just so happens that they arrive on Earth (although call it Earsh for some inside joke reason God only knows). On the way there they see some star constellations of cars with a hooded figured saying that those are the Gekisou Sentai Carranger they will find 5 youths to protect the world and keep order to it. The Hooded figure saying all of this is Dappu the sole survivor of the recently destroyed planet he gets away from the Bowzock using his Carmagic. What is Carmagic, IDK? It is whatever it want's to order by the writer is my best guess.
On Earth, were introduced to the Carrangers. Red Racer Kyosuke Jinnai, Blue Racer Naoki Domon, Green Racer Minoru Uesugi, Yellow Racer Natsumi Shinohara, and Pink Racer Youko Yagami at an auto repair place called Pegasus. Dappu comes and wouldn't ya know it finds out that the 5 youths with different color coded cloths are the Carrangers. Dappu is more than thrilled about this news while the others could give less none of the what to do with this shit. The Bowzock arrive on earth and they still don't care about what Dappu is saying and as such Dappu just drags the Carrangers to the battle, Dappu tried to fight the Bowzock but losses and on the verge of dying. The 5 are Made at the Bowzock and decides to take up the mantle of becoming The Carrangers using the Accel Changers.
Now since the Awesomeness that is Shout Factory released this legally on DVD I can now see the detail that I never have seen before in good quality. For example, the suits themselves have black lines all over the suits and also a big black area around the belt. Under the helmet where the visor piece is I believe there was intended to be more chrome added in that area but scrapped at the last moment, my proof for that is this picture right here.
Now I bet you are all gonna say the same thing why are you saying this now "It's only now you seen this detail? I seen that detail for year at this point!" Which my rebuttal is this I never had glasses before and was unable to see this detail for.The rest of the episode is just a fight scene and it ends and no talking with the teammates or anything it ends and I will get back to this in a moment.
The first episode was OK, we got a good idea about out Villains and how they relate to Dappu. Dappu is the mentor for the show and is unique with him being A KID! The whole Carmagic and constellation are never explained at all are are their for I assume for the laughs and the weirdness.
but probably the biggest thing that bugs me is The Rangers as Charters we know nothing about. I know in some first episodes we don't know some or even all about the characters which is a good seaway to my next point.
In the first half of Carranger their isn't too much of a story and is mostly filler episodes so yeah it is a show about nothing. And in said show there's an overabundance of fight scenes in this show. Which normally is fine but shortly becomes a problem early on when all you get is a lot of action sequence a and little on charters, I only really bring this up only because the characters aren't characters but they are more like charter troops since this is a parody after all. You got the hot-headed red leader (before you think about it now he's not a Right Suzuki, Takaharu, or Lucky he is not although he is a jerk), the smart one, the Funny guy and the girl, the only one that feels any different is Yellow Racer because she is a Tomboy.
Since this is a comedy show I feel like I should talk about the comedy since this is the main gimmick of the show after all... It's OK. I did chuckle once in awhile but that was too far and to in between for this to be a funny show, Listing off some of the comedy that did happen in the show there was a gun to make people get naked, car horns for noise pollution to make other aliens destroy the earth, yellow destroying the bike with just her reaches alone, a monster that orders things like Wile E. coyote does from AMCE, a spray that makes you fat and then explodes, 1 of the Carrangers becoming or quickly becoming a dentist and change little alien bunny teeth. Funny stuff but it just did not make me laugh. It should be noted I never seen anything Lupin related so I can not compare the 2 however what I can compare it to is Abaranger!
That was a thing I found out about this show Yoshio Urasawa wrote on Abaranger and if you ask which episodes they are they are the ones involving the more wacky episodes like the hair one. But Abaranger was more crazy and outlandish. I a really sorry on this one people, the comedy in the show just didn’t do it for and since comedy is a hard thing to describe, critique and talk about this review is super jaded and please do not get mad at me, PLEASE? While I wrote all of this I know full well I like this guys comedy.
So with the show being more comedy filler of the week in the beginning of the show it lost a lot of viewers early on and as such that is why I believe is why Carranger ratings still had low viewership. this is just me speculating all on my part. BUT if there is too much humor and not enough serious then you lose a person I mean it happen with me and Kyuranger (and from what I hear Kyuranger is just keep getting worst with just dumb filler episodes as I am writing this 5-19-17). Although contrary stuff did start picking up as the show went on which I will talk about.
In Episode 5 the Bowzock found out that can make themselves grow bigger by eating and for the Rangers they are no match for a giant Bowzock. So Dappu uses his Carmagic to create the RV (Ranger Vehicle). I am once again not to fond of the Mecha with it's head overly complex design. and the body looks like it is wearing overalls (am I the only that sees that this Mecha looks like it is wearing Overalls)?
In episode 13 we are introduced to Signalman the shows Extra Hero. His design in a Robotic police officer or a RoboCop as it were. To show you how much he was inspired by RoboCop he has a wife and kid... ALSO he comes from the planet Police because that makes sense. Since he is a robotic cop his design is quite good with looking like half a robot and half policemen, although his shoulder pads are a bit to bulging to the point of ridiculous when he starts to run.
His Mecha Sirender is more particle looking Mecha but I do not like it. Purely on the grounds of when I was a kid I saw this thing all the time as a kid at a Dollar Store I went to. It was not the real to mind you it was a cheap KO and to me I can never stop unseeing this thing as a cheap KO of a PR toy. As a character he's a real stick in the mud and sees the and believes the Carrangers are evil then good all because Red Racer went over the speed limit. He's also a goofy Extra Here, however, with him being the butt of the joke at times.
In Episode 15 Zonnette is in love with Red Racer. However Red Racer does not feel the same as Zonnette does so he breaks her heart. I will go into more detail on this latter but you'll see why.
We are introduced to Ritchihiker who well will became impotent in part 2
a shooting star but that shooting star is really a girl in a car in the morning she goes to a beach in search for the Carrangers but that would have to wait with the Reckless Driving Sentai Zokuranger with their own theme song but the girl from before comes and here once again girl name is Radietta a faingirl of the Carrangers and is the unofficial 6th member of the Carranger white racer.which explains why her costume looks like the Carrangers suite but in cloth. She even has her own Mecha Radicar Robo which is an robot cat (say what you will about the design but still a better designed Mecha then Toq-oh). She is also important to let the audience know that she has a sister Zonnette. So yeah there are some plot threats and some plot elements here but not an overarching story well that is in the first half!