After 34 successful years on television, the Japanese phenomenon known as the Super Sentai Series continues. To commemorate the 35th anniversary of the inception of the series, this special series features a group of space pirates with not only their own powers, but a whole lot more.
An alien force known as the Zangyack Army threatened the existence of the Earth. The 199 members of the Super Sentai Heroes, led by the ultimate hero AkaRed, were able to defeat the Zangyack Army. However, it came with a price. All 199 members have lost their powers. No longer having the ability to transform into the courageous heroes and protectors of Earth, the 199 members attempt to live normal lives.
One day, a mysterious pirate ship is headed towards Earth when they are attacked by members of the Zangyack Army. The pirates’ mission is the obtain “the greatest treasure in the universe”. The pirates are known as the Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger. They are able to escape and make their way to Earth. However, upon arrival, the pirates soon learn that getting the “treasure” will not be as easy as it gets.
The pirates are led by the arrogant Captain Marvelous (Ryota Ozawa), who is also GokaiRed. Job Gibken (Yuuki Yamada) is a former member of the Zangyack team whose special swordfighting skills have given him the ability to become GokaiBlue. Luke Millfy (Mao Ichimichi), a money-hungry warrior who lost her sister to Zangyack, becomes GokaiYellow. Don “Doc” Dogoier (Kazuki Shimada), the ship’s resident cook and one of the two most sympathetic members of the team, is GokaiGreen. Princess Ahim de Famille (Yui Koike), whose kingdom and family were destroyed by Zangyack, is GokaiPink.
While today, 2009-2010′s SAMURAI SENTAI SHINKENGER is hailed as one of the most popular current Super Sentai series as of late, it should be noted that this anniversary series comes in at a very close second. This is truly one of the best Super Sentai Series thanks not only to its impressive young cast, but there is quite a nice twist to the story of the Gokaigers.
As this is the 35th anniversary Super Sentai Series, the Gokaigers do have their customized pirate suits when they transform. However, the twist comes in that they also have the ability to transform into any member of the previous 34 Super Sentai teams with what are known as Ranger Keys. Plus, in order for the pirates to complete their mission and obtain “the greatest treasure in the universe”, they must master the Grand Powers of the previous 34 Super Sentai teams. Even that is a mission that deems to be not as easy. However, they find help from unexpected sources.
Throughout the series, special guest appearances were vital to commemorate on the Super Sentai anniversary. Cast members of the past series reprised their characters as mentors to the Gokaigers in an effort to give their Grand Powers to the Gokaigers if they are deemed worthy. Notable appearances included Atushi Matsumoto (Magiranger), Ayumi Kinoshita and Ryuji Sainei (Dekaranger), Noboru Kaneko (Gaoranger), Hiroki Suzuki (Gekiranger), Yuji Kishi (Carranger), Teruaki Ogawa (Gingaman), and Kayoko Shibata (GoGo V), and the core cast of NINPUU SENTAI HURRICANGER.
Episode seventeen introduced the sixth member of the Gokaigers. Played as the second comic relief with Kazuki Shimada’s Doc, Junya Ikeda’s Gai Ikari is a Super Sentai fanboy who is given the powers to becomes GokaiSilver. However, it is not Marvelous who gives Gai this power, but rather three past Rangers who combine their powers just for Gai. They are Abarekiller, Dragonranger, and TimeFire. Ikeda plays his character really well as not only does he act like a member of the team, but also a mentor of sorts in terms of teaching the Gokaigers all about the world of Super Sentai.
The Zangyack Army is not the only enemy of the series. We are introduced to an evil pirate named Basco ta Jolokia, played by Kei Hosogai. Basco was a former ally of Captain Marvelous and AkaRed, the grand master of the Super Sentai Heroes. However, deciding he wants the “treasure” for himself, he turns against AkaRed and Marvelous. The rivalry between Basco and Marvelous proves to be critical in the series as they each attempt to obtain Grand Powers. While Marvelous and his team must perform tasks to obtain them, Basco forces past heroes to give them up. In episode 48, their rivalry comes to a head in a climactic showdown, and this is before the series wraps up.
The action is well done here. Where the pirates use their trademark swords and guns, it is when they transform into other Sentai heroes that brings delight. As the past heroes, they have the ability to use their special attacks ultimately using their own Pirate final attack, Final Wave. When they form their mecha, Gokai-Oh, using various Grand Powers, they can combine their own powers with the Grand Powers to become mecha modes like DekaGokai-Oh and their own special mecha, which combined GokaiSilver’s mecha GoJyuJin and that of a GO-ONGER grand power.
If you are a Super Sentai fanatic, then this is truly the series for you. It is safe to say that KAIZOKU SENTAI GOKAIGER is truly the best Super Sentai Series to come after the 2009 series SAMURAI SENTAI SHINKENGER. The cast is terrific here and the cameos from past heroes is truly a dream come true for any fan of this prolific series.
Super Sentai • Toei • tokusatsu