Episode Title: The Song of Guitardo
Original Airdate: September 26, 1994
We’re a good seventy episodes into the wonder that is Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, so it should come as no surprise by now that no monster is too out there for this show. A giant pig with a roman helmet, we’ve seen it! How about an evil clown that turns into a monster pineapple…been there, done that. So now it’s time for something that truly makes you wonder what the writers were smoking when they dreamt this up. Prepare yourselves for a giant bug that plays heavy metal guitar, in The Song of Guitardo.
We start with Kimberly hanging out at the youth center strumming on her guitar and trying to write a song. She even enlists the help of Zack to try and come up with some lyrics. Seeing this inspires Lord Zedd to create a monster with a guitar. For some reason he listens to Baboo’s advice to make it a cicada bug.
Later in the park, the rangers are having a picnic, and Kimberly is still strumming away on her guitar. They are distracted for a bit, though, when Bulk and Skull come running by. Skull is dressed as a princess and Bulk is chasing him dressed as a dragon. They figure this will draw out the power rangers so they can discover their true identities. Our heroes are not fooled, but while their backs are turned, Zedd zapps the guitar and it ends up in the hands of the bug. Soon after, the rangers get word from Zordon to report to the command center. He gives them the lowdown on the bug and they are sent off to engage. That is, except for Tommy, who is still a bit on the weak side.
When the rangers arrive at the location of Guitardo, the bug, they quickly end up in trouble. Zack, Billy, Trini, and Jason all end up falling victim to the bug’s music, which causes them to float in the air unable to get down. Only Kimberly remains. Just as the bug is about to zap her, as well, Tommy shows up to save her. The two remaining rangers soon learn that they must fight music with music. So, Kimberly converts her power bow into a harp to fight back against the bug. Later, she uses the bow to launch Tommy’s musical dagger into the beast, finishing it off. The music doesn’t stop there, though, as Kimberly later plays her song for the gang back at the youth center.
Though the idea of a bug with a guitar is one of the silliest this show has had, this ends up being a very enjoyable episode. One thing that’s nice is that it doesn’t fall into the same old formula that many other episodes do. There’s no putty battle this time, which is a nice change even though the putty battle is often my favorite part of a given episode. There’s also no zord action this time. Not that I really have anything against the zords, but it’s nice to see the baddie taken out by something other than a giant robot with a sword. In this episode, Kimberly and Tommy have to use some ingenuity. Rigging up the power bow to serve as a makeshift harp is actually kind of clever. That aside, the green ranger also has some pretty boss one-on-one battles with the bug. Can’t complain about having some cool martial arts action.
Speaking of the music, one of the highlights of this episode is seeing Amy Jo Johnson get to display some of her musical talents. In the years since being a power ranger, the actress has pursued a music career, even releasing an album. The song she sings at the end of the episode is pretty sweet, and she’s got a pretty voice.
One of the weirder aspects of this episode, though, is the Bulk and Skull storyline. Forget the endless stream of bizarre monsters this show gives us, the sight of Skull in a pink princess costume may be the most twisted thing this show has ever given us. I also can’t help but wonder if this is the same princess costume worn by Kimberly in the season one episode Life’s a Masquerade. I wouldn’t put it past the producers.
All in all, this was a fun episode. Plus, we didn’t have any more of Lord Zedd obsessing over stealing Tommy’s powers. I think we’re headed back that direction, though, with our next episode. We are about to encounter a pair of episodes that lead to a big change for the show. Join us next time for Green No More Part I.