Before we begin, I’d like to point out that “Sync or Swim” is Power Rangers’ 800th episode, according to Saban. It is rare that a franchise makes it this far continuously with next to no stops. Congratulations Power Rangers.
The episode begins with Wrench building a powerful bomb while Sledge enlists the help of a monster that farts a red fog from his shoulders, Smokescreen. Meanwhile, the Rangers, along with Kendall, continue prepping for the Museum’s Fossil Day. Tyler tries his best to flirt his way into Shelby’s heart by buying a long coat she said looked good, but is immediately shot down. In comes Ivan, dressed in full armor and a horse, possibly the best way to get a one up on someone ever. With everyone distracted, Wrench plants the bomb in Tyler’s car, forgetting to set the timer.
At the event, Ivan arrives with Shelby wearing the same coat Tyler bought, as she had picked it out for him in the first place. Ivan, determined to prove how good he is, uses his coat to block a muddy puddle for an old lady, that is then walked over by everyone else. Smokescreen uses his fog to set the timer on the bomb, resulting in Ivan ruining Tyler’s coat as well. The two continue to feud as they chase the monster down.
During the battle, Ivan and Tyler quickly learn to settle their differences with one another and quickly make work of Smokescreen, Wrench, and the Viviks. The group learns of the bomb back at the park. Tyler and Ivan combine the Dino Charge Megazord and Ptera Charge Megazord to form the Dino Charge Megazord Tri-Stego-Ptera Formation to take on Smokescreen while the Rangers work on the bomb.
Sledge, determined to cause destruction, uses the Magna Beam on the bomb itself, so the Rangers can’t dispose of it. Having destroyed Smokescreen, Ivan and Tyler arrive to pick up the bomb, and fly it into space, throwing it towards Sledge’s ship as it explodes. Back at the Dino Bite, Tyler proves he’s Ivan’s best friend forever, by buying him a new coat and taking selfies.
True friends indeed.
Saban hyped up the 800 episode a ton, but unfortunately, “Sync or Swim” is your run of the mill “Feuding Ranger” filler episode. There’s no real reason for Tyler and Ivan to be fighting each other than both of them being immature enough to think they’re trying to outdo one another. As a viewer, I’m not a fan of episodes that pit the Rangers against one another, especially for such simplistic reasons.
Other than debuting the Dino Charge Megazord Tri-Stego-Ptera Formation, the episode itself didn’t advance the plots of the Rangers or the villains, and it just fell flat. Ivan and Tyler showed no signs of feuding before this episode, so their problems with each other seemed very juvenile and got in the way of the Rangers’ end goal. It’s one thing for a Ranger to be under a spell, but this baseless attitude toward each other is off-putting for a group destined to save the world.
I really wish there was more to say about Power Rangers’ milestone 800th episode. Unfortunately, it was a lackluster filler episode, saved only by its comedic moments and the performances by its amazing actors.
This is one of the few episodes thus far that you could easily skip.
“Sync of Swim” is an amalgamation of Kyoryuger’s “Brave 12” and “Brave 14”. The monster, battle footage, and base plot all stem from “Brave 12” while the plot about the bomb was taken from “Brave 14”.
In “Brave 12”, a new Debo monster (Smokescreen) appears and uses a red gas to kidnap children. This is a monster from Utsusemimaru’s (Gold’s) past. Tracking down the monster, Utsustemimaru and Daigo (Red) get trapped in a hidden village. Here, Utsusemimaru tells Daigo how he looks like his old Lord, and Daigo begins to understand Utsusemimaru’s tough attitude towards him. He drugs Daigo to put him to sleep, so he can go tackle the monster on his own. Fortunately, Daigo used his Gaburevolver (Dino Charge Morpher) to remain awake, and rushes to his aid. By the end of the episode, Daigo and Utsusemimaru learn to trust each other and be a team.
The plot of “Brave 14” involves the Debo Monster of the week sidetracking the Kyoryugers while Luckyuro (Curio) makes his way into the Spirit Base with a bomb to destroy the Kyoryugers’ base of operations. The bomb plot used in “Sync or Swim” is very similar to this, but the villain from this episode has yet to be used in Dino Charge.
I’ve generally liked the changes Dino Charge has brought to the table, but “Sync or Swim” is one of the instances where I question what they were going for. In Kyoryuger, Utsusemimaru had created a tough facade to hide his true, happy nature and present himself as a true warrior. Him and Daigo were never in a feud, contest, or argument of any sort. The two simply needed to learn the truth about one another and learn to act as a team. With Ivan being new to the team, and just as displaced as Utsusemimaru, there was no real reason to twist the narrative so both Tyler and Ivan act like stuck up children. As I said, I’ve generally supported the changes they’ve made, but this one just didn’t work.
Next time, Chase must learn a lesson in attitude and friendship in Episode 14, “True Black”.