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Buena Vista Home Video presents
Power Rangers S.P.D.: Stakeout Volume 2 (2005)

"Rangers, go."
- Commander Anubis "Doggie" Cruger (John Tui)

Review By: Chuck Aliaga   
Published: September 15, 2005

Stars: Brandon Jay McLaren, Chris Violette, John Tui
Other Stars: Matt Austin, Monica May, Alycia Purrott
Director: various

MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (nothing objectionable)
Run Time: 01h:45m:53s
Release Date: September 06, 2005
UPC: 786936282696
Genre: action


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B B+B-B- C+

DVD Review

There seems to be no stopping the Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers, a collection of characters that have been going strong for over a decade. Fortunately, I was a little old (in high school) to have actually watched the show during its initial run, but my daughter has made sure that I know quite a bit more about it than a want to. The ultimate in cheesy action, this series has changed formats, storylines, and characters so much through the years that it's difficult to keep all of its spin-offs straight.

The latest of these is Power Rangers S.P.D., and Stakeout Volume 2 is the latest DVD collection for this young (it's been airing for less than a year) incarnation. The first disc did a nice job introducing those who don't watch the show to this new special forces unit, Space Patrol Delta. This group of Rangers (a red, yellow, and green one, among them) is fighting in the future, defending Earth from an impending alien invasion. They are joined by Commander Anubis "Doggie" Cruger and Dr. Katherine "Kat" Manx, who generally provide the brains for their brawn.

Similar to the first release, there are five episodes of the show here, namely "A-Bridged," the two-parter "Sam," "Idol," and "Stakeout." The first show finds the team on the hunt for a bank robber who has yet to be concretely identified. An alien named T-Top is seen at the scene and arrested, although one of the Rangers has their doubts as to whether this suspicious creature actually committed these crimes.

The two-parter "Sam," is the most exciting storyline of the bunch, focusing on a shy boy named Sam, who has the power of teleportation. His powers have the other kids at school constantly making fun of him, so he is easily lured by the evil Mora to aid in teleporting an entire office building to a location where her new Bugglesworth monster can turn the people into dolls. It's up to the Rangers to stop Sam without hurting him, and show him the good that his powers could be used for.

"Idol" is probably the weakest entry, as it features a slightly confusing plot that pits the current Blue Ranger against one of the old guard. Things come to a close for this set quite nicely with the title episode, "Stakeout." An alien has just escaped from custody, and a stakeout is on-going of one of his associates. With one of the members of the stakeout's crew falling in love with the target, problems between the Rangers soon come to the surface and threaten the mission.

The overall entertainment value of the first Power Rangers S.P.D. was surprisingly high, and things get even better with Stakeout Volume 2. These shows have grown quite a bit since the original Power Rangers series, thanks in large part to more mature writing, leading to slightly more complex, almost adult-friendly stories. The acting is still pretty much bottom-of-the-barrel, but you'll see much worse while channel surfing these days. Power Rangers S.P.D. is still primarily a kids to pre-teen targeted show, but us parents won't be as miserable as we think we might be sitting down with this DVD.

Rating for Style: B
Rating for Substance: B+

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicno


Image Transfer Review: These full frame transfers are almost exactly how they appeared on TV. The same wild color scheme is on display here, down to the intricate details of the Rangers' crazy costumes. Things are almost always sharp, as well, and there's only a slight bit of grain to be found.

Image Transfer Grade: B-

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Englishyes


Audio Transfer Review: The Dolby Digital 2.0 track is also TV quality, but fairly lifeless. There is a bit of surround usage during the action sequences, but everything else stays up front, including crystal clear dialogue. The subwoofer even springs to life at times, providing nice, tight bass.

Audio Transfer Grade: B-

 

Disc Extras

Full Motion menu with music
Scene Access with 10 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English
7 Other Trailer(s) featuring The Greatest Game Ever Played, The Shaggy Dog, Bionicle 3: Web of Shadows, Power Rangers S.P.D.: Volume 4 & 5, Spider-Man: The Venom Saga, Tarzan: Special Edition, Kronk's New Groove
1 Featurette(s)
Packaging: Keep Case
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: dual

Extra Extras:
  1. Delta Squad Runner Simulator: "D" Level - Interactive flight-simulator game.
Extras Review: There are a few extras, including Sneak Peeks for other Buena Vista Home Video releases, and The Power Rangers Want You! With Syd Drew. This four-minute featurette is basically an overview of what it takes to be a Ranger.

Delta Squad Runner Simulator: "D" Level is an interactive game that basically picks up where the Acceptance Level from the previous Power Rangers S.P.D. DVD left off.

Extras Grade: C+

 

Final Comments

While the Power Rangers series will seemingly live on forever thanks to countless spin-offs, they might finally be onto something with Power Rangers S.P.D. These action-packed shows come to us on DVD, again in the form of a non-seasonal collection of episodes. The audio and video are what you would expect from their television presentations, and there are a couple of extra features on board to spice the disc up a bit.

 


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