The Power Rangers arrive at the home of the Solar Ranger…and learn the shocking secret behind the universe that’s drawn them together!
In “The Dark. The Deep. The Still.” the Praetor enters the mind of the Solar Ranger, Ellarien. He needs the Solarix and offers a similar deal he made to Mike Corbett (Magna Defender) last issue. He goes on to explain that he is a MORPHIN MASTER. Long ago a villain (referring to Lord Zedd) was able to tap into the Grid via a Zeo Crystal – a power so great it could destroy whole worlds. The Morphin Masters were able to trace its origins to an entire planet made of Zeo Crystals. The universe was severed from the Grid in an effort to protect all of reality. The universe would die off and the Praetor chose to stay behind to make sure it did. The Solarix was designed to absorb all forms of Morphin Energy into a single point. A knife that would sever the universe from the Morphin Grid forever.
Ari wakes up from her dream and Mike confesses he took the Solarix, his guilt had consumed him. Ari explains her vision to the entire team, further revealing that the Praetor had Power Rangers! Over the years the Praetor realized that there was no way to save the universe safe for the rest of reality. As the universe died and the Solar Rangers continued to fight for the right to live, the Praetor realized they were vermin – not worth his sacrifice. In the end, the seventh Ranger betrayed him.
Ari shatters the Solarix and the Rangers each take a piece… powering up their Morphers and transforming them into SOLAR RANGERS. The Praetor becomes enraged, his twisted sense of morality will not let him be seen as a murderer, but a savior. He prepares to take matters into his own hands. Bringing the full force of his armies to the planet, the Solar Rangers fight on…
Unfortunately, exposition heavy writing continues in an issue that makes you wonder why couldn’t this information have been spread out and seen throughout the series? With Kyle Higgins and Ryan Parrott’s writing styles, current story lines were intertwined with flashbacks that give context to what was happening relevant to the story. This is not the case with Beyond the Grid writer Marguerite Bennett. Five pages of this issue are dedicated to essentially a “villain explaining his plan” trope.
The art by Simone Di Meo continues to improve with interesting layouts and detailed line work. If only his earlier issues were consistent with the character depictions seen in the last three issues. Some of the action is confusing in a two page spread of the new Solar Rangers fighting Praetor’s army. While the new suit designs are a thing of beauty, it was hard to distinguish who was talking in a few panels since we were just introduced to them.
With one more issue to go for Beyond the Grid, we can all hope for a satisfying conclusion.
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Cover images below.