The culture behind a Megazord: Kat, Kimberly and one tough act to follow

9 Ago

Welcome back to my blog.

I know, I know: 32 consecutive days of “The culture behind a Megazord” and, then, I kinda “disappeared” for those days. However, now I’m back with an article about Kat Hillard, a clear example of a character that has to replace a fan favourite, resulting in one tough act to follow.

Risultati immagini per Kat Hillard

Now, let’s talk about where are we when Kat is introduced.

It’s the third season of Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers. A movie came out, it’s all about ninjas, and Amy Jo Johnson, who plays Kimberly “everyone’s first crush” Hart, wants to leave the series.

This is different than last time, when Austin St. John, Walter Jones and Thuy Trang left after a dispute, forcing the producers to use stock footage for them and quickly recruit new actors. Now, the actress told in advance that she doesn’t want to stay for the entire season, so there’s time to build up towards her leaving.

However, you can’t exactly have Power Rangers without a Pink Ranger (it could have worked out due to Kakuranger only having 5 Rangers, but, after about 150 episodes with 6 Rangers, that was the status quo), and it wouldn’t make sense to quickly introduce a new character to replace her (which is actually what they’ll do with Aisha and Tanya), especially considering they were already thinking about Zeo.

Therefore, they introduced the character of Kat Hillard. At first, she’s simply a new student, but Rita brainwashes her, giving her the ability to turn into a cat. This is because she alone is an adaptation of the Hanarangers, an evil Sentai formed by cats turned into girls. I’m actually glad that they went for “girl turned into a cat” and not the other way around, because imagine dealing with that later on. Especially when it comes to romance.

Risultati immagini per Tommy and Kat

After the Rangers break the spell and she’s no longer brainwashed, Kat bonds with Kimberly, and here you have it: a female character who befriends the Rangers, has a personal reason to be one (after all, Rita brainwashed her and turned her into a cat!) and doesn’t feel like a forced substitute at all.

Then, the moment arrives.

 

For the last few episodes of Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers, Kat will be the Pink Ranger as a taste of what’s to come in Zeo (in fact, she’s the only Ranger going from Mighty Morphin’ to Zeo to keep her colour).

Now, one part that many fans didn’t like was that she didn’t just take over Kimberly’s role as a Ranger, but also as Tommy’s love interest. I mean, shippers rarely forgive something, and see the replacement of half of an OTP getting closer and closer to the other half isn’t something everyone would love.

However, one could argue that Tommy and Kat do spend a lot of time as Rangers together, and who knows what happened offscreen.

Also, I find it funny that Power Rangers tried multiple times to get Catherine Sutherland back so that she could be shown as Tommy’s wife, but couldn’t make it. I mean, we don’t even have a canon way to know she is Tommy’s wife, as there’s a non canonical Christmas special that shows the two growing old together as a couple. Apparently, both are rumored to return on Super Ninja Steel, so maybe they will finally show us what happened next.

Kat Hillard is a prime example of one tough act to follow, because she had to replace a character that’s the classic “some want her, the others want to be like her”. How are you supposed to do so? The two don’t seem so “identical”. I mean, they do share similarities, but it’s more like the kind of common things two friends can bond with.

If she had an impact to the community? Well, Catherine Sutherland is still beloved by fans, so I suppose the answer is yes, and it’s a positive one.

The article, however, ends here. See you, next time, here, on the Empty Blog!

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