Table of Contents

Description

In real life, Power Rangers RPM was the seventeenth season of Power Rangers; it told the story of a group of Power Rangers who battled the forces of Venjix, a computer virus which apparently ravaged much of the planet. One episode of RPM, titled "And... Action!", took the home audience on a behind-the-scenes tour of the production of the show.

"Ziggy" chats with the home audience before teleporting
"Ziggy" chats with the home audience before teleporting
The odd part about "And... Action!" was that all of the characters remained in-character. For instance, Ziggy Grover, Ranger Green, played in real life by Milo Cawthorne, was still Ziggy Grover as he explained the workings of the show (he could even teleport like his RPM counterpart!). Once the Rangers were done filming a battle, they watched the finished cut in their headquarters and were then called away on an emergency. This was not real life; this was a fictional world in which the Rangers all played themselves on TV and could apparently morph. This page discusses the details of that world. (Note that for discussion below, "show" refers to the show-within-a-show seen in this special.)

Outline

The basic "plot" of "And... Action!" was as follows:
  • Dr. K tells the Rangers of an Attack Bot who breached the city shields
  • Ziggy interrupts to show the home audience some of the "tricks" they use to save the world
  • Ziggy teleports to the Attack Bot's location, where the Rangers will drive in to confront him
  • Flynn introduces a featurette on the show's stunt driving
  • Summer and Dillon detail the show's stunts (including crane work), but they neglect to mention stunt doubles
  • Ziggy bribes Dr. K into demonstrating the creation of the show's visual effects
  • Tenaya 7 is seen being served by Grinders
  • Scott describes other elements that go into finishing off the show (making for "the most exciting stunt sequences on television")
  • Scott spars with Tenaya, discusses fight choreography
  • Gem and Gemma eagerly talk about explosions
  • in garage, Ziggy fails to morph with the rest (director calls "cut!"), Ziggy then shows a blooper reel
  • Rangers and Dr. K later watch the action sequence they filmed, but then an alarm goes off
  • Rangers rush out (Ziggy suggests to audience that Dr. K will make him "the next Red Ranger")

Q&A


So in this episode, there were Power Rangers who filmed a TV show and responded to emergencies?

Production
Production
Apparently.

And they played themselves on TV?

Yes.

And they could morph?

Yes, it appeared that way, particularly before Ziggy introduced the blooper reel (everyone morphed except him, prompting the director to call "cut").

What did the morphs look like?

Scott's green-screen morph
Scott's green-screen morph

They were unseen, but during Dr. K's visual effects segment, a green-screen is shown to be used to produce Scott's extended morph sequence for the show; he was apparently filmed in several states, from unmorphed, to morphed-but-helmetless, to fully morphed. Morphs that didn't have post-production applied were either instantaneous or occurred off-camera.

Who were the Rangers?

  • Credits within "And... Action!"
    Credits within "And... Action!"
    The character of Scott Truman was played by an actor by the same name; this actor apparently had Red Ranger powers. He had an American accent and apparently had a friendly rivalry with Tenaya 7.
  • The character of Flynn McAllistair was played by an actor by the same name; this actor apparently had Blue Ranger powers. He had a Scottish accent and liked vehicles.
  • The character of Summer Landsdown was played by an actress by the same name; this actress apparently had Yellow Ranger powers. She had an American accent and liked stunt scenes.
  • The character of Ziggy Grover was played by an actor by the same name; this actor apparently had Green Ranger powers and could teleport (with the aid of his Morpher). He had an American accent.
  • The character of "Dillon" was played by an actor by the same name (no surname listed); this actor apparently had Black Ranger powers. He had an American accent and liked stunt scenes.
  • The characters of "Gem" and "Gemma" were played by actors by the same names (no surnames listed); they apparently had Gold and Silver Ranger powers, respectively. They had American accents and loved explosions.

Was the show that was being filmed the same as the rest of RPM that aired in real life?

It looked that way from the snippets that were seen.

So was this the "real" RPM, while all other episodes were just a show-within-a-show?

That is one valid interpretation of this special. Alternately, this special could be divorced completely from the rest of RPM without affecting other episodes' "realness."

Who produced RPM in this world?

One of the many slates seen in "And... Action!"
One of the many slates seen in "And... Action!"
It wasn't specified outright, but one slate seen briefly bore the name "Ranger Productions." Directors included Jonathan Brough, Vanessa Alexander, Peter Salmon, Koichi Sakamoto, Mike Smith, Ken Ohara, and Charlie Haskell. Directors of production included Neil Cervin and Andrew McGeorge. (These are all real-life people, as the slates were actual RPM slates.)

When did filming take place in this world?

Dates seen on slates ranged from October 15, 2008, to March 2, 2009.

Where was it produced?

Unknown, but the date format was "dd/mm/yyyy" rather than the American "mm/dd/yyyy" format. (In real life, RPM was produced in New Zealand.)

How many episodes were there?

Unless this editor misread a slate or two, episode numbers proceeded up through 24. - Rovang Rovang

Were there other seasons of Power Rangers in this world?

Possibly:
  • The series title, as seen on slates, was Power Rangers RPM.
  • Actors Gem and Gemma noted liking Power Rangers for the explosions (er, "explosives," actually).
  • Ziggy suggested that Dr. K might make him "the next Red Ranger."
  • Tenaya 7 noted, "Our stunt men have been training Power Rangers for years, and it shows."

Uhh, wait, the stunt men trained Power Ranger actors or real Power Rangers?

Take your pick (it could even be both, for all we know), but she was speaking about stunt training and choreography at the time.

When Ziggy said "the next Red Ranger," did he mean in this season or a hypothetical next season?

Unspecified.

Was there significance to Ziggy using the term "Red Ranger" over RPM's usual standard of "Ranger Red?"

Perhaps. But note also:
  • Dr. K called Ziggy (the actor) "Ranger Green."
  • Scott called Ziggy (the actor) "Ranger Series Green" after Ziggy's talk of being the next Red Ranger.
  • Other "real" episodes of RPM also intermittently used this alternate naming standard [1].
[1] Go for the Green, Ranger Blue, Not So Simple

Beyond her acting role, what role did Dr. K play in this world?

It wasn't stated expressly, but note:
  • Apparently between filming sessions, Dr. K was busy "synchronizing the energy matrix of three multidimensional bio-fields."
  • She was able to demonstrate the show's visual effects from her computer in the lab (which also served as a set for the show).
  • She hung out with the Ranger actors (having expected a pajama party) to watch the battle they'd filmed.
  • Ziggy speculated that Dr. K would make him "the next Red Ranger."

How similar was Dr. K to her in-show character?

Fairly similar:
  • She was initially dismissive toward Ziggy ("Ranger Green"), though he did crack her up during a blooper reel.
  • She was effectively bribed with sweets.
  • She purportedly didn't go out in the sun.
  • She wore puppy slippers and pajamas (as in "Brother's Keeper").
  • She was credited in the show-within-a-show simply as "Dr. K."

What was the state of Earth in this world?

It wasn't specified outright, but note the following:
  • A blue sky was seen above landscapes later tinted in post-production to become the dingy orange wastelands outside Corinth (comparable to the blue sky seen after Venjix's defeat in the finale).
  • No dome was seen over the city during the behind-the-scenes portion (neither during shoots in the city nor looking at it from neighboring areas); a CG Corinth was shown being added in post-production (along with sky tinting, explosions, and jets "to create a war against Venjix," Dr. K noted).
  • The crew was able to film in areas which became "the wastelands" in-show. The crew was not shown being attacked by anyone during their filming.

So there was no Venjix war?

That's one possibility. Another is that the show was filmed at some point after the war ended, the dome was taken down, and the atmosphere recovered (note the clean skies after Venjix's defeat in the series finale).

Did Venjix exist at all in this world?

Unknown, but here's what we know about villains in this world:
  • The character of Tenaya 7 (actually listed in the show-within-a-show credits as "Teneya 7") was played by an actress by the same name. She apparently had a friendly rivalry with Scott. Scott called her a robot. She tartly refuted the idea of guys thinking they're faster and stronger than girls. She participated in stunt training with the others.
  • Grinders apparently served Tenaya 7 between takes. They made robotic sound effects even while off-camera. They rested in the shade and drank beverages through their metal faces (their "masks," if they are even masks, were not shown coming off).
  • An Attack Bot was present to "fight" the Rangers. Its nature wasn't detailed, but everything in the show was "carefully choreographed."
  • Scott noted, "Tenaya 7 and Venjix always seem to have this grand plan about how they're gonna destroy Corinth and take over the world. So that's when we come in. Basically, we try and talk 'em out of it, but they're a little bit stubborn, so they end up pushing us, we push right back – Ranger style."; during this time, a slate showed "Venjix Eye" as the name of a shooting location, and a clip of Venjix's eye appeared.
  • In the context of loving Power Rangers for the explosives, Gem and Gemma noted to the home audience, "Every time the alarm goes off, everyone's like, 'Oh no, Venjix!' Not us. We're like, 'Excellent! Huzzah!'"

Wait, Gem and Gemma the actors liked battling Venjix?

So it would appear.

And Tenaya 7 and the Grinders were actual robots?

Scott said (or joked?) that Tenaya 7 was a robot, in the context of not having to go easy on her while sparring. The Grinders were unresolved (see notes above).

What prompted the alarm that called the Rangers away at the end?

We don't know. It caused Dr. K to look serious, and the Rangers rushed out, with Scott announcing, "Back to work."

Could the alarm have been calling them to the set to film more of the show?

This editor isn't aware of anything that would expressly contradict that interpretation. - Rovang Rovang

What actual abilities did the Ranger cast have in this world?

They appeared to be able to morph (but the morph effects were added in post-production), and Ziggy could teleport (but only with his Morpher). At the same time, the Rangers didn't appear superhuman:
  • The cast received physical training for their stunts; Dillon joked about breaking their necks, but Summer noted they were "very, very careful." Everything about the show was "carefully choreographed."
  • "Summer" on wires
    "Summer" on wires
    Tenaya 7 noted, apparently in reference to herself and the Ranger cast, "We start stunt training weeks before the cameras are set up." Scott added, "The stunt team is always coming up with new moves for us to learn, pushing the limits of what's possible."
  • Dillon noted, "Working on this show, we get to do a lot of cool stuff. But by far, my favorite is the stunts." Summer added, "Yeah, because that's when you become a superhero."
  • The Ranger actors apparently did their own stunt driving and action scenes; Scott noted that stunt training could be "a bit challenging, but it's always exciting."
  • Cranes and wires were used for some stunt scenes.
  • The actors rehearsed their morph gestures and sometimes messed them up.

Did these Rangers have a working arsenal of any sort?

That's unresolved. To wit:
  • When Ziggy asked Dr. K to "show off some of the weapons," she explained the show's visual effects (but didn't actually mention any weapons).
  • The RPM Enforcer was used in-show to end a fight scene, but its nature wasn't discussed. (Its blast was seen in post-production. The filming of that scene wasn't shown.)
  • The Zords received no mention at all.

Did the Ranger cast hang out in the RPM garage?

Yes, the garage was apparently both a shooting location and a place of rest for the Ranger cast.

What about Colonel Truman and his command center?

Truman's command center was, at minimum, a shooting location. (Note that in the show-within-a-show RPM, the command center was suspended at the top of Corinth's dome, which appeared to be a visual effect in the "real" RPM world.) Colonel Truman (or the actor who played him) appeared in the blooper reel; he appeared to have a sense of humor. His role outside the show-within-a-show is unknown.

Why did nobody mention stunt actors or sentai footage?

The argument could be made that in this world, neither was used to produce the show. That or they were just whitewashing (as in real life!).

Could the special have been filmed after events comparable to those in RPM's finale?

This isn't necessarily out of the question, but note the following:
  • The Ranger actors in the special appeared able to morph using working Morphers, and yet one Morpher displayed an ominous blinking light (Venjix?) when last seen in the finale (it may be noted that Scott's morph effect was apparently constructed with the aid of green-screen, though all were apparently able to insta-morph).
  • Skies in the "wasteland" were blue for the special and apparently tinted in post-production; this is compatible with the finale, in which skies outside the dome were blue once again following Venjix's defeat.
  • Grinders (apparently actual robots) were present in the special, yet Dr. K caused Grinders to vanish in large numbers in the finale; it's unknown whether any remained, but none appeared on-screen after this mass vanishing.
  • The dome of Corinth was apparently added in post-production in the special; in the finale, Corinth's dome was not shown to be taken down, though air quality did measurably improve following Venjix's defeat.
  • All of the Ranger actors were present in the special, yet their RPM counterparts pursued their own activities in the finale (Dillon, Tenaya, and Summer left to explore the world; Ziggy and Dr. K intended to teach children; Scott, Gem, and Gemma accepted work for the military; and Flynn intended to sell computers with his father).
  • Tenaya the actress was said to be a robot in the special; this doesn't necessarily conflict with the finale, in which she retained some robotic parts, though it wasn't known whether her bionic eyes would continue to work.
  • Tenaya was credited as "Teneya 7" in the special, yet in the finale, she rejected the name Tenaya while facing General Crunch; this followed her transformation into Tenaya 15 and subsequent treatment with Dr. K's antidote.
  • Dr. K, Dillon, and Tenaya were all credited with their placeholder names in the special (see note above about Tenaya); this is compatible with the finale, in which none ultimately learned their real names (at least not on-screen).
  • The control tower was a working set in the special, while the tower was destroyed in the finale.
  • The Rangers responded to an alarm with urgency in the special, but no threats were specified in the finale aside from the ominous light in one of the Morphers; note the crew's apparent freedom to film in "the wastelands" in the special, and their use of Grinders and an Attack Bot on-set.
  • Slates seen in the special showed dates ranging from 2008 to 2009; whether events comparable to the RPM series could have reasonably taken place these shooting dates is debatable.

Does the Samurai teamup have a bearing on any interpretations of this special?

...
[1] Clash of the Red Rangers