Recap #285: Power Rangers: A Nightmare on Elm Street #1
Title: Power Rangers – A Nightmare on Elm Street #1 a.k.a. “Mighty Morphin’ Nightmare Rangers”
Author: Stephen Harber
Pencils & Inks: Francisco Mauriz
Colors: James Zark
Movie Poster Variant Cover: Ryan Lindberg
Wow. The crossover I never thought would happen, which you can find here. [Wing: A crossover I never once considered and yet am excited to read.]
PLEASE NOTE THIS IS A FAN COMIC, SIMILAR TO HOW STORY OF THE BLANKS WAS A FAN GAME.
Ah, before I go further I would like to thank Dove for being cool with me recapping this story for the site. I know Dove’s handling the Elm Street franchise’s recaps, and I was worried I’d be stepping on her toes.
I don’t often get to mention this on Point Horror, but the Elm Street franchise has been my defacto horror movie franchise since I was young. Well, ages 9 to 13 these movies disgusted me and it was more a bile fascination thing. I’m in the camp where I genuinely enjoying Parts 2 and 5, and on the rare chance anyone pays attention to my rantings over the internet they’d know my favorite characters are Alice Johnson and Greta Gibson. I WILL NOT HEAR ILL INTENT SPOKEN ABOUT DREAM CHILD.
I’ve talked about Power Rangers more on Nostalgic Bookshelf, like the year I included that Flame Con commission post talking about the history of the franchise from Mighty Morphin’ to Ninja Storm. I’m still supporting the comics from Boom Studios but I’ve lost track of what’s going on in the current show.
I found this comic one night while randomly searching for stuff on my smartphone. I cannot begin to tell you the feeling that surged through me when I saw how professionally done everything looked. My entire life has been fueled by intersecting fandoms and interests beyond what people normally like to engage in. I’ve spent three years and counting developing a DC Comics AU directly inspired by the visual novels of 07th Expansion and at least TWO decades on a mega crossover centered around Revolutionary Girl Utena. Fuck, in 4th Grade I tried writing fan fiction combining the Angry Beavers and 1959’s The Bat, I am just that weird.
Power Rangers: A Nightmare on Elm Street runs with the basic cheesiness of the Power Rangers franchise, but chooses to embrace it in a way that’s self aware without being mean for the sake of meanness. The comic is currently set during the later Mighty Morphin’ episodes with the following line-up:
- White Ranger: Tommy
- Pink: Kimberly
- Blue: Billy
- Red: Rocky
- Yellow: Aisha
- Black: Adam
We also have the Big Bad line-up of Rita Repulsa and Lord Zedd with Rita’s brother, Rito Revolto.
In terms of Elm Street chronology, the comic is set to incorporate possibly everything from the original franchise so expect some spoilers. At least that’s what I’m guessing. The creative team has set the stage for other horror properties to appear, but I won’t say who for now. All I will say is I’m enjoying this comic a LOT and I can’t wait for the rest of it to be released.
PREVIOUSLY, ON MIGHTY MORPHIN’ POWER RANGERS
Our favorite Rangers have returned to Angel Grove after a relaxing summer vacation, yet they’re worried. Their archenemies Rita Repulsa and Lord Zedd have been pretty quiet lately. What could they be up to?
It turns out Rita and Zedd were on vacation too! They’re returning from their honeymoon in the M51 Galaxy, and Rita somehow convinced Zedd to bring her brother Rito Revolto back with them. Rito’s certainly grateful to his brother-in-law and promises “Fred” he won’t be freeloading for long. Zedd’s totally shure.
Back on the moon, Zedd returns to work trying to figure out how to get rid of those pesky Power Rangers. Casting his malevolent gaze down to Earth, Zedd finds his latest instrument of destruction. Our favorite juvenile delinquents, Farkas “Bulk” Bulkmeier and Eugene “Skull” Skullovitch plan to ditch the first day of school to binge A Nightmare on Elm Street on DVD. That’s right, every movie (barring Freddy Vs Jason and that sorry excuse of a remake) in a seven disc set. [Wing: I’d say I’ll be impressed if they get through all of that, but I know people who did the official in-theater MCU marathon with the release of — oh, I can’t remember if it was Infinity War or Endgame. Either way, that’s a lot of movie-watching hours.]
Zedd can hardly believe humans are scared of something ridiculous like this “Freddy Krueger,” but if that’s what they want he’s happy to oblige!
Using his staff, Zedd fires a beam of energy at Bulk and Skull’s DVD set. Instead of some weird DVD monster [Wing: Shame, it could blind everyone with light reflection before it killed them all.] it summons Freddy Krueger! As in THE Freddy Krueger! And he kills Bulk and Skull!
…WAIT HOLY SHIT HE KILLED BULK AND SKULL! PEOPLE DON’T ACTUALLY DIE IN POWER RANGERS WHAT THE FUCK?!
[Wing: Fandom: For When Canon Isn’t Dark Enough.]
Zedd finds this delightful, while even Rito thinks that was a bit mean. Rita, meanwhile, is angry because Freddy didn’t kill any of the Rangers. [Wing: She’s a woman focused on the mission. I respect that.]
At the Command Center, Zordon and Alpha-5 show the Rangers the deaths of Bulk and Skull on the viewing globe. The Rangers can’t believe Zedd somehow managed to summon Freddy Krueger, and are horrified and saddened by the deaths of their sometimes-friends. Even Alpha can’t believe Bulk and Skull are dead. Tommy feels Zedd’s finally crossed the line. But where did Freddy go? Not even Zedd can find him.
Freddy hasn’t gone far. In fact, he plans to get to know each of the Rangers…
At Ernie’s Juice Bar, the local hang out for the youths of Angel Grove, the Rangers are trying to process the deaths of their friends. However, Kimberly asks the hard questions; were they ever really friends with Bulk and Skull? Kim acknowledges how often they laughed at the two, even if Bulk and Skull tended to be assholes most of the time. Tommy argues Bulk and Skull were still their friends and nothing could change that, not even death.
Ernie brings out a tray of his newest smoothie for the group to try. He says he made it in honor of Bulk and Skull, the “Bulkmeier and Skullovitch Special.” Kim thinks that’s really nice of Ernie… or at least she did before she realized she’s drinking blood!
All of the Rangers start vomiting up blood and bits of viscera, even an eyeball, as Ernie says he made the drinks from Bulk and Skull’s “meatier” parts. [Wing: Surprise: Food is People! is one of my favourite tropes.]
That’s when a certain gloved fiend claws his way out of Ernie’s chest and lunges for Kim!
Kim wakes up screaming in her bed. As she gets her bearings, she checks to make sure her Power Blaster is still under her pillow in case she needs it. Mrs. Kim’s mom enters the room asking if Kim’s okay. Mom thinks Kim’s upset about her plans to re-marry while Kim struggles to explain she’s grieving the deaths of her two friends. Kim’s mom apologizes for her insensitivity, stating she only wants Kim to be happy. Mother and daughter hug as Kim apologizes for snapping. Closing the bedroom door, Kim’s mom promises everything will be fine…
At which point Freddy Krueger bursts into Kim’s bedroom, tossing the severed, screaming head of Kim’s mom!
Kim finishes recapping her nightmare to the rest of the Rangers. Billy notes that was almost shot-for-shot what happened to Kristen Parker in A Nightmare On Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors. Each of the Rangers had their own visit with Freddy Krueger, each a redo of a scene from a different Elm Street movie. [Wing: I’m disappointed in this. I can see going for the canon references, but I think it would work better with new dreams better targeted to the Rangers themselves.]
Seems Kim got off easy compared to the rest of the team.
- Adam: Went through the “Flesh Marionette” sequence from Dream Warriors.
- Rocky: Got the “Roach Motel” treatment from Dream Master.
- Aisha: Was trapped in a house plummeting through the sky ala Freddy’s Dead.
- Billy: Strung up and had his back clawed up similar to Coach Schneider from Freddy’s Revenge.
- Tommy: He, um… got Nancy’s bath treatment, but doesn’t wanna talk about it.
Zordon notes it’s a lucky thing none of the Rangers were actually killed in their dreams, but fears Freddy Krueger is preparing to attack the Rangers in real life. Aisha and Rocky both doubt Zedd can keep Freddy under his control. Zordon agrees, noting this universe isn’t big enough for two forces of death and destruction. [Wing: Lies.]
On the moon, Rita and Zedd are wondering where the H-E-Double Hockey Sticks Freddy is. Zedd’s worried Freddy’s too much of a loose cannon. Also he could seriously use some moisturizer (said the man with no skin).
Freddy bombastically appears and Rita asks when, exactly, is he gonna get rid of the Power Rangers while they’re awake.
When your lips match your vocal chords, bitch.
OH NOW THAT SHIT’S CROSSING A LINE FOR ZEDD, CUZ NO ONE MOCKS HIS LIL’ SNOT RAG’S SPEECH IMPEDIMENT!
Zedd promises to take Freddy out of this world just as easily as he brought him into. But Freddy takes advantage of one of Zedd’s glaring weak points and YANKS OUT ZEDD’S EXPOSED BRAIN. Goldar and Rito enter the throne room just in time to see Freddy grabbing Zedd’s staff, transforming into LORD FREDD.
Fredd: SAY HELLO TO DADDY!
Rito: Uh… you can be my second dad, I guess. I hear all the cool kids have two of ’em nowadays. So what? It’s the 90s!
And who says supervillains can’t be progressive?
His nightmare-warping abilities combined with Zedd’s evil energy, Lord Fredd decides the rest of the PR villains suck ass and takes matters into his own clawed hands. Hocking up an utterly monstrous loogie towards Earth’s atmosphere, the projectile mucus lands in one of Angel Grove’s parks. Rita watches from her telescope as the snotwad turns into a second Freddy Krueger.
Rito: So… into clones, huh? I’m not judging.
Lord Fredd: You know what they say…
Freddy Krueger: TWO FREDS ARE BETTER THAN ONE!
[Wing: Painful and not in the good terrible pun way.]
From the Commander Center, the Rangers watch as Freddy begins his attack on Angel Grove. Enraged by Freddy’s violation of their dreams and the deaths of Bulk and Skull, Tommy announces IT’S MORPHIN’ TIME!
Transformed, the Power Rangers teleport to the park to stop Freddy before he gets his hands on any of the kids. Manifesting their weapons, the Rangers announce they’re gonna trounce Krueger’s burnt ass.
Tommy: Show’s over, Krueger.
Kim: You’re a hack!
Adam: A has-been!
Rocky: You’re butt ugly!
Aisha: And you smell bad, too!
Billy: But most of all, you’re not scary!
Tommy: We’re taking you back to the video store to pay for what you did to our friends! ‘Cause we’re the…
All: POWER RANGERS!
Freddy’s not worried, calling them a bunch of kids in spandex which really seems to piss Rocky off. The five main Rangers combine their weapons to form the Power Blaster, firing a burst of energy at Freddy.
Freddy does the one thing absolutely no Power Ranger enemy has ever done in this situation. He… moves out of the way.
Kim: Wow. He just… stepped aside.
Rocky: H-has anyone ever done that before?
Being the epitome of class and grace that he is, Freddy returns fire… from his ass.
Yeah he literally farts at the Rangers. Freddy Krueger farted on the Power Rangers. That is a sentence you all read. You can’t unread it. [Wing: Oh, I bet I can burn it out of my memory somehow.]
Having dodged the ass blasting (oh Jesus), Tommy comments on Freddy’s lack of style and lunges forward with his blade Saba. Tommy runs Freddy through while the other Rangers get their bearings and surround him, firing from all sides with their Blade Blasters.
Back on the moon, Rita voices her boredom and wonders when someone’s gonna send the Putty Patrollers down there.
Rita: I am so bored! Where are the Putties already?!
Rito: Yeah, Fred! Won’t someone please think of the Putties?!
Lord Fredd transforms the Putty Patrollers into Freddy-style Putties with gloves, hats, and a taste for blood. Rito’s all… huh. Meanwhile, no one notices Zedd’s brain slithering on the floor and thinking to himself that Fredd won’t get away with this.
But now we have to turn elsewhere, away from the moon, away from Angel Grove.
At Westin Hills Psychiatric Hospital, Bulk and Skull are told to get up. The two deceased delinquents are shocked as they awaken to find themselves facing several unexpected and familiar faces.
In front of Bulk and Skull are none other than the Dream Warriors, Kristen Parker, Joey Crusel, Taryn White, Roland Kincaid, Will Stanton, and Nancy Thompson herself.
Nancy informs Bulk and Skull their first dream therapy session has begun.
TO BE CONTINUED
I love every single glorious thing about this comic, and I don’t have much else to add in regards to any final thoughts other than I hope Stephen’s able to keep the momentum going and more people learn about this project to support it. Honestly, this is the best Elm Street related anything we’ve had in decades. It’s a far cry for the horrible official comics released by Avatar Press and Wildstorm, and infinitely better than the remake.
[Wing: This was fun. I don’t love it the way Jude does, and I question some of the choices, but it was fun.]