Welcome to Right on Cue, the podcast where we interview film, TV, and video game composers about the origins and nuances of their latest works — plus exclusive commentaries from the score’s most important tracks.
It’s morphin’ time! Thirty years after Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers hit the airwaves and thrilled ’90s latchkey kids the world over, the franchise has stayed strong through 29 seasons, dozens of incarnations, and more Zords than you can shake a Power Sword at.
But one of the elements that made it such a mainstay was its shredding, hard-rock theme song, with its heavy power chords, driving rhythms, and catchy battle cry of “Go, go, Power Rangers!” It, and the Power Rangers music as a whole, was the soundtrack to a generation, fueled primarily by the show’s composer, Ron Wasserman (who also supplied other catchy licks to other millennial catnip like the ’90s X-Men cartoon and Dragon Ball Z). He also crafted several iconic Ranger themes since, from the thrilling build of In Space to the meedly guitar solos of Power Rangers SPD.
Now, Wasserman is back for the first time in decades to score new Power Rangers — this time, for Netflix’s 30th-anniversary reunion special, Once & Always. Bringing back four of the old-school ’90s Rangers, including original Rangers Zack (Walter Emanuel Jones) and Billy (David Yost), the special lets these middle-aged superheroes get one last crack at classic villain Rita Repulsa, with all the spandex-clad karate that entails. Not only that, the special’s a hotbed of Easter eggs for new and old fans alike, and the nostalgia trip wouldn’t be complete without Wasserman’s involvement.
We’re thrilled to have Wasserman on the show to talk about Power Rangers’ grip on a certain segment of pop culture, how the sound of the show evolved, and how he’s updated it for this latest trip back to the Morphin’ Grid.
You can find Ron Wasserman at his official website.
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: Once & Always is currently streaming on Netflix.