Rita’s Monster-matic: Notes on Power Rangers and its Filmic Antecedents

In Power Rangers canon, the evil empress Rita Repulsa molds her monsters out of clay. Episode 1, “Day of the Dumpster,” establishes the monster-making premise when Rita launches her first attack on the unsuspecting teenagers. Perched in her moon lair, watching the pretty Americans through a giant telescope, Rita blinks once and recoils from the eyepiece. She furrows her brow and curls her bottom lip, an expression the makeup artists exaggerate through liberal application of lipstick and eye shadow. Her horned headdress and spiky neck piece aid the overall effect. “So, you think you can stop me, do you?” Rita...

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