On Friday, the latest “Power Rangers” movie will be released in the United States, marking a new, more diverse era in the popular franchise.
The original 1993 series caught some backlash for playing on racial stereotypes ― specifically by having an Asian woman play the “yellow” ranger and a black man play the “black” ranger (who fought in a “hip-hop” style).
But it seems as though the new reboot, directed by Dean Israelite, is seeking to expand the world of the rangers by including a cast that is not only racially diverse but also intersect at other less-represented identities.
The reboot features a strong Asian male lead as the black ranger, a refreshing casting in light of Hollywood’s ongoing issue with positioning Asian men as heroes in mainstream films. In addition to that, the new Power Rangers also include a queer character played by Mexican-American actress Becky G and an autistic character, played by black actor RJ Cyler.
“There was no specific look to what the characters had to look like,” Becky G explained in a recent interview with MTV. “We could be anybody.”
It looks like at least one Hollywood movie has gotten the memo ― diversity isn’t just about filling quotas, but creating characters with truly unique experiences and backgrounds.
From a show with one-dimensional and often stereotypical POC characters the franchise has morphed into a reboot with characters of diverse ethnicities, abilities, and sexual orientations ― proving that together, we really can do anything.
Watch the video above to see how “Power Rangers” has begun to evolve.