Monday, June 30, 2008
July finally arrives and as each day passes my anticipation for ComicCon grows. I made lots of great memories at AnimeExpo about a year ago and sadly can't attend again this summer, but a few members of the Parody Rangers cast, including Egoraptor, Tomamoto and Rina-chan who was the champion of last year's AXIdol competition, will be there. Ego and Tomamoto will both be entering this time around and are sure to dominate. Can't wait to see the videos of it. Anyways, here's one of the last two Rangers characters histories:
Jerome "Mace" Jacksum - The token black character, who I'm surprised I haven't gotten reamed for yet. I have NO idea as to where Mace's design came from. I knew off the bat that there was going to be a black character, as a throwback to "Zack" from the original Mighty Morphin' Team, and I think Mace even had a different name at some point (which escapes me). The flails (which I thought at the time were maces) were just some strange quirk I thought'd be funny to go along with his "bling" factor, plus the -M- (Majin) amulet he wears...I think he even has a golden tooth.
His voice was obvious from the start, but it was a tad tricky finding someone who could do a tough (but still funny-sounding) urban-black voice. I actually went through about two or three people before I settled on Jacob Sanders (aka Niro Rose), since two of them couldn't do it and one of them was sick at the time. Niro was another case where I felt like he should be given a fully character, so I gave him a shot and he nailed it better than I expected.
I felt like the voice was getting higher and higher as the three movies progressed, so we worked hard to make sure it was deep sounding. There's a joke in the feature movie pertaining to his voice that I dare not spoil. Rest assured though, Niro's about as white as it gets.
Oh for all ten of you interested (for what reason I'll never know), the reason behind Mace's flail arms'll be explained in the movie during a certain part improved completely by Niro. Look forward to that.
Friday, June 27, 2008
Chan Yung - Playing up the horrible Asian-stereotype jokes, Chan was born. I learned after the fact that Thuy Trang, the actress who portrayed "Trini" in the original Mighty Morphin' series, ended up dying in a terrible car accident, hence the small tribute to her at the end of Rangers 1, with Chan popping up using a quick little blooper her VA did during the record. Maria Vu was another case where I wanted to make use of her as a main character, similiar to my usage of Chris for Meat. We quickly found her cute little voice and made Chan into almost like a "mascot" character, despite her obviously being overshadowed by Meat and Billiam for example. There very easily could be plushies of her.
On the animation side of things, I did some...weird things with Chan. Her face was done as a cross between the "^_^" emoticon and a bunch of V's put together to make features, with her mouth, specifically, being animated at a lower framerate to give the illusion of an "Anime mouth". This is more obvious in the feature movie. Another odd trait I gave her, and this was the case with Willy too, was her lack of arms during certain scenes. She's supposed to have flaily kimino sleeves, but they only show up when she needs to. You'll see plenty of moments in the movie where they magically appear and disappear depending on the situation.
Chan, along with Mace and Pinky in certain cases, ends up also being one of the only SMART characters in story, giving the attitude that she seems the be the only one who actually knows what's going on...though at the same time, I seem to make a lotta jokes with her being "paired up" with other characters, such as the fanfictions (that don't really exist, I promise) of her and Willy, followed by having her and Mace "hook up" afterward.
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
Willy & Billiam Williams - I originally cast Edwyn Tiong as Willy in Parody Rangers 1 after hearing the voice eventually used for the character in another flash movie as "Jeff Andonuts" from Earthbound. The voice was very high-pitched, fast and hyper. Sometimes you couldn't even understand it, but it worked perfectly. I didn't voice direct Edwyn straight-forward for the first Rangers cartoon, so he did all of the lines in what was eventually Billaims voice! I told him that it wasn't exactly what I was looking for, but that the voice was hilarious and definitely wanted to make use of it somehow. Sure enough, the second one came around I found a "use" for it pretty damn quick.
The setup of Meat and Willy being best buddies worked very well, as it helped give more reason for Meat's swirling emotions for the later episodes. Since Willy is directly based on Billy from the Mighty Morphin' series, I had him "move away" and replaced, as per the usual in the history of the Power Rangers series, and figured it would be easily accepted by the viewers. I'm glad I made the decision, as Billiam's one of my favorite characters now as well.
Billiam is a combination of many different things, at least by his looks anyway. Cyborg 002 and Pheonix Wright were, for whatever reason, the first things that came into my head for when I came up with his character design. The voice that Edwyn indirectly came up with was so hilarious and led into my choice of making Billiam a flaming stereotypical gay man. I remember a few friends of mine in High School were a little shaky on making the switch to him from Willy, but after "Green Day" came out everyone settled into him nicely. Now Willy's boring in comparison to him.
Sunday, June 15, 2008
Red Meat - Originally based on a clip done by Egoraptor called "Zordon's Dilemma", which featured Zordon and Tommy from the original Mighty Morphin' series arguing about random crap, and Jason comes in at the end screaming like a maniac. Jason, of course, was obviously Meat's base model.
When Parody Rangers 1 was first conceptualized back in 2006, I thought the movie would be carried mainly by Zordon and Alpha having to deal with annoying teenagers. By the end of the movie, I and everybody else knew Meat was the REAL star of the show. Chris Zito does an amazing job with his voice, and I knew I was gonna use him as the character from the beginning after wanting to make use of his voice talent as a MAIN character for quite a while. Meat's over-enthusiasm lends itself well to his quotable catch-phrases the fans can't help but dig.
He's also overly emotional, which I helped play up on throughout the trilogy of movies, where he can be totally gung-ho and a your best bud in the world, but as soon as something goes horribly wrong for him, he becomes a sea of sorrow and regret, which slowly turns into depressing anger and rage. The feature movie gives quite a bit of development, very much akin to the process he goes through during each of the original three movies I've made.
By this point, Meat's without a doubt one of my favorite characters of the hundreds I've created and designed.
Monday, June 2, 2008
Who doesn't love a group of young athletic teenagers falling out of a plane from miles above ground? ...and for CHARITY even! Those kids, they bring a tear to my eye. Oh token-fat and token-goth are in there. Designing and color-scheming their jumpsuits was fun, though I still don't get why the citizens of Angel Grove are retarted enough to NOT catch-on to the whole color-coding thing and realize their true identities. Oh well.
Stay tuned for more, since I've got some background design and character sketches to put up in the near future, along with some character bios with info on their creation and the like.