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POWER RANGERS S.P.D. DELTA ARMOR SERIES
By Thomas Wheeler

I'll admit - I can be something of an easy mark for chrome-plated toys.
Not sure why. I just think they tend to look cool. And transparent toys.
And glow in the dark toys. If they ever made a glow in the dark action
figure with transparent plastic and chrome trim, I'll have to have it.

This year's Power Rangers concept is called S.P.D., which stands for
Space Force Delta. It's more of a sci-fi concept than anything else, and
honestly, I think the uniform designs are some of the best that the Power
Rangers have had in years. The black side with the number (1 through 5)
is simple and yet dynamic.

A while back, I reviewed the basic figures, which were called "Light
Patrol" because of the fact that you could push a button on their belt
buckles, and activate a light in their heads. These were the most basic
of the Power Rangers figures this year. Bandai has always done a good job
with the Power Rangers toys over the years. They have a fairly basic
design, but the articulation is generally very good, and the overall
detail excellent.

Recently, a variant of these basic figures turned up at Wal-Mart. Called
"Delta Armor", these were figures that has a certain amount of color-
chrome plating on them. There were, however, a few things that kept me
from purchasing them. For one thing, they came in two-packs with other
figures, which I either already had or wasn't really interested in. I
didn't really feel like putting out the expense. For another, and more
significantly, they only did the Red, Blue, and Green Rangers in this
armored format. The males. There was no sign of the Pink and Yellow Rangers.

A little research online, however, turned up an interesting fact. There
were Delta Armor versions of the Pink and Yellow Rangers, and they were
on single cards. They were also reportedly only available in Canada.

I live 65 miles from the Mexican border. A trip to Canada would be a fair
haul for me.

But a few weeks later, something unusual happened. I saw the Delta Armor
Power Rangers at Toys "R" Us. More to the point, I saw the Pink and
Yellow Rangers, as well as the other three. Interestingly, the figures
were on bilingual packaging, in English and French. This is mandatory for
most Canadian products.

Now, I honestly have no idea if this was just some sort of mis-shipment
(I don't think it was, because I've seen the supply restocked), or if
Toys "R" Us made arrangements to carry the Delta Armor Power Rangers in
all of their stores, not just the Canadian ones. But in any event, I had
my Delta Armor Power Rangers - all five of them.

The body molds are the same ones as the Light Patrol Power Rangers. The
figures are about 5-1/2" in height, nicely sculpted and detailed, and
very well articulated. They move at the head, arms (forward, backward,
and outward), elbows, wrists, legs, and knees (including a swivel).

There are some differences. The Light Patrol effect has been removed. The
heads are clearly still molded from transparent plastic, and then painted
in the necessary colors except for the side apertures, but the LED inside
is gone. And it's not even possible to push the belt buckle button.

But then there's the chrome armor. On most of the figures, it looks
outstanding. The only exception to this is the Blue Ranger, where the
blue chrome is way too light compared to the blue plastic of the rest of
the figure. On all the others, it's a good match, so I really don't know
what might've gone wrong here.

The black side of the torso, where the number is, has been painted with a
black that has a slight metallic sheen to it. Nice touch.

It should be noted that the chrome armor is not as all-encompassing as it
might look from the front of the package. While the entire upper right
arm of any given figure has been chromed, only the fronts of the torso
and legs have been chrome-plated. If this is the sort of thing that would
make you feel cheated upon opening the figure, consider yourself duly
advised.

For myself, it didn't really bother me that much. However and wherever I
decide to display these figures, they'll be facing forward. I honestly
don't know if "Delta Armor" versions of these popular characters have
actually appeared in the TV series (I rather doubt it), but overall, I
feel that Bandai has done a nice job with these Power Rangers, and unless
the shipment I came across at the Toys "R" Us here in Tucson was some
sort of strange fluke, then it's not impossible to acquire all five, and
they're all single-carded, so it's not necessary to buy a Wal-Mart two-
pack just to get one of them, and another figure that you might already have.

In my opinion, the Delta Armor Power Rangers are a cool addition to the
line, and they definitely have my recommendation!