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Robert Cartagena is a boxing correspondent for SFBay.ca. He graduated from SF State in 2011 with a B.A. in journalism and spent more than a year contributing monthly articles to The Hudsucker, an online magazine with a blog twist. He has a passion for sports journalism -- particularly boxing -- as well as film reviews. He also enjoys blogging and aspires to be a professional actor one day.

White Ranger vs. Scorpion: Universes clash in ‘Super Power Beat Down’

Image Credit: Bat in the Sun

Image Credit: Bat in the Sun

Attention fellow fanboys and true believers alike…

Have you ever wondered who would win in a battle between Batman and Deadpool? Or what would happen if Wolverine encountered the Predator in the jungles of South America? Or even which Batmobile would cross the finish line first?

Well, all your questions can now be answered thanks to the new hit web series Super Power Beat Down from Bat in the Sun.

As alluded to by the title, the series takes legendary superheroes and pits them in epic battles to determine which of them is superior. Each episode is hosted by actress and comic book enthusiast Marisha Ray. Along with fellow comic book enthusiasts Damian Buerer and Andy Liegl, they use their expertise to determine who they think will come out on top.

Though the series premiered last March, only 10 episodes have been released. The series has been entertaining for the most part so far and looks like it will have a promising 2014 when its next episode – “Captain America vs. Master Chief” – premieres in February.

But the most recent episode – “White Ranger vs. Scorpion” – is definitely the best in the series so far … and my personal favorite. There are other episodes worth watching, but I highly recommend “White Ranger vs. Scorpion” simply because it embodies what you would expect from a super-powered beat down.

Just consider the caliber of these two icons. The White Ranger (real name: Tommy Oliver) is probably the most iconic character to emerge from the popular 1990s kids’ television series Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. His wicked suit of armor gives him enhanced speed, stamina, strength and agility. Plus, he possesses the power of the almighty Tigerzord and wields the mighty Saba sword – which not only moves on its own, but also talks!

Then there’s Scorpion, who’s an icon in his own right … for the brutal and gruesome ways he eliminates his opponents in the Mortal Kombat universe. Scorpion also possesses the ability to breathe fire and like White Ranger, wields a trusty weapon of his own – a spear he shoots through the opponent’s chest!

Director Aaron Schoenke (who co-created the series with his father, Sean) and his team were aware of what would be expected from a battle of such proportions and truly went all-out to deliver an episode that fans wouldn’t soon forget. Just the opening sequence alone should be enough to keep you tuned in.

It opens up on a nightly shot of what appears to be Japan. A damsel in distress (played by beautiful YouTube sensation Arika Sato) is captured by Scorpion, who demands to know “where is he.” “He” turns out to be the White Ranger, who makes his epic entrance via bright bolt of white lighting. What follows is a nonstop, fast-paced fight to the finish that’s powered by the aptly-titled fight theme song “Mighty Kombat.”

In addition to the action-packed battle, the episode should also be noted for its nostalgia factor. Power Rangers and Mortal Kombat played big roles in my childhood (each for significant reasons). Seeing them come together in a series of this magnitude was awesome because even as a child, I never imagined what would happen if their respective universes collided. The battle also effectively blended elements of both franchises – with special effects reminiscent of Power Rangers and intense combat reminiscent of, well, Mortal Kombat.

If that wasn’t nostalgic enough, the episode also features a guest appearance from the White Ranger himself – Jason David Frank! Previous episodes of Super Power Beat Down have featured special guests, but none the caliber of Jason David Frank. This was the guy many Power Rangers fans – including yours truly – wanted to be because he was simply badass. Whether he was the Green Ranger or the White Ranger, I always liked how he had the coolest-looking shield and weapon to summon his respective “zord.” Seeing him on screen just made the episode that more special to me. Plus, he took the cake with his closing remark as to why White Ranger would slay Scorpion:

“Scorpion, come on. You were beat by a human – Johnny Cage. White Ranger don’t get beat by humans. White Ranger is not gonna tap – so it’s time for you to tap, Scorpion. Tap out!”

As I mentioned earlier, Super Power Beat Down has been an entertaining series so far. My only gripe is that some battles have been disappointing, with some ending anti-climatically and others just being too short and unsatisfying. I originally wanted to review the first 10 episodes, but there wasn’t enough content to work with; I pretty much gave my thoughts about it a sentence or two ago.

“White Ranger vs. Scorpion,” however, has that “it” factor that separates it from the other episodes; it just leaves a lasting impression on me. I mean, you get the best of both worlds – Power Rangers and Mortal Kombat – so you know you can’t go wrong. Throw in a memorable guest appearance from Jason David Frank and you have the ingredients that make it the defining episode of Super Power Beat Down.

Go, White Ranger, go go! Finish Him!

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