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The Wanna-Be Ranger

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This article is about a/an episode in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.

The Wanna-Be Ranger is the fourth & sixth-fourth episode of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.


The rangers find themselves seeing double when Lord Zedd attacks them with Primator, a monster that can change from one ranger to another. Meanwhile, Alpha 5 has left the command center exposing himself to the monster (in an attempt to be the hero for once), putting him in danger in the process.


While Jason, Kimberly, Tommy, Billy, Trini, and Zack are enjoying a friendly basketball game amongst themselves, they are suddenly alerted by Zordon to the Command Center. The Rangers are informed by their mentor that he will be forced to de-energize temporarily. Before he fades away, he leaves Alpha 5 in charge and to keep an eye on things. After the rangers teleport back to Angel Grove, Alpha expresses his sadness on being alone in "this big, scary Command Center".

Meanwhile, Lord Zedd senses the sudden flux in energy, and the instant he realizes that Zordon's powers are down, he sends a bolt of lightning from his staff, which strikes a gorilla costume Zack had left behind on the basketball court and transforms it into Primator, who possesses the power to shape-shift into the likeness of any of the Power Rangers.

Back at the Command Center, a bored Alpha 5 checks things out and sees a little boy, Dylan, who needs help. He considers contacting the Rangers, but changes his mind in the next instant and decides to help him by himself, calling himself "Alpha Ranger". After scaring away Bulk and Skull, who are trying to discover the secret identities of the Power Rangers, he finds Dylan and discovers that the boy has been suddenly separated from his mother, while befriending him and learning how to play soccer.

Squatt then informs Zedd that Alpha's out of the Command Center as well.

Meanwhile, Primator shape-shifts into a Billy look-alike and confronts Alpha and Dylan, but when Alpha catches a glimpse of Billy's image in the reflective surface of his helmet, he realizes that "Billy" is a fake, and Primator becomes himself again and attacks Alpha. Panicking, Alpha orders Dylan to run to safety and activates his self-destruct sequence so that Primator can't use him to find the Command Center.

With that plan thwarted, Primator transforms into a Zack look-alike and lures Kimberly and Trini into a trap, as the girls end up battling and defeating Zedd's Putties. Afterwards, the girls return to the Youth Center and confront the real Zack, who distinctly states that he knew nothing about the Putty attack. Jason tries to contact Alpha at the Command Center, but with no response, so the Rangers return to the Command Center, finding that Zordon has restored himself. Zordon debriefs them of Alpha 5's predicament and reveals that they have mere minutes to save him from death. However, they must battle and defeat Primator first, but he does not make things easy for the team, especially when he begins to confuse the Rangers with his shape-shifting powers, until they have no idea who's who.

They are forced to retreat and regroup at the Command Center, where Zordon explains that the Primator cannot maintain his shape-shifting ability upon seeing his own reflection, using Alpha's encounter with the Primator as an example. Equipped with a mirror, the Rangers teleport back to the battlefield, but somehow get separated. They find Tommy, seemingly in pain because of his waning powers, but become wise when "Tommy" suggests they surrender to Zedd. Using the mirror he brought with him, Billy is able to expose "Tommy" as the Primator. With Primator's shape-shifting powers useless now, Lord Zedd has no choice but to make his monster grow. After a harrowing battle, the Dragonzord and the Thunder Megazord destroy the monster, but the Rangers must still rush to help Alpha before he self-destructs. The Rangers teleport to Alpha's location, and Billy is able to restore the Alpha's systems to full operation with not a moment to spare, while Dylan is reunited with his mother.

With Alpha's greatest adventure ended, Zordon reproves him about leaving the Command Center unprotected and failing to inform the Rangers that he would be leaving, as although Alpha meant well, a true hero knows the meaning of responsibility. Trini then teases Alpha about being grounded for a few thousand years, and Alpha laments about not ever being able to learn to play soccer.

Episode info

  • Writers: Daniel Sarnoff, Ellen Levy-Sarnoff
  • Director: John Stewart



  • The original script title for this episode was "Where in the World is Alpha?"; Trini says it as an actual question in the episode.
  • The episode's title makes reference to not only Primator's shapeshifting powers but also Alpha's wish to become a Power Ranger like his friends.
  • Alpha gains a non-Ranger human friend in the form of Dylan, the little boy in this episode.
  • All of the rangers, with the exception of Amy Jo Johnson also portrayed Primator when he changes into a copy of their character.
  • The episode was adapted into the book Alpha, the Hero.
  • Alpha 5 goes outside the Command Center for the second time, only without permission. His first time outside was in "Life's A Masquerade" in the previous season, though he most likely got Zordon's permission to leave so he could hang out with the Rangers. Alpha also, after the Rangers teleport away, expresses his sadness at being alone, which comes up to the surface again in "The Wedding".
  • Alpha's gender (male) is again stated in this episode, but his programmed age is audibly confirmed by Primator when he is in Billy's form ("You are a naughty, naughty little boy, aren't you Alpha?"). This explains the reason why he has his teddy bear that he occasionally holds, and why he acts so innocent, endearing and occasionally bratty.
  • Although the mirror they used was owned by Kimberly, it was blue and has a picture of the Triceratops Coin on its back when Billy uses it.
  • First time the Red Dragon Thunderzord Transforms from Dragon to warrior mode through lightning and first appearance of its Power Staff.
  • First of only two times the Dragonzord fights alongside the Thunder Megazord.
  • Some things in the original Zyu2 footage were edited out.
    • Originally, when Primator as the red ranger said "Guys, that's the bogus Red Ranger", it was true and some fight scenes of the Red Ranger fighting the others is shown.
    • A shot showing the Rangers doing poses as if making a rolecall was shown as well.
    • The Red & Green Rangers Blasting the monster with the Power Sword & Dragon Dagger respectivly.


  • The Dino Megazord is faintly visible beside the Dragonzord through the explosion Primator causes and it's right shoulder can be briefly seen in the corner of the screen when the Dragonzord begins to go one-on-one against the monster at the beginning of the fight.
  • Primator's Billy disguise is supposedly broken by seeing his reflection in Alpha's head, however the surface of Alpha's head is in no way reflective in his first body.
  • Based on their original positions and movements during the fight between Red Ranger and the disguised Primator, it was actually Primator who was beaten back and rejoined the others.
    • In the uncut Zyu2 footage released nearly twenty years later, this is indeed the case as Primator (in the form of the Red Ranger) attacks the others while they are off-guard.
  • Trini calls Billy by name in front of Dylan when the Rangers arrive to save Alpha.


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