Power Rangers fans know that the GOAT when it comes to the franchise is Tommy Oliver played by Jason David Frank since Mighty Morphin in 1993. The character had a unique origin story as he started as a villain turned hero. Above all, Tommy Oliver was the definition of “once a Ranger, always a Ranger.”
Throughout the franchise, the character has made numerous returns and taken part in different teams. Despite all this, fans can’t help but be aware that there were some Rangers who came in a close second to the best of the best. Whether it’s for leadership skills, good looks, or martial arts skills, some Rangers almost gave Tommy a run for his money.
10 Tommy: His Redemption Story
Don’t be fooled; over the years, there have been many spectacular redemption stories to marvel at. For example, Magna Defender sought revenge for his son’s death and even went against the Rangers to only become their ally. None surpass Tommy Oliver’s.
He made his debut early on in Mighty Morphin’s first season as the cute new guy with martial arts skills. His skills led Rita Repulsa to kidnap him and brainwash him to become the Green Ranger. With even stronger powers than the Rangers, Tommy became an undefeatable enemy. After the Rangers and Tommy break Rita’s spell, Zordon and Alpha transform him into the White Ranger, starting his story as a hero.
9 Merrick (Wild Force)
Merrick was the sixth Ragner in Wild Force who harnessed the powers of the wolf mask. Taking a look at Merrick’s history, he can easily be pitted against Tommy. Three thousand years before Wild Force, unable to defeat Master Org, Merrick ventures to find the wolf mask said to hold immense power.
After defeating Master Org, Merrick is cursed to wear the mask forever and falls under its evil spell. He becomes the evil Zen-Aku and is imprisoned by the other warriors. In the present time, Master Org frees Zen-Aku and uses him against the Rangers. Much like Tommy’s story, Merrick has to fight his evil and becomes an ally to the Rangers.
8 Tommy: Longest Reigning Ranger
It goes without saying that the main reason why Tommy is the best of all time is because of how long he’s appeared in the franchise. After Mighty Morphin, Tommy transitioned into becoming the Red Zeo Ranger and the Turbo Ranger for a brief time. At the beginning of the franchise, reusing characters in new installments were normal.
Tommy Oliver took a short hiatus before returning as the Black Dino Ranger and appearing in the epic crossover event Forever Red. Tommy’s history as a Ranger is often referred to in different series, and he continued to appear in multi-Ranger crossovers.
7 Wesley (Time Force)
Wesley was much more than the handsome Red Ranger in Time Force. The reason he gets a spot on the list is because of his immense character evolution throughout the show. Wesley was born into wealth and privilege and forced to follow the life his father wanted. Deep down, Wesley knew it wasn’t meant for him.
At first, Wesley came off a bit cocky and sure of himself when meeting the Time Force Rangers. Over time, Wesley grew into his role as a leader and as a hero. Wesley had no issue giving up his pristine life to be with the Rangers. When his father finds out he’s a Time Force Ranger, Wesley makes it clear that he finally found what he was meant for and was willing to make sacrifices for it.
6 Tommy: Natural Born Leader
There have been many Rangers who have proven their worth as leaders, but Tommy stands above everyone else. Since becoming the White Ranger, the team naturally followed his lead on many occasions. Tommy often showcased compassion and understanding when the team was down on their luck.
To top it off, Tommy also knew how to help execute a plan and have his teammates’ confidence. It was natural to see Tommy transition from the White Ranger to the Red Ranger in Zeo and Turbo. Even when Rocky became the Red Ranger, Tommy was still dominant, but within reason. In all of his appearances and crossovers, Tommy is always the natural leader.
5 Andros (In Space)
Andros gets some serious props as a Red Ranger in In Space that could rival Tommy. Andros made it his mission to uncover information about the universe’s evil villains on his own. He was a lone wolf, but he openly accepted the Turbo Rangers in their fight to rescue Zordon and stop Astronima.
Besides Andros’s skills as a leader, fans applauded his storyline with his sister. After uncovering that Astronima was actually his long-lost sister, he does everything possible to save her. He even refuses to fight her in the last major battle. Andros’s big moment of heroism is when he musters the courage to destroy Zordon’s energy tank to wipe the world of evil.
4 Tommy: He’s Loyal No Matter What & Helpful
A characteristic of Tommy Oliver that’s always appreciated in the franchise is his loyalty to the cause. Tommy isn’t one to shy away from a fight against evil, and he’s more than willing to become an ally with the Rangers to defeat Rita and continue on his journey as a Ranger for the next installments.
In Forever Red, Tommy is the one who bands together all the other known Red Rangers, even Jason, to fight the machine empire from regaining power. In Dino Thunder, Tommy disappears to only come back with the black Dino Crystal just in time to save the others. He was also willing to sacrifice himself in his fight with Goldar.
3 T.J. (Turbo & In Space)
That’s not all; it was revealed that T.J. dreamed of becoming a Ranger ever since he was younger. Many can say it was fate as Tommy hand-picked T.J. to become his successor. After the Command Center is destroyed and Divatox manages to defeat the Rangers, T.J. bands together the Rangers to make the venture to space to go after her and try to free Zordon. T.J. realized his duty as Ranger when meeting Andros and joined forces to become the Blue Ranger.
2 Tommy: His Impressive Martial Arts Skills
All Rangers need good martial arts skills to make it in the franchise—that’s rule number one of Power Rangers. When it comes to memorable fighters, fans often recall Tommy. He had impressive moves and combat skills that only got better and better with every appearance.
Between high kicks, punches, and acrobats, Tommy wasn’t one to mess with. It’s one of the reasons why Tommy is the best of the best, no matter what series he’s in. Fans can vividly recall Tommy “Hiya!” whenever he fought.
1 Jason (Mighty Morphin)
Jason and Tommy were head-to-head in Mighty Morphin when it came to the show’s top guy. Besides Tommy Oliver, Jason was the second most remembered Ranger in the franchise. This is because he was the first-ever Red Ranger in the American adaptations. Jason had big shoes to fill, and he didn’t disappoint.
He was built, skilled in fighting, and compassionate. He had the makings of a great leader and did well until Tommy took over the mantle. Much like Tommy, Jason gave his comrades words of wisdom when needed and even gave them the push to use their Morphers for the first time.
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