|This article is about a/an ally in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Power Rangers Zeo, and Turbo.|
Alpha 5 (usually just called Alpha for short) was the robotic assistant to the Rangers during Mighty Morphin Power Rangers and Power Rangers Zeo, as well as the first few episodes of Power Rangers Turbo. Alpha was an important factor in the Power Rangers' battle against evil and acted as a secondary mentor to them, under his friend, the wise sage Zordon of Eltar. Alpha would use the exclamation "Ai yi yi" in moments which invoked emotions of any kind, from panic to elation (most commonly panic); in more extreme situations, the exclamation could contain four "yi"'s, five "yi"'s or, in rare cases, six or seven "yi"'s; this has become a well-known catchphrase for most of the Alpha robots. He worked in the Command Center most of the time, only getting out on three occasions, and almost always obeyed every command and order that Zordon issued. Surprisingly, while Alpha 5 is a robot, he has an amazing range of emotions that make him very humanlike.
|This article contains content in reference to the main TV series, as well as supplemental material, such as the comics. A sliding/floating timeline applies. Story instances for TV and other media will be clearly marked.|
Before Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers
Alpha was a fully-sentient multi-functional automaton built by King Lexian on the planet Edenoi thousands of years ago; his memory banks contain many fond memories of that planet, but we never see those memories so we don't know what his "childhood" was like there. Alpha's close friend from his days living on Edenoi is Lerigot, the wizard of Liaria. No information has ever been given as to when and how they met, however.
However, it is mentioned by Alpha that he was assembled by the king and was raised by him as if Alpha was his own son. He is the second Alpha automaton to be in the service of Zordon, succeeding Alpha 4 (who is also presumed to have been built by the Edenite king). Zordon later befriended him and took him in as his trusted assistant, serving as a father figure in place of his creator and "father", King Lexian of Edenoi. Alpha 5 thus assisted Zordon in the creation of the original Power Rangers as well as the Command Center.
Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers to Zeo
Alpha was originally in a shut down mode prior to Rita Repulsa's release and, under Zordon's orders, recruited Jason Scott, Zack Taylor, Billy Cranston, Trini Kwan and Kimberly Hart to form a new Power Rangers team.
From then on, an adviser, mechanic, tech-wizard, and overall friend to the Power Rangers from Mighty Morphin leading up to Power Rangers Turbo. Alpha was loved by the Rangers and Zordon and, during Tommy's stint as an evil Ranger, even acted as the sole mentor due to Zordon being lost in another dimension.
When the Command Center was destroyed, Alpha was totaled in the wreckage, leaving only his head behind. When Rita was sitting in her new throne, she spoke with Alpha briefly, saying that he could have been better off serving her rather than blindly serving "the old sage". She then cruelly orders that his body should be melted down and that his head be fashioned into a bedside lamp, but then his visor eyes began to glow, revealing that he was still activated. He later communicated with the Rangers several times.
He is later reprogrammed by Finster and Rita but was later rescued by the Rangers and rebuilt good as new (meaning that Rita never really made good on her threat to melt down Alpha's body). He later piloted the Pterodactyl Dinozord.
However, because of their duties as the protectors of Angel Grove, the Rangers rarely spent any quality time with Alpha, which devastated him.
His despair and need for the love of Zordon and the Rangers only came up to the surface when he was turned evil by Finster's personality-altering disc, whereupon his inner rage consumed his central processor. Alpha is constantly left alone in the Command Center/Power Chamber, and very rarely gets to leave; as a result. This serves as a catalyst for his later conversion to evil.
As Rita returned to the Moon Palace after her banishing by Lord Zedd at the start of Season 2, she had Finster create a love spell to make him fall in love with her. They decided to create a wedding gift so Zedd had Finster recreate his best monsters to kill the Power Rangers as a wedding gift. Meanwhile, Zordon went into temporary hibernation and left Alpha in charge who went outside of the Command Center to pick flowers although Putties appeared and grabbed him until Finster inserted a disc into his back which turned him evil. When he returned inside, Zordon picked up on his switch and tried to stop him but Alpha modified his face to look more goofy before muting him and teleporting the Power Rangers (who were in Australia) to the Specter Theater where thier weapons would be unavailable and they would be unable to teleport out. When they later left, Zordon tried to appeal to him again but Alpha cut the connection and teleported the Power Rangers back to the Specter Theater when they were defeated in thier Zords by the Peckster and the Rhinoblaster. Luckily, the Power Rangers later escaped by tricking the two monsters and made it back to the Command Center where Alpha tried to play it cool. However, Billy noticed the virus disc and ripped it out which removed the virus and returned Alpha to the side of good.
Rita clearly makes reference to some kind of history with Alpha when she speaks to him briefly, stating that he could have been better off serving her than Zordon.While there is a possibility of stories that will eventually explore this, it may be a reference to when Rita and Finster turned Alpha evil , where he was completely loyal to her thanks to the reprogramming that he had received due to the virus.
When the opportunity presented itself, Alpha 5 left with Zordon to the planet Eltar and was replaced by Alpha 6, his "brother" whom he programmed in the Power Chamber before leaving. His last known appearance is in the episode Passing the Torch, where he and Zordon returned to witness the veteran rangers passing on their powers, and oddly, he is in his old robot body rather than his shinier, more advanced one. Alpha 5 hasn't been seen or heard of since. Wild Force writer Amit Bhaumik has said that he takes the view that Alpha was destroyed in the battle when Dark Specter invaded the planet Eltar but there's no official confirmation of this whatsoever. Some fans of the series believe that he survived but went into hiding. However, Richard Horvitz can still do Alpha's voice, and Alpha is still remembered and loved by cast and fans alike. It was implied by Bhaumik that Alpha 7 was in fact Alpha 5, but rebuilt with a stronger body and tuned up with a database function.
Alpha 5 is featured in a chronicle of Power Ranger history compiled by Tommy Oliver shortly after he forms the Dino Rangers which is found by the nascent Ranger team in the Dino Lab. However, Tommy does not mention Alpha's current whereabouts.
This Alpha possibly has a star system named in his honor which is unfortunately laid waste to by high-class alien criminals Gineka, Chiaggo and Delapoo at the direction of intergalactic arms dealer Broodwing. Thanks to the efforts of the B-Squad Rangers though, especially Bridge Carson this does not go unavenged.
Alpha's personality throughout most of his appearances was kind, loving, and innocent. He is also quite panicky, quoting his iconic 'ai yi yi yi yi yi yi!' when in a panicked state (but as mentioned above also uses the phrase for any emotion). In "The Wedding", however, thanks to Finster]]'s personality-altering computer program (inside of a compact disc) and Alpha's subsequent reprogramming for evil, Alpha was transformed into an angry, obnoxious and megalomaniacal brat bent on destroying the rangers and becoming famous for their deaths as a result. He even silenced Zordon three times, once by simply muting him, by commanding him to be silenced, and again by cutting him off from our dimension (though not by un-anchoring him the way Tommy did in Green With Evil, due to repeated footage recycling) and repeatedly insulted and mocked him. He also, while he is in this brainwashed state, has complete fealty to Zedd and Rita, as he declares that the Command Center would be all his when the Rangers become Zedd's prisoners in "The Wedding" ("With the Rangers prisoners of Lord Zedd and no Zordon, the Command Center will be mine! ALL MINE!").
In relation to the above statements, Alpha also gets very sad when the Rangers leave him alone; this is shown in "The Wanna-Be Ranger", "A Friend in Need" and "The Wedding". This is also shown in Alpha's Magical Christmas and its audio book adaptation Lord Zedd's Holiday Humbug.
At times, Alpha can also act very paternalistic, making him sort of the "mother hen" to the Rangers and some others (such as the children in his Christmas special, when he paternally reminds the kids not to open the gifts he gave them until the next morning).
Powers and Abilities
Alpha does not have much in the way of attacking enemies, but in "Power Ranger Punks" and Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Live, he can shock enemies with electrical charges of white energy. However, this does little damage to enemies, only stunning or shocking them briefly. His movie counterpart attempted to fight in a more traditional fashion, but did not defeat Ivan Ooze.
He was also the sole architect of both the original Command Center and, later, the Power Chamber.
As revealed in Power Ranger Punks, Alpha is adept at creating potions and tinctures (his skills rivalling that of Baboo and Rita themselves), with an example being the creating of the anti-punk antidote made from the Singing Squash.
Through the power of the Universal Morphin Grid, Alpha has the ability to create organic matter, such as flowers; he can also utilize its power to create clothing and, in his Christmas special, decorations, toys and Christmas gifts. In the same special, he also can rearrange the lights in the Command Center to form various shapes. It is unclear if he used his powers to create weapons for himself and the Eltarians during the war on Eltar before Dark Specter conquered the planet.
As an artificial intelligence, Alpha 5 is not susceptible to old age or death.
Alpha is a young robot that is only about four feet high, and has a red-and-gold casing over a black body. His head is flying saucer-shaped, and his "eyes" are a red bar that flashes across its front, similar to the Cylons in'Battlestar Galactica (the 1978 to early 1980s versions). He has a gold lighting bolt on his chest that flashes. On Alpha's arms are two golden "elbow caps" that limit the movement of his arms. He also has big and clunky feet. On Alpha's back is a golden badge-shaped CD compartment that was used to put a disc into him on two occasions.
The Alpha 5 costume was constructed in such a way that Sharf, Sellner and Kistler could not sit down while wearing it, similar to the C-3PO costume in Star Wars. Any scenes where Alpha sits down would have required the costume to be partially disassembled first. This principle is true for Alpha 6 too, but Alpha 6 appears to walk much more freely.
Alpha, in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Live, resembles his design from stock drawings of the character as he appeared on merchandise during the show's early years. He appears to walk much more freely in this appearance, but he still does not fight in traditional methods.
In Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie, he was upgraded with a shinier, more advanced version of his body, this one being much "beefier". His body is now blue instead of black. His arms are bigger, his flashing lightning bolt now points straight down and is arrow-shaped, and the small dome on top of his head is gone. He is also now much shinier and more reflective. Gone also are the gold elbow caps as well, allowing for more greater movement of the arms. This body was later used for Alpha 6, and parts of it were used for Alpha 5's upgraded form Alpha 7.
Behind the Scenes
- Alpha 5 was voiced by Richard Steven Horvitz and suit acted by Romy J. Sharf, Sandi Sellner and finally Donene Kistler. Horvitz is best known as the voice of the titular character from the cult classic TV series Invader Zim.
- The identity of Alpha's voice actor remained a mystery for several years because Richard was credited under as the pseudonym Richard Wood. Alpha's Magical Christmas was the first episode to credit him under his actual name.
- His body in the comics is a combination of all three of the bodies he had on the show - his Turbo body for his head and chest, his MMPR early season 1 body for his shoulder plates, and his MMPR season 3/Zeo body for his legs.
- Richard Horvitz has confirmed that he himself came up with "ai yi yi" as Alpha 5's signature line when filming for "Day of the Dumpster" began.
- Alpha 5 is named after a letter in the Greek alphabet. "Alpha" (Greek: άλφα) is the first letter of the Greek alphabet, represented by the symbol A in uppercase, and α in lowercase.
- In Power Rangers S.P.D., a planet named "Alpha 5" is mentioned.
- Alpha appears on the 404 Error page at powerrangers.com, with this message: "ALPHA-5 ERROR ALERT Ay-yi-yi! My sensors tell me that the page you are looking for does not exist. Sorry!"
- Alpha 5 was planned as a character since Power Rangers' earliest incarnation Bio-Man, as a promotional folder reveals Alpha's name (written as Alpha-5) over a picture of Peebo.
Popularity and Legacy
Alpha 5 is considered a beloved character by fans; Alpha's Magical Christmas was made to give him a starring role in a Power Rangers project, as he had a supporting role during most of his appearances. Years after Alpha's departure for Eltar, Bandai America issued a Gosei Morpher/Power Rangers Action Card Game card bearing Alpha's image. The image features several minor discrepancies from the original costume from season 1 and more resembles his body from season 3 and Zeo, such as additional segments on his shoulder pads and pelvic parts and additional plating beneath his visor.
- Peebo, the robotic ally of the Biomen and inspiration for Alpha 5.
- Tensou, the robotic assistant of Gosei who serves a similar role and personality to Alpha 5 in Power Rangers Megaforce.
- Alpha 1 - one of his predecessors seen in the 2016 Boom! Studios comics.
- Alpha 4 - his immediate predecessor.
- Alpha 5 (1995 movie) - alternate version of Alpha 5 seen in the 1995 movie.
- Alpha 5 (2016 comic) - alternate version of Alpha 5 seen in the 2016 Boom! Studios comics.
- Alpha 5 (2017 movie) - alternate version of Alpha 5 seen in the 2017 movie.
- Alpha 6 - his immediate successor.
- Alpha 7 - his second successor and/or possibly a rebuilt Alpha 5 (depending on how canon one takes the statements made by Amit Bhaumik in interviews).
- Alpha 55 - Possible future iteration of Alpha's model series from the year 3016 that serves Time Force and the HyperForce Rangers in Power Rangers Hyperforce.
- Circuit, the robotic assistant of the Time Force who serves a similar role and personality to Alpha 5 in Power Rangers Time Force.
- Assist Robots - Similar non-combat assisting robots appearing in Super Sentai.
- Alpha 5 Online (now defunct, archived by Wayback Machine)