Power Rangers is an enduring franchise that’s been around since 1993, beginning with Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers. The Red Ranger is always (with a few exceptions) the leader of the Power Rangers – for better or for worse. There have been over 20 seasons worth of Red Rangers, and they have not always left a legacy to be proud of.
Some Red Rangers have proven their strength and courage by their willingness to sacrifice their lives in the line of duty. Others have turned evil, skipped out on Ranger duties to play pachinko or gone on cross-country trips with their parents. This list will exclude some of the lesser known Red Rangers who were not the main leaders of the season, such as Aurico from the Mighty Morphin’ Alien Rangers (1996) saga and Alex from Power Rangers Time Force (2001).
So, who the greatest Red Rangers – and who aren’t? Find out in Power Rangers: Every Main Red Ranger, Ranked From Worst To Best.
20. Rocky DeSantos (Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers)
Rocky DeSantos replaced the original Red Ranger, Jason, in season two of Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers (1993-1996). This was a major step down, to say the least. Unlike Jason, Rocky wasn’t the leader. Tommy led the team and Rocky’s other teammates, all more experienced than him, often took on more important roles. He was the focus of one of the worst moments in Power Rangers history, a terrible episode focusing on Rocky, “Rocky Wants to Have Fun.” That had episode showed him neglecting his Red Ranger duties to play pachinko.
During Power Rangers Zeo (1996-1997), Tommy becomes the Red Zeo Ranger and Rocky is rightfully downgraded to being the Blue Zeo Ranger. Jason also returns as the Gold Ranger and becomes the second-in-command. This leaves Rocky feeling useless (It took you this long to realize it, Rocky?) and he tries to take on the villainous King Mondo by himself, biting off more than he can chew.
The final stain on Rocky’s character is his role in Turbo: A Power Rangers (1997) movie. He was injured during a practice match when he THREW HIMSELF into a spinning kick and fell out of the ring, hurting his back. The Rangers had a major battle to fight, so Rocky sent a 12-year-old to help the Rangers, since he couldn’t, and he has done a lot more than Rocky ever did. His stand-in, Justin Stewart, becomes the Blue Turbo Ranger and permanently took his place on the team. Because he is the only Red Ranger who was never truly been a leader, Rocky is the worst Red Ranger in the history of the franchise.
19. Nick Russell (Power Rangers Mystic Force)
Unlike Rocky, Nick was one of the major focuses in Power Rangers Mystic Force. The story actually overdid it, and focused on Nick a little too much. He is capable of becoming the most powerful wizard ever, yet he gives up on himself time and time again. Nick didn’t even get his powers until after all of the other Rangers because he did not believe in magic or in himself. He was ready to stop fighting and his team had to convince him to keep going. It should have been the other way around. He also has difficulty trusting other people, including his teammates, and rushes into battle, acting first and thinking later.
But Nick’s biggest reason for being here? During the finale, he turns evil. Of course he goes back to the side of good, but at the end of the series, he’s the only Ranger who doesn’t stick around. He decides instead of being a Red Ranger and saving lives he’s going to go on a cross-country motorcycle trip with his parents. But he promises to return. Someday. Despite being powerful and the season mostly focusing on him, Nick’s lack of confidence in himself and his preference to act before he thinks land him at this spot on the list.
18. Jayden Shiba (Power Rangers Samurai)
The Red Ranger in Power Rangers Samurai (2011-2012) and Power Rangers Super Samurai: Rise of the Bullzooka (2013), Jayden Shiba is a serious samurai raised and trained by Master Ji since childhood. He is overly concerned for his fellow Rangers, leading to several mistakes including going off to fight alone and initially not letting Antonio (the Gold Ranger) join the team, all in a misguided attempt to keep them safe. Overall, he’s a rather stereotypical stoic leader.
Jayden is also keeping a secret from the other Rangers, which further impacts his rating on this list: he is not the true Red Ranger. It was originally supposed to be his sister, Lauren, but she was forced to go into hiding. After this reveal, Jayden leaves the shrine and his friends behind, convinced he has no purpose. He does return but leaves his samurai days behind and learns to have fun. Not truly a Red Ranger, Jayden did care about his fellow Rangers. Just not enough to stick around.
17. Troy Burrows (Power Rangers Megaforce/Super Megaforce)
Troy Burrows is the Red Ranger in Power Rangers Megaforce (2013) and the follow-up series Power Rangers Super Megaforce (2014). He used martial arts as a way to become responsible and focused. Troy is compassionate and loyal, and always roots for the underdog. These are all important traits for the leader of the Power Rangers.
So why is Troy so low down on the list? Because he’s extremely boring and has little to no development over the course of the series (just like the rest of the Rangers in this season). His character is very generic and lacks much of a backstory. He often broods for the sake of brooding and shows little emotion. This just makes him so boring. Plus, his acting doesn’t help matters, delivering a lot of his lines with about as much enthusiasm as someone going for a root canal. At least he sticks to being a Ranger and doesn’t turn evil. But being generically brooding won’t get him any higher on this list.
16. Casey Rhodes (Power Rangers Jungle Fury)
Casey Rhodes is the leader in Power Rangers Jungle Fury (2008), despite being a new member of the Phi Zhua Academy. He becomes the Red Ranger instead of Jarrod, who had been training much longer, because he was verbally abusing another young student and Casey stood up to him. This led to their Master, Mao, making Casey the Red Ranger. Despite his noble actions, experience is also a pretty good asset to have when becoming a Red Ranger. After getting his tiger powers, he was referred to as a “cub” because of his inexperience. One of Casey’s faults is his overconfidence, evidenced by taking on Dai Shi alone.
When all of the Rangers undergo a test with Master Finn to get their Master Stripes, Casey is the only one who fails because he follows what the other students are doing. Not a good sign that this leader, when unsure what to do, just follows what everyone else does. Apparently, a student is someone who “follows his master and doesn’t ask.” Even this route that Casey manages to master is questionable, since asking questions and understanding why he’s doing what the Master is doing should be rather important too. He goes on to teach this to the students he ends up teaching at Phi Zhua Academy, further spreading a rather problematic ideology. Casey does go from an inexperienced leader to a Red Ranger who doesn’t get his team killed and ends up teaching others… but he is a very flawed teacher.
15. Jack Landors (Power Rangers SPD)
Jack is similar to Casey in that he is an inexperienced leader. Unlike Casey, he is a Robin Hood-esque thief who has the ability to walk through walls. He starts out not wanting to be part of Power Rangers SPD since he wants to help people in smaller ways rather than fighting as a Ranger. However, he does become the Red Ranger in order to save his friend Z’s life and the rest of the Rangers. At one point he even risks his life to stop a meteor.
Ultimately, by the end of the series, Jack decides he is not to be the Red Ranger anymore. He instead goes back to helping others in need and Sky, the Blue Ranger, is promoted to Red Ranger status. While Jack does prove himself as a Ranger, the Blue Ranger was more fitting for the role of leader. He had been training for it most of his life and Jack was simply a new rookie who didn’t even want to be on the team who was handed the role. Jack really wasn’t qualified for the job and despite his heroic actions, he just stops being a Ranger once the big bad is taken care of. He doesn’t even say a proper goodbye to his fellow teammates. He may have a kind heart, but Jack really didn’t want to be the Red Ranger. He was a great person morally, but he just wasn’t cut out to be a Red Ranger.
14. Tyler Navarro (Power Rangers Dino Charge)
Tyler is adventurous and puts a lot of energy into his leadership role in Power Rangers Dino Charge (2015). He is also trying to find out what happened to his father, who disappeared ten years earlier while he was on an archeological dig. Unfortunately, his father’s disappearance leads to Tyler’s biggest flaws as a leader. His obsession with finding the person responsible for his father’s disappearance causes Tyler to act rashly and put his team in danger.
At one point he goes after Fury, the monster drawn in his father’s notebook (the only thing he left behind), on his own. His actions ruin a plan the Rangers were working on to take down the big bad of the season, Sludge. He does not let his obsession totally consume him, though. After he finds out Fury is controlling a mysterious host, Tyler switches from focusing on revenge to focusing on saving the host. Tyler also gets the energy that turns him into a Power Ranger stolen by Sledge. He does recover it, but losing it in the first place hurts him more than it helps on this list. Tyler’s obsession with revenge puts him lower on this list, but he is a powerful Ranger that can be a serious leader. He also has the most “forms” of any other Ranger, 11 in total.
13. Lauren Shiba (Power Rangers Super Samurai)
Lauren Shiba gets the honor of being the very first female Red Ranger (WOOHOO!). This is not counting Charlie, the A-Squad Red Ranger from Power Rangers SPD who turned evil. However, her character had a very rocky start with her fellow Rangers. She is the sister of Jayden Shiba, who took the #18 spot on this list, taking his place as the Red Ranger in Power Rangers Super Samurai. Of course, the other Rangers were reluctant to move on from having Jayden as their leader. Kevin, the Blue Ranger, even wants to leave with Jayden.
But Lauren is a very capable leader and fighter, and right away she is shown to be just as good if not better than Jayden, skills-wise. She had to be sent into hiding in order to master the Sending Seal to seal away the big bad of the season. As soon as she gets back, Lauren takes care of Jayden and the injuries he sustained while fighting in her stead. She manages to take out a monster with one Zord that previously took out the powerful Claw Armor Megazord. The biggest problem is that, while Lauren finishes strong as the Red Ranger, she only shows up on the 16th episode of the show, giving her only a handful of episodes to prove herself.
12. Cole Evans (Power Rangers Wild Force)
Cole Evans was raised by a tribe in the jungle from the time he was a baby, because his parents were killed. It prepared him well for leading his team in Power Rangers Wild Force (2002-2003). He could give Tarzan a run for his money with his agility, keen senses and connection with animals. He is even able to communicate with the Wild Zords. Also, unlike previous Rangers, Cole wasn’t a teenager. He’s approximately 20 years old and, in his case, with age comes experience.
Despite having some difficulties adjusting to civilization, Cole tries his best at everything he does. However, he is still a rookie with no formal training when he joins the Rangers. And just like Jack, there was arguably another member of the team who was much more suited to be the Red Ranger: Taylor Earhardt, the Yellow Ranger. She was the leader of the team before Cole, so she already had experience leading the team. Unlike Cole, she’s had military training. This does mean she has a very strict personality, but Cole shouldn’t completely disregard the rule book she sets out for the team. A true leader would at least try to consider his second-in-command’s suggestions. Cole has a lot of unique powers and the heart of a hero, but he would have been better as the emotional center of the team rather than their leader.
11. Shane Clarke (Power Rangers Ninja Storm)
Shane Clarke leads the Rangers in Power Rangers Ninja Storm (2003-2004). He’s a very serious person who has difficulty working on a team. His family are the ones who instilled this seriousness into him. To compensate, Shane uses skateboarding as an outlet. He watches his friends’ backs and tries to make sure they don’t trust others too quickly. He has to learn to trust the Crimson and Navy Thunder Rangers, Hunter and Blake, but eventually does consider them true teammates and friends.
In addition to his capabilities as a Ranger, Shane has a lot of superpowers and skills he learned from the Wind Ninja Academy. He has superhuman speed, can leap high into the air, evade detection and use his inner energies in order to resist mental attacks and manipulation. His power as a Ranger allow him to control the element of air. He’s able to project gusts of wind and walk on air. He earns his Battlizer armor because he saved the alien woman Skyla when he was younger from a bounty hunter. Shane eventually becomes an instructor at the Wind Ninja Academy.
10. Scott Truman (Power Rangers RPM)
Scott Truman, the Red Ranger of Power Rangers RPM (2009), has a lot of baggage on his shoulders. He really wants to live up to his father’s expectations, having always been overshadowed by his younger brother Marcus. Scott is the one who survives the Battle of Corinth, while his brother dies in battle.
The reason Scott isn’t ranked higher on this list comes down to his personality: he can be very stubborn and cocky, and doesn’t trust easily. If you disobey his orders, you better watch out – especially if you’re Dylan! He also cares about his cars A LOT – maybe more than his fellow Rangers. But Scott does prove himself to be a good person and leader. At one point, he recklessly goes out into the desert, but he manages to correct his folly when he saves several prisoners. His father offers him a medal for his actions, but he refuses to take it because he wasn’t on a mission at the time. Scott may like his cars a little too much, but he does have his heroic moments.
9. Wesley “Wes” Collins (Power Rangers Time Force)
Wesley Collins, better known as “Wes”, is the second-in-command of the Rangers in Power Rangers Time Force. Despite his Red Ranger status, Wes is more of a field commander while Jen, the Pink Time Force Ranger, leads the squad. He gets his morpher from the former Red Time Force Ranger Alex, who was Jen’s fiance.
At first Wes is going to take over his father’s company, but he joins the Rangers instead. He tries to save his fellow Rangers by sending them back to the future when he finds out they’ll die if they stay, but his teammates are dedicated and return when they find out Wes will die trying to save the city. After winning the fight, the other Rangers leave for the future. Wes keeps his Red Ranger powers and becomes the commander of the Silver Guardians, who protect the city. He also makes the smart decision to only accept the job if he can have Eric, the very capable Quantum Ranger, as his partner.
8. Mackenzie “Mack” Hartford (Power Rangers Operation Overdrive)
Mack Hartford is the Red Ranger in Power Rangers Operation Overdrive (2007). Mack has to convince his father, who is creating the elite Power Rangers team, to let him become the Red Ranger. Instead of convincing him, Mack steals his father’s morpher and becomes the Red Ranger. It’s not a great start.
Mack’s drive is adventure and excitement, but the most interesting thing about Mack is that he is actually an android created by his dad because he couldn’t have a son. Being an android both positively and negatively influences his ranking on the list. When Mack finds out he is an android, he questions his existence and becomes very reckless. But he does ultimately overcome this identity crisis, a pretty great feat considering his whole life was under question.
Mack’s most heroic moment occurs during the season finale. He uses all of his power during his fight with Flurious in order to destroy him. This causes severe internal damage, too severe to repair. He sacrificed his life and that does earn him a higher place on this list. But besides being a robot, Mack just isn’t very interesting, and he is revived and becomes human at the end of the season.
7. Conner McKnight (Power Rangers Dino Thunder)
We’re first introduced to Conner when he skips class to play soccer. His first line in Power Rangers Dino Thunder (2004) is to his friend, who is worrying about getting caught by Principal Randall. “Don’t worry about Randall,” says Conner. “She’s a woman. And women are just grown up girls. Need I say more?” Please, don’t.
So why is he on this list? Conner does one of those things we love about Red Rangers: he evolves as a character over the course of the season. He goes from being a jerk to someone who has earned the right to wear red. It’s a real risk to start with a jerky character because it makes it more difficult to root for them; but if you can pull it off, that former jerk can become much more compelling than someone with a stoic, perfect personality right from the get-go.
Conner’s life used to revolve around soccer and nothing else. Toward the beginning of his career as a Ranger, he wanted to give up in order to play soccer. But he eventually bonds with the other Rangers and dedicates himself – for the most part – to his Ranger duties. And he still manages to pursue his passion, setting up soccer camps all around the world. But he still isn’t the brightest crayon in the box, which is why he isn’t higher on the list.
6. Leo Corbett (Power Rangers Lost Galaxy)
Leo started out as a very rash and impulsive Ranger. He wasn’t even really supposed to be the Red Ranger in Power Rangers Lost Galaxy (1999-2000). At the beginning of the season, the Rangers pulled their swords out of stones, King Arthur-style. It was his Leo’s brother, who dies in the ensuing battle, who pulled the Red Ranger’s sword, and gives it to Leo upon his death. Leo’s brother never even got to transform. Leo, however, ended up being a Red Ranger his brother would be proud of… plus he rips off his own shirt like a boss.
Getting the most development of any other Ranger in the season, Leo starts to think before jumping into situations by the time the season’s through. His crowning achievement is when he defeats Trakeena in a fight to the death. He takes her down by shooting her at point blank range with his fully powered Battlizer. However, Leo does need to be saved from the Red Psycho Ranger by Andros.
5. Carter Grayson (Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue)
Carter Grayson, the Red Ranger in Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue (2000-2001), doesn’t have an evil bone in his body. He was inspired by Captain Mitchell, who was a firefighter that saved Carter’s life as a kid. Even before becoming a Power Ranger, Carter dedicated his life to saving others, becoming one of Mariner Bay’s best firefighters. He cares more about saving people than pulling off a fancy martial arts move, gladly putting himself in harm’s way to help others. However, he does like to go by the book and doesn’t like it when people don’t follow his orders.
Being the first to accept the role of a Lightspeed Power Ranger, Carter puts his all into being a Ranger. He drives Lightspeed’s Rescue Rover into battle, trying to run over a monster with it early on in the show. During the final battle of Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue, Carter takes out Queen Bansheera by hurtling her into the shadow world, trapping her forever. The only problem is, Carter didn’t really develop over the course of the show. However, since he started out so awesome, that still earns him a spot as one of the top ten best Power Rangers.
4. Andros (Power Rangers In Space)
Andros, the Red Ranger in Power Rangers In Space (1998-1999), had an epic introduction into the franchise. He covertly scopes out a major gathering of villains held by Dark Specter. Andros is discovered, but not before he discovers Dark Specter has captured Zordon and is draining his energy. He manages to escape from the likes of Rita Repulsa, Lord Zedd and Divatox, showing his cunning and skill. Later, when he meets the former Power Rangers Turbo Rangers, after initially not trusting them, he gives them the Astro Morphers so they can become the Space Rangers and save Zordon.
Andros leads the group to victory against many powerful foes, including the Psycho Rangers, one of the biggest threats ever faced in Power Rangers. He also has to go up against Astronema, who he finds out is his long lost sister Karone. At Zordon’s request, Andros sacrifices him in order to release his good energy and turn evil to dust. In the end, Andros is a terrific fighter – horrible space CGI effects and all – who saved the universe.
3. Thomas “Tommy” Oliver (Power Rangers Zeo/Turbo)
Tommy could easily top this list… if it was for being the Green Ranger or the White Ranger. He is an amazing character and becomes the leader of the team despite not being the Red Ranger in Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers. He even becomes a mentor and the Black Power Ranger in Power Rangers Dino Thunder. His tenure as the Red Ranger in both Power Rangers Zeo and Power Rangers Turbo (1997-1998) was also significant, but no more so than his time as the Green or White Rangers.
When the Power Rangers were turned into children (long story short: a villain used the Superman method to turn back time), each of the five kids had to be sent through time to get their own Zeo crystal, which would turn them into the Zeo Power Rangers. Tommy was sent to a Native American land in the past and had to find the Red Sub-Crystal amongst two fakes and succeeds, getting his Zeo Crystal.
Tommy goes through a lot as a Red Ranger. When he’s unable to control the Red Battlezord, he doesn’t give up but instead goes on a spiritual journey. He even reveals himself as a Red Ranger to save his brother. Tommy’s recruitment skills are impressive, enlisting Jason, the original Red Ranger, as the new Gold Ranger for a time. Good forethought, considering Jason has to help a brainwashed Tommy before he takes the Rangers down. Definitely a Power Rangers legend, Tommy is a fantastic leader, with and without the Red.
2. Theodore Jay “T.J.” Jarvis Johnson (Power Rangers Turbo)
Theodore Jay Jarvis Johnson (say that three times fast), better known as “T.J.”, was picked by Tommy to succeed him as the Red Ranger in Power Rangers Turbo, and he definitely made him proud! He is a kind-hearted baseball player who is picked to be the Red Turbo Ranger because of the bravery he demonstrates when saving others, no matter who they may be. T.J. even helps out Bulk and Skull when the two are suspected of stealing packages, going above and beyond to prove their innocence.
T.J. is a great example of a true hero who is willing to risk everything to save others. In the Ranger’s final battle against Divatox, T.J. tries sacrificing two Megazords to stop her and then risks his own life to defeat her. Even when Piranhatrons destroyed the Power Chamber, T.J. wouldn’t leave without saving Alpha. It’s unfortunate that T.J. was only a Red Ranger for half a season before being demoted to being a Blue Ranger.
1. Jason Lee Scott (Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers)
Jason Lee Scott is the original Red Ranger and the first lead of the Power Rangers in Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers. A skilled martial artist with a big heart, Jason is willing to help others when they need him. He even teaches Billy, the Blue Ranger, martial arts in order to build up his confidence and teach him useful self-defense skills.
When the Green Ranger appears on the scene and is manipulated by Rita, Jason nearly dies at Tommy’s hands. But eventually, he beats Tommy in combat and breaks the spell Rita has over him, convincing him to join the other Rangers and fight against her. Tommy even gave him his Power Coin, giving Jason access to Tommy’s powers. Jason also proves he isn’t just some dumb jock when the villainous Goldar ransoms parents off for the Power Coins. While Jason sacrifices his own Power Coin, he kept Tommy’s, allowing Tommy to become the Green Ranger once again.
According to a contest run by ABC Family in 2004, Jason was voted the best Power Range of all time. He held onto his title as the most popular Red Ranger in a 2007 Toon Disney contest as well. Ten years later, he still holds that honor in many fans’ hearts, and is the best Red Ranger ever.
Who do you think are the best and worst Red Rangers? Let us know in the comments below. Also, check out 15 Worst Power Rangers Bad Guys In The History Of The Franchise.