Half shelled…but entirely awesome!
Needless to say, I’m stoked for the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film. If there is one franchise that defines my childhood more than any other, it’s this one. More than Transformers. More than GI Joe. More than Power Rangers. I happily cut my teeth on religiously watching these four lean-green machines kick some serious Saturday morning ass! And the action figures…my God the action figures! It was insane. Oh how I feel sorry for my poor Mother and Father for having to feed the crack-addict sized addiction I had to the endless well of colorful plastic figures.
While there is a palpable excitement in the air, there is also a dark cloud looming. As it gains strength, it could very well develop into a full-blown hurricane (blowing in and quickly turning our joy into endless amounts of pain and suffering). Let’s name it Tropical Storm Bay shall we? While many claim that George Lucas raped their childhood with the Star Wars Special Editions, I reserve that honor for Mr. Michael Bay. After effectively ruining the possibility I’d ever enjoy Transformers on film again, he now helms a film depicting the most important series of my youth.
To say I’m nervous for its release is a Technodrome sized understatement. However, I will admit that I’ve not seen anything too off-putting in the trailers so far. The third just debuted online, giving us the most insight to date. So here are just a few things that stood out to me after several repeated viewings.
The Turtles & The Foot Clan:
The Turtles themselves don’t look any different than what we’ve already seen, but their personalities are the most clearly defined in this trailer. Leo is the somber leader you’d expect, while Mikey and Raph represent both the overly serious and overly humorous sides of the same coin. I also love that Donnie finally embraces his tech side (with gadgets strapped to his shell and head) in a way not seen since the original comics. Also, does it seem like the Foot Clan are looking more and more like The Expendables with their new look and arsenal of heavy artillery?
A VERY Familiar Tale:
While taking a different path in regards to the origins story, some aspects will keep to a traditional route. In the new footage, all four Turtles get tasered during an ambush (instead of just Raph this go ‘round) and thrown into the back of a van. Also, the Turtle’s lair looks to once again be ransacked, as we see Splinter severely injured (perhaps fatally?), leaving them to venture out on their own. It will be interesting to see just how closely Bay sticks to the source material with ‘Turtles (as that was the single biggest complaint amongst fans during his Transformers run).
Real Shredder IS BACK!
Remember that scene at the end of Secret of the Ooze where Shredder drinks the vile and becomes Super Shredder (played by wrestler Kevin Nash)? It looks as if this was mere child’s play compared to what we’ll get now. In a new scene that would likely make Silver Samurai piss himself, we see a version unlike anything depicted before. However, the most important take away is that Shredder will NOT be played by American actor William Fichtner (as we were previously led to believe). The appearance of a shadowy Asian figure (combined with the line about “taking your armor to the next level”) would point to the fact that Oroku Saki WILL RETURN!
As the film’s release date steams towards us, I can happily admit I’ve already made plans to see this opening day. I still consider the possibility that I could walk out of the theater disappointed, but I don’t care. I want to recapture some of that childhood wonder I miss from my past, and seeing a legit TMNT film in theaters is my last best chance to do so. Hopefully, Bay will hit a home-run and allow the healing process of our relationship to begin.
August 8th people, circle it on your calendars. Cowa-FREAKIN’-bunga!