Ninja Turtles sans Teenage Mutant

By now you’ve all heard Michael Bay’s infamous “alien race” quote, when referencing the new Ninja Turtles reboot.

And like many others on the internet, you nearly shit your pants when these words were uttered, forcing you into a blind rage, while simultaneously scouring the internet for any social outlet that would allow you to express your animosity for Michael Bay. Fan outcry was so intense that Michael Bay himself issued a response, stating:

“Fans need to take a breath, and chill. They have not read the script. Our team is working closely with one of the original creators of Ninja Turtles to help expand and give a more complex back story… Relax, we are including everything that made you become fans in the first place. We are just building a richer world.”

Reactions to this were far less then ideal, but by this time most complaints had been made and were just being rehashed by those who thought their word had yet to be heard. Kevin Eastman, the creator mentioned by Michael Bay, co-creator of TMNT, stepped forward with his own statement posted on facebook:

“I had been invited to check out the TMNT film development by my friend Scott Mednick over the years, and a while back had a full look behind the curtian at what writers Appelbaum and Nemec, director Liebesman, and producer Bay are doing–and trust me–it IS AWESOME. I’m officially on board, and will share more as I’m allowed… thanks all!”

Of course, no one believes this. There are claims out there that, the ever elusive “they” must have paid Eastman off to get him to announce his collaboration with the movie just to help settle fans down. Are you kidding me?! This man created, CREATED, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles! If he’s on board, then you should be too. But why would you be excited for a new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie when Michael Bay is involved in the production? I mean, he ruined Transformers! Right?

What about this isn’t awesome?!

I would have to disagree. Like it or not, Michael Bay sells movie tickets. Sure his movies are mostly eye candy and explosions, but that’s okay. Not every movie can be a heavy hitting piece about the harshness of life, and the truths of moral codes exposed through the existential minds of blah blah blah! Not everyone can get behind the movies with a cause. Not everyone can follow an intense drama with 6 twists. Not everyone can understand the subtle undertones that give a movie a deeper meaning. Sometimes we just want to sit down and watch giant robots from space shoot the living hell out of each other, and blow the shit out of every god damned thing they can! We want to see these kinds of films so bad that the franchise made over $1 billion domestically, despite all of the hatred generated solely by being a Michael Bay film. TMNT needs a name like Michael Bay to help draw in the younger crowds that have not been exposed to it like we were as kids. Hate it all you want, but this is a good thing because the more tickets sold means higher chances of sequels, and thus the longevity of a franchise. Truthfully, any Ninja Turtles is better then no Ninja Turtles.

The Transformers toy brand sold about $100 million in merchandise in 2006. One year later, following the film’s release, the Transformers brand brought in close to $500 million! That’s 5x more then the year before. Not just because a movie was released, but because a successful movie was released. TMNT was the #1 selling toy brand in 1990. Now, it’s nearly impossible to find a TMNT toy in any toy store. Can you believe that?! I had shelves and boxes loaded with TMNT merch, and now I can’t even buy one figure for my little nephew… or myself. I don’t think I could have ever imagined a world where TMNT was actually irrelevant. I’m shell shocked!

TMNT is far overdue for a comeback, and Michael Bay is the name that can help them return to their former glory. Sure he said “alien species” and has not yet stated that they aren’t aliens, but that doesn’t matter. Maybe the ooze is of alien origin, thus mutating them into alien beings. Aliens and intergalactic beings play a major role in the history of TMNT’s fiction. So for them to say alien isn’t exactly far fetched. And I say that with as straight a face as I can when talking about an ooze that mutated some petstore turtles and a sewer rat into anthropomorphic teenage ninjas!

Stories and origins change all the time. In the 2002 Spider-Man movie, Peter Parker was given Organic Webbing, forgoing the need of web shooters. I didn’t like that decision, but someone at Marvel did and they changed the fiction of the comics to include it. Did I complain when this happened? No, I just kept reading on, because it didn’t matter. Why? You see, in fiction there’s only one rule: THERE ARE NO RULES! It’s fiction! Made up! How do you kill a vampire? Holy water, stake to the heart, sunlight. WRONG! However the hell you want, because they’re not real. When Spider-Man underwent a change that gave him new powers, including organic webbing, I just accepted it, because it isn’t real. If the turtles are re-written to be aliens from another planet, that resemble mutated turtles of our world (which is highly unlikely based on the statements from the production team), then so be it. It’s all made up anyway!

The original TMNT was WAY different then the pizza eating goofballs of the 90’s!

Really at this point it’s too early to tell if anyone should hate the movie or not. On one side we have Michael Bay, Kevin Eastman, and Jonathan Liebesman all stating that everything we know and love will be in Ninja Turtles. On the other hand, we all hate Michael Bay for turning Transformers into a multi-billion dollar a year franchise, and household name once again… I mean… ruining Transformers.

So I say we just wait and see. Don’t hate for the sake of hating, instead be tolerant. See what happens. If you don’t like what you see in trailers, and hear in reviews, then don’t see it. Action speaks louder then words. You can bitch all you want online, but what really hurts a product is not generating money. My personal feelings on this situation: If Eastman says it’s awesome, then I’m certainly intrigued. Tell us know what you think in the comments below!

is not a boss.

You can Email Eric or follow Eric on Twitter @EricSweeten or Facebook

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