As echoed by my cohort Turner, it’s easy to hate on remakes because whatever is being remade will never be as good as the original, or at least as nostalgia remembers it. The new Ninja Turtles trailer inspired more of this sort of sentiment and sentimentalism, but it’s important to remember that even if Michael Bay Presents Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Explosion Edition looks cheesy, there’s a long precedent of cheese in the TMNT pantheon. Here are just a few examples:
Really, this should be the end to any discussion if the Michael Bay Ninja Turtle movie will be the worst Ninja Turtles movie made. No. No, it won’t. I remember seeing this movie in the theater when I was a kid, a rare treat, and I can remember the Pizza Hut pizza I got being the best part of the experience. Want to talk about a movie that isn’t what the Ninja Turtles are about? How about they travel out of New York City and fight no mutant monsters, just nefarious ninjas? The new Ninja Turtles can’t be worse than this. It’s not possible. (I hope).
Whatever this is. I remember this as a kid, too, on a bootleg VHS. I also remember sheer disappointment at what I saw. To quote Milhouse, “They’ve been singing for two hours!”
And this. What the hell am I watching? It’s like guys dressed up as the Turtles for a summertime parade decided to make a movie with the costumes after.
This at least returned the phrase “production values” back to the franchise, though the Turtles still remind me of the prehistoric, full body puppeteering sitcom “Dinosaurs“. Then there’s the controversial addition of Venus De Milo, who may or may not be topless the entire time and throws the whole naming convention for a loop (surely kids would cheer for a turtle named “Georgia O’Keefe”?).
So to all those saying nay to the new Ninja Turtles, I offer you some consolation: it likely won’t be the worst Ninja Turtles movie ever (perhaps rising as high as third best), and if you’re worried about it “not respecting the source material”, I say I’m fine with that, since everything I remember about TMNT quickly spiraled away from any source material in favor of franchise building. At least they’re putting production values into this one, and maybe, just maybe, I can rectify the injustice of wasting a trip to the movies for Ninja Turtles III.