Thursday, April 3, 2014

Nerd Rant #3 - TM Ninja Turtles Reboot - The Next Batman Begins?

Smells like Teen Spirit.....and uhh ninjas....and tur...tles???
Ever wonder why, my dear readers, I will sometimes greet you as "my ninjas"?  This is because I have a deep affection for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise, as most adults my age do. (Yes we're Adults now!)  The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, or TMNT for short, were four brothers that worked as a team.  This use of "Ninja" became a term of endearment at my work, since I work so closely together with my co-workers.  We have each others' back.  We are a TEAM!

Now as the oldest sibling, Leonardo aka the Blue One, is the leader of the team.  He's not the strongest, that's Raphael.  He's not the smartest, that's Donatello.  He is definitely not the funny one, that's Michelangelo but he is the boss.  He's a little serious, a little bossy but he leads because he loves his family and his brothers.  As a kid, I GOT Leo.  As the oldest sibling myself, I understood his struggle to lead, especially whenever he doubted himself or became frustrated that he was held more accountable than anyone else.  Growing up, my parents told me it was my job to protect my two younger sisters whenever my parents couldn't be there.  I got in trouble if my sisters got in trouble, because I knew better and failed to keep them in line.  Yep, I was Leo just without the sweet swords, ninja training, and turtle DNA.

I went to see the last TMNT animated movie at the movie theater by myself.  I actively watch every episode of the current TMNT animated tv series on Nickelodeon.  So yeah, I gonna judge the hell out of the new trailer for Michael Bay's live action Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot.

My verdict?  This looks a whole lot like the Christopher Nolan's Batman Trilogy.  Like shot for shot.  Let's break it down, shall we? Please be advised, none of these images are mine but that's kinda obvious.....right?

So first up in the trailer we see overhead shots of a big city, I assume it's New York but really it could be Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Seattle, anywhere.  This is followed by a shot of a terrorist shooting a gun, dressed in black, then followed by a helicopter hovering over the city.  Fair enough, this is the same setup for any action movie trailer or drama these days.  Then we see a large radio tower get destroyed.  Large scale destruction appears in most action movie trailers but consistently appears in the Nolan Bat-verse.

Gotham City Bridge....Bane prefers blasting bridges to burning them

During these shots we hear a white male's voice-over describe the decline of honor, justice and heroes.  Again no real surprise here, it's been done before.

In the Dark Knight trailer it's Michael Caine.
In TMNT it's William Fichtner, apparently he plays Shredder AND he was also in the Dark Knight.
Next up in the TMNT trailer we see armed criminals being ambushed in a subway station.  Literally being thrown against the walls. We do not get a glimpse of the attackers. Seem familiar?  That would because the first scene in which Batman fights in Batman Begins takes place in a shipping container yard.  He too, ambushes armed criminals while remaining unseen.

Okay well eventually he is seen.

I guess the Turtles get seen by April O'Neil too.  On her digital camera, in the dark., while my camera can't even take a decent concert photo.

We see more city destruction in the trailer, the masses panicking, cop cars forming a blockade and then Leonardo leaps from a building donning ninja weapons and gear.  Ninja weapons....hmm.......

Oh right,....

Yep, got it.
Then comes my favorite part, the turtles can be seen sliding down a snow-covered mountain, because their shells are like natural sleds, baby!

He did not clear that all...
THIS too appears in Batman Begins, when Bruce Wayne slides down a snow-covered mountain to save Liam Neeson's character.

Okay nerds, I know this scene occurs earlier that the mountain scene but I needed to show a lil context, so slow your roll, okay?
He (Bruce) had to literally slow his Master's roll (off a mountain)
I'm not saying the comparisons between the TMNT reboot and the Nolan Batverse is unfavorable, far from it.  I realize this is just the very first trailer but I feel as though I have already seen a movie like this, Batman Begins, and I do not believe TMNT can top it at this point.  This trailer just gives rise to too many questions.  Where is Master Splinter?  Who is the bad guy, the antagonist?  The Foot Clan, the Kraang, Shredder?  What does Raph or Donnie look like?  What does Leonardo sound like?  Is Casey Jones going to show up?  What the hell happened to Mikey's face?

I mean, LOOK AT IT!!!!
I feel like the current animated series is totally hitting it out of the park, providing an updated version of the Turtles that includes all of the above elements,(Master Splinter, the Kraang, etc.) and yet wisely skip any Vanilla Ice references and "Cowabunga, dude!"  What purpose would the live version hope to accomplish?  A watered down version of Batman Begins?  At this point, I'm not buying what Michael Bay is selling and I even buy the TMNT Lego sets, people! I guess, I'll just have to stay tuned.

What are your thoughts, my ninjas?  Which turtle was/is your favorite?  Are you excited for the reboot? I wanna know!



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