Nickelodeon has given our favorite sewer-dwelling ninjas a major redesign for the upcoming Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
Coming to the channel later this year, the producers of Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are definitely bringing the iconic TMNT screaming into the 21st Century. However, after many decades of beloved comics and movies - as well as some not so loved movies - it will certainly be interesting to see how the fans who grew up with the formidable four take to the new look.
Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles executive producers Andy Suriano and Ant Ward held a Facebook Live broadcast alongside long-time Turtles voice artist Rob Paulson, which was hosted by (new) Splinter Eric Bauza. The broadcast also had TMNT co-creator Kevin Eastman drawing a live sketch, but the highlight was audiences' first look at the heroes in a half shell. Take a look:
— Nickelodeon (@Nickelodeon) February 1, 2018
Each character will now represent a different species of the rambunctious reptiles, presumably to teach kids more about turtles. Raphael is a snapping turtle, Leonardo a red-eared slider, Michelangelo a box shell, and Donatello a soft shell. It is now a beefed-up Raphael who leads the gang, and other changes include a much younger and black April O'Neil. Missing from the picture are the likes of Shredder and Splinter, but both will find a place on the new show as well. There is a decidedly more edgy look the Turtles, but as long as they are still living beneath NYC and chomping on pizza, we should probably give it a chance.
At least Rise appears to be pushing the envelope this time, but having the boys as wholly different species was never the way the Turtles were supposed to be. It is a look that is sure to divide the Turtles' fanbase, but at least it looks better than the awful CGI years of Nick's last series which ran from 2012-2017.
First introduced in 1984 as a parody of the four most popular comics at the time, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was originally a hybrid of Daredevil, New Mutant, Cerebus, and Ronin. The comics in popularity and eventually got its first animated series in 1987. Widely popular, TMNT 87' ran until 1996 as one of the best animations from that era. There have also been various continuing animations, a live-action TV series, and six feature films, but how will Rise fare in Turtles lore?
While the early days of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles made a big name for the quartet, its most recent outings on the small and silver screen have failed to cash in on the hype of the original. Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles' 26-episode first season is coming soon, so let's see if the latest iteration can whack the competition with a pair of nunchucks or whether its back to the dojo to work on their movies.