When we selected Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for our "Most Anticipated Movies of 2014" list, it wasn't because we were overwhelmingly excited for it so much as we were morbidly curious about what Michael Bay, his Platinum Dunes production company, and Battle Los Angeles director Jonathan Liebesman have done with the property. An icon for children of the '90s everywhere, the new TMNT established the wrong precedent almost immediately with initial word that the film would feature everything from a wildly different alien origin story to a title that dropped the "Teenage Mutant" wording.
Some of those initial worries have been smoothed out; the film WILL be called Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and the origin story will largely remain the same. However, when it comes down to the look and characterization of the TMNT principal players, there's still been plenty of anxiety on the part of fans. Today that anxiety will likely reach new levels, as a Halloween costume reveals what could be the new look of the Turtle clan.
Have a look at this new version of a Michelangelo costume, courtesy of TMNT.com:
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When considering just how valid (or not) that image above is, it's probably best to refer back to some recent unofficial descriptions of a TMNT toyline inspired by the movie:
Michelangelo’s costume sounds like the most modern of the bunch: “a hoodie wrapped around his waist, pants and sneakers with the toes cut out, wrappings on his hands and forearms, a necklace (could be puka shell beads?) and his mask ends drape down to his chest.”
So, taking inventory of the photo above:
- Hoodie around waist - check.
- Pants and sneakers - check.
- Forearm wrappings - check.
- Shell bead necklace - check.
In fact, the only thing the toyline description mentions that we DON'T see in the Halloween costume pic are the long mask ends - though it's easy to see why that detail might be left out of a child's costume (tangled ends, etc...).
Bottom line: When you have toyline descriptions alone, that's just smoke; when you have toyline descriptions matching up to separate pieces of merchandise (like a Halloween costume) it's pretty safe to assume that we have fire on our hands. As in: this is probably the design that Liebesman and company are going with.
Should that be the case, then we can probably say that - while there will undoubtedly be some vocal detractors - the design depicted in that costume skews close enough to the original Ninja Turtle cartoon (and movie) design to keep older fans happy. However, if the designs of the Halloween costume do reflect they toyline and subsequently the film designs, it also means that the new version of Shredder (played by Lone Ranger star William Fichtner) will also probably adhere to what was leaked in the toy descriptions:
Pointy edges coming off of absolutely anything. He’ll be the stuff of ridicule for some time. Very overcomplicated outfit.
No es bueno, if true. The last thing fans want to see is a villain who will be the butt of jokes rather than fearsome (see also: Bane) - and with some pretty concerning ideas seen in an alleged leaked script still hanging in mind, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has a lot of hill to climb before it wins fans' respect.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles will open in theaters on August 8th, 2014.