Strip Talk #19: Sometimes it’s OK to reserve judgment

Lyndsey-2013-cutout-onlineBefore we even get started, let’s not even question my TMNT legitimacy, OK? I am what you would call a superfan. Check my credentials: I have most of the 1987 cartoon seasons on DVD, have had the theme song of said show memorized since the beginning of 1988, had loads of merchandise and wrote a freaking play about Leonardo falling in love with April. Oh, and that 2011 GI issue devoted to TMNT? My idea. So, when I render a verdict on this new contraption that Michael Bay has dared introduce, you can best believe I do know what I am talking about. Except … that’s just it: I haven’t rendered a verdict and I’m not going to. At least, not just yet.

Yes, I’ve seen the epic original trailer (and I use that term loosely here), and no, I don’t have much to say about the overall film. The trailer is just that: a trailer. You can’t just go around supposing anything from a trailer. From what I saw, it’s supposed to be a retelling of the origin story of the four turtles and their first meeting with Ms. O’Neil. Beyond that, I’m not really expecting much other than the rumbling that I’ve heard over the hills that the Turtles are supposed to be aliens this time around. Not so fast there, Bay. That isn’t canon and that one change? Yep, you guessed it: The fanbase isn’t buying it. At all.

There comes a time, though, when everyone needs to step back and keep a clear head about things. This is one of those magical times. Kevin Eastman, co-creator of the boys in green, even agreed with that righteous statement from Bay. Keep in mind, however, that Eastman isn’t even directly involved with the rights to the Turtles anymore and has only recently gotten back into the Turtle game. So take it for what it’s worth. Meanwhile, other co-creator Peter Laird is telling anyone who’ll listen that the concept is being watered down and probably will hurt the standing of the franchise. My reaction: As if the third movie, subsequent 80 million series after the 1987 cartoon and rampant merchandising didn’t already do that? I mean, let’s not forget that at the height of the series’ popularity, you could find the Green Machine on everything from bookmarks to toilet paper practically. So, what’s another movie to potentially push the franchise again to a newer generation of kids that don’t know the black-and-white history of the Turtles?

I’m no Bay defender or apologist but all of the knee-jerk reactions to the trailer need to descend right back down to the sewers whence the third movie came from.

Lyndsey Hicks is editor-in-chief of Gaming Insurrection. She can be reached by email at gicomics@gaminginsurrection.com

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