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‘Teenage’ Angst: New Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Movie Drops First Half of Title

It’s official: The heroes in a half-shell from the upcoming Michael Bay-produced live-action reboot of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles won’t be teenage or mutants. Instead, the movie will be called, simply, Ninja Turtles – but as Bay was eager to tell fans, it’s really not his fault, honestly.Writing on his website, Bay opened by immediately shifted blame for the new title: “Paramount marketing changed the name. They made the title simple.”

Luckily, though, the name will apparently be the only thing that’s different, going by what Bay says: “The characters you all remember are exactly the same, and yes they still act like teenagers,” Bay explained, presumably very aware of the oncoming backlash, adding that “everything you remember, why you liked the characters, is in the movie. This script is being developed by two very smart writers, with one of the original creators of Ninja Turtles. They care VERY MUCH about making this film for the fans. Everyone on this team cares about the fans. Just give them a chance. Jonathan [Liebesman] the director, is a major fan of the whole franchise. HE’S NOT GOING TO LET YOU DOWN.”

Before the internet does its usual self-righteous outrage twist, though, it’s worth pointing out that dropping the first two words from the original title isn’t a new thing for the long-running franchise. Not only has the official website of the Turtles has been at since November 1995, there was even a television series that ditched the first half of the title around the same time (The much derided Ninja Turtles: The Next Mutation, which was also responsible for introducing the world to fifth turtle Venus De Milo). So, yes: while it’s true that next year’s movie may not have exactly the same title as the thing you grew up with, there’s still seventeen years of history to the “new” version. This one’s for the kids, “yo.”*

(* Attempt at late 1990s lingo brought to you at no charge courtesy of awkwardness and self-consciousness.)

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