As the end credits rolled for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows, a familiar tune crept into my ears. It was the one and only Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles theme song from the classic 1987 cartoon. I don’t know if using that song meant anything to you, but for me, hearing it with your title sequence was the final push I needed to get over my cynical predisposition towards the Michael Bay-era Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle franchise.
To my utter surprise, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows wasn’t the incomprehensible mess I was expecting it to be. I was left scarred by its predecessor and I expected any follow up to be just as bad, or worse. But as the movie went on, I found my defensive walls slowly began to crumble.
I was charmed by what seemed like genuine brotherly quarrels. Raphael and Leonardo have always had a tumultuous relationship and I found that was exhibited perfectly here. .
I was captivated by the action sequences – which drastically toned down the use of slow-motion. Thank God. I don’t know if I would’ve been able to handle another TMNT movie where everyone sounded like the grown-ups from Charlie Brown.
But most of all, I was left satisfied after seeing Commander Krang, Bebop, and Rocksteady stay true to their source material. It’s been years since I’ve seen the original cartoon, yet I felt a strong connection with the trio of villains. The nostalgia factor is also why your title sequence obviously made such a difference for me.
Once I started picking up on the cartoon call backs, I was slightly disappointed that the theme song was nowhere to be found. It’s an integral part of any TMNT fan’s music library. When the theme song finally did play during the end credits with an exciting animation style, I perked right up from my reclined theatre seat. To add to the moment, several members of the audience sang along with the theme’s most iconic lines, “Heroes in a half shell – turtle power!”
At the end of the day, that’s what anyone wants from an adaption. We just want to make sure you give credit where credit is due and don’t tarnish the memories we have. That’s one area where Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows’ predecessor messed up. It was more concerned with bringing another adaption to life than it was with paying homage. The end title sequence that time featured Wiz Khalifa and Juicy J rapping to ‘Shell Shock’, an original song created for the movie. There wasn’t anything fans could grasp onto. It was mainstream music on top of mainstream moviemaking and nothing classic.
There were some aspects of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows that I wasn’t too thrilled about, like the cheesy dialogue and the ever emotion-less Megan Fox, but that’s not something you can control. I’m just happy you had the wherewithal to inject that last bit of turtle power and give TMNT the tribute it deserved.