'Ninja Turtles' Would Have Probably Been a Lot Like 'Transformers', but with Alien Turtles
With production on Ninja Turtles shut down indefinitely , Michael Bay's vision of "tough, edgy, funny, and completely lovable [turtle-like aliens]" may never reach screens. But if you're wondering what it would have been like had it reached screens, a recent review of the last draft of the script--the one deemed too terrible for the director of Wrath of the Titans to even bother with--has revealed some insights into what was planned. Unsurprisingly, it sounds quite a bit like what was planned the last time Michael Bay based a movie on an old box of toys in your basement.
You can read the full review here, but in short, Ninja Turtles sounds a lot like Transformers, with all the fantastical toy-based stuff poorly-grounded to military jingoism and a central, ill-conceived teenage love story. Casey Jones is the LaBeouf-y star, a 18-year-old small town security guard and amateur hockey player who's dating a presumably-supermodelesque, soon-to-be CBS intern named April O'Neal. The villainous Shredder, traditionally depicted in a samurai-like metal outfit, in this incarnation takes the form of an unmasked military colonel (as we learned from his Optimus Prime tweaks, Bay prides himself on breaking off his toys' little metal mouthguards) named Schrader(!) and thusly, his clan of Foot Soldiers are now proper soldiers--though still identified as "The Foot" for some reason. The turtles themselves, when they encounter Casey Jones and befriend him, still apparently physically resemble "our boys," but "not in a way you've ever seen them," whatever that means. Probably that at least one of "our boys" would be an offensive ethnic stereotype and/or have visible testicles.
The plot, meanwhile, sends the crew from this small town to New York City, and later to Dimension X, where a character identified as "TURTLE WARRIOR" informs the turtles that they are part of a whole race of turtle warriors, and also that they are also the chosen ones spoken of in The Prophecy (the radioactive ooze story of the Ninja Turtles was not convoluted enough, so now there's a Prophecy too). Dialogue includes such self-aware, pop culture-acknowledging winks as a nod to Planet Earth, a reference to Reservoir Dogs, Raphael's incredulous demand to know if he's "a kid's toy," and a spoken-aloud description of the title characters as "Ninja. Mutant. Turtle. Teenagers." It does not sound like a very good movie!
And thankfully, it remains not a movie at all, with development still said to be on hold until at least a better script is banged out. For now, Earth's hope for edgy, funny, completely-lovable aliens rests solely on ALF's shoulders.