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View Poll Results: How much should a character be allowed to be altered?
Not at all 2 5.41%
Very little 3 8.11%
Noticable are fine, just not too much 27 72.97%
Very much, don't matter to me 5 13.51%
Voters: 37. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-04-2014, 12:12 PM   #1
neatoman
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How much can a character be altered and still be the same character?

So here's something I've been thinking about for a while now, how much can you alter a character before it is hardly recognisable?

I noticed this a lot with the Nickelodeon cartoon. It uses a lot of character's that were created for the first cartoon (Metalhead, Mutagen Man, Slash etc) but at closer examination, they're not quite the same as before are they? As an example Slash may look like the old Slash (or the Archie Slash at least) but none of his trademarks are there. The old Slash was dumb and obsessed with palm trees, new Slash is a psychotic beast with respectable intelligence.
A more extreme example is Bebop (or the guy who is very obviously going to be Bebop), we all remeber Bebop as the dumb manchild street thug but this new Bebop is a skilled, jive talking master thief with high tech gadgets and a crazy attitude. Pretty much the only similarity is that he's going to be a mutant pig.

I'm fine with both examples as I didn't really like either one of the original characters but the IDW versions of them are noticably different but still roughly the same, just tweaked enough to be more enjoyable. So I'm not so sure they needed to be as different as they ended up being.

Anyway, my point is: Is Bebop still Bebop if he's not an immature and stupid street thug or does he just become some other mutant pig?
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Old 07-04-2014, 12:56 PM   #2
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For me, it depends on what is changed. Most of what's been done with the Nick show I am fine with. Prob the main thing that threw me off at first was April suddenly being a kid now. As for other elements, it probably helps that before then I had not seen the old stuff in a very long time and returned to the fanbase with the Nick show.

But the show is cute, the writing and humor is great, plus 3D modeling/animation is something I have a bit of a passion for, so it's got a number of saving graces to soften up the differences in this one.

Bebop... I'll have to see more of this character in future episodes. So far I'm kinda "eh" on him.

Now... visually speaking (yeah I know, hater-haters, its old news, oh well) they went a bit too far with changes to the looks of them for the movie. Not saying it's not ok to change it up a little, but I just don't personally agree with how they handled their quest for realism. If anything I hope their personalities will at least be a small saving grace for them in this case.
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Old 07-04-2014, 01:46 PM   #3
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Slash has a different origin in every series:

- In the original cartoon he was Bebop's pet turtle that he mutated

- In Archie Slash was an alien from Dimension X on a planet full of palm trees

- In IDW Slash was a mutant spliced from collecting data off the Turtles

- In Nick Slash was Raph's pet turtle mutated


Slash already changes drastically from each series.
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Old 07-04-2014, 01:55 PM   #4
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For me, as long as the changes have some sort of reason or logic behind them and were done by someone who actually respects TMNT/has an interest in the lore, then I'm open to all interpretations. A lot of the people working on the nick cartoon are longtime TMNT fans themselves, so I'm much more lenient on their choices since I know they respect the source material and aren't just trying to completely reboot it into their own thing. With that said, the only real gripe I have with any of the nick designs would have to be with Kirbybat or "wingnut" if you will.

Maybe it's a bit of a personal thing but bats are my favourite animals next to alpacas, so naturally I love Wingnut from the original series. I had went into the Nick cartoon mostly blind but I heard there was a bat mutant based on Wingnut, so I was really looking forward to that, and when I finally saw Kirbybat I was pretty letdown. Now, I'm not saying his design is necessarily bad or poorly designed, it's more that... It just doesn't really mesh well with the TMNT universe? Yes, there's no right or wrong way to do a mutant, and if anything Kirbybat is more "realistic" in that he's hideous and deformed... But in a series where the mutants tend to turn out like Fishface, Dogpound, Snakeweed, etc, he just seems horribly out of place. His design is better suited to something where he could have much more detail and not be subject being toned down for the kids. On top of all of that, he's heinously un-toyetic to the point where they shouldn't have even bothered making his toy a standard release figure. I'm not even a huge Karai fan like most others but the fact that he got a figure before her (if she even gets a human form figure) is disappointing on so many levels.

tl;dr: kirbybat is lame
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Old 07-04-2014, 02:02 PM   #5
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Personally, I believe, characters can be redesigned / recreated as much as possible, but it should be justified by setting or by some necessity. Abd of course, it should be something good.

Of course, sometimes it can be done just for the hell of it, but in this case it should be either minor character, who nobody would miss or author should be prepared for certain reaction from his fans.
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Old 07-04-2014, 02:02 PM   #6
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They can change the characters as much as they want, as long as the characters are still recognisable.

For example, they can change April as much as they want, as long as she is still recognisable as April.
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Old 07-04-2014, 02:07 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CyberCubed View Post
- In Archie Slash was an alien from Dimension X on a planet full of palm trees
Soo... not only was the defunct "aliens" movie script a bad idea, but it was also an unoriginal one. That's it, their concept development must have involved a hat and pulling a few random pieces of paper from it.


Agree that recognizably is key. You lose that and you destroy it. (Been a lot of my issue with the movie.. :\ )
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Old 07-04-2014, 03:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CyberCubed View Post
Slash has a different origin in every series:

- In the original cartoon he was Bebop's pet turtle that he mutated

- In Archie Slash was an alien from Dimension X on a planet full of palm trees

- In IDW Slash was a mutant spliced from collecting data off the Turtles

- In Nick Slash was Raph's pet turtle mutated


Slash already changes drastically from each series.
I'm not really talking about origin stories. Splinter has three origin stories by now (pet rat, mutant martial artist and reincarnated warrior) but he always feels like the same character. He's always the wise master of the Turtles and their father figure, never has he been something like let's say a hardboiled police officer. He's always the wise master because that's his role and who he is and that's more important than where he came from. It won't matter if he is Hamato Yoshi's pet, a mutated Hamato Yoshi or the carrier of Hamato Yoshi's soul but he has to be a wise master ninja or else he won't be Splinter.
Do you understand what I mean by that?
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Old 07-04-2014, 04:27 PM   #9
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Noticeable enough to make them different but not too much so that they resemble a totally different character.
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Old 07-04-2014, 05:40 PM   #10
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Slash more or less has the same personality in every version. He's a psychotic and out of control Turtle who isn't necessarily evil but doesn't know any better.
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Old 07-04-2014, 10:54 PM   #11
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Characters can be changed as many times as they want for all I care. As long as its a good character, it doesn't matter what changed.
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Old 07-05-2014, 03:44 AM   #12
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Yeah, this is a bit of a toughie... in some cases, near-complete character change can be for the better, and is actually an improvement.

Generally speaking, and this isn't a hard-and-fast rule, but generally - I think as long as the "feel" of a character is the same, you can change a fair bit. Like, as long as Splinter remains a father/teacher to the Turtles, I don't care too much about his origins and backstory being tweaked, or even, dare I say it, if they changed the type of animal that he was.

Just my personal opinion, though I imagine that the idea of a non-rat Splinter would bother a lot of people, which I would totally understand.

On the other hand, the recent changes (aka, de-ballsing) of Lobo and Constantine did rub me the wrong way, so eh...
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Old 07-05-2014, 05:21 AM   #13
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Nick Bebop is possibly the line for me. I guess if a character's appearance prompts me to ask "Why bother?" then he or she can be described as different.

It's my impression, based upon the way the Nick show has developed that they are trying to milk nostalgia for the sake of name recognition, but other than that do their own thing, and with Bebop, nothing about whom they want him to be suggests that he had to be Bebop. Beyond that the character is known for being stupid and incompetent, the very nature of a pig mutation doesn't lend itself well to an agile thief. Sure; they're pretty smart, and can be more athletic than people think, but graceful and subtle? No.

There's plenty of other animals that would make more sense--cat, raccoon, octopus, monkey, to name a few--and before in this series, it has always been the norm that humans who mutate are crippled when applicable. Bradford got stronger but also clumsier when becoming Dogpound, Xever couldn't even walk without help when he became Fishface, and ICK still can't walk. An agile cat-burglar who becomes a pig with no penalty just doesn't gel.
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Old 07-05-2014, 07:18 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Konchadunga View Post

There's plenty of other animals that would make more sense--cat, raccoon, octopus, monkey, to name a few--and before in this series, it has always been the norm that humans who mutate are crippled when applicable. Bradford got stronger but also clumsier when becoming Dogpound, Xever couldn't even walk without help when he became Fishface, and ICK still can't walk. An agile cat-burglar who becomes a pig with no penalty just doesn't gel.
Maybe Bebop's penalty is that he gets dumber? The description of him that was briefly leaked on Nick had him pegged as a moron, so that could be what happens.

I agree that the penalties and disadvantages are what make the Nick mutations interesting. Otherwise they'd be kind of boring and it would look like a gee whiz power-up. I always hated in the OT when someone got mutated and all it looked like was they were perfectly happy with it, the only 'disadvantage' being that they couldn't walk around out in the open without some weak disguise.

-----
For my own answer on this, I'd say as long as they were recognizable as being that character, it doesn't matter how they were changed.
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Old 07-05-2014, 07:34 AM   #15
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It Depends. Visually, a character can look different as long as they have the same characteristics and personality that makes them recognizable. However, if a character has the same appearance but an altered personality, they aren't recognizable in spirit.
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Old 07-05-2014, 07:35 AM   #16
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Personally, for the OT,I never felt that Bebop and Rocksteady started off "dumb". Maybe not so bright, but they had a backbone, they were strong, and they didn't seem to fear Shredder and Krang. As the series went on, they were continually dumbed down for comic relief.

To answer the question....I guess it's okay as others have put it, but the Bebop for the Nick series...my feelings are a bit mixed on that one.
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Old 07-05-2014, 09:09 AM   #17
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In general, it depends on the hierarchy of the character. Primaries (the TMNT, Splinter, Shredder) should only change a moderate amount at most since their ultimate objectives have always been the most consistent. Becoming anti-heroes, traitors, or any other radical change just breaks up the harmony that makes those key characters so iconic. That's why most of the mutants work; a huge physical change with some personality changes, but outside of that, any other changes are moderate at best. However, characters that only appear a few times at most in a series are more fair for change, and while they won't be the same, I feel like that it can be the biggest thing that can happen to a minor character as opposed to being a monotonous one-or two-shot. Still, I feel that every character still should have a small amount of change (Even Leonardo!) to prove that they can change their strategies in battle to surprise others. Do you ever feel bored in real life? Its probably due to the inability to change once in awhile that you've grown stale, and so many series get cancelled due to that reason. You always need to change the proper amount to succeed but not enough to alienate.
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Old 07-05-2014, 09:35 AM   #18
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I don't mind drastic ones if it improves on it's predecessor.

Slash looks great now (look and personality wise), I never was a fan of the old version. Same as Metalhead, the old one is just...awful. Sorry fans.
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Old 07-05-2014, 12:39 PM   #19
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Also probably depends in part how emotionally invested I am in a particular character(s) or not. Ones I'm not particularly attached to.. meh, whatever. lol

Ones that I am... make drastic changes (*sideways glance at movie*) and it's like a close relative suddenly walked in the door after an unexpected massive amount of plastic surgery and/or psychiatric change and am expected to recognize them and take it in stride.
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Old 07-05-2014, 01:09 PM   #20
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Maybe Bebop's penalty is that he gets dumber? The description of him that was briefly leaked on Nick had him pegged as a moron, so that could be what happens.
Actually, it'd be interesting to see how that works, because aren't pigs supposed to be really smart animals?
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