6 Animated 90’s Shows That Need Live Action Movies
Despite the arguable quality of recently released THE TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES movie (My Review here), one thing was abundantly clear; these overgrown, anthropomorphic turtles, put in a live action setting, is not at all as ridiculous as one might have expected. Rocket Raccoon from the blockbuster GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY (My Review here) further punctuates how a CGI character of an everyday animal, only seen in animated form thus far, can be highly realistic and emotionally relevant to the story, even in a real world setting. This got me thinking about other enjoyable, dare I say classic, 90’s Animated shows that would make excellent live action movies.
Biker Mice From Mars
Everything you need to know about this animated show is in the title itself. 3 survivors of a race of humanoid Mice from Planet Mars, crash land on Earth only to find that the destroyers of their home world have similar plans for Earth. To defend Earth, the brothers-in-arms become vigilantes on kick ass motorcycles, foiling the plans of their arch nemesis in every episode, with the help of a cute lady bike mechanic. The concept of this series is almost tailor made to be a Michael Bay movie. (Megan Fox already played a mechanic in the first TRANSFORMERS Movies). The anchors of this show are the 3 lead characters, which almost seemed too grown up for this supposed kids show. Grown mice with metallic limbs, rebellious attitudes, expressions straight out of the 1960’s and a Steve McQueen charm using which they defeat alien foes while maintaining a heartwarming brotherly relationship is just begging to be made on screen. Instead of trying to make such a film too serious and overly dramatic, it should be made to embrace its cheesiness in the style of a B-Grade Sci-Fi film, similar to Robert Rodriguez’s PLANET TERROR.
Parodies are meant to mock established formulas and clichés from other films and pop culture, as observational humor done an attempt to ridicule overdone plot points and recycled ideas.But before paradoies became a sub-genre in and of themselves, there was an animated show by Disney that truly paid homage to various Superheroes throughout history… personified in the form of a Duck. DARKWING DUCK was a Disney DUCKTALES Spin Off, which took inspiration from various pulp fiction heroes like Batman & Doc Savage and created an original story that satire and gave tribute to other works in almost every episode. In a time where Superhero films dominate the Box Office and show no signs of stopping, a live action film where an egotistical Batman archetype character done with a comedic bent, would do wonders. With the recent appearance of Howard the Duck in a Marvel movie (Who is owned by Disney), it wouldn’t be that difficult to incorporate the character in a movie such as this, and have a Duck superhero reunion of sorts that may be relevant today. A superhero movie about a walking talking Duck embodying all the aspects of what we love about superheroes done as an off beat dark action-comedy would be genius!
While there have always been rumblings of a reboot of the GARGOYLES Animated series, none have actually come to fruition. Considering that the story about a group of Millennia old Scottish Gargoyles who are only awake at night, while turning to stone at day, being displaced in a modern day New York City and becoming vanguards of the city at night, would be an amazingly dark and almost gothic live action film. With the lead characters brought through life with live actors doing Motion Capture, with a supernaturally dark vibe, a live action GARGOYLES could easily rival the ominously borderline horror-istic visuals of SPAWN or thematically gothic aura of the CROW Movie Franchise, and quite possibly spawn a franchise of its own like UNDERWORLD.
The Powerpuff Girls
Here me out. The POWERPUFF GIRLS are 3 sweet girls created accidentally in a lab, who end up becoming superheroes with immense power, but still have to deal with the rigors of being pre-teen adolescents and all the complications that come with it. The show is an incredibly funny and satirical series, as it combines the innocence of a story featuring little girls, with action adventure and fresh humor that is unexpected from a ‘kids’ show’. The time for a mainstream commercially viable POWERPUFF GIRLS movie is now, when Animated films are no longer limited to children, but rather cater to an all ages’ audience. While Teens are being catered to with films like DIVERGENT & THE HUNGER GAMES more of a Young Adult genre, THE POWERPUFF GIRLS live action movie would be a great addition to films that specifically cater to a younger demographic of children while still having enough funny and pop culture references for the adults as well. With the right cast, and definitely the inclusion of Series creator Craig McCracken, this can be silly, fun and a great ride for the whole family. Especially if the film focuses on the show`s trademark gimmick of having the characters deal with real life issues that younger Grade-school kids have to deal with on a regular basis.
This entry may be more recognizable to Kids in the 90’s in Canada, but REBOOT is a 90’s YTV show about the behind the scenes computer data that exist and are activated every time we, the ‘user’, plays a game on the computer. Imagine TOY STORY, but the toys are data that live in computers and the internet. The premise may be a little complicated, but it’s genius nonetheless. A fictional digital town is ravaged every time ‘users’ play games on their computer. Citizens of this town race to where the game is being loaded, and must play the game as the computer AI that we humans play against, in order to prevent us from winning, which results in the devastation of part of heir city. Like typical stories, there is a hero, and sidekicks, and very cool villains, all set up in the world of cyberspace and technological mumbo jumbo. This show was popular during the time of IBM computers, Floppy Disks and the domestication of the Internet. The concepts of the show are now dated, but seeing how much technology in our lives have progressed since then, it would be amazing to see a brand new revitalized take on the series, in a time when we actually have the technological capacity to do a live action REBOOT movie, utilizing the way in which we use tech in our own everyday lives.
Based on a video game, it’s not hard to imagine a concept of robotic AI and human body, especially after the success of huge blockbusters like PACIFIC RIM & THE EDGE OF TOMORROW. A tweak to the origin story to have a young boy mechanized with awesome firepower, and this would be another live action children’s action adventure movie geared towards a SPY KIDS kind of audience. The franchising licenses into new games and Toys would be a no brainers as well. Sure it’s a little out there… but there’s a Biker Mice From Mars on this list too…
Tim The Film Guy · September 16, 2014 at 12:16 PM
I think Gargoyles, Mega Man and Powerpuff Girls might be possible adaptations to film. Can’t start to imagine the others 😀
Nick Powell · September 16, 2014 at 1:28 PM
I agree with Tim. While I love a lot of these, live-action may not be the best way to go. Reboots or full length animated flicks on the other hand..yes please.
I feel Darkwing Duck would like a Smurfs/Yogi Bear/Scooby Doo rip-off.
Nostra · September 17, 2014 at 12:40 AM
I’m a kid of the eighties so wouldn’t easily be able to name a nineties cartoon, I’ll go with Mask which would be cool in live action form…
John G. Simley · November 30, 2014 at 4:53 AM
Gargoyles done with a heavy dark atmosphere would be epic if done right. Especially if the characters are properly cast, and the Mo-cap is executed with the same precision and detail as the last two Planet of the Apes movies. Furthermore the character Demona should be more of an anti-hero instead of an out right villan. One who is struggling with resisting the seductive lure of being able to blend in with humans by day and her PTSD-like reactions to her loss due to their betrayal of her and her fellow Gargoyles in the past. The comic relief of the characters like Lexington and Bronx should be toned down if not out right abandoned in favor of a more fish out of water air to how they are portrayed. As you can see I’ve been giving this some thought since the series wrapped up back in the 90’s.
Shah Shahid · November 30, 2014 at 7:42 PM
The comic relief should definitely be abandoned entirely in favour of a more serious tone. I like your thoughts to this and appreciate you stopping by and commenting.
I’ve always heard about a movie of this being in development, but nothing’s ever come from it. Definitely something worth doing.
Thanks again for reading!