Twisted Metal is being turned into a TV series – WTF is Sony thinking?
Some video game adaptations are good ideas with bad execution. This just screams bad all over.
Twisted Metal is a classic destruction derby style game from Sony. It was originally released in 1995 for the original PlayStation and has since seen many sequels as well as remasters for later consoles.
Now, Variety is reporting that there’s a TV adaptation in the works, and I have to say I’m not very hopeful. There have been rumors for years now, but this is the first anyone has heard of it in a while.
Twisted Metal at its core is an arena battle game. You set your car up with insanely unrealistic weaponry and drive around a map blowing up as many cars as you can.
Personally, multiplayer was always where the Twisted Metal games seemed to shine. There’s nothing like jumping in a non-branded Camaro strapped up with a 6,000 round-per-minute machine gun and riding around repeatedly destroying your friends in their ice cream trucks.
So why don’t I have faith in Twisted Metal as a TV series?
Television and movies have been notoriously brutal when it comes to video game adaptations. Hopefully, we’ve all mostly forgotten about the train wreck that was the Street Fighter movie. With a few exceptions, video games for whatever reason just never seem to translate to good television. I can’t see a Twisted Metal series being much different.
Why, you ask? It’s actually pretty simple. The base structure of the Twisted Metal games is, as I mentioned above, a battle arena where there is more firepower than in the entire state of Texas. And from here you drive around and blow everyone and everything up. Even in the story mode of the game players are pitted against the game’s bad guys in arena-style combat. It will surely give writers a hard time developing good characters if everyone is blown up by the end of every episode.
The game’s premise just doesn’t fit into a TV setting
So of course, the Twisted Metal TV series can’t simply be a giant shoot-em-up arena every episode where none are left alive. That would make for some pretty boring content after a while. So, what exactly can we expect?
According to the article mentioned above, the series will follow a guy sent to deliver a package through a post-apocalyptic wasteland for the promise of a better life. That sounds like a pretty cheesy premise to me, but let’s say they are able to make the very Mad Max-like concept interesting. How big is this wasteland? Why is everyone driving around in ice cream trucks? Where does all the ammunition come from?
While I understand that these are silly questions, they are rooted in some real concern. There were a lot of things that didn’t make sense in the Twisted Metal series, but that was ok. The gross exaggeration and wild antics of the game helped make it what it was, but I just can’t see that stuff working in a television setting.
The main villain in the series is a clown called Sweet Tooth who literally drivers around in an ice cream truck turned into a war machine. While he is a menacing character in the games, it will be difficult to make that kind of psychopath into a beloved character in a TV series.
I’m not really keeping this series on my radar. After being disappointed so many times in the past when beloved games get a terrible movie or show adaptation, I just don’t have much hope for Twisted Metal. Maybe I’ll be surprised. The show does have some interesting people on the production, including writers from Deadpool and Zombieland, so maybe there is some potential. I’m not holding my breath.
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