I guess it’s time we all accept that Vanilla Ice just isn’t the coolest name in rap anymore.
To celebrate Michael Bay and Jonathan Liebsman’s (Battle Los Angeles, Clash of the Titans) upcoming revival of the beloved ’80s cartoon/comic series, the production team thought it would be best to serve up another dose of nostalgia.
Served as cold pizza, of course. Cowabunga, man.
Shell Shocked is the official song of Liebsman’s blockbuster, and if the mood of the track is anything to go by, we may be in for another “mature” reboot of the franchise.
Laced with heavy bass from dubstep DJs extraordinaire Kill The Noise and Madsonik, Shell Shocked sounds like a song you’d hear woven into the background of a Fast and Furious film, not a beloved yet completely ridiculous movie about turtles saving Manhattan from savage criminals.
Then there’s the ridiculous lyrics…and who exactly is Ty Dollar $ign?
The chorus, which seems to repeat an obnoxious amount of times during the three and a half minute play through is, “Knock knock, you about to get shell shocked.”
Not only is it a poorly written line, it makes me question whether any of the three “artists” know what shell shocked actually means. For those wondering, it’s described by Webster’s dictionary as, “mentally confused, upset, or exhausted as a result of excessive stress,” and was used for the first time in 1916, following the first World War.
It’s not even clever, it’s just using puns lazily. Oh, it gets better, too.
“Together ain’t no way we gonna fail, you know I got yo back like a turtle shell,” Juicy J raps in the opening of the first verse, somehow enunciating it in a way that rhymes.
To make the situation -because this track is officially a situation that needs to be resolved- worse, he ends the verse with this beautifully horrendous line: “Check my Rolex, it says I’m the man of the hour. All this green in my pockets you can call it turtle power.”
Surprisingly, Wiz Khalifa’s verse isn’t atrocious. Instead of spitting mocking lines about the Turtle franchise, he chooses to rap about the strength of family and perseverance. You know you’ve got a major problem on your hands, though, when Wiz Khalifa is the one making the most sense in a song.
The best part is, this isn’t the first time TMNT producers have tried to broaden their potential audience by bringing in the current big name hip-hop sensation.
Fans of the TMNT films may recall the second installment in the franchise, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze, featured an incredibly addictive track from Vanilla Ice about the facetious reptilian superhero team.
With lyrics like, “Have you ever seen a turtle get down,” and “Gonna rock and roll this place, with the power of the ninja turtle bass,” it’s almost impossible to think that someone would come along and try to best an instant classic.
Say what you will about Vanilla Ice’s “classic” track, at least it was fun and had a bit of heart. Khalifa’s just sounds apathetic, manufactured, and nothing more than a quick cash grab.
Hey, kind of like what we’re expecting Liebsman’s film to be like! Maybe they do belong together after all.