Posted on Wednesday, February 8th, 2017 by Ethan Anderton
If you didn’t like the most recent big screen adaptation of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, there’s a good chance that you’re one of the many fans who preferred the original franchise iteration from the 1990s. The original movie from the beginning of the decade was surprisingly dark and gritty for a movie that ended up being a favorite of kids, but that tone changed a bit when Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze was made the following year.
Since there were millions of kids who became obsessed with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, largely because of the popular animated series that came out even before the first movie did, New Line Cinema decided they needed to make the franchise more child friendly. You may never have realized this before, but that’s why the turtles rarely use their signature weapons to thwart bad guys. In fact, there was one key moment in when Michelangelo uses a pair of sausages strung together as some makeshift nunchucks. However, even that was deemed too much for audiences in the United Kingdom.
Find out about the offending Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2 sausage nunchucks after the jump.
The story goes, the British Board of Film Classification was in the business of doing a lot of censoring of entertainment in the 1990s, and that included protecting the innocent children of the violence in both the animated series and the live-action feature films. The weapons and more concerning violence was removed from both in an effort to make them more kid friendly. So what made the sausage nunchucks so offensive that the scene in question had to be cut from the movie?
In the BBFC’s case study on their classification and censorship of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze, they explain that the scene needed to be cut because “any streetwise 8-year old” would think they were weapons. Of course, any streetwise 8-year old would probably also be smart enough to know the difference between nunchucks and sausages, but whatever. The suggestion by the BBFC was as follows:
“After turtle takes down sausages and uses them as a flail. Reduce to minimum dazzling display of swinging sausages indistinguishable from chainsticks.”