Assuming you were born around 1983 and that your social circle in the early grammar school years consisted of a rigidly impermeable foursome, we can conclude indisputably that you spent a good deal of your time playing Ninja Turtles. Unlike other pop culture-inspired imagination games, Ninja Turtles never allowed for turn taking as far as the central roles were concerned. Maybe you’d alternate occupancy of Luke, Han, and Chewy when playing Star Wars, or switch off between Margaret and Jimmy for games of Liquid Sky. But when it came to Ninja Turtles, the margins were set before recess even began: you were either the leader, the tough one, the smart one, or the goofball. Without exception.
But are such stark roles present in any other pop culture phenomena? We’d have to imagine so. As such, we sought to our favorite foursomes from the entertainment world and took a stab at assigning them their respective Ninja Turtles.
LeonardoJerry, the leader (who, incidentally, derives all of his moral fiber from the noble Superman)
RaphaelGeorge, the truly "dark and disturbed" member of the group
DonatelloElaine, the intellectual — she did graduate from Tufts (her safety school), and she scored a 151 on an I.Q. test
MichelangeloKramer, the hipster dufus
THE HOGWARTS HOUSES
LeonardoGryffindor, house of the daring and noble
RaphaelSlytherin, house of the severe and ambitious
DonatelloRavenclaw, house of the wry and intellectual
MichelangeloHufflepuff, house of the spirited and kind
SEX AND THE CITY
LeonardoCarrie, the glue, the narrator and the center of everyone's attention
RaphaelMiranda, stubborn and cynical enough to walk away from the love of her life (twice!)
DonatelloCharlotte, the conservative, overachieving Ivy League grad obsessed with everything appearing perfect
MichelangeloSamantha, who has never passed up a chance to see and be seen
United Artist via Everett Collection
LeonardoPaul: "Think globally, act locally."
RaphaelJohn: "Everybody loves you when you're six foot in the ground."
DonatelloGeorge: "When you've seen beyond yourself, then you may find, peace of mind is waiting there."
MichelangeloRingo: "Peace and love. Peace and love."
LeonardoCaptain America, the wholesome, morally didactic good guy
RaphaelThe Hulk, the "muscle" who is tortured by his own demons
DonatelloIron Man, the tech genius who never hesitates to let his teammates know how much smarter he is than they are
MichelangeloThor, who's just kind of an idiot
LeonardoDawson, proving that having your name in the title doesn't save you from being the biggest buzzkill
RaphaelPacey, the rebellious, wise-cracking screw up of your teenage dreams
DonatelloJoey, smart - she went to Worthington! - sweet, and innocent, and always likely to end up in a bad situation
MichelangeloJen, the reformed party girl with a heart of gold and a chip on her shoulder
LeonardoMeg, the oldest sister and de facto head of the household
RaphaelJo, strong-willed and at odds with her siblings (and herself)
DonatelloBeth, who is shy, wise, and musically adept
MichelangeloAmy, the li'l one with the penchant for art
Columbia Pictures via Everett Collection
LeonardoRay, the heart and soul of the group
RaphaelPeter Venkman, the rebel who plays by his own rules (and forces everyone else to accommodate)
DonatelloEgon Spengler, the smartest in a team of scientists
MichelangeloWinston, who is also there
THE MT. RUSHMORE PRESIDENTS
LeonardoGeorge Washington, the diplomat who kicked off American democracy
RaphaelAbraham Lincoln, the agonizingly depressed hero who took to the front lines
DonatelloThomas Jefferson, the braniac wordsmith who wrote the Declaration of Independence
MichelangeloTheodore Roosevelt, the loon who used to fight bears and whatnot
LeonardoBlanche, the open-minded, creative sort
RaphaelSophia, a master of caustic wit
DonatelloDorothy, the smartest of the lot
MichelangeloRose, the ditz
THE FACTS OF LIFE
LeonardoBlair, who was rich and blond, so she was the natural choice for the central role in an '80s sitcom
RaphaelJo, who wears a leather jacket
DonatelloNatalie, who basically acts like she's 40 at age 15
MichelangeloTootie, who wears rollerskates all the time
20th Century Fox Film via Everett Collection
THE FANTASTIC FOUR
LeonardoSue Storm, the levelheaded voice of reason
RaphaelThe Thing, who is, as one might expect, pretty pissed about being a giant rock
DonatelloMr. Fantastic, the hyper-intellectual
MichelangeloJohnny Storm, the jag who's always jumping around and lighting stuff on fire, because he thinks it's cool
STAND BY ME
LeonardoGordie, the courageous leader
RaphaelChris, the young punk who has stolen his share of milk money
DonatelloVern, the timid perpetual bullying victim
MichelangeloTeddy, the kooky thrill-seeker
LeonardoHannah, who at the very least sees herself as a well-adjusted leader of mankind
RaphaelJessa, the alleged loose cannon who is riddled with dark passengers
DonatelloMarnie, the uptight would-be sophisticate who tries to manufacture life experience by the book
MichelangeloShoshanna, the young nutter butter who garners the least respect
LeonardoReggie Rocket, the smart, even-tempered overachiever
RaphaelOtto Rocket, the troublesome bad boy
DonatelloSam Dullard, the awkward intellectual
MichelangeloTwister Rodriguez, the idiot comic relief
Paramount Pictures via Everett Collection
LeonardoCady Heron, the acceptable human being
RaphaelRegina George, the villainous upstart
DonatelloGretchen Wieners, kind of just by default
MichelangeloKaren Smith... see "Thor"
LeonardoVinnie Barbarino, the boring (albeit charming) leader
RaphaelJuan Epstein, the tough guy with whom everybody knows not to mess
DonatelloArnold Horshach, the dorky dweeb
MichelangeloBoom Boom Washington, the loudmouthed goofball
A special thanks to writers Angie Han (an easygoing Michelangelo type) and Rudie Obias (a total Raphael, with respect) for helping to mastermind this piece, and to everyone else who contributed their varied expertise to the cause.
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Rapper Wiz Khalifa skipped a court date in Texas on Wednesday (06Aug14) to play Pictionary with Megan Fox and Nick Cannon - and the whole thing was televised. A warrant was issued for the Black & Yellow hitmaker's arrest after he failed to show up for a hearing connected to his drugs bust in May (14) in El Paso, and he is sure to have angered local law enforcement officials with his TV appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon hours later.
He previously upset local cops hours after they booked him for trying to sneak marijuana onto a plane by posting a jailhouse 'selfie' online. The cheeky snap triggered an investigation into how the rapper was able to sneak a cellphone past arresting officers.
Khalifa also performed at the end of Fallon's show on Wednesday night.
A lost version of Led Zeppelin's rock anthem Stairway To Heaven is to feature on a remastered release of the band's IV album later this year (14), despite an ongoing spat with the estate of the late Randy California over the epic song. U.S. attorney Francis Alexander Molofiy is attempting to take the British rockers to court over claims Stairway to Heaven was inspired by his late client's track Taurus, which he wrote as a member of late 1960s act Spirit.
Back in May (14), Molofiy announced he was hoping to prevent Led Zep from releasing the remastered album, stating, "The idea behind this is to make sure that Randy California is given a writing credit on Stairway to Heaven. It's been a long time coming."
Led Zeppelin star Jimmy Page has called the legal threat "ridiculous" and now he has discovered an alternative take of one of the most celebrated songs in rock in the group's archives, and he's planning to release it after 40 years.
The new version of the song will feature on a companion disc to the new release, which will also include other alternative versions of IV tracks.
Rapper Snoop Dogg risked arrest by smoking weed in a bathroom at the White House.
The hip-hop star has revealed he defied the security team at the U.S. president's official residence to light up a joint during a bathroom break.
During an installment of his YouTube.com web series Double G News Network featuring an appearance by Jimmy Kimmel, the late night talk show host asked the rapper, "Have you ever smoked (weed) in the White House?"
Snoop Dogg replied, "In the bathroom... not in the White House, but in the bathroom. Cos (sic) I said, 'May I use the bathroom for a second?' and they (the security team) said, 'What do you want to do a number one or number two?' And I said 'number two'... So I said when I do a number two I usually have a cigarette or I light something to get the aroma right and they said,'You know what, you can light a piece of napkin' and I said 'I'll do that' and the napkin was this (weed)."
Kanye West used his wedding speech to compare the troubles facing modern celebrities to the injustices suffered by African-Americans during the fight for civil rights in the U.S. in the 1960s.
The rapper married reality TV star Kim Kardashian in Florence, Italy in May (14), and he has now revealed he turned his wedding toast into an impassioned plea for the rights of the famous.
West compared the issues facing his family, including being photographed regularly and appearing in gossip columns, to the discrimination against black citizens in America in the early 20th century and the civil rights fight throughout the 1950s and 1960s.
The Stronger hitmaker tells GQ magazine, "What I talked about in it (my wedding speech) was the idea of celebrity, and celebrities being treated like blacks were in the '60s, having no rights, and the fact that people can slander your name. I said that in the toast. And I had to say this in a position where I, from the art world, am marrying Kim. And how we're going to fight to raise the respect level for celebrities so that my daughter can live a more normal life. She didn't choose to be a celebrity. But she is. So I'm going to fight to make sure she has a better life."
West went on to insist mocking stars is also a form of discrimination and he is rallying against it, adding, "I'm fighting (for my rights) with the way I line my words up together and the way I place a sweater on top of a T-shirt... People know I'm smart. And people know that, whether it's SNL (Saturday Night Live) or Jimmy Kimmel (U.S. TV show), it's a trend to take the p**s out of celebrity - just as much of a trend as wearing a grey hoodie or driving a Prius."
Getty Images/Slaven Vlasic
Comedian Tracy Morgan has spoken out for the first time after he was seriously injured in a multi-car pile up in New Jersey to assure fans he is feeling "strong".
The 30 Rock star was hospitalised in a critical condition on 7 June (14) when a Wal-Mart truck slammed into the back of a limousine he was travelling in, killing his mentor and colleague James 'Jimmy Mack' McNair. Morgan, 45, was released from a rehabilitation centre last week (ends11Jul14) and has since returned to his New Jersey home, where he will continue his recovery for injuries including a broken leg, a broken nose and several broken ribs.
On Monday (14Jul14), he was pictured back on his feet with the help of a walker as he was helped into a waiting car outside his house. Asked how he was feeling, he told photographers, "I'm OK. I feel strong. Love you. Thank you very much. I appreciate it."
Wal-Mart driver Kevin Roper stands accused causing the multi-vehicle accident after allegedly falling asleep at the wheel of his truck. Morgan, his assistant Jeffrey Millea and comedian Ardie Fuqua, who were also injured in the crash, filed suit against bosses at the U.S. superstore on Thursday (10Jul14), accusing them of negligence, alleging company executives should have known Roper had been awake for more than 24 hours and that his drive from his home in Georgia to work in Delaware was "unreasonable". Roper denies charges of vehicular homicide and assault by auto.
Tracy Morgan's condition has been upgraded to "fair" by doctors following his horrific car crash on 7 June (14).
The former 30 Rock star was left in a critical condition along with his assistant Jeff Millea and fellow comedian Ardie Fuqua after the accident in New Jersey. Comic writer James 'Jimmy Mack' McNair was killed when a truck collided with the group's limo-bus.
Morgan was taken to the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, where he has been receiving treatment for injuries including a broken leg, a broken nose and several broken ribs, and a little over a week after the incident, his condition has stabilised.
A statement from his spokesperson reads: "Happy to pass along that Tracy has been upgraded to fair condition, which is a great improvement. His personality is certainly starting to come back as well. "Also, Jeff Millea's family shared that he has been upgraded to fair condition as well."
Truck driver Kevin Roper has been charged with one count of death by auto and four of assault by auto, and pleaded not guilty during an appearance at Middlesex County Superior Court in New Jersey last week (ends15Jun14).
Metallica rocker Lars Ulrich has accepted a drum battle challenge from Red Hot Chili Peppers star Chad Smith and Will Ferrell. Last month (May14), Smith and his actor look-alike went head-to-head on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon in a long-awaited 'drum-off'. The funnyman, who was clad in the exact same outfit as Smith, lost after the Red Hot Chili Peppers star showed off his unmatched skills.
On Wednesday (11Jun14), the two issued a challenge to Ulrich and the 50 year old has now accepted their offer, telling Spin.com, "I'm sure that with a bit of practice, I could give Chad a run for his money. But Will? That's a whole different story. He rules the bad-ass drummer universe.
"I mean, you're talking about a guy who's so next level, actually, so beyond next level, that he may just be completely unreachable! That said, I'm definitely up for the challenge...Bring it on!!!"
Smith has since taken to Facebook.com, writing, "Two pieces of advice for Lars: Leave the double bass drums at home and load up on cowbells!"
Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor has reportedly left his position as Beats' Chief Creative Officer following Apple bosses' acquisition of the headphones and digital music streaming company on Wednesday (28May14). Last year (13), the rocker was hired to lead the organisation's new music subscription service, Project Daisy, serving as "tastemaker", offering up suggestions to listeners with new music they may enjoy.
However, after Beats, the company rap mogul Dr. Dre founded in 2008 with record boss Jimmy Iovine, was acquired by executives at the technology giant, USA Today reports that Reznor has left the company.
Reznor has previously been very critical of Apple, notably in 2009 when the Nine Inch Nails' The Downward Spiral app was banned from the iTunes Store.
He said, "You can buy The Downward F**king Spiral on iTunes, but you can't allow an iPhone app that may have a song with a bad word somewhere in it.
"Hey Apple, I just got some spam about f**king hot Asian teens through your e-mail program. I just saw two guys having explicit anal sex right there in Safari! On my iPhone! Come on Apple, think your policies through and for f**k's sake get your app approval scenario together."
Rocker Don Henley has fired back at Robert Plant after the former Led Zeppelin star suggested the drummer's supergroup the Eagles are "too bored" to retire. Plant was explaining his reasons for turning down offers to reunite Led Zeppelin for a world tour in Rolling Stone, insisting such a venture would be "an absolute menagerie of vested interests and the very essence of everything that's s**tty about about big-time stadium rock".
And using peers the Eagles as an example, the Stairway to Heaven rocker stated, "Do you know why the Eagles said they'd reunite when hell freezes over, but they did it anyway and keep touring? It's not because they were paid a fortune. It's not about the money. It's because they're bored. I'm not bored."
Henley has taken issue with Plant's remarks in a new New Zealand Herald interview, insisting, "I am never bored. The truth is, we enjoy doing it. It is hard work, especially for gentlemen of our age, but the fact is it’s a fantastic job and it’s a wonderful way to make a living and see the world and get to travel and we take our kids with us.”
The Eagles are still a very relevant live act - a recent residency at the renovated Forum venue in Los Angeles sold out in record time, and Henley admits he wishes Plant would reteam with Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones, so he, too, can enjoy gigs at the world's biggest venues.
He adds, "I really wish they'd get back together because they were one of the greatest bands of all time."
And taking a parting shot at Plant, he jokes, "I think maybe Robert is worried about hitting those notes. He may not be able to unbutton his shirt any more."
Last week (ends23May14), the Eagles announced plans to take their History of the Eagles tour to Australia and New Zealand in February and March, 2015.