Another day, another post-apocalyptic TV series. This time it’s “Twisted Metal,” based on the PlayStation series about vehicular combat. It’s definitely one of the more obscure titles to get an adaptation, but count us in for the cars and carnage. And comedy, at least this post-apocalypse is funny.
The original “Twisted Metal” game came out in 1996. Players selected from a number of different vehicles with varying pros and cons to do battle in a gladiator-like arena. The cars were unlicensed, but some did bear resemblances to real-world vehicles. There were analogues to the AM General Hummer, an early ’60s Chevy Impala lowrider, Lamborghini Diablo, Checker Marathon cab, and so on. Sequels expanded the variety of cars. In total there were eight games in the series, as well as a couple of spinoffs, with the last one released in 2012.
As far as we know, there was never a Subaru WRX in any of the games. But that’s exactly what lead actor Anthony Mackie is driving in the trailer. The show appears to take place in a Mad Max-ified United States where civilization has collapsed, so an AWD sports sedan actually makes quite a good choice. It’s rugged enough to take off pavement, but quick and nimble enough to outmaneuver tougher war rigs. Plus, this particular example is fitted with machine guns and a Sony (naturally) CD player.
In the game, contestants entered a death match held by a mysterious supernatural puppetmaster who granted the winner one wish of any value. According to IMDb, the plot of the series revolves around Mackie’s character, John Doe, delivering a package of unknown contents across the wasteland for a reward.
If there’s anything casual gamers may remember about the “Twisted Metal” game, it was the psychotic clown character who drives an ice cream truck. The evil Sweet Tooth became sort of a mascot for the series. We get a glimpse of him at the end of the trailer, portrayed by wrestler Joe Seanoa, though he will be voiced by Will Arnett.
Sony’s Playstation Productions is on a roll with game adaptations, from the dramatic zombie survival series “The Last of Us” on HBO to the “Ghost of Tsushima” samurai epic in development. They even have the upcoming racing movie “Gran Turismo” for those who prefer an automotive story with fewer killer clowns. “Twisted Metal” begins streaming on the Peacock network July 27.