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They Changed It, Now It Sucks!

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"If you want to make enemies, try to change something."

As long as it is still the same basic story and keeps all the best bits and characters intact, then it doesn't matter too much that Bob's bald, Alice dies in a train wreck instead of a car crash, the football game ended with a different score, and they cut the watermelon scene, right? It's a bit of a shame they screwed that bit up, but really, it's not like the entire work is Ruined FOREVER, right?


...or so you would be told by many fans.

For some people, the very act of adaptation is decay. A film version of something should be a direct word-for-word transcription, with utmost care that the sets, costumes and people be reproduced in every detail. If a character who wore a homburg in the original now wears a fedora, that will be enough to ruin the character, and therefore ruin the film. It will be all you will hear about from these fans on message boards, with them going on at length to explain how their homburg visually defined their entire personality in a way that a fedora never could.

And don't you dare suggest that in changing it they made it better. If certain fans take the Chicken Little approach and announce that the sky is falling, it's mainly an expression of their fears that the writing staff don't care much about the source material, particularly if it's not mainstream-friendly. Even if the changes were enforced by Executive Meddling, the possibility of Special Effects Failure, budget constraints etc, it won't make any difference to these people; they'll still insist that any change from the original is automatically for the worse.

This also happens a lot with translations. People can become religiously attached (sometimes quite literally, in the case of texts like The Bible) to one translation of a work, and when a new translation comes out they condemn it as a travesty, accusing it of distorting and cheapening the meaning of the original, whether or not the new translation is a more literally accurate rendering.

Sometimes, the complaints are about a sequel or remake to an adaptation, and the original adaptation actually made changes from its source material, and the new adaptation tries to be more faithful, but people don't know that and complain about changes anyway.

This is sometimes a result of Ability over Appearance.

All this being said, there are many cases wherein the fans complaining are coming from a more solid foundation:

  • When producers (or executives above them) make drastic changes, especially if this clashes with the vision of the authors/scriptwriters/directors, creating some sort of unresolvable tonal disconnect. Can result in Running the Asylum and/or an Audience-Alienating Era.
  • If old fans liked the franchise for what it was, and then it is totally changed, and the new version is still successful enough... it's valid to mourn that what people previously liked is probably never coming back. If such a complete overhaul of a franchise is old enough, fans who want the franchise to go back to its roots are not exactly rejecting change, they are demanding change back to a version they preferred. These are the kind of people who cry "They've ruined my childhood!" if a reboot of something they remember from their youth is different in any way from the original
  • An adaptation/reboot that has so many changes it becomes In Name Only. Fans may feel betrayed if they think a disliked work was merely made part of an already popular series to profit on the existing audience. (Of course, good luck distinguishing between "taking a series into bold new territory" and "betraying the core promise and appeal of the setting"...)
  • Online updates to video games can make the criticisms more valid: unlike a new sequel that can simply be ignored, updates can effectively make the game they enjoyed non-existent. To a lesser extent, the same can apply to other media that goes through changes in rereleases and the original version becomes unavailable.
  • Most important, they can argue that they aren't complaining because it was changed, they are complaining because it was changed for the worse. The problem is not that the new version is different, the problem is that it is bad.

Compare with Translation Style Choices, Darker and Edgier, Lighter and Softer, New Sound Album, Replacement Scrappy, Ruined FOREVER, Seasonal Rot, Network Decay, Magazine Decay, Jumping the Shark, Fanon Discontinuity, They Don't Make Them Like They Used To, So Bad, It Was Better, or even Damn You, Muscle Memory!.

See also Unpleasable Fanbase and Broken Base.

Contrast Woolseyism, It's the Same, Now It Sucks!, Franchise Original Sin.

Remember that Examples Are Not Recent, even if you're writing up an example while fan controversy is erupting.


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  • The 2020 redesign of Froot Loops mascot Toucan Sam got a massive hatedom as soon as it was revealed. Common complaints about Sam's redesign include his beak being overlayered with a rainbow gradient instead of having individual stripes and his mouth overlayering the edge of the beak, his eyes being overly large and sparkly, looking like he is constantly on some sort of Fantastic Drug, and being extremely lazily designed in general. It's pretty clear that Kellogg's is trying to emulate modern cartoon styles while having absolutely no idea what made those work. Plenty of artists on Twitter have made their own redesigns in response. The ad campaign didn't last a year before Kellogg's scrapped it due to the immense backlash and gave Toucan Sam and his associated ads a second redesign in a much less obnoxious artstyle that was, for the most part, better received.
  • Planters' decision to replace Mr. Peanut with Baby Nut to cash in on the whole Baby Yoda craze drew massive ire from fans. And then Baby Nut evolved into Peanut Jr., leading to even more hostility towards the campaign, which eventually led to Planters retconning Baby Nut/Peanut Jr. and bringing back Mr. Peanut. This also became an unfortunate case of Harsher in Hindsight, as the original ad in the campaign featured Mr. Peanut sacrificing himself in a helicopter crash, which led some to criticize it for airing following the death of NBA legend Kobe Bryant in a helicopter crash in late-January 2020.
  • The long-running Hershey's "Christmas Bells" commercial (with Kisses ringing "We Wish You a Merry Christmas") was altered in 2020: it starts off as normal, then suddenly a hand picks up one of the Kisses and it instantly changes to a father and daughter decorating cookies with Kisses set to a remix of the music, which is what Hershey's claimed was the real icon of the Christmas season. Fans were not happy about this change, and backlash was immediately posted online. The controversy was so much that Hershey's cancelled plans to replace the original "Christmas Bells" ad with the new one and began airing both versions interchangeably, before pulling an Author's Saving Throw by debuting a third version (which mainly aired in Canada) in which the bell that was taken returns to finish the ad as normal. The original 2020 commercial is still seen during subsequent holiday seasons, and fans still don't take kindly to it.
  • The 2022 redesigns of the M&M's spokescandies received some backlash, particularly Ms. Green's because it made her less "sexy," which included replacing her go-go boots with sneakers. The hate for an "un-sexy" candy got so pronounced that even political pundit Tucker Carlson devoted a whole segment on his show to complaining about it.

    Asian Animation 
  • People tend not to like it when Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf changes its art style for a particular season, due to it being considered visually displeasing to some viewers. War of Invention is a notable example in that fan outcry over its unique art style was enough that Creative Power Entertaining changed it back to the original art style for Mighty Little Defenders, the direct sequel to that season.

  • The 1985 "New Coke" formula was made during the cola wars between Coca-Cola and Pepsi during The '80s. It was an intent to change the old Coca-Cola's formula by making it New and Improved. "New Coke", as it has come to be known, tested well in blind taste tests, but it was a major failure once it was actually released on April 23, 1985 and consumers realized that the original Coke had been replaced. Though New Coke was accepted by many Coca-Cola drinkers, many more resented the change, especially in the southern part of America, where Coke is part of a local identity. Coke was not prepared for the backlash to this change being so intense, later saying of it "To hear some tell it, April 23, 1985, was a day that will live in marketing infamy... spawning consumer angst the likes of which no business has ever seen." New Coke was reversed by bringing the old formula back as "Coca-Cola Classic" with New Coke getting yanked off the shelves on July 11, just 79 days after New Coke's launch. Despite a small run of New Coke to promote Season 3 of Stranger Things getting more positive reviews from consumers that hadn't grown up with it, New Coke remains one of the biggest flops in the modern food industry's history.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • This is Jim Cornette's philosophy in a nutshell and is considered the reason why he doesn't appear as much as he used to do. Cornette knows more about wrestling than probably anyone here will ever know, so he has a great mind for the business, but he's just stuck in a different era. One he'll be quick to tell you, was watched by a lot more people, easier on the wrestlers' bodies, had more emotional connection with the fans, and most importantly, made a LOT more money for a lot more wrestlers.
  • CHIKARA 2010: This was the reaction to Team F.I.S.T. note  replacing Gran Akuma (who had formed the team with Icarus in 2003) with Johnny Gargano.

    Logos & Branding 
  • The 2009 Nickelodeon logo was torn apart by upset Nick fans upon being revealed, with the majority of complaints being that it looked "bland" in comparison to the classic "splat" logo. The logo was so unpopular when it debuted that some believe that the logo's designer, Eric Zim, is actually an alias that was used to protect the designer's identity. It's telling that there was huge storm of celebration within the fandom when it was announced that Nick would bring back the original splat logo (albeit modified with the 2009 Nickelodeon font) during their the 2023's Kid's Choice Awards as part of a visual rebrand, and they kept that way ever since.
  • In 2009, Kraft Foods changed its logo from the iconic red "racetrack" with dark blue block letters from the Kraft brand to a "smile-and-splash" logo with a light blue (originally red) curve and a different font. The logo immediately received criticism, with detractors saying it had too many changes all at once. Thankfully, the "racetrack" logo returned in 2012, when Kraft split up, albeit with different lettering and having "Kraft" in title case instead of uppercase.
  • In October of 2010 The Gap, a very well-known clothing retailer in the US changed its logo from the iconic blue box which became well-known when the brand established itself nationally, to a Helvetica-styled "Gap" with a small blue box in the corner. The logo became so hated by fans of the brand that the retailer reverted back to the old logo in less than a week.
  • Fast food chain Long John Silver's had a vibrant logo with a jumping orange fish over staggered letters on wavy ocean-like lines introduced in 2001. In February 2011, this was replaced by a much simpler logo consisting of dark blue fish with yellow and green droplets, plain "Long John Silver's" text and the new slogan "We speak fish". Long John Silver's abandoned this in September 2012 in favor of a slight redesign of the 2001 logo.
  • Olive Garden changed its logo in 2014. It formerly looked like a sign one might find outside a fancy Italian restaurant with grapes on a vine. The new logo changed the background to brown and used a 2D script font and a simplified olive branch illustration.
  • Tegna's news graphics package and "C Clarity" theme have been derided by angry fanboys as too "hipster"-like from the day it began being rolled out.
  • The 2020 Petco logo received much scorn for pushing aside the iconic blue cat and red dog in favor of a sans-serif wordmark.
  • Google
    • Their 2015 logo got this reaction from people due to the font changing from something more unique to a custom sans-serif font known as "Product Sans".
    • Another thing Google did that received backlash was when Google changed their icons in 2020, homogenizing most of Google's service by implementing the Google colors in them, making them look less unique from one another.
  • In the United Kingdom, The BBC's "Rhythm & Movement" idents for BBC One were universally despised for replacing the beloved "Balloon" idents, to the point that their replacement with the "Circle" idents was considered a case of "good riddance" by fans of the prior idents.
  • Twitter under Elon Musk was rebranded to "X" in 2023note . Users have expressed disdain for the rebrand, considering "X" bland and lacking originality, comparing it to Totally Radical names like Mega Man X and Sonic X.

  • Format changes often lead to outcry from angry listeners upset with the (often huge) changes, especially if it's a rock station of any format (active rock, classic rock, etc.) or an oldies station.
    • This was amplified in the mid-to-late 2010s when the Educational Media Foundation bought out several popular radio stations (including WLUP Chicago, WPLJ New York City, and WAAF Boston) and turned them into pass-throughs for their K-Love network.
    • Similarly, Boston rock station WBCN being demoted to a HD Radio subchannel of WBZ-FM (a format almost nobody has access to) to make way for WWBX (a generic Top 40 CHR station) also drew massive ire from rock fans.
    • Happened in 2005 when oldies station WCBS in New York was rebranded to JackFM. The backlash was so intense that WCBS got its oldies format back two years later. WCBS even got in on the bashing, playing songs such as "Hit the Road Jack" by Ray Charles before and after the change.

  • Microsoft Windows: The new "Metro" look used in Windows 8 and 10 gets a lot of this from older users, who prefer the "Aero" look from Windows Vista and 7. The version of Metro used in Windows 8 received particular scorn for its complete overhaul of the start menu (it was changed to a full-screen menu clearly meant to appeal more to mobile users than desktop users), to the point that it's often considered to be just as bad as Windows ME and/or Vista. While Windows 10 rectifies this by splitting the difference; the menu being back to its old size while still using the Metro look, some still prefer the old "Aero" look.

    Theme Parks 
  • The Disney Theme Parks have their own page.
  • Six Flags Magic Mountain's fourth dimension coaster Green Lantern: First Flight, which allowed ride vehicles to rotate along the twisting track, had a positive reception during its early operation in 2011. However, after incidents where riders ended up stuck upside down or otherwise disoriented on certain parts of the ride, the vehicle was weighted to reduce the number of rotations. This, ironically, resulted in a more uncomfortable and even painful ride, since the rotations countered the whiplash of the coaster track. First Flight became regarded as the worst coaster at Six Flags by both hardcore and casual fans, and it shut down six years later.
  • The Old Mill at at the historic Kennywood amusement park had been rethemed multiple times over it's 100+ year history, but it's biggest re-skin was in 2004 when Kennywood, wanting to modernize the ride, changed it to Garfield's Nightmare. This change did not go well over with most parkgoers, as it was not only seen as vastly different from the original Old Mill, but it was also criticized for its cheap cardboard cutout effects, a questionable use of chromadepth 3D, and tons of Product Placement at the beginning of the ride. Despite this and the noticeable lack of upkeep, the ride lasted sixteen years before it was changed back to The Old Mill and it's classic "haunted Wild West'' theme, to critical acclaim.


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Alternative Title(s): They Changed It So It Sucks


Wacky Delly's Cancellation

An in-universe example. The titular "Wacky Delly" is beloved by all of O-Town despite being a poorly-animated and poorly-edited mess, and Ralph's efforts to sabotage the show in order to get him out of his contract only make it even more popular. When Rocko encourages Ralph to make the show better instead of trying to sabotage it, Ralph takes his advice and makes his own intellectually improved episode. Said episode is hated by the public and the show gets cancelled as a result.

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Main / TheyChangedItNowItSucks

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