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Ready Player One doesn’t hit theaters until the end of the month, but people are already roasting the movie on Twitter for its cringe-worthy posters. The posters mimic those of popular science fiction films of the ’80s, including Blade Runner, Back to the Future, and Labyrinth.
Ready Player One homage posters—who wore it best?— Fandango (@Fandango) March 7, 2018
Retweet for the THE BREAKFAST CLUB homage v Like for the THE MATRIX homage pic.twitter.com/ArElpzu8J2
Someone at Warner Bros. apparently decided that this idea was really clever. The result is something that could easily be mistaken for a parody of the film.
For those who aren’t familiar with Ready Player One, it’s an adaptation of Ernest Cline’s popular 2011 dystopian novel of the same name. The novel is set in the year 2044, and people are now so obsessed with virtual reality devices that they have neglected the world around them. The VR world is called the OASIS, and when founder James Halliday dies, he sets up a contest for people to compete for ownership of the company. The competition is devised like a video game, and, because Halliday was obsessed with ’80s pop culture, the winner must also know everything there is to know about ’80s culture to win. The protagonist, Wade Watts, is a teenager who initially spends his days consuming pop culture and exploring the OASIS instead of interacting with other people IRL. The story makes it clear that is lifestyle is obviously not healthy, and interacting with people in the real world is necessary and good.
Still, Watts’ pop culture knowledge is seen as valuable. Clearly, Warner Bros. agrees, and it thinks that all the ’80s references will hook people into seeing the movie. But the posters end up coming off as a massive self-own, and a lot of people hate them.
My eyes! I CANNOT UNSEE. WHYYYYYYYY!?!?! https://t.co/d7eHDYhmYx— Faintdreams (@faintdreams) March 6, 2018
These….are…real official posters? https://t.co/WdL3OGHguc— Tony Heugh (@standardman) March 6, 2018
rp1 isnt!! comedy!!!! its just references!!! theres no goddamn jokes in the whole book, its just entirely "hey remember back to the future is a movie that was popular?" "hey remember the matrix??" https://t.co/1RWxjUZBGC— professor jon arbuckle, Ph.D (@hooooouuuuooooo) March 6, 2018
Are these supposed to look like shit? https://t.co/lJTCZWJdzu— always open for commissions (@aviviavai) March 7, 2018
This is quite possibly the worst thing I've ever seen. Blade Runner hurts me deep, but Bullitt?!?! I don't even understand who their target audience is for that! Awful in every single way https://t.co/OR9P21iF6f— Jeremy Bratetich (@Obiwanjezz) March 7, 2018
THIS IS REAL?? they look like FaceApp edits https://t.co/biXS5r9GYY— William Airoehead (@Airoehead) March 7, 2018
How do I call the police on a movie poster? It's urgent. https://t.co/rIUMe5VN6j— Saroo bear (@SarooBear) March 6, 2018
These. Are. Awful. Just plain and simple. Surely the movie can't be THIS bad, right? https://t.co/ksoDyLADi2— Scott Gregson (@ScottWGregson) March 7, 2018
new ready player one posters like pic.twitter.com/jXYG7HWbgK— Skrut (@jackstwisted) March 6, 2018
The Ready Player One posters are exactly as bad as I expected them to be pic.twitter.com/DhKn7zlYlA— Andrien Gbinigie (@EscoBlades) March 6, 2018
Looking at these Ready Player One posters like.... pic.twitter.com/cRIu6WoVzF— DiBiase (@Dibiase_ca) March 6, 2018
Best part about the ready player one posters is that their premise is “What if these movies you liked starred someone who fucking sucked?”— chris person (@Papapishu) March 7, 2018
those ready player one posters are great advertising that communicate what the movie is all about: masturbatory self-inserts that have nothing interesting to say or offer about what they're referencing— 20XX (@TheYear20XX) March 6, 2018
I JUST SAW THE READY PLAYER ONE POSTERS— gone (@ChelleDoggo) March 7, 2018
DAVID BOWIE DIDN'T DIE AND RETURN TO HIS HOME IN THE STARS FOR THIS
Since the posters already look like a bad internet Photoshop job—why not create posters that are even worse?
Really, why does Watts’ OASIS avatar, Parzival, look this terrible?
I honestly don’t know how to make them worse. pic.twitter.com/yrWlv4ADI1— Martin Connolly (@Mardcon) March 6, 2018
The internet accepted the challenger and made some new Ready Player One posters.
Not really feeling these new READY PLAYER ONE posters. pic.twitter.com/xFY9Kyfyl4— Boner Vivant (@Doug_Tilley) March 6, 2018
all those READY PLAYER ONE posters are good, actually pic.twitter.com/PpH3DSeXYX— DMW! (@damnyouwillis) March 7, 2018
did i even need to change this one— DMW! (@damnyouwillis) March 7, 2018
It’s hard to tell which ones are the real posters—and which ones the internet created.
Tiffany Kelly is the Unclick editor at Daily Dot. Previously, she worked at Ars Technica and Wired. Her writing has appeared in several other print and online publications, including the Los Angeles Times, Popular Mechanics, and GQ.