The Little Mermaid Live! aired on ABC Tuesday night. The live event combined the original cartoon film mixed with live-action musical numbers. While the 2 hours event was certainly entertaining, the majority of viewers on Twitter couldn’t get over some of the production issues.
Major news outlets issued harsh reviews, like USA TODAY’s Review: ABC's baffling 'Little Mermaid Live!' sunk straight to the bottom of the ocean. But the reviews from viewers on Twitter were much, much harsher.
Many fans were disappointed with the production value of live performance, particularly that of Flounder. Flounder, who is Ariel’s best friend, only made a brief appearance as a very lackluster puppet.
The most discussed topic of the night had to be Sebastian. Sebastian is the crab who watches over Ariel, and was portrayed by musician Shaggy. Even though Sebastian has large claws in the film and Broadway versions, in this version he had 10 fingers.
It became such a big deal that Robert Mills, the SVP of Alternative Series, Specials & Late-Night Programming at ABC addressed it on Twitter during the show. He wrote, “For those wondering, Shaggy wore crab claws in early rehearsals and it looked ridiculous.“ He later tweeted a photo Shaggy in the original crab costume with “ridiculous” claws.
With an abundance of negative reactions on social media, Mills retweeted a positive comment from random person in Texas, tweeting, “I don’t care what anyone else thinks, my man Edward Sanchez said it’s the best ever and that’s good enough for me!!”