Old Hob‘s would-be mutant army gets its first test when Pigeon Pete accidentally leads Rocksteady and Bebop right to them. Of course, it doesn’t take long for all hell to break loose. Realizing the danger her former enemies are in, Alopex steps out of the shadows and enlists the help of Angel and her high-tech suit. Donatello it seems has other plans.
More concerned with the events in Dimension X and the construction of the Technodrome nearing completion, Donatello leaves the group to enlist the help of Harold and work towards stopping the Krang invasion of Earth which he sees as a far greater threat that the Shredder‘s vendetta against Splinter and his family. I don’t expect this split to last all that long but it does open Donnie up for his own storylines while opening a spot on the team for my favorite new character of the series. Yeah, I’m pretty happy Alopex is back in action once more (now would somebody get busy making me a figure?). Worth a look.
The main story of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: New Animated Adventures #16 features Leonardo, Donatello, Michelangelo, and Raphael following their senei around New York City on a wild goose chase all to discover where Splinter disappears to every year on this day. The chase leads the Turtles to battle Mousers, Fishface, and Rahzar, but end up no closer to learning about the moment Splinter spends in secret with his daughter in honor of her birthday.
The issue’s back-up story centers mainly on Donnie who is stuck fixing the Shellraiser when it breaks down and his brothers leave to persue Foot soldiers. He also must deal with (and attempt to hide from) a random pedestrian who offers his help to fix the van, but proves to be more useful than Donnie gives him credit for.
Both stories prove to be fun as Splinter is able to teach his sons a lesson about respecting his privacy while providing them with a nightly adventure that was more than they bargained for. Donnie’s story, while goofy, offers some fun moments as well such as the man’s statement to the cops about the crazy night. Worth a look.
When Splinter‘s deal with Old Hob is brought to light it creates a rift in the recently restored family. As Donatello refuses to part of the vendetta against Shredder with the larger threat of the Krang invasion looming Splinter leads Raphael, Michelangelo, and Leonardo to discuss Hob’s plans of a growing mutant army and meet his two latest creations.
The issue also continues Angel‘s training in the Exo-Suit (which draws the attention of a curious observer foreshadowing a possible new friend for the arctic fox?).
Donnie’s departure is unexpected but certainly makes sense from the his point of view weighing the severity of threats against the Turtles and the world. Along with a cameo from Pete and teasing the return of Rocksteady and Bebop in next month’s issue, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #38 introduces Herman and Mondo Gecko who despite their looks (and lack of training) have been well-armed to be a part of Hob’s army. Of course just how far Hob plans to take his mutants-first crusade, and how long Splinter will support him, will have to be seen. Worth a look.
- Title: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – The Invasion
- wiki: link
The Second Season finale of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is rather bleak for our heroes in a half-shell. Perfecting the Mutagen, agreeing to a partnership with the Shredder (Kevin Michael Richardson) and his Foot Clan, and using Irma (Kate Micucci) to discover the secret location of the Turtles’ home deep inside the New York sewers, the Kraang‘s invasion of the city begins as the aliens start transforming New York into another Dimension X.
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Leonardo‘s planned competition for the rest of the team gets out-of-hand when the Turtles’ leader is captured by Fishface who alters the various challenges and traps in Leo’s obstacle course to lethal levels in hopes of finishing Donatello, Michelangelo, and Raphael once and for all. The comic’s main story forces the competition into a team-building exercise (which Leo had in mind all along – although be it far more dangerous than he planned).
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: New Animated Adventures #15 also offers a pair of goofy and enjoyable back-up stories. The first is presented from the perspective of Ice Cream Kitty who fancies herself a legendary hero with the freezer door is mistakenly left open allowing the slowly-melting warrior to dispense justice on the streets of New York. The second storyline involves Splinter‘s attempt to master Mikey’s favorite video game, which offers only frustration for the Turtles’ master. All three stories work well and are certainly worth a look.
- Title: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – Into Dimension X!
- wiki: link
Michelangelo‘s (Greg Cipes) rash decision to jump through a portal to Dimension X and rescue Leatherhead (Peter Lurie) force Leonardo (Jason Biggs), Donatello (Rob Paulsen), and Raphael (Sean Astin) to follow their brother to a bizarre dimension where Mikey proves to be the most valuable member of the team.
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- Title: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – A Chinatown Ghost Story
- wiki: link
After three foolish Purple Dragons release the spirit of an ancient Chinese sorcerer from a dagger they find themselves with an immediate power upgrade with control of lighting, thunder, and wind. Donatello (Rob Paulsen) and Casey Jones (Josh Peck) are forced to put the rivalry over April‘s (Mae Whitman) affections aside when Ho Chan (James Hong) chooses to dump the three idiots in favor of his new mindless soldiers: Leonardo (Jason Biggs), Michelangelo (Greg Cipes), and Raphael (Sean Astin).
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As he’s done in the past, Kevin Eastman seizes on the opportunity to not only co-author the latest Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Annual but do double duty and give fans of the original comic a taste of the co-creator’s artwork as well. Given the fact that time travel plays a large role in the annual, it shouldn’t be surprising that some leaves several questions unanswered as the Turtles are recruited by an old friend who they haven’t yet met to fight in gladiatorial combat against warriors from several other realms.
Introducing the well-meaning but scatterbrained Renet into the series, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2014 Annual opens up time travel into the IDW series for the first time. Working together Leonardo, Michelangelo, Donatello, and Raphael manage to survive the games and help Renet and the young warrior Baltizar lead a revolt to make drastic change to their world.
As annuals go, it’s weird and goofy to be sure and probably worth picking up for Eastman’s art (despite the $8 price tag). Worth a look.
One of the staples of the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon was the contentious partnership between the Foot Clan and the Utroms. Having kept the two sets of Turtle enemies separate until this point, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #37 brings the groups together as the Shredder makes an offer of an alliance with his old enemy General Krang. Not surprisingly, both characters plans on ruling the world leave little room for partnership as the meeting ends in bloodshed.
The battle with Krang means the return of Koya and the first appearance of Bludgeon as the comic’s mutant character pool continues to build. The comic’s B-story features Alopex still on her own after abandoning both the Foot and the Turtles, but after the fox is approached and bewitched by a vision of Kitsune it appears Alopex’s freedom will be short lived. As someone who would like to see her stay firmly on the side of the Turtles this isn’t a development I particularly like, but it should at least give us more of the character in the coming months. Worth a look.
Playing on the Donatello‘s well-established crush on April (both in the comic and current cartoon), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: New Animated Adventures #14 finds the smartest Turtle get into trouble in an attempt to create a pheromone spray to cause April to return his feelings. Things go wrong pretty quickly for Donatello as the spray doesn’t effect April but does cause the various bugs in the sewers and New York streets to seek out the Turtle leaving his brothers to clean up the mess.
The issue’s back-up story centers Michelangelo‘s short attention span which gets him kidnapped by Baxter Stockman and imprisoned in the mad scientist’s latest robot creation sent after Raphael, Leonardo, and Donatello. Mikey uses his brains (sort of) to save the day leaving his brothers both impressed and exasperated (as usual).
The pair of goofy stories both center around well-established character traits and fit well into the comic’s existing catalog. Worth a look.