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IDW's TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES: Read It!

The heroes in a half shell are back in an all new comic series and it is absolutely worth every penny.

Who's your favorite?

Just like countless others, I grew up with the '87 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon. The beyond catchy theme song lured me in and from that point on I'd spend the rest of my youth in love with the franchise. I'd dress as the Turtles for Halloween (my mom was kind enough to make me an outfit one year), buy as many toys as I could see and watched the VHS copies of the films over and over and over again (Go Ninja, go!).

The poor Mousers never stood a chance.

Two decades have now passed and I'm amazed by the fact that I now love the Turtles more than ever. Calling the concept of the TMNT dated and quite goofy is certainly fair, but the heroes have managed to make minor changes here and there, allowing it to stand the test of time and still feel like a brand new product. Now is a great time to be a fan of the Turtles. The original Mirage series is being reprinted in color by IDW, the brand new Nick cartoon is surprisingly fantastic (which I'll begin reviewing soon!), and most important of all, the IDW reboot series is excellent. If you consider yourself a fan of the franchise, it's your duty to follow this title.

The new comic, written by Tom Waltz & franchise co-creator Kevin Eastman (micro-series by assorted writers), manages to strike the perfect tone for the group of sewer dwellers. You'll get a heavy dose of nostalgia as each unique Turtle interacts in the manner you've come to expect, except the dialogue is appropriately updated to fit the modern era (RIP cowabunga). The sense of camaraderie remains powerful and the conversations are written in a manner that both young and longtime fans can appreciate. The main villains (Shredder, Krang) are also composed exceptionally well and so far have managed to avoid any cringe-worthy tropes. Their agendas are especially familiar but have just enough change to breathe new life into their diabolical plans.

The action is plentiful, impactful, fast-paced and never gratuitous. They pull no punches here, having no gripe with Splinter slashing a Foot Ninja's stomach, Krang killing someone with a projectile blast, or Shredder humiliating an already battered and bruised Leonardo. But the book widely stays away from unnecessary gore and blood -- which is a good thing because that would definitely feel off-putting.

Shredder has never looked better.

Naturally, with a reboot comes character redesigns and origin changes. As absurdly dedicated fans, we tend to have two reactions: love it or hate it (we're a reasonable bunch, aren't we?). Thankfully, the change to the origin is hardly blasphemy and while it sounds a bit far-fetched on paper, it is implemented extremely well and is the source of an interesting debate among the Heroes in a Half Shell. As for their looks, fret not, Splinter eventually hands out their fitting colors and all of the characters look awesome. Shredder would make me soil myself if I bumped into him in an alley, and (despite some anatomy issues) Krang's new body is intimidating and a superb update to an incredibly dated design.

All of your favorites and then some are thrown into the mix. Obvious characters aside, we've seen a quick cameo from the dim-witted Bebop and Rocksteady, Fugitoid, the Utroms, Karai (cheers, '03 fans), a glimpse of the currently under construction Technodrome and much more. It's clear they're going all out with expanding this new universe and filling it with as many updated familiar faces as possible.

Turtle fans, I know a $3.99 cover price is intimidating (especially on top of everything else in your pull list), but give the new run a shot and I'm pretty confident you'll happily take something out of your monthly stack to make room for the TMNT's latest adventure.

Gregg Katzman is a freelance writer for Comic Vine and IGN Entertainment. Despite the mass hysteria, he's still holding onto some hope for the Ninja Turtles movie reboot.

61 Comments
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Posted by Dark_Guyver

This series is fantastic! I really enjoy what IDW has done here.

Posted by cyberchop979

Dang it, Katzman!

Now I am going to have Rob Van Winkle's voice in my head all day!!!!

Thanks. ALOT.

Posted by Gordo789

I picked up the most recent issue last week at my local comic shop based on Corey's recommendations on the podcast, and I gotta say it was great! Gonna try and pick up as many of the back issues as I can this week.

Posted by k4tzm4n
@cyberchop979 said:

Dang it, Katzman!

Now I am going to have Rob Van Winkle's voice in my head all day!!!!

Thanks. ALOT.

You're very welcome :D 
 
@Dark_Guyver said:
This series is fantastic! I really enjoy what IDW has done here.
Definitely!
Staff Online
Posted by Deranged Midget

I much prefer reading single issues than trades, but my LCS doesn't carry the current TMNT series.

Moderator
Posted by k4tzm4n
@Deranged Midget said:

I much prefer reading single issues than trades, but my LCS doesn't carry the current TMNT series.

http://idwpublishing.com/news/article/2330/ 
 
@Gordo789 said:

I picked up the most recent issue last week at my local comic shop based on Corey's recommendations on the podcast, and I gotta say it was great! Gonna try and pick up as many of the back issues as I can this week.

Very happy to hear it.  In case you're interested, the first trade is called 'Change is Constant.'
Staff Online
Posted by Deranged Midget

@k4tzm4n: WHAT THE WHAT...

Moderator
Posted by Lvenger

Thanks to your excellent suggestion I am reading it and not regretting it at all. It's such a breath of fresh air from the Big Two and the writing is simply superb! Thanks again for suggesting it though your article is making me want to buy the earlier issues in trades, My wallet is gonna hate me soon.

Posted by EdwardWindsor

I am reading this. This and ghostbusters by same publisher are both awesome.

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

The Katzman is right, TMNT is indeed awesome and if you havent checked it out then you should at least give one issue a try.

@k4tzm4n: Is the new cartoon really that good?

Posted by danhimself

I'm like you I grew up on the TMNT....the Archie series TMNT Adventures was my first ongoing comic series and I had just about every toy and vehicle imaginable and I've got to agree that this series is nothing but gold....when it first started and they showed the new origin I was upset...it was so far out there that it was hard for me to get on board with it....I'm still having trouble accepting it...but despite that problem I still love this series and would recommend it to anyone....I would also highly recommend that if you're enjoying this book then you should definitely be picking up the classic color reprints and see where the Turtles started and where the 2003 animated series got most of it's inspiration

Edited by k4tzm4n
@Deranged Midget said:

@k4tzm4n: WHAT THE WHAT...

:D 
 
@Lvenger: You'r very welcome.  Happy you're enjoying it! 
 
@EdwardWindsor said:

I am reading this. This and ghostbusters by same publisher are both awesome.

Unfortunately, I haven't been checking out GB (despite that also being a childhood favorite).  They have a Dredd reboot starting soon and I'm excited for that. 
 
@Jonny_Anonymous said:

The Katzman is right, TMNT is indeed awesome and if you havent checked it out then you should at least give one issue a try.

@k4tzm4n: Is the new cartoon really that good?

I went in with pretty low expectations.  I thought it was being geared towards a much younger audience and disregarding the long time fans.  Thankfully, the pilot slapped me across the face and proved me wrong.  It was really fun and (not to sound too cheesy) heart-warming. 
 
@danhimself: Awesome!  And yes, the color classics is making my wallet take an extra hit but it's totally worth it.
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Posted by EdwardWindsor
@k4tzm4n Do yourself a favour get the trades of ghostbusters and add to your list. If you like ghostbusters at all its well worth it. The art is a cool/cartoony style and the characters are absolutely bang on.
Posted by Lvenger

@Deranged Midget said:

@k4tzm4n: WHAT THE WHAT...

Ah I forgot about the digital realm. See I knew there'd be a way for you to read TMNT. You're gonna have to do some major catching up though.

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

@k4tzm4n: cool, I'm gonna have to check the cartoon out now, that's another win in the column

Posted by sweetesttoaster

If you want to save a few bucks, Comixology has all the issues and if you wait a month they drop down from $3.99 to $1.99. It's a pretty good deal. Plus they have both the trades in digital format which is also nice.

Posted by Deranged Midget

@Lvenger: Yes, although I'm not exactly fond of digital comics :/

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Posted by Lvenger

@Deranged Midget: Indeed you've mentioned that to me before I believe. I'm not too keen on them either.

@k4tzm4n: So are you reading the micro series as well? I don't have enough money for that too. Is it any good?

Posted by longbowhunter

I've been buying the IDW B&W; collections of the original Turtles series. They're great fun. I picked up the first issue of the new series but dropped it after that. Just wasn't a priority.

Posted by TDK_1997

I just bought the issues and sooner or later I'm gonna read them all.

Posted by riiiiiiiight

One of my favorite titles out right now. Sooo good. The Micro-Series are great too.

Posted by stormtrance1618

Been getting this series, and the Micro-Series, since day one. Awesome series!

Posted by Duke_Nasty

Guess I'll have to try this out. Thanks for the suggestion Katzman.

Posted by Shamelesslysupportinaznballers

What's funny is if this was the basis for the movie, everyone would be crying about how Bay ruined the origin.

Posted by Billy Batson

Are you going to do a same type of article about Valiant comics next?^^
BB

Posted by Mucklefluga

First Corey and Mat saying it's awesome and now you, hmm i guess i should be reading this!

Posted by The Stegman

meh...i'll catch the trade.

Posted by JamDamage

@Shamelesslysupportinaznballers: I concur. You are so right.

Posted by NightFang

This series is a most read!

Posted by Superguy0009e

Have to catch up with it, but still love it!!

TURTLE POWER!!!

Posted by blur1528

I've been buying this and the micro series since last fall. Haven't looked back since.

Posted by kingdomenic

This whole run has been fantastic, glad to hear other people like it was well. I was worried it was only good because I was obsessed with TMNT as little kid.

Posted by mightypug78

Isuppose i could shell out a few bucks

Posted by Metatron_Da_Don

Im a 90s kid so I caught the reruns on basic TV(CBS?). I dont remember the channel but I still remember  Bebop, Rocksteady, Krang and his bodysuit/assistant.... Good times. I also tuned in regularly for the '04 series and loved the movie like presentation and enemies, altho Stockman got a bit tedious for me.
I did not know until recently there was a new show. Unfortunately Michaelangelo is basically developmentally challenged.
His appeal was that he was a goofy slacker who could get serious and surpass expectations.
 
For their lobotomy of Mikey, the show really sucks in my opinion.  But maybe kids like it.
 
THe IDW comics I read were great and did not know that Bebop and Rocksteady were there!

Posted by zombietag

i HATED mousers in the games, so frustrating!!

Posted by Master_Thief

What origin did they give splinter..... is he hamato yoshi or a rat to begin with

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous
@mightypug78: I see what you did there 
 
Posted by StMichalofWilson

IDW series is awesome. But I'm still a fan of the 2003 series.

Posted by Differentology

This issues look great i just hope its better than that new cartoon they got on tv

Posted by webling

I got every issue that was on sale from Comixology last week because Corey praised it so highly on the podcast. It blew me away! An amazing reboot for the turtles. I plan to continue with the series after the monthly price drops that mentioned.

Posted by They Killed Cap!

This series is amazing. I have dropped almost all of my marvel and dc weekly pulls this is one that I have decided to keep.

Posted by J_Flo

This series is godlike. As great as it is, I always wonder why I never see it mentioned on major websites. I almost never see reviews when they come out and never see/hear TMNT mentioned in any website's podcasts or "best comics coming out this week" segments.

Posted by YourNeighborhoodComicGeek

Raphael is still my favorite as always, followed by a tie with all the other three.

And you're right, Shredder looks like a beast, although I like the 2004 animated version slightly more.

Posted by cc1738

This series is really good. I was mad because Kuhn's art is terrible. I can't stand it and I had to drop it after issue 12.

Posted by Dark_Guyver

Yea, not a fan of kuhns art either. But the story definitely makes up for it. Duncan's art was a really good fit for the series. Kuhn just doesn't fit in my opinion. Maybe well get a new artist after 12 issues.

Posted by k4tzm4n
@Master_Thief  said: 

What origin did they give splinter..... is he hamato yoshi or a rat to begin with

Hamato Yoshi.    
 
@Metatron_Da_Don
Yup, Bebop and Rocksteady appeared in Raph's micro issue.  They were humans at the time, but clearly upset that they were outclassed by a Turtle.  It seems clear they're wanting a mutation to become more effective ;)  
   
@Billy Batson said:

Are you going to do a same type of article about Valiant comics next?^^
BB

Well, the answer isn't no... 
 
It was slated for this week but will likely go live next week. 
 
@Duke_Nasty said:

Guess I'll have to try this out. Thanks for the suggestion Katzman.

You're very welcome! 
 
@Lvenger said:

@Deranged Midget: Indeed you've mentioned that to me before I believe. I'm not too keen on them either.

@k4tzm4n: So are you reading the micro series as well? I don't have enough money for that too. Is it any good?

Yes, it helps compliment the primary series, fill in the gaps between issues and give more depth to each character. 
Staff Online
Posted by mattwing87

This TMNT series is awesome! Definitely a TMNT series for us long time fans that are not adults!

Posted by Reignmaker

Kuhn's art is scaring me away. I don't know guys, the story is going to have to knock my socks off, to help me see past it.

Posted by SiycoBat

I would seriously pick this up if I wasn't strapped for cash and didn't invest in so much DC right now.

Posted by SpiderMan100

I am getting issue 4 and I want to know where I could buy the issues online????

the series is great, I like how everybody has their part in this not just Leo and Raph

Overall its a 10

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