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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #29 - Northampton Part 1 Review

4

'City Fall' is over and now it's time for the group to recover in Northampton.

The Good

City Fall's a tough act to follow, so instead of trying to create something even bigger than the epic story, the IDW team is wisely playing off its conclusion to create a more somber and humanizing tale. City Fall was explosive and action packed, but it also brought about some major changes to the key characters. Now the creative team has time to actually flesh out what these events mean to everyone and prove they weren't just forgettable shock value.

Seeing as this is a jumping on point (although I strongly recommend reading City Fall at some point), Tom Waltz, Kevin Eastman and Bobby Curnow spend time addressing how each character is coping post-City Fall. Unfortunately, Michelangelo and Donatello don't have any big moments, but there's a solid focus on Leo's recovery and how Raph's handling it, the developing April/Casey relationship, and the reintroduction of Alopex. The handling of each character feels appropriate after what just went down and that's a welcome change of pace. So often we have characters saving the world and they're cool about it in very the next issue. Here, we're feeling the impact the war has taken on the family. Sure, they escaped with their brother, but the conflict is far from over. Additionally, the writing team has opened the door to a much bigger plot here.

Yes, Mateus Santolouco's an awesome fit for the book, but having Ross Campbell take over art duties for this story makes sense given the dramatic change in narrative. The opening two pages show this pretty well as we briefly chime in on the cold and violent locations from City Fall before being hit by the calming and peaceful scenery for this one. Campbell does a good job immersing us in the setting, but it's his work on the characters which really drives the tone home. The characters often have a much more innocent look to them, which, in turn, makes us experience a greater sense of compassion for them. That's particularly needed given what they're going through, after all. Campbell also nails it with the more intense moments. When Raph lets loose, you can truly see it in his eyes and the very brief flashback of Shredder vs. Alopex looks excellent. And, as always, Ronda Pattison does a thorough job with the coloring, adding so much more depth and vitality to the pages.

The Bad

If you've been following along (both the ongoing series and micro-issues), then the fact this is a jumping on point is definitely noticeable. Waltz makes sure the exposition is given in an organic way, but it still feels like covering familiar territory for the rest of us and takes up a fair amount of the time.

And, while the drastic change in the atmosphere is completely understandable, it's tough not to miss the excitement of City Fall a little bit.

The Verdict

Handling the fallout of City Fall certainly doesn't seem like an easy feat, yet the team at IDW has kicked things off with a strong first chapter. It's a much needed breather for the team after being hit by all of the chaos in the last story and Ross Campbell's art does a fine job reflecting that. This one's primarily character-driven, but by the end of the issue, it'll definitely leave you wondering where the overall narrative will go next. This book has yet to let me down and I just can't recommend it enough.

20 Comments
Edited by AllStarSuperman

I was gonna jump on, but I decided to not, and read it in trades.

Posted by Master_Thief

Felt like that one ep in the tmnt 2003 series after the shredder beat them

Posted by Xwraith

Felt like that one ep in the tmnt 2003 series after the shredder beat them

The "escaping to Massachusetts" plot point has been in virtually every TMNT incarnation (except the 80s cartoon).

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Posted by Wolverine08

@xwraith said:

@master_thief said:

Felt like that one ep in the tmnt 2003 series after the shredder beat them

The "escaping to Massachusetts" plot point has been in virtually every TMNT incarnation (except the 80s cartoon).

It a pretty cool place for the Turtles to hang.

Posted by Xwraith

@xwraith said:

@master_thief said:

Felt like that one ep in the tmnt 2003 series after the shredder beat them

The "escaping to Massachusetts" plot point has been in virtually every TMNT incarnation (except the 80s cartoon).

It a pretty cool place for the Turtles to hang.

I live right near Mass, so of course I enjoy it.

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Posted by AllStarSuperman

@xwraith said:

@master_thief said:

Felt like that one ep in the tmnt 2003 series after the shredder beat them

The "escaping to Massachusetts" plot point has been in virtually every TMNT incarnation (except the 80s cartoon).

I was gonna say that, I think its a pretty important place

Edited by GraniteSoldier

Can't wait to get this issue this week.

Posted by Fenderxx

It was a very good change of pace from City fall, just so we can all catch our breath. It also reminded me of the movie, when Raph was hurt ... I want to see that movie again.

Posted by manwithoutshame

this issue surprised me. the ramifications of Dark Leo has definitely taken a toll. also, I love that this series changes the art so seamlessly from one arc to the next and it still works. I just don't want to see a gap-toothed Donatello, that pisses me off.

Posted by AllStarSuperman
Posted by Dark_Guyver
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Posted by snarkybits

Gregg hated the book? ZOMG!!! :p

Posted by k4tzm4n
Staff
Edited by AllStarSuperman

@k4tzm4n said:

@dark_guyver said:

@allstarsuperman: @fenderxx: Well, I know what I'm gonna be watching later tonight!

The blu ray's pretty cheap. I'd say treat yourself and purchase it!

I was gonna buy it but I have a question first, in HD do the turtles look worse oranything or does it look really good anyway?

Edited by k4tzm4n

@k4tzm4n said:

@dark_guyver said:

@allstarsuperman: @fenderxx: Well, I know what I'm gonna be watching later tonight!

The blu ray's pretty cheap. I'd say treat yourself and purchase it!

I was gonna buy it but I have a question first, in HD do the turtles look worse oranything or does it look really good anyway?

I've only watched it once on blu, but no, I don't remember thinking anything along the lines oh, "oh man, this high def ruins the costumes for me because now I can see ___."

Staff
Posted by AllStarSuperman

@k4tzm4n said:

@allstarsuperman said:

@k4tzm4n said:

@dark_guyver said:

@allstarsuperman: @fenderxx: Well, I know what I'm gonna be watching later tonight!

The blu ray's pretty cheap. I'd say treat yourself and purchase it!

I was gonna buy it but I have a question first, in HD do the turtles look worse oranything or does it look really good anyway?

I've only watched it once on blu, but no, I don't remember thinking anything along the lines oh, "oh man, this high def ruins the costumes for me because now I can see ___."

thanks ill probably get it next time I can then

Edited by Dark_Guyver
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Posted by AllStarSuperman
Posted by danhimself

this issue surprised me. the ramifications of Dark Leo has definitely taken a toll. also, I love that this series changes the art so seamlessly from one arc to the next and it still works. I just don't want to see a gap-toothed Donatello, that pisses me off.

I'm really happy that Leo isn't just going right back to being himself but still has a lot of his Dark Leo personality leftover even after being freed from the brainwashing

Posted by MrJelly122

I had dropped this series at the end of city fall, but i just couldn't resist picking it up again, not that i didn't like city fall, it was just the last book in my pile every month, this issue has revitalized my love for the characters and made me want to re-read it all again! And the art is spectacular!!