Review: IDW TMNT #15

Happy Halloween everyone!

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are getting more and more attention now with the new toys and cartoons on the market, though we can not let the first of the Viacom incarnations of the Turtles disappear into the shadows as the IDW Comics are still coming out strong with some awesome new Ninja Turtle Comics.  Today issue 15 has hit the market where the Turtles are going against a very strong and dangerous mutant from Stockman’s lab.  Find out the new history of a character many of us know well from the original cartoons and Archie Comics!

This issue starts off with the history of a snapping Turtle going through life with Chet doing some test and changes to it.  Trying to make a new mutant to hunt down the Turtles and Splinter.  Though they can’t seem to get control of the Turtle as it gets bigger, it’s mind remains small. In the April O’Neil Micro Series we see how this Turtle, Slash, escapes from Stockman’s lab.  Which brings us to the present time.

What I like about this beginning is the growth of how much work is being put into things.  We get to see Chet at work, and his concerns about what they’re doing.  I also like how he got a blood sample from Old Hob.  We also get to see some more of how Stockman is towards his staff.  A boss I would not want to work for.  A great way to dislike Baxter even more.  The art through this section is good, as I’ve said before I do think that Andy is really good with his Humans.  And even the young snapping Turtle works well.  Making this a nice intro into the comic all around between writing and artwork.

With Slash free and the Turtles going on with their life, we get to see Michelangelo getting pizza from Woody.  Mikey is a bit upset by what is going on with Splinter, saying that something is going down.  It’s clear it’s troubling him, and it’s nice to see Mikey has someone outside the family to open up to a little.  Here we also see a post filled with missing animal posters.

I really love this scene, as it shows something we don’t normally have.  Michelangelo with a human friend he can sort of open up too.  Usually we see him crushing on a girl, admiring super heroes, or hanging with his brothers.  This is a normal human, that Mike can just talk to, which is a very nice touch.  One that I hope we see through the series.  The character growth between these two shows that Mike does not share everything, but Woody is still very supportive.  While I love that part, I’m reminded as soon as I see Mikey’s face that this is not the art style I’m all that fond of for the Turtles.  I still hope to get use to it, to see around it...  though it’s just not got the feel for me yet.

After Michelangelo leaves Woody is attacked by Slash who is on the hunt.  This seems like the perfect issue for Halloween.  We do not see what happens to Woody, as the scene cuts to a crime scene that the Turtles are watching.  The police are calling the big creature that did this, a “Big Green Lizard Monster”.  The Turtles listen in as the officers say that they are to use deadly force if needed.  This worries the Turtles, as they realize that this is going to be trouble for them down the road as well.  Now we learn that Donatello has found a new home for them that they’re heading to check out.  Raphael has other concerns as he wants to watch Casey play a game now that he’s got his grades up enough to play again.  Donatello uses this time to express how he found this place and why it would be a good new home for them.  Mikey shows a little of his dislike for the idea of fighting the Foot.  We also learn that Mikey tried to get pizza and Woody was not there.  He does not seem to concerned at this time.

I like this talk between the brothers as we find out where they stand with all of the news coming down around them.  Donatello is moving the family forward with finding them a place and working with April.  Raphael is into his stuff with Casey, and being there for him.  Leonardo seems like he’s still just watching over the family.  Though Mikey is showing that he’s not up for fighting this old battle.  It’s interesting character growth for each of them as they’re moving along through these comics.  While I’m loving the writing here, I still have to say that Andy’s art is not holding me.  These are not pages I’d need as backgrounds or posters.  And each time I’m trying to pinpoint where my problems are.  I still say it’s that they look older, and it is the faces.  The bodies are ok.  In fact I think he’s getting better with the bodies.  I know these just my feelings towards this, and I don’t like saying something doesn’t work for me without a reason behind it.  In the comment section below, let me know if you agree or disagree about the faces aging them.

Back at the Second Time Around Shop Splinter is cooking dinner.  Casey is getting ready to go to his game.  Splinter has Casey turn on the tv to hear the news reports about the creature, and of the small pizzeria that had an attack.  The man suffered only minor injuries.  Though was severely Traumatized as he’s being treated for shock.

To me this scene was important, crammed into a news report.  We get to hear what happened to Woody.  Sad to hear he’s being treated for Shock and hope he’s better soon.  It’s clear the way the news was given, no one at the Second Time Around Shop will pick up that the reporter is talking about Woody.  I love that this was slipped in there for us readers, like this.  So we have the update but without a big flashy scene to go with it.  Just something to say, he’s still alive and this is what’s going on with him.

Right away the news is broken up by April coming in saying she’s got a flat and it’s more than that.  When Casey joins her outside to see what happens, there’s large scratch marks through the van.  April’s put the pieces together that what did this is the creature that got away from the lab and she’s worried that it’s tracking the Turtles.

Again this is a scene I really like.  This April is awesome and is really on top of what’s going on around them.  She realizes things without it being spelled out for her, and she’s stepping up to help the guys where she can.   I also like that this affecting the other characters, not just the Turtles.  April’s van is attack, but her mind is on the fact that this thing is going after the Turtles.  Not just feared about what is going to happen with them.  I can respect this April, Tom is doing a great job in writing her.   While I normally like Andy’s humans though, right here it seems as if these pages were rushed... as the art is all simple between Casey and April going out to the van.  Even the newsman has more detail put into him.  The backgrounds looked ok, and when Casey’s getting the tire out, he looks good.  It’s almost as if Andy is having issues with drawing April.  Not sure why these images were done so simple.

While the Turtles are traveling they spot an old man being attacked and they jump in for the rescue.  Right away people accuse them of being the Slash creatures that’s been doing all the damage.  The Turtles take out the thugs, only for the old man to freak out and run to get the police’s attention.  Raph is annoyed that this just made him even more late to see Casey’s game.

This fight felt like a filler, as people already realized the Turtles were going to be seen as the Slash creature if seen.  I realize that it’s a lead up for what happens, just felt that could've been done different since things were already on a roll.  There’s only so much pages per an issue, so small fights like this don’t always hold me.  While I know other people do like fights like this.

Slash stumbles about the fight scene and sees the Turtles leaving.  He rips one of the thugs shirts and makes his own mask. He calls the Turtles his Prey as he goes after them.

I like that we get to see when Slash notices the Turtles.  Though that could've been anywhere including when the Turtles left the crime scene.  Slash seem to be on their trail... with Woody, April’s van, and now he’s there.  Though he did get his mask from one of the fallen thugs, so something did come out of that fight scene.

Now the Turtles get to where their new lair is.  They go through and find that this place would really work out well for them for a home.  It’s well hidden and has a lot of supplies they could use.  Mikey’s more concerned about spiders, in the 4Kids series that would've been Raph’s concern.  Don gives the tour, of course Raph’s mind is getting to Casey’s game.  Though he does not know that they are about to be greeted for their next fight as Slash has followed them down into this new lair.

I like the design and plans for this new lair, so I do hope they can use it even though Slash has found it.  I also love all the interaction between the brothers in this scene.  A lot of fun talk and jokes.  Though I do not want to spoil this fight scene.  If you want to see which Turtle remains standing in the fight with Slash, go pick up issue 15 of IDW’s TMNT Comic!  I do have to say this, I do enjoy how Andy draws Slash.  He’s creepy and huge.  This is art I can really dig.  And has to be my favorite character that he draws.  If I was ever to meet Andy, I believe I would ask him for a sketch of Slash over anyone else.

Issue 15 is a great read as the story keeps going!  Tom Waltz and Kevin Eastman are doing a wonderful job at keeping this something the readers can really dig as we’re going through issue after issue.  I’ve talked with a lot of people recently who read these comics that feel the same way.  This is a story worth sharing and I hope more fans pick up these books to see the new and interesting directions that they are taking the Turtles.  I look forward to issue 16!

Have you read issue 15 of IDW TMNT?  If so please let us know what you think of it!  It’s great to read the different thoughts from fellow TMNT fans!   All reviews, comments and questions are welcomed below!

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