Review: IDW TMNT #16

With all the hype of the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series on Nickelodeon, let’s not forget the first story arc since Viacom has bought the Turtles.  IDW Publishing has it’s awesome comic line, with a full new story for the Turtles.  Different from any version out there, these Turtles are winning the hearts of their readers.  As Tom Waltz is bringing us on a ride full of action, family moments, bad guys and humor.  In the last issue Michelangelo stood alone against their new foe, as his brothers fell.  So here’s my review of issue 16, where we see how the Turtles face off against this new threat.

Leonardo is being held up by Slash.  Donatello and Raphael are down.  It’s all up to Michelangelo.  It does not take Mike long to move in and help his brothers, back up on their feet the fight goes into full swing.  Though the Turtles are having a hard time finding a way to take down the big snapper who is out to kill them.

An easy intro to the comic as we get to see how they handle the mess from the end of the comic, we get to see how hard their current battle is.  And what I do like, is that Mike is the one who came through for his brothers at the beginning of this fight.  Nice use of the chucks.  Raph’s comment about this being because of Don’s choice of living was fun.  And this is only the beginning of the comic.

Elsewhere Baxter Stockman is having a video chat with Chet.  As Baxter learns not only of the lab being broken up badly, but about Slash getting away.  Chet informs Stockman of what they are doing in order to try and keep things under control.  Though Stockman is not impressed and wishes he could handle this himself, General Krang has him busy at the moment.

With knowing who Chet is and his background now, I’m more than excited each time he’s in the comic.  He’s one of my favorite characters and I would love to see more of him through the series.  I can not wait for the Turtles to meet him as the Fugitoid.  Story wise I like that these pages show how Stockman is staying up to date on what’s going on, and just how he feels about not being there to fix things himself.  Once again the humans are Andy’s strong point in artwork.  So these panels flow nicely, with information and character growth.

Krang has his Soldiers lined up for orders.  Rock and Human Soldiers standing side by side as Krang talks.  His talks are focused on the downfall of the Neutrinos.  After his speech about the upcoming attack, the crowd cheers for him.

A nice page to move the story along.  And show us a bit of Krang’s army.  It’s clear his focus is mainly on this war.  Just wonder what he’ll do to his army if they do fail.

At the Second Time Around shop, April is worried about the Turtles.  She realizes that they should of been back by now.  So April decides to go searching for the Turtles.  Casey wants to go with her, though she does not want him to miss his first game back into Hockey.  But Casey refuses to play till he knows the guys are safe.  Once April agrees with Casey they head out, as Splinter Thanks them.

Now when Andy firsts took over as artist, I liked his art for Splinter... but the image of him in this top page does not look like a rat at all to me... and he looks like he’s been soaked... not really liking how that came out.  And the art for Casey and April has them looking younger than normal.  I think Andy is trying to find his style for these characters, and sadly it’s just distracting.  The scene otherwise is good, showing how strong of a force April is going to be in these comics.  She’s got a backbone and refuses to just sit around.  I like this April so far.

Back at the fight the Turtles are doing their best to win in the fight as Donatello figures this out.  Slash is programed to find them, he will always be a threat.  So Don’s advice to Leonardo, is for them to kill it.  Though Michelangelo does not agree with this.  As he tells Leo they’re better than that.  So Leonardo tries a few things to help keep Slash from being killed. Though when Leo’s plan fails, he watches Slash kick his brother’s shells, once Slash picks Michelangelo up to kill him.  Leonardo realizes he has to end this fight.

This fight is one you really have to look at to fully respect.  The writing is just amazing here, as Michelangelo in mid battle goes against their choice.  Begging for them not to take the path that was recommended.  Truly a powerful scene that Tom did a wonderful job writing.  I truly respect Tom’s way of handling the Turtles.  And Slash.. he’s a so lost and confused.  He’s giant wrecking ball that the Turtles can not bring down easy. Yet Leo’s about to attempt to bring him down.  Though can he do so without killing Slash?

April and Casey show up in the van to the building Donatello lead the others too.  As they’re talking we learn how they knew to come here.  April admits that she’s glad Casey is with her for this.

This is a nice one page piece to keep the pace and show us how April & Casey find where the Turtles are at.  It’s an interesting location, and I’m curious what inspired this location.  It’s not often in a TMNT universe that we’re shown the location of where the Turtles live, and the last time this happened was with the 4Kids series when they moved in Season 4 under the Castle near Turtle Pond.  It would be very cool if this place in the IDW Comics is based off a real building as well.

Inside, Leonardo is trying to talk Slash out of fighting.  At this point you learn that Slash is in pain... as he says “Kill... Turtle... Pain... Stop!”  Leo keeps trying to talk.  Though Slash goes into action, attacking Leonardo, just as April and Casey show up.

I’m leaving the rest of this fight scene for the comic readers to see for themselves.  I hate to spoil the end of a good fight.  And I must say, it is intense what happens.  There is much more to this comic after the fight as we watch things wrap up in a few areas.  And one very touching scene with Michelangelo.  IDW is truly doing an amazing job with this, with Tom Waltz and Kevin Eastman just leading the comic head first into an outstanding adventure of family and warriors.

I do want to say for anyone who reads the comic, my favorite pages in this issue is from when Raphael says “Mikey gets way too Sensitive” to Splinter saying “be loved”.  This is a strong moment of character growth, and a great show that Splinter in this version truly does understand Michelangelo, which means a lot to me.  In the Mirage tales of TMNT Volume 2 issue 9, we have Splinter telling Mikey off for being himself.  In the 4Kids series we have the episode “Touch and Go” where Splinter is getting after Mikey.  So it was starting to feel as if Splinter did not truly grasp who Michelangelo is.  Though IDW is showing me, that this Splinter does see and understand Mike.  I really really like this.  Thank you Tom for putting such a strong scene into this series for Michelangelo.

Once again I highly recommend the IDW Comics to all TMNT fans to give a chance.  This is not like any Turtles you’ve seen before, but with a lot of wonderful nods to the different areas for people to enjoy.  With a ton of old faces returning to their world.  I enjoyed issue 16 a lot, and can not wait for issue 17.

Have you read issue 16?  If so please share your thoughts here!  All reviews, comments and questions are welcomed below.

Entertainment Earth


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