Review: Nickelodeon TMNT "Alien Agenda"

AlienAgenda

Baxter Stockman, the man who made it so mousers could run and chase rats through the streets of New York City.  He's been seen in most worlds of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles as a very smart man who's got way too much know how with technology.  For him to be dismissed as a small time scientist who can not move forward on his own would be a mistake, for Baxter Stockman is a man with a great mind.  Who should be feared.  At least that is how he was written for the Mirage Comics and the 4Kids Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series.  Nickelodeon is taking a different step towards who Baxter is, which has some of us fans wondering if he truly is the genius in this series that was intended to be.  In the newest episode of Nickelodeon TMNT series we see Baxter struggling with something he should be able to do, much like he did his mousers.  Here is my review of "Alien Agenda" where the Kraang pay a specail visit to April O'Neil.

This episode starts off with the Foot looking for the Ninja Turtles.  Karai is leading them and has reports that the Turtles were spotted in this area.  At this time she hears Michelangelo's Booyakasha and other fighting noises, mainly from Michelangelo.  She moves over and notices that the Turtles are fighting Robots.  She sees one of the Kraang pop out of the robot and takes interest in this.  Leonardo does notice Karai and begins to show off, taking out all of the Kraang that they're fighting.  Raphael notices Karai watching them, and is upset with Leonardo.  "Turtles First" he says angry.  Leonardo agrees "Turtles first" on a bit of a defense.  Donatello and Mike realizes that they're missing out on something.

This is a nice pick up straight from "New Girl in Town" where Leonardo meets Karai.  It's clear that things are still new between them.  It's clear Raphael has not had much of a chance to tell Leo off for being interested in a member of the Foot Clan and Mike and Don still being in the dark about her.  Leonardo does a great job at showing off his skills.  Even Michelangelo is impressed.  And I do like that it gives reason for tension between Raph and Leo other than the 'I want to be a leader' kick that we normally see between them.

At Shredder's base Baxter Stockman is adding legs to Xever, working on robotic legs.  Dogpound is watching and getting a laugh out of Xever's situation.  Baxter has Xever test the legs, though they seem to work at first they soon start to fail and gives Dogpound a good laugh at the outcome of Xever.  While Baxter is trying to discover what is going on, Shredder comes up behind him.  Threatening Baxter to get these legs working.

At this point Baxter is up to a good start, as it seems the legs are a bigger version of the Mouser's legs.  Though I saw it did break, my hopes is that Baxter could do this without the help from outside sources.  Show to us that he truly is worthy of the name Dr. Baxter Stockman.  Shredder was fastly at Baxter, to threaten him for his mistake. Much like Shredder would be in the 4Kids series when Baxter would fail.  You feel his threat is real and that Baxter could truly be in danger.

Karai was watching Shredder telling Baxter Stockman off, she interrupts his threat to tell him that they saw the Turtles fighting brain squids in robot suits.  Shredder goes to dismiss this.  Karai stands up to him saying how there's more going on and they should take some interest to what they're seeing.  She points out that Dogpound and Xever are mutants, the Hamato's students are mutants, and there's brain squids in New York.  That there's more to this than his fight with Hamato.  Shredder snaps at her saying there's nothing more than his fight.  He has this very very controlling and manipulative speech about what Yoshi did to them and how for their honor Splinter must be wiped out.

I love this scene!  It was brilliant!  Finally we see how Shredder is treating the Mutations around him.  We hear how he dismisses the other problems in New York City as it holds no interest at all to him.  He's so focused on his revenge against Hamato Yoshi that he refuses to take notice or care about the other problems going on around him.  And the way he talks to Karai, how he talks about cleaning up their honor.  This has got to be one of my favorite Shredder moments.  And makes me all the more curious of what his true back story is.

Raphael and Leonardo are sparing as Raph is pissed about Leo showing off while the Foot was watching them.  Leonardo defends her saying that there's good in Karai.  Raph snaps about not informing Mike and Don.  Leo responds that they would not understand.  Raph growls about this.  Leo defeats Raph in this sparing match getting him into a headlock as Splinter comes into the room snapping at them.  Raph keeps Leo's secret.

I like seeing this character growth between Raph and Leo.  As Raph is truly trying to talk sense into Leonardo.  Raph's got the right mind on the subject, she is the enemy.  Leo is searching for something that is not there. It's good to see Raphael taking the time to try and convince Leo one and one to stop this madness.

In the living room Michelangelo and Donatello are with April.  April swabs her mouth and puts it in a test tub.  Mike asks what's going on and she informs him that she's mailing this sample in for a class project.  Mike goes to show off his spit, as Don stops him.  April realizes she has to explain more, but when she mentions DNA Mike is even more confused.  This is when Donatello tries to explain the building blocks, till he realizes who he's talking to.

Leonardo goes out to the roof tops and just as he plans Karai shows up.  Karai wants to find out who the robots were that Leonardo was fighting. Leo warns her her to stay away from them, which gets her intrigued about these aliens.  She takes a moment to inform Leonardo that she will destroy him some day, Leo tells her that he thinks she's wrong and that she wants out of the Foot Clan.   He asks her to stay away from her brothers, when she says she can not promise that he warns her that if she goes after them he will come after her.

I like how there's a growth here.  How Karai sees that he's crushing on her and calls him adorable.  Like Don with April in "The Rise of a Turtle", the crush came on a bit fast.  At least with this one the female character is taking notice to it and using it to her advantage.  It's a fun jump back and forth between Karai and Leo, I enjoyed this fight a little bit more than the fights they had in "New Girl in Town".  As I'm finding I do like Karai's personality.

April goes to school.  The place is very empty, as she goes up there's a lady that she does not know who asks if she is April O'Neil.   She introduces herself as Ms. Campbell and that she is here to present April her DNA results from the project that April was telling Michelangelo about earlier in this episode. April realizes there's something wrong with Ms. Campbell and goes to back away as Ms. Campbell grabs her and throw her against  a display piece on the wall.  April rolls out of the way from being hit and starts to run from Ms. Campbell.  She escapes from her and calls the Turtles.

Where is everyone at the School?  Is April there after hours?  Should there at least be cleaning crew?  I know they got other molds for the show we saw some at the beginning of "The Gauntlet" when she came out of her apartment.  We could have a few people in the hall way giving April a weird look.  Did the Kraang kidnap everyone?  What is wrong with this school!  Why would April be there after hours?  Ok as you can tell by all the questions this scene drove me NUTS.  It's bad enough the streets are empty, but I was excited thinking we were going to see her in school with other students and teachers, only to see empty halls.  It was neat that Ms. Campbell had Elvira's voice.  I loved that April thanked Splinter when she dodged the attack.  Though I wish we knew more of what is going on.  It's getting the point where a good story build up, is turning into dragging out.  We've seen the Kraang since episode 1.  We should have some clue as to what is going on.   I like how they are handling the Foot more than the the Kraang.  So this scene was a bit of a disappointment.  I pictured something more.

Down in the sewers Leonardo and Raphael are heading to the kitchen.  Raph wants to know if Leo is going to tell the guys about Karai.  Leo assures him he's got everything all under control.  As they go into the kitchen Mike offers pizza omelets to them.  Just at that moment they all get a mass text from April about being attacked by an old lady.  The Turtles are confused if this is an emergency or not, deciding it must be the Turtles take off to April's school to save her.

I like family moments like this.  We see Raph is still keeping Leo's secret and trying to be there for him.  At the same time Raph is trying to convince him that he's being stupid.  I really do like the relationship between Raph and Leo here.  Raph is not just calling Leo out to get him in trouble, he's trying to reason with him.  Don's reaction to the text is great, as each of them are agreeing.  I love how Mike is resting on the table looking at his.  This scene is so much better than the one before it.

The Turtles arrive at the school, a metal detector goes off as they wall through holding their weapons.  Raph takes no time at wasting the metal detector.  They see Ms. Campbell in the same area that April first saw her.  They assume she's a normal lady and Leo complains that April has to learn that the T Phones are only for emergency.  As soon as Leo mentions April, Ms. Campbell goes nuts and attack the Turtles.  We get a fight scene, fun for anyone who ever imagined school property being destroyed, and the Turtles take down Ms. Campbell who is a full on robot.

This is an interesting fight scene.  While I like that the Turtles are out and about to save April and doing their thing, it is surprising how in the open they are.  Just walking into the school's front doors.  Destroying a metal detector and just standing there when they see Ms. Campbell.  Not every ninja like at all.  Still fun.  Michelangelo's reactions to the school is funny.  I do believe he will not like it as much as he wants to like it.  I remember when I was a kid I loved going to school... that did not last for me.  His reacting to the drinking fountain is a nice laugh.  Another funny part is when Raph says "Dude it literally hurts to listen to you sometimes" Mike is in the back ground nodding.

April comes out of hiding and kicks Ms. Campbell's down body.  She thanks the Turtles, Donatello goes to give her a hug but sees her reaction and pats her on the head embarrassed.  The Turtles turn their attention to the down body, to try and figure out what is going on with it.  They figured that the Kraang hacked into the program that April sent her DNA to and decide to check it out, sending April back to the lair.

This is a scene to keep things moving.  still think that the lead up here was so forced.  The Turtles should of been more Ninja like, the Kraang should of known better.  From what we can tell they've been on Earth since before the Turtles mutated.  Why would they make a robot that would go nuts just at the mention of April's name.  Instead of trying to figure out how they know April or something.  It's clear they are after the O'Neil family.  But attacking anyone who knows who April is, will not get them what they want.  The best part about this scene is where Mikey is holding Ms. Campbell's face in front of his own and he scares Raphael.  That was a good laugh.

The Turtles are heading to the place that April sent her DNA to, World Wide Geno Project. Karai spots them and begins to follow.  Breaking into the building became Raphael's job, as he was not going to wait for Don's app to do the work for them.  The Turtles go into the building and realize that this is a Kraang building.  They find a room with different animal DNA, as Leonardo decides to destroy this place he realizes Raphael has disappeared from the group.  Raph comes out from above holding Karai.  Leo shouts out Karai's name as Raph and Karai break into a fight.  Once they get down to ground level Leo tries to get them to stop fighting, though in his efforts he stumbles back setting off an alarm.

I like this because Donatello and Michelangelo finally get to see and learn about Karai.  Raph took action because he felt it was right.  It clearly troubled Don and Mike to realize they were out of the loop with who this lady is.  I like the comments back and forth between Raph and Karai.  They work good off of each other.  A favorite line was when Karai asked if this was the stuff that changes people into Monsters how does it work and Raph's reply is "Why don't you lean in a little closer and I'll show you. "

Now the Kraang come in due to the alarm and the battle gets even more intense. Leonardo is still convince that Karai could be on their side.  But when they get cornered she does something despite everyone's warnings.  Pressing a button on the Kraang's machines which causes a new mutant of many mixed DNAs to be created.  Karai uses this time to escape with half of a Kraang's robot body.  Leaving the Turtles to fight this new monster she created, as Leonardo realizes Raphael has been right about her.

The stuff that happens with this new mutant, including the way Michelangelo names it is great.  It's a fun battle scene.  Though the Turtles against one giant Mutant and an army of Kraang Robots.  How will they defeat them?  This I'm going to leave for those who get to see "Alien Agenda".

Though I normally cut and run here, I do want to talk a little about the ending of this episode with the Foot Clan.  Karai wins Shredder over with the Kraang tech as he realizes it could be useful as she gives some of it to Baxter Stockman.  Now Shredder wants to know what they can learn about the Kraang.

This is a love hate scene for me.  I love that Karai got her dad to budge on the idea that this could be useful.  She got him to see that she was right to check it out.  Though I hate that Baxter Stockman did not fix Fishface's legs on his own.  He needs the Kraang tech to do what is needed for Fishface.  I want to see Stockman grow without stealing from others.  Baxter is one of my favorite characters, but in this series each time I see him in an episode I remain just a little disappointed in him.  For one reason or another.  At least he made it so Fishface can breath out of water without Kraang Tech.

A few really cool things with this episode for me was how much joy Dogpound got out of what Fishface was going through.  Him sitting there laughing like crazy was very amusing.   I was amused at a point where Raph could swear his lines is "ah sewer bunnies".  In the old Archie comics he would say "spit".  Which got me to laugh when I first heard him say that.  I like the attention to the school mascot including the poster Michelangelo finds, would of been nice of the school had people to it though.  But most of all this episode really won me over with how Raph and Leo were acting with each other.  Really well done.

Did you watch "Alien Agenda"?  What was your thoughts? Did you like Ms. Campbell?  What was your thoughts of Justin?  And do you think Leonardo will keep trying to win Karai over to the side of good?

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Comments

This was one of my favorite episodes! I'm really starting to like Karai, I think she was portrayed better here than the last episode. I'm also loving nickelodeon's version of Shredder, he's really evil an intimidating, and I loved how at first, he didn't want to even talk about anything else than his revenge. Such a great episode!

On an un related topic, have you seen the new figures from toy fair? I didn't actually go, but I saw some pictures online and I LOVE the Spider Bytez figure. What's your favorite out of all of them? I hope they make a Karai figure, but I also hope it'll have some decent articulation and not be like the April figure XD

i thing i find neat about this episode is that the Viking mascot reminds me of some short story where Mikey was drunk and ends up being sent to world ruled by Vikings. Also, seeing Karai flirt with Raph reminds me of a future story where Karai fights with Raph because she misses the old times.