TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES (2011-) #101 review

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (IDW Publishing)

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #101 is available now where all good comics are sold!

Synopsis

Welcome to the new world of TMNT! After the cataclysmic events of TMNT #100, the Turtles find New York City drastically changed—new factions and enemies are on the rise, and allies are in short supply. The Turtles discover that in order to survive they will need to work together like never before!

Review

Regular GYCO readers will know that I used to review Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comics religiously. I’ve followed this recent run all the way back to its first issue and have stuck with it through the good times and the bad.

I stopped reviewing the series around issue #50 when I felt that is was going in narrative circles. Setting up huge events and climactic battles which would lead in to a relative period of calm and then repeat. For the next fifty issues Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has done just that. Following Splinter’s time leading The Foot and circling a potential return for Shredder.

But finally, with its landmark 100th issue, the series has done something different. Writers Kevin Eastman, Sophie Campbell and Tom Waltz took a brave step and implemented some misdirection to pull off a huge coup. Now with both Shredder and Splinter dead, the series finds itself in issue #101 treading a new path.

A new status quo has been set and finally it’s taking us somewhere we’ve never been before with the series. There’s now five turtles thanks to the addition of Jennika (not Venus de Milo like the TV series) and the landscape of New York has forever been changed by events of the previous arc.

We’re now in a kind of post-apocalyptic version of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles universe. One where humans are outnumbered, at least in certain parts of the city. Thousands more people are having to adjust to mutant life and the prejudices that come along with it.

This first issue of the latest arc finds the series at its most politically aware, constructing walls to barricade mutants in to sections of the city where families are ripped apart based on whether they were infected by mutagen or not. It all stands are a perfect analogy for societal issues in contemporary America and praise to the writers for going head first into some tricky territory.

The titular Turtles are consequential in this story. This issue is very much about giving the audience an understanding of the new landscape of the book. There’s some small tidbits of information about how the four leads are coping with the loss of Master Spliter, spoiler alert… not well.

Raphael has the most exposure here as he’s still within the limits of the mutant city. Acting as a vigilante as only he could in this situation.

The others are now living in the countryside attempting to move on with their lives. This issue sets the groundwork for a lot of soul searching and potential character development as it makes it very clear that the deaths of the 100th issue have not, and most likely will not, be undone.

This is easily the most excited I’ve been to read a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles book in a long, long time…

Verdict

Coming out of its landmark 100th issue Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has a new creative vigour and a new outlook on life. An intriguing start to a new chapter for the Heroes in a Half Shell.

7/10

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #101 is written by Kevin Eastman, Sophie Campbell and Tom Waltz with art also by Campbell.


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About Neil Vagg 4571 Articles
Neil is the GYCO Editorial Chief. He has a BA in Film & Tv and an MA in Scriptwriting; he currently works 9-5 as an office manager and 5-9 as a reviewer/web designer. He has been subscribing to comics for around nine years but has been reading them as long as he can remember. Favourite comics: Batman; Nightwing, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and All New X-Men Favourite films: Batman (any apart from & Robin); Star Trek Generations, Underworld, Beetlejuice Favourite TV shows: Fringe; Buffy, Arrow, TBBT, Being Human UK and Star Trek TNG