The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles know it takes a team to accomplish their goals. Creating a comic is no different, and the upcoming relaunch of the comic series from New York Times bestselling writer Jason Aaron and IDW Publishing will present amazing artwork from four incredible illustrators: Rafael Albuquerque, Joëlle Jones, Cliff Chiang, and Chris Burnham.
TMNT has a rich forty-year history of talented artists leaving their mark on the franchise. It all started with Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird, and now IDW Publishing is bringing back the tone and attitude of the classic comics. With each artist stepping in for an issue that stars their favorite turtle in the first story arc, Albuquerque, Jones, Chiang, and Burnham are all bringing Aaron’s action-packed and raw story to life in a way that will stun readers.
“I’m thrilled to be working with Jason on such a special project, with so many talented artists,” stated Albuquerque. “Being a child from the ‘80s, the TMNT cartoon has a special place in my heart, so having the chance to draw them for the first time kind of completes a full circle, full of nostalgia and excitement. I can’t wait to reveal what we’re working on!”
Burham has a strong personal connection to the TMNT’s comic history and is amazed to be added to the franchise’s history of excellent artists. “I am SO excited to be working on the Turtles! I’ve been a TMNT fan since the black and white days – Fugitoid is one of the first comics I ever owned, and the original Donatello One-Issue Micro Series is one of my favorite comics of all time. I discovered so many amazing artists as a kid reading the Turtles – beyond Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird there’s Mark Bodé, Rick Veitch, Mark Martin, Richard Corben, Michael Zulli, Eric Talbot, Jim Lawson, Sophie Campbell… the list goes on and on and it’s a great honor to add my name to it!”
Chiang also has fond memories of the Heroes in a Half Shell and is thrilled to be working with Aaron. “I still remember the thrill of reading those early black-and-white issues and how they ushered in a new wave of independent comics, and I’m incredibly excited to be a part of this next chapter for the Turtles. Even better, Jason and I have been friends for a long time but haven’t yet worked together, so I get to kill two Mousers with one sword.”
“For me, working on TMNT was first a nostalgia hit – being an ’80s kid, I consumed it all!” said Jones. “But at its heart, and why I think it still resonates with people today, is that it’s a story about a family of outcasts brimming with personality and the conflicts that come out of it. Or maybe I just like the giant rat father figure, which might be something for me to unpack with a therapist at a later date!”
“I almost couldn’t believe it when these folks started saying yes. It’s such a dream team of modern artists, folks responsible for some of my favorite comics of this century,” added Editor-in-Chief Jamie S. Rich. “All four of them were so enthusiastic to draw characters they love for the first time. It was cool to hear why they loved each of the individual Turtles. Like Chris talked about the Donnie issue with the Jack Kirby homage, and Joëlle mentioned how she has always liked hotheads and fighters. It’s comic book kismet!”
Co-publisher Mark Doyle cannot wait for fans to get these comics in their hands and gaze at the artwork. “These are some of the best artists and storytellers in modern comics bringing their style and action to characters they love. As a fan, I’m over the moon!”
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Alpha #1 is on sale this June with a 10-page prelude story, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 will go on sale this July. For updates on everything regarding TMNT comics, be sure to follow IDW and the official TMNT accounts on social media.