Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shadows of the Past

I enjoyed the last two trades I just haven't gotten around to reading more of these. Which is good because I have some books to savor during my gap in collecting before the new ongoing titles.


April has a more realistic reaction to the turtles than Casey though she gets over it. Mostly to do with her knowing there's more craziness going around with ninjas. Casey manages to get them information thanks to his friend Angel and her gang. I like that Angel is more guarded about mutants in general to be a little wary of the turtles until Casey shows up. The Dragons not wanting to get involved beyond pointing them in the right direction also works well. It'd be a little forced to have them get over their mutant issues completely and decide to take on the Foot right after were introduced to them. I can buy Angel deciding to help Casey since his presence is what gets her to help in the first place.

The nod to Aprils' family antique store was appreciated as was Mikey and Donnie having geeky reactions. The best part has to be the scenes with Shredder which acts as an reintroduction between him and the guys. Karai is also brought in referring to Shredder as grandfather at one point. Shredder notices Splinter's fighting style though he doesn't know who he is until he refuses to taint his honor and calls the Foot out on losing theirs. This meeting doesn't make sense to either of them but Shredder has no interest in telling his backstory. He is fascinated to learn about his archenemy's sons though.

Leo has some nice moments in this too as he manages to hurt Shredder when he sees Donnie is in trouble. He remembers what happened last time they met and apparently put up a damn good fight. He manages to one up Shredder by getting the last word in. I can't recall Leo ever owning him like that before. April and Splinter also get a scene together that's rather sweet.

There's some mentions to some solo minis the Turtles had most of which don't affect the plot much. It  does feel odd to read this and miss out on Raph meeting another mutant. This story doesn't seem to have many breaks so I didn't think there would be much room for those stories. I'll have to check them out at some point.

My problem with Donatello in this series continues as he argues more with Leo. Look, I think it's perfectly reasonable for Donnie to not believe in reincarnation. He has a scientific mind that needs proof to go on and there's little to be had. I can even get Leo getting upset because he thinks Donnie should trust Splinter more and accept what he said. More so since Leo previously saw their mom in his dreams. But the level of aggression in their talk really does feel like something that would be in a Leo/Raph fight. Maybe the creative team felt it wouldn't work as well since Raph has been missing ?

I guess so as it feels like their building towards something with Leo making a point to refer to his brother as the one who cares about odds as he's the one that believes in miracles. At present it feels a little strained.

Donnie by nature is against aggression, he prefers to use his mind and even his weapon of choice reflects a less damaging combat style. Leo is usually level headed and I'd think he'd try to talk this out reasonably without resorting to insults. Yes he could get into it with Raph in other versions but he seems to resent Donnie for relying on logic. Having them bickering to the point it gets on everyone else's nerves is way too much. Leo and Donnie are supposed to be the most mature turtles now their being lectured by Raph and MIKEY?! I do like how Donnie apologizes later and Leo acknowledged that Donnie had a point about needing proof. But their fights still feel overblown.

While I didn't like this as much as the other two trades it was still enjoyable. I have two more I haven't read yet and I know there's a lot to go though. I might look for more instead of getting more Rebirth issues. TMNT might have one problem that bugs me but it's still entertaining with plenty character bits.

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