Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles/Ghostbusters II 1

by Taylor Anderson and Patrick Ehlers

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

Taylor: There’s something about a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Ghostbusters crossover that just works. There are the obvious reasons why, like both groups being made up of four dudes with similar personalities, or the fact that they both live in New York. While that explains why the crossover is convenient, it’s not why it works. No, the reason that the Turtles and ‘Busters can merge stories so well is that both groups routinely deal with strange shit. That, and that alone, might just be why there is a second crossover event for these two franchises, and if the first issue is any indication, it is also reason enough for it existing. Continue reading

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Ghostbusters: Answer the Call 1: Discussion

by Ryan Mogge and Taylor Anderson

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

Ryan M: Beginnings have a sense of weight to them. Readers expect that the moment has been chosen with care, to best set up the story that follows. When readers enters the world, they are especially sensitive to the status of the characters. This is the point where a creator can offer a lifeline in the form of a point of view character. Alternatively, we can begin in a state of flux, so that the reader naturally finds the “new normal” along with the plot. Ghostbusters: Answer the Call 1 starts the series with the main characters in a comfortable rhythm with each other and their world. By not challenging their status quo, Kelly Thompson and Corin Howell let the Ghostbusters remain entertaining but not affecting. Continue reading

The Truth Lets Us Down in The Infinite Loop: Nothing But the Truth 2

by Spencer Irwin

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

The truth is a powerful thing, to be sure, but popular media seems to have the idea that the power of the truth can overcome any obstacle — the second the truth comes out armies rebel, court cases are immediately solved, etc. etc. Pierrick Colinet, Elsa Charretier, and Daniele Di Nicuolo seem to have a more complicated view of the truth throughout Infinite Loop: Nothing But The Truth 2, crafting an issue where the truth isn’t actually all that helpful — and, in some cases, is actually part of the problem. Continue reading

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Universe 15: Discussion

By Drew Baumgartner and Patrick Ehlers

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Universe 15

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

Drew: The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have always been the perfect outcasts in a medium made for outcasts. Well, saying that comics were “made” for outcasts isn’t entirely accurate, but it certainly had become a medium for outcasts — at least in the US — by the time the turtles were invented in the 1980s. We don’t really need to get into the causality of why comics fandom was perceived as a weird thing — the point is that it was. And in the age before the internet, someone with a “weird” hobby or enthusiasm for some obscure piece of pop culture might not know anyone else like themselves. While the rest of the world could connect over their religion, political party, or even local sports team, the average comics reader in 1984 might not have had anyone they knew who shared their interest. I don’t bring this up to pity the lot of the poor comics fan — heaven knows plenty of people were more isolated and actively persecuted — just to say that themes of not fitting in have always been an essential part of the TMNT makeup. This is a point that Erik Burnham and Sophie Campbell clearly understand, as their Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Universe finds several characters seeking their place in the world. Continue reading

Objections to the Drama in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 74

by Taylor Anderson

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

There’s a reason courtroom scenes are commonplace in stories these days. With a plaintiff’s life sometimes literally on the line, stakes are high and the margin for error is low. Additionally, in a lot of fictionalized courtroom stories, shocking truths are exposed and justice is served (or terribly undermined). Thus it comes as no surprise that the “Trail of Krang” is being labeled as the trial of the century, but does it actually pack the drama that we expect from a courtroom scene? Continue reading

The Infinite Loop Nothing But the Truth 1 Turns to the Opioid Crisis

by Patrick Ehlers

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

The original Infinite Loop series was pretty transparent: it was a sci-fi crusade for the rights and acceptance of LGBTQ folks. That was thinly draped in allegory: Ano wasn’t a target because she was gay, but because she was a time-travel anomaly. But the themes of tolerance and gay rights were prevalent and obvious, presented with a sci-fi veneer that was often better enjoyed than actually understood. I was trying to explain the series to our own Ryan Mogge last night, and while I had the themes and characters totally nailed down, I had a hell of a time trying to recall the plot. Nothing But The Truth firms up some of those logical conundrums while shifting its focus to another group caught in an infinite loop: those effected by the opioid crisis. Continue reading

Focus is a Strength in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Universe 14

by Ryan Mogge

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

In real life, people who exhibit single-mindedness can be a bore. In fiction, that same behavior can work as a backdrop for more entertaining action. Erik Burnham and Sophie Campbell present two storylines in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Universe 14, each with a woman at the center who provides the story’s drive if not its color. This is not a negative thing, Karai and Natsu both demonstrate a sense of purpose and commitment that pushes the story forward while also challenging the world around them to make room. Continue reading

Little is Not Enough in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Dimension X 5

by Taylor Anderson

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Dimension X 5

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

In his discussion about Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Dimension X 4, Patrick talked about how there was just too much going on in the issue.  If anything, the next issue in the series suffers from the exact opposite. Following the same format as the four issues that came before it, 5 has little more to offer than the issues which proceeded it which, at times, make the issue feel painfully thin. Continue reading

More is Too Much in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Dimension X 4

by Patrick Ehlers

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

Before the Turtles land in Palmadise City (presumably where the grass is green and the girls are pretty), Michelangelo and Leonardo share their first impressions of the all-city planet:

The city is an overwhelming stimulant — there’s so much to see and to do, that our heroes just might end up losing sight of their goal. This almost ends up being a thesis statement for the creative team of Ryan Ferrier and Chris Johnson, who arguably have more narrative toys than they know what to do with. Continue reading

Wondering about the Burning Axe in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Dimension X 3

by Ryan Mogge

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

Sometimes a log line is better than a story because it’s pure potential and isn’t weighed down by the details of execution. In Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Dimension X 3, the boys visit a professional wrestling planet. It’s not as great as whatever your brain just conjured. Continue reading