After last month’s epic battle, the Turtles and their allies (and enemies) take time to assess the wounds and decide what to do next. Is it good?
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #46 (IDW Publishing)
The issue opens with Donnie trying to adjust to his bizarre new status quo. Meanwhile, Casey’s father decides that with the Foot Clan out of commission, it’s time for him to drunkenly reconcile with his son. As you might imagine, this doesn’t go very well.
Speaking of the Foot Clan, Karai has (predictably) taken over what’s left of it and plans to immediately start kicking names and taking ass. Shredder, on the other hand, has joined forces with a surprisingly resourceful and even more determined Baxter Stockman.
But out of all the issue’s plot threads, the one involving Professor Miller and his discovery about the ancient entities that once ruled this world is the most interesting…and fatal.
Is It Good?
Normally, an issue like this suffers greatly from trying to set things up. Instead of a good narrative, we get a bunch of jumping off points for the next story arc. In Tom Waltz’s hands, however, this obstacle ends up being utilized to show great character moments.
From Raph and Alopex’s building relationship to Woody’s pep talk to Mickey, the individual moments in this one really shine.
I think what she’s trying to say is “Slow your roll, Alopex.”
The script continues this title’s excellent tradition of making what happened in the previous issues matter. The characters have been through a war and the resulting wounds are still wide open. It was also really cool to see Donnie interacting with Fugitoid to learn about how his new robotic form functions. Waltz goes the extra mile to really make what he’s going through feel like more than just a quick fix to keep his body alive.
As always, the artwork by Mateus Santolouco is superb. There is one frame in particular of Alopex barring her teeth and Hun that needs to be made into a poster/t-shirt immediately. It’s one of many great moments that her and all the characters seem to get in this one. Waltz is never content just to keep all the story threads going—he also makes sure the narratives are driven by character growth and transformation, which is no small task when you’re dealing with a major franchise.
I should also mention the new threat that’s being introduced. Not only does it sound really cool, but it utilizes a minor character death to really bring home just how serious it is (rather than going for cheap shock value). Then to top it all off, we’re left with a kick-ass cliffhanger.
Once again, the TMNT creative has taken an issue that could have been a by-the-numbers setup piece and turned it into a great bit of storytelling. It’s yet another reason this title is becoming my favorite incarnation of the Heroes in a Half Shell.