I’m still not 100% sure what Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Universe is beyond just a second Turtle title. But the first issue was good enough that I was willing to give the second issue a try.

Is it good?

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Universe #2 (IDW Publishing)

tmnt-universe-2-cover

Observations

  • Dang. This version of the EPF doesn’t mess around.
  • And neither does this new scorpion mutant! Holy crap!
  • No matter what version of the TMNT mythos you’re in, Baxter Stockman will always be a complete tool.
  • …although I have to admit, this is also the closest to being a badass that I’ve ever seen him achieve.
  • I think we’ve all been waiting for someone to do that to the scorpion for a while now.
  • Okay, maybe not that much…

Is It Good?

Maybe it’s because the main TMNT title has been so bad lately and my expectations or lower, but I’m really starting to like this book.

There’s still plenty of issues that need to be addressed—like the fact that Raphael is acting like a bad caricature of himself—but so far, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Universe is giving us a fun, action-packed story.

I also love how we’re getting a set of eyes inside the EPF. It would have been simple just to position Bishop and his minions as a shadowy, monolithic entity. Instead, writer Paul Allor puts Detective Lewis in the unenviable position of working for the organization while also questioning their motives. She’s a good solider, but that doesn’t mean she’s going to turn off her brain and instincts to things that don’t seem right.

tmnt-universe-2-epf

As despite my earlier criticism of how Raphael is being characterized, at least Allor made sure to have it pay off with a really good cliffhanger ending.

On the art side of things, the action sequences by Damian Couceiro (pencils) and Ronda Pattison (colors) are fantastic, particularly when they involve the mystery scorpion character. They also deserve a great deal of credit for making Baxter Stockman actually seem cool (at least for one panel).

Like I said before, I’m still not sure how this title is an exploration of the TMNT mythos beyond what the regular book attempts, but at least it’s telling a good story so far.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Universe #2 Review
Not much difference between this title and the main TMNT one, but at least it's telling a good story.Paul Allor gives us a great POV for observing Bishop and the EPF.Damian Coucerio (art) and Ronda Pattison (colors) create some gorgeous fight sequences.
Except for the cliffhanger ending, Raphael's characterization is ridiculously unsubtle. It's almost like he's doing a parody of himself.
7.5Good
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