From “Cowabunga!” to “Booyakasha!”: My Life in Ninja Turtle Memories

The unexpected emotional mix of finally sitting down to watch some of Nickelodeon’s 2012 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series coupled with warm feelings of post-birthday nostalgia gave birth to this post.  You see, there are a lot of characters I’ve loved through my whole life but few I’ve experienced in as many different iterations as I have the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  So I’m taking a walk down Memory Lane, looking at every incarnation of the Turtles I’ve met and exploring what they meant to me.  To be clear, this is not an exhaustive list of every single version of the Turtles.  There’s plenty of entries, sure, but the Turtles are prolific characters with parts of their mythology I’ve missed/yet to experience.  Still, this is a fairly impressive list if I do say so myself :).  With that being said, onward to an exploration of my life with the heroes in a half shell…TURTLE POWER. Continue reading

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IDW’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Hits A Milestone…and I Get Nostalgic

Congratulations IDW!!!  You did it!!!  With the release of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles issue #73 last week, IDW’s TMNT series became the longest running Turtles comic of all time.  Yay!!!  Archie Comics’ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Adventures held the record at seventy-two issues running from August of 1988 to October of 1995 and, for comparison’s sake, the Turtles’ original Mirage series ran for sixty-two issues, ending in August of 1993.  In honor of this momentous occasion, I wanted to talk about why IDW’s Turtles series has captured my heart and mind as well as how growing up with the Turtles for nearly thirty years has allowed my appreciation of their story to evolve. Continue reading

My Life in Costumes and Cosplay

When David and I saw Logan last weekend I did something I’ve never done – I dressed up for the premiere.  For years David has asked me to embrace mutton chops for the opening night of an X-Men movie but I never did either because I wasn’t feeling it or I didn’t remember soon enough to grow them in all their glory.  However, to honor Hugh Jackman’s final performance, as well as the seventeen years he spent playing Wolverine, I did it.  I went full on Wolverine!  There were no claws of course; I didn’t need to make things awkward for the theatre staff as they understandably ask for no toy weapons at these things.  But I did my best to capture the rest of his look.  And it was a lot of fun! Continue reading

IDW Gives Us The Turtles At Their Best!

I’m exploring the comic books I find to be indispensible reading as I count down to my 100th post and today I’m shining the spotlight on Tom Waltz and Kevin Eastman’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  In the hands of their IDW stewards, the Turtles’ tales transcend any sort of generic genre labels and simply stand as great literature.  This comic is a master class on compelling character studies and stories that are consistently as emotionally affecting as they are exciting.  I’ve yet to read a single issue and not be moved! Continue reading

Humanity’s GREATEST Literary Work

With slight modifications for genre, the sentiments legendary anchorman Ron Burgundy once applied to the band Survivor applies with as much truth to Tom Waltz and Erik Burnham’s 2014 IDW miniseries masterpiece Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles/Ghostbusters – “I’ve often said that the [comic book Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles/Ghostbusters] is the best that ever was.  In my opinion, they put [classic literature] to bed.  Everyone else is an imitator.  That’s right, you heard me [Shakespeare], [Rumi], [J.K. Rowling], [John Grisham], you guys suck…dong.”  But to be as honest as possible, I must take my praise a step further, slightly modifying Ron Burgundy once again, “This [comic book] is quite simply the greatest composition in human history.  If you disagree, I will fight you.” Continue reading

Who feels like a little…TIME TRAVEL?!?

The idea of time travel has been a staple of the fantasy/sci-fi genre in general and comic books specifically for…well, probably since the first future time traveller went back in time and was accidentally discovered by a struggling author who then just pretended to invent it.  No matter how many times it’s used, I love it.  I’m ALWAYS a sucker for a good time travel story.  So, with thoughts of time travel on my mind, I figured I’d look at two recent time travel series I really enjoyed – Marvel’s Deadpool & Cable: Split Second done by Fabian Nicieza and Reilly Brown as well as IDW’s Bebop & Rocksteady Destroy Everything put together by the team of Ben Bates, Dustin Weaver, Damian Couceiro, Ryan Browne, Nick Pitarra, Giannis Milonogiannas, and Sophie Campbell. Continue reading

To micro-series or not to micro-series?

When I began reading IDW’s brilliant series Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles several months ago, I was faced with a question.  As I amassed all the trade paperbacks going back to the beginning of the series’ 2011 run (because, responsible adult finances be damned, this was too fun to not read everything) I wondered whether or not I should invest in all the micro-series and miniseries that ran alongside the main title.  Obviously, it was a question born of financial concerns.  Did I need them to understand the story?  Did they add anything essential to my comprehension of the main title?  Should I spend all of that money?!?  I scoured the internet looking for suggestions.  I found a lot of sites offering very helpful chronological lists of where the various micro-series and miniseries issues fit within the larger stories in the main title but I didn’t find much on how essential they were.  So, for those of you struggling with this yourself or if you’re just interested the fun little tale of what I ended up doing, here’s my answer. Continue reading