Comic Review – TMNT #46

Originally written for Flickering Myth.

“Casey prepares for a final showdown with Hun as the Purple Dragons run amok. Meanwhile the TMNT struggle to reunite as a family while a greater threat looms… what is THE STOCKMAN SWARM?”

That’s more like it. After my disappointment with last month’s #45, TMNT is back in my good books. Though there may not be much action, #46 is gorgeous, with some amazing use of colour, plus a series of well written dialogue scenes.

What must it be like to have an out of body experience? It must be even stranger if you also find yourself in a robot body of your own design. It would freak me out for sure, but I’ve always been more emotional than logical. Donatello is the opposite, having already proven he’s capable of making the big calls. It’s hardly surprising that his response so far has been to get on with things, even helping his brothers care for his real body. Mateus does a sterling job here, a top down full page view of Robo-Bro (Mikey’s term) caring for himself, whilst discussing himself is a great way to start the issue off. Metalhead/Donnie may not have an expressive face, but the body language gives you all the clues you need as to his current state.

Ugh, mopey Raphael. Whilst everyone else dusts themselves off and gets on with things here he is cursing the situation and the decisions made that lead up to it. You’d think by now he’d have learnt. Oh well, the stuttering relationship between him and Alopex will hopefully blossom now which should make for interesting reading. A mutant inter-species relationship? I could go for that.

Alopex, like Mikey, is a character than Mateus handles really well. From a snarling warrior to softly spoken confidante, it’s all there.

Last month I compared TMNT to Batman, and here we are again; a shot of Alopex and Nobody pretty much ripping off a classic Batman and Robin pose. I’m not complaining though as it looks great. They seem to make a good pairing, and I think are deserving of a micro at some point.

It’s not all mutants though, with April and Casey getting some time ahead of their mini-series. For Casey it’s a clash of new and old families as Hun visits the O’Neil’s store to bring his son back into the fold. Because you know, the hit ordered on your son by an age old evil ninja being rescinded by his apparent death is a good bit of news to kick off with isn’t it?

Tom Waltz handles the amount of dialogue this issue well, and uses to good effect, especially for Mikey. He may be considered the baby of the group, but he’s got his head screwed on; the questions he asks of the current situation and the future are not those of a child. Baxter Stockman is coming up for his time to shine too, his current position leading to confidence when speaking with Shredder. I do hope it bites him on the backside at some point.

The series has shown it’s not averse to the odd panel of shocking violence, but I thought we might be clear of that for a little while post shell break. Nope, there’s a particularly vicious scene this month. It’s damn good mind you, with Ronda Pattison’s colours really bringing it to life, or not as the case may be.

I might not have agreed with some of the decisions made last month, but TMNT is following through on them strongly. I can respect that. With some wonderful artwork and thoughtful dialogue it’s back on track.

If you enjoyed this review you could always check out the rest of the site. If you went one further and shared with everyone you know I might just love you forever.
I also have interviews with TMNT artists Ross Campbell and Mateus Santolouco, if you’re into that sort of thing.

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