Wednesday, June 29, 2016

COMIC REVIEW - Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Deviations (IDW One-Shot)

Written by Tom Waltz, Kevin Eastman, Bobby Curnow
Art by Zach Howard, Cory Smith

Of the half-dozen issues that IDW put out for its "Deviations" event - essentially a take on the "What If?" concept of alternate realities and the such - I've bought and read two books; one on Ghostbusters and one on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The Ghostbusters book had an interesting idea marred by poop jokes, low brow humor, and just bad writing overall.

The Deviations on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, on the other hand? That fares a bit better. And that says something considering I haven't been a regular follower of IDW's (still ongoing) TMNT comic book... something that I eventually plan to rectify sooner than later, I hope.

This Deviation alters a plot point in the series, wherein the original narrative Leonardo is brainwashed into joining the foot clan, this narrative changes things by having all four Turtles brainwashed and in pursuit of their now-former master, Splinter. Although a familiarity with the original story in question may enhance one's enjoyment of the story a bit, the book's prologue provides enough of a backstory that bring those not in the know a little more up to speed. Who knows? Maybe it might entice potential readers to pick up back issues or the various trade paperback collections.

As for the issue itself, it's not a bad read despite the story not being all that fantastic. The possessed Turtles almost become interchangeable caricatures of each other, with only slight hints of personality being shown and the lead up to the big battle at the end could've used a bit more meat. Regardless, I can't say that I didn't enjoy this book; the final battle at the end is certainly fun and the side story of Arnold Jones mulling over the loss of his son Casey (which triggered this whole thing to begin with) adds a bit of depth to a character that seemingly had none.

The art is fine, a bit messy at times, but it's fine. I mean, as its own little thing, it's a nice and somewhat believable story that's saddled with a predictable ending (everybody dies, of course - hardly a spoiler if you've read a lot of What Ifs). An intimate knowledge of IDW's take on the Turtles would certainly help, but this holds its own just fine as a standalone.

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