Venus de Milo – The Fifth Turtle

In 1997, Saban Entertainment created a new entry in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise, TMNT: The Next Mutation.  The boldest addition to the mythos in this show was the introduction of a brand new ninja turtle – Venus de Milo.  Venus was the first female turtle, and was to reinvigorate the brand, giving Saban Entertainment another mega hit for their arsenal.  Unfortunately, Venus failed to live up to expectations, and disappeared into the annals of history just a mere eight months after her creation.

            Venus’s origin rewrites the beginning of the ninja turtles.  Her story says there were five turtles covered in mutagen, and one was washed away into the sewer, where it was found by shinobi master Chung I.  Chung I named the turtle Mei Pieh Chi, and taught her mystical arts for 18 years.  After meeting his end at the hands of the Dragonlord in the spirit realm, Chung I entrusted Mei with his mystic mirror, and told her about her birth in New York City.  Coming home, Mei was introduced to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and their master, Splinter.  She was given the nickname Venus de Milo, and joined the boys in their fight to protect NYC.

 Venus De Milo Ninja Turtles The Next Mutation

            Venus de Milo had a very innocent persona.  She was completely unaware of what the outside world offered (in a much more exaggerated way than the boys ever were), and therefore had to learn everything from square one.  This offered a level head unclouded by the fascinations of the modern world, allowing her to see things clearly whenever the situation got especially tense. Ultimately, Venus de Milo didn’t make it past the one season of Next Mutation, though her story continued for a little while online in the form of the “Venus’s Venerations” journal entries.  These letters tried to insert her into the same continuity as the other incarnations as the turtles, including having her battle some of the boys’ most dangerous enemies (like Krang).  However, only about a dozen were ever written, and by 2001 she faded away entirely.

            Venus was not well received by fans for a variety of reasons.  The most notable was the fact that her introduction tried to erase the idea that the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were siblings.  Even though other incarnations never explicitly said whether or not the turtles were related, Next Mutation made the point very clear, and the reason for it even clearer:  If the turtles aren’t siblings, then there can be romantic subplots between Venus and the boys.  While romance has always been implied between some characters in the other versions, it was a very prominent part of this series, and it didn’t need to be.  The action alone can make a compelling show for the right audience.

Ninja Turtles The Next Mutation Venus de Milo            The portrayal of “shinobi arts” as being strictly mystical was another point of contention for the character.  While spiritual aspects are part of ninjutsu, “shinobi” means “ninja”, so there’s nothing magical about the title.  So if she were just a shinobi, Venus would only have the same abilities as the other turtles.  If the writers wanted to add some sort of mystic element to her character as they did, that’s fine, but it should have been referred to as mysticism, and not shinobi arts.

            Venus de Milo will always have a small following that wishes to see her return, as well as a very vocal group of protestors that will never be sad if she fails to show up again (including creator Peter Laird).  But whether she’s loved or hated, Venus de Milo was an experiment that needed to happen.  The notion of a female turtle, and the aspects of the universe she could influence, wasn’t a new concept for its time.  The opportunities it offers (including romance, if done correctly) are numerous, and would provide interesting stories, especially if worked into the 2012 series.  While it failed in the implementation, it may be an idea worth trying again in the future.  Ultimately, whether or not Venus returns to the screen will be in the hands of the creative minds developing future properties.

Written by TurtlesAdmin

  • https://twitter.com/Karasu_zetsubou Rene

    I’m glad Venus was just that, an experiment. I like the TMNT being four and not five. Too many parts of the story work very well cause they’re made for four turtles, all males, the only ones in their specie. That’s why Venus won’t work.
    Anyway, if they made it in a parallel universe with another female turtles it could be worked better.

  • http://davidcfraga.wordpress.com/ Frogod1

    it would be interesting to see her in the new TMNT cartoon series or any any new,future TMNT movies.
    -lionardo has karai
    -donatelo might have April (in current cartoon series)
    -michelangelo ?
    -raphael ?

    there was another female turtle in the TMNT 80′s cartoon series- Mona Lisa
    http://turtlepedia.wikia.com/wiki/Mona_Lisa

    story idea
    -shredder makes a female team to fight the turtles (Karai,Mona Lisa,and venus) who end up becoming female turtles by aksident

  • jonathan acosta

    if they bring her back, they need to get rid of her magic powers..I didn’t care too much for her, but what i made it worst for me is when she brought shredder to the good side to see how evil got. Than after that,shredder was gone.
    I was so upset. She need to be a normal turtles and fight without magic. i see why Peter never liked her at all and deleted her profile lol

  • ARON MASTERS

    I loved Ninja Turtles: The Next Mutation. It was fresh and new. It had a great theme tune and it was Ninja Turtles live action again, after the 3 movies. I like Venus De Milo as it brought a new female character into the show which is nice. Watching a bunch of male characters talking with hardly any female characters is boring. It should have lasted longer than one season because now we don’t have a live action Ninja Turtles show. Once we’ve all watched the 2014 Ninja Turtles movie that’ll be that for live action Turtles probably for a while. I like the idea of seeing new live action Ninja Turtles stories every week. So I liked Venus De Milo, although I don’t really miss her.

  • http://Teenagemutantninjaturtles.com njs

    Read my comment in “Ninjitsu – Combat Skills”. I know a secret.

  • peter

    Thanks for the fair sum up of one of the most underestimated characters in the TMNT Universe. I like Venus.

    • Ebony

      Finally someone else that does

  • Ghenesa

    I still don’t know who Venus is. I’m always good at romance stories (cause I like to write a lot). I also write a TMNT show of my own. It’s still just like the TMNT 2012 series. And in my writings, I already made 3 female characters. And don’t ask me why i made 3 female characters ’cause I’m perfectly sure you wouldn’t agree with my answer.
    Anyways, if Venus will appear in the 2012 series (same as Casey Jones will appear), I just felt like I’ve been punched in the stomach. TWICE! :(
    Why is my adventurous action and mysterious yet romantic TMNT show turned to a miserable, stupid and ruined story? :’(