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Comic Review: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #62

Harold’s been captured and Casey’s unleashed in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #62 from IDW Publishing. In an issue full of moving parts, perhaps the most impressive movement is the reader to tears…

Comic Review: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #62

(W) Kevin Eastman, Bobby Curnow, & Tom Waltz, (A) Dave Wachter, (C) Ronda Pattison, (L) Shawn Lee

The story whipped up by Kevin Eastman, Tom Waltz, and Bobby Curnow in this installment of the TMNT saga sets the reader on an emotional journey full of highs, lows, and everything in between. The cover by artist Dave Wachter alludes to an issue focused on Casey Jones, which usually implies a good amount of action. And while the trio’s story holds true to that promise, the issue’s script, executed by Waltz, carries an emotional weight that catches readers off guard.

After much stage-setting in TMNT #61, Splinter’s master plan begins to take shape, beginning with Casey reintroducing himself to his father’s old crew: the Purple Dragons. What transpires is a raw and brutal action sequence courtesy of Wachter. Rhonda Pattison employs a muted color palette which reflects the brutal, emotionless actions Casey undertakes, incapacitating the entire crew with relative ease.

That same cold color palette is used to great effect later in the issue, when it is revealed that Splinter had set in motion some of the series’ more recent events for a tactical advantage. This is a great tie into Michelangelo’s speech in the previous issue where he calls Splinter out for acting more and more like the Shredder than their father-figure. The issue’s closing image of Splinter against a cement-gray backdrop overseeing the Foot train in their all-black uniforms is a chilling sight. Each issue since the conclusion of the “Vengeance” arc has alluded to Splinter’s moral corruption, but this might be the first evidence of its existence. Moreover, his actions (or at least his confession to certain actions) may be the tipping point that sees himself and the Turtles fully divided.

If you’re worried that this issue is all doom and gloom, do not fret. Waltz, Wachter, and Pattison collaborate to deliver one of the most heartwarming sequences in the entire series as Raphael tries convincing Michelangelo to rejoin the team. Each word feels specifically chosen to emotionally lure the reader further and further into the scene so that by the end, they are reduced to tears. Wachter and Pattison’s art works perfectly in tandem with the script. The desperation Raphael feels to reunite his family is on full display, as is Michelangelo’s skepticism to the whole idea. In all, this is a masterfully executed sequence.

Anyone planning to pick up Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #62 should prepare for an emotional roller-coaster ride. Waltz takes the story he has crafted alongside Kevin Eastman and Bobby Curnow and molds it into a tightly paced and emotionally taxing issue. Add to it the great artwork by Dave Wachter and Ronda Pattison, and the result is another installment in the best ongoing superhero comic available being published today. This is without a doubt a must-buy.

Editor's Rating

TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES #62 combines great writing with fantastic art to deliver a powerful and emotionally affecting issue. This series proves once again to be an underappreciated gem in the superhero genre.
Great 9.0

The Author

Dan Gehen

Dan Gehen

Dan Gehen is a lot of things, but one thing he's been for his entire life is a TMNT fan (this has been verified by watching embarrassing home videos of his formative years). Though the classic 1980s cartoon caused his 3-year-old version to drive his parents insane via the constant repetition of "cowabunga dude", his true appreciation for the heroes in a half-shell came from the 1990 feature film as well as the comics by Mirage Studios. Today, he continues to enjoy comics from a variety of publishers, including the current TMNT series from IDW Publishing.

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