“RISE OF THE TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES” REVIEW – SEASON 1 EPISODE 4 – The Fast and the Furriest / Mascot Melee
Now in to the fourth episode, “Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” is showing signs of continuity while still introducing new elements to flesh out the world.
We get the most sense of an overall story with “The Fast and the Furriest.” Donatello stays his claim as the inventor of the group when he turns the moon buggy, acquired in a previous episode, in to the Turtle Tank. Donnie is about to show off his new invention when he finds it’s stolen! But not by someone he would expect.
In the quest to find out who stole the Turtle Tank, we get a good look at other mutants in this universe. Maybe most important, this episode gives us our first returning villain. Meat Sweats makes his return on his quest to make everything more delicious. Once the turtles recover their stolen tank, we get a high speed chase showcasing some of of the Turtle Tank tech, as well as some ways other mutants can counter the attacks. Leo gets a nice moment where he’s able to activate his swords magic.
“Mascot Melee” sets up a very light story, but turns in to every New Yorkers’ nightmare.
The turtles are on a mission to buy Splinter a new robe. In disguise, Raph works his way through times square in a giant hippo suit. His giant hippo head gets knocked off, he gets mugged, and people mistake him for the new meme, “Turtle Possum.” I thought I would have tuned out when I heard the word “Meme,” but we get one of our major Easter Eggs to the original series. I barely know what memes are, so this was a good way to keep me interested. Donnie also whistles to old “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” theme, which made me happy.
Raph takes pictures with tourists to earn back the money that was stolen from him. He does so well, the other costumed Times Square characters take notice. While this is terrifying enough, things get even creepier when the bad guys mascot heads get knocked off. It’s a creepy episode that emphasizes how weird things can get in this universe.
I love that the show is moving along with continuity. I like the idea of building villains and letting them escape to fight again later. The world here seemed almost too colorful at times, and the emphasis on memes was the first time I maybe felt like this show was solely aimed at kids. But the visuals are very striking and getting to learn more about mutants and how they interact with humans is a lot of fun. The first half was the stronger, I felt. But both worked well in different reasons. I think the new Turtle Tank will be a great addition, and it sounds a lot cooler than Turtle Van.