COMIC REVIEW: TMNT #114
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #114
Story by Sophie Campbell
Art by Sophie Campbell & Ronda Pattinson (colors)
Published by IDW
Released February 10th, 2021
Jennika comes face to face with the person who almost killed her—Karai! Will the other Turtles be able to stop Jennika from exacting revenge before Bebop and Rocksteady find her first?
Some vocal fans within the TMNT social media bubble have had a “take it or leave it” attitude when it comes to Sophie Campbell’s run on IDW’s TMNT. While I’ve taken my fair share of turtle-trash over the decades as a TMNT fan (I willingly bought Turtle Pies, folks) I see where they’re coming from. Fanfare and familiar faces fall flat when the meat of your story isn’t gripping. Just ask Star Wars fans about the past few years (please don’t). But I’m a “pizza half full” kinda guy with the patience of a Splinter Clan Ninja. So after a hefty previous issue that covered a little too much ground and left me feeling pretty torn about the overall direction, can TMNT #114 lead us down a clearer, better path?
Yeah. It does.
TMNT #114 proves to be a step in the right direction, taking the bundle of storylines (time traveling and all) and untangling them one at a time for a satisfying read in the Turtleverse. Campbell has done a great job in this chapter blending drama, action, and humor. Lita might have beaten Bill and Ted to be one of the most ignorant time travelers of all time. But the way she interacts with her child self (and the disappointment in child-lita’s observations) is wholesomely hilarious.
Jennika has an interesting side shown to us as well. I’m not sure of the direction, but Jennika confessing to Donatello that she wants BeBop and Rocksteady dead shows the difference between her ideology and the TMNTs’. Exploring this deeper could make for some impactful storytelling, itching the “Frank Castle” side of Jennika…and the eventual clash between her and the TMNT (which is touched on with Raphael in #114).
It’s always great to see Bebop and Rocksteady back. And though it was interesting to see Tokka and Rahzar in the same issue, it’s a bit of a shame that these two intimidating monsters are given the baby treatment once again. Though I did enjoy the Secret of the Ooze nod during their confrontation and I eagerly await the battle about to ensue. Campbells and Pattinson’s artwork is also stellar throughout issue 114. The great stylistic use of stark shadows and textured colors make this issue especially sleek. All in all, TMNT #114 gets the story moving once again and provides humor, heart, and action that the story has been recently missing. It set up some interesting paths and ended on a cliffhanger that’ll make me want to read #115. And it feels good to say that again.
Nom noms indeed.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #114 is now available wherever comics are sold!