Friday, November 7, 2008

Blast from the Past #36 repost: Donatello's new costume

This is one of five pieces which were drawn by me and inked by Kevin (in the late 1990's, I think) as possible new takes on the main characters of the TMNT universe, as part of the development process for the never-filmed fourth live-action TMNT movie. We had put our heads together at the request of the movie studio and came up with some tweaks for the guys -- we were calling it “TMNT: The Next Mutation”. (This was before the live-action TV show.) The general idea was that the mutagen was continuing to change the turtles and Splinter, giving them new abilities -- and new problems.

Don was given the least obvious mutation -- growing telekinetic and telepathic abilities, unfortunately counterpointed by diminishing eyesight (hence the vision-enhancing goggles). We also provided him with an updated “techno” version of his bo staff.

In retrospect, I'm glad this never happened. -- PL


  1. Neat to look back on, but I'm glad, also. For a while, I feel like there was too much thought into adding something to the turtles to make them new or whatever. Like the Image series ... I don't mean to diss it, but I think all the TMNT need is someone dedicated to advancing the characters' personalities and stories, not the mindset that seems to suggest that they are out of gas as they are. So I'm happy that things are finally heading in that direction after that period.

    But that's just some random thoughts I've had in the years of being a fan, not any kind of judgment. I'm just along for the TMNT ride. :)

  2. In retrospect, I'm glad this never happened.

    Me too. I guess I'm sort of a traditionalist, but to me the greatest appeal of the TMNT is that they are not super heroes but just kind of ordinary (although in another sense extraordinary) guys struggling to do the right thing in a world that doesn't understand them.
    While they might have some innate talents, really all their physical skills are a result of busting arse to achieve them. That probably was one thing that made them so appealing to younger kids (and I suspect precipitated the martial arts *boom* that happened in the 90's (yes, I give you guys credit for that.)) But that quality is also part of what makes them, appealing to me.
    I know I'm far from the targeted demographic, so my feelings on the matter may not hold any water.
    I just love 'em, still.
    That's all.


  3. I have to agree. Something like this would have been like "X-Turtles." Wow...I have this weird image of Spinter ina wheelchair now...and bald....ugh nevermind. :P

  4. -->> well the designs still kick ass, and they are a fun part of Turtle history.

    I still would have loved ( even if just for a movie ) a Turtle named Kirby.

    Just as an appropriate and sweet homage.


  5. I like the idea and would have enoyed these more so than a few of the other ideas we've seen happen to the turtles over the years.
    The Raphael idea sort of happen to them in the old cartoon, I have to wonder if they took that idea from you?
    It's funny but in my younger days I use to draw allot of TMNT and I had drawn all of the turtles with super powers, I guess I had x-men on the brain or something.

  6. I guess it's a fine line to walk, adding things to an established franchise to keep it fresh.

    In this day and age, it's got to be in your mind every time that this might finally be the "shark jumping" moment that everyone dreads.

    ...At least it would be for me if I came up with something that popular.

    It must get infinitely worse when there are more parties involved, all looking at the financial line, all trying to push their ideas, citing market research and "focus group" testing, as the "Poochie" episode of The Simpsons so wonderfully parodied.

  7. While I agree that the super powered Turtles work better as an alternate universe concept, Don upgrading his bo-staff seems pretty in character.

    I can see the others sticking to their weapons for sentimental reasons but Don might find a retractable staff useful (techno geeks love compact weapons.)

    I believe in in Murphy's "Future Turtles" issues of the Archie Series, he had Future Don utilize a retractable staff that was also able to fire bullets.

  8. Well, Don had retractable Bo in Archie series' future things, but it didn't shoot bullets, but rather some sort of energy. Raph even used it to suck energy in Dreamland-storyarc...

  9. I like your ideas and articles. Good and great.
    I will wait for your articles.