Saturday, July 23, 2011

Blast from the Past #376: More notes from the development of the 4Kids TMNT series: Feb. 9, 2004: TMNT -- Outline 6

Feb. 9, 2004: TMNT -- Outline 65

From: Peter Laird
To: Lloyd Goldfine


I'm thinking this could turn out to be a great episode!

Here are my comments:

1.) Re: the following:

" April asks the Turtles to help perfect her ninjitsu skills.  But the Turtles are reluctant to do so ..."

I thought the Turtles had been giving April lessons all along? Or has it been Splinter? Or am I confused?

2.) Re: the following:

"Casey:  "Lighten up, April.  It was just a joke.  You’ve been talkin’ about your ninja fighting so much I thought I’d give you a little practice.  It’s not a real bat.  It’s a wiffle bat.  Check it out."

Casey hands April the wiffle bat.  "See?  It’s hollow plastic."  April then <whacks> the bat over Casey’s shoulder so hard that she breaks the wiffle bat in half.  Casey makes a face, "Ow!  Man, I didn’t know wiffle bats could hurt so much.""

Two issues here. First, while I can understand that Casey might think it's a good idea to give April a chance to safely test her ninja training, it's pretty crazed and cruel for him to scare the shit out of her in this way... UNLESS this is something that SHE suggested that he do sometime. 
Now, she could still be pissed at him -- maybe because she viewed her idle suggestion as something that might be a good idea and they should think about it some more, while Casey took it as definite, a done deal. I just don't think Casey should spring this attack on her without SOME kind of foreknowledge on her part that he might do this, even if he does it before she was expecting him to.
Second, the idea that April's going to smack him over the head with the wiffle bat so hard it breaks the bat -- that's going a little too far, I think... ESPECIALLY because she does it AFTER she knows it's him, knows why he's there, and all threat has passed. (And anyone who's ever been whacked hard by a whiffle bat knows that it HURTS, even if you're not hit hard enough that the bat breaks.) I could go for it if she does it WHILE she's defending herself... and Casey could then say something like "Jeez! Glad that was just a whiffle bat and not one of my REAL ones!" (By the way -- is "whiffle" a trademark name, and can we use it?)

2.) Re: the following:

"Arnie and Steve are walking home from school.  Steve is Arnie’s friend … Steve is pretty geeky."

It just occurred to me that a fun little"geek"  bit would be to have Steve carrying a beat-up paperback edition of one of the "Lord of the Rings" books, and he's telling Casey how awesome it would be if somebody were to make a movie out of the trilogy someday.

3.) I love the bit with the stuffed animal standing in for Leo on the couch!

4.) I probably don't need to say this, but this story takes place when the Turtles were in the old lair, right?

5.) Re: the following:

"… reverse up angle to reveal … Master Splinter!  And, he is definitely not happy!  The turtles try to explain, but Splinter scoops them all up like the truant turtle tots that they are and takes them home."

Splinter doesn't LITERALLY "scoop them up", does he? They aren't THAT small, right? 

6.) Re: the following:

"Back in the present, in April’s living room, the turtles laugh about Splinter finding them out and about like that … and Splinter’s reaction.

Leonardo:  "We couldn’t sit down for week."
Raphael rubs his backside:  "Yeah, my shell still hurts."
Michelangelo: "I still think twice about even going outside.""

I get what the writer is trying to get across here, with the classic kid punishment (i.e. spanking), but I think we should try to do something a little different, as -- if you think about it for a moment -- a "sore shell" makes NO sense, and if you can try to imagine spanking a mutant Turtle... where would you hit him? I think it might be better if we used something like the idea that Splinter punished them by "hitting them where it hurt" -- i.e. denying them their favorite things for a time (Raph couldn't use the weight bench, Don his computer, Leo his (?), and Mike the TV).

-- Pete


  1. Very interesting,Mr. Laird. What is your opinion of April having decent ninja training? I nevered cared for the idea of her fighting alongside of them like Casey Jones, Usagi, and others.

  2. You are right, Peter. I don't agree on doing physical punishment either, unless is necessary like spanking.
    There is one thing, that I don't like about the 2003 TMNT on Season One. Why Master Splinter hit his kids?I think he slapped them and then tell them "Because you're foolish" How he dare? and the fact that Michelangelo (pretty name) is constantly hit in the head by his brothers. He's not stupid; he's just a cutie :) Lucky, "Sensei" is a rat not a human, because he would be arrested for child abuse (if the ninja turtles were human, too)!! :0

    I wonder how old are our "favorites heroes in a half shell" (aka the TMNT)?

  3. I agree about the ithers slapping Michelangelo's head because they think he said something unneccessary. It signaled Michelangelo out in a way saying he was intolerable or inferior. I know it wasn't the intention, but perhaps my love of Mikey and a little unnecessary. Just a small nitpick I suppose on my behalf. :)

  4. "mikeandraph87 said...
    Very interesting,Mr. Laird. What is your opinion of April having decent ninja training? I nevered cared for the idea of her fighting alongside of them like Casey Jones, Usagi, and others."

    I thought it made a certain amount of sense that she would learn SOME fighting skills from the Turtles and Splinter, given all the time she spent with them and the dangers she consequently faced due to that association. But I don't think she ever got to, say, Karai's level of skill. -- PL