Friday, March 16, 2012

Blast from the Past #498: September 15, 2005: Space Usagi, September 16, 2005: Re: Show 129 Outline, Re: Show 128 Premise, and Re: Show 125 Final

Subj: Space Usagi
Date: Thursday, September 15, 2005 9:17:53 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine


Now that the Turtles are in the future, it occurred to me that it might be a good time for them to meet "Space Usagi" -- Stan's "descendant of the original Usagi Yojimbo" that he created some years ago. What do you think? Possible? Not possible? I think it could be fun. FYI, I have said nothing to anyone besides you about this.

-- Pete


Subj: Re: Show 129 Outline
Date: Friday, September 16, 2005 1:54:18 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine


Here are my notes on the Ep129 outline.

1.) Re: the following:

"From inside one of them a hand wipes away the steam and we see a creepy, smiling Dark Michelangelo, who utters in a comical yet demonic way. 

DARK MICHELANGELO: “Cowabunga, dude <sinister cackle>” "

It's certainly a cool visual, and I think we should keep it, but... the "Cowabunga" bit makes NO sense. I mean, unless we are saying -- and i hope we're NOT -- that from that little bit of genetic material Sh'Okanabo stole from the Turtles, he's not only been able to clone the Turtles' bodies but their PERSONALITIES as well!
In fact, this leads me to another idea -- might it not be more interesting if these "Dark Turtles" were not merely "bad" mirror images of the regular Turtles? And, in fact, all had different and unique personalities? For example, what if "Dark Leo" wasn't the leader of this counterpart group -- what it it were "Dark Mikey" or "Dark Don"? What is "Dark Leo" was the "funny man" of the "Dark Turtles"? And so on.

2.) Re: the following:

"Darius’ eyes light up, and host a malevolent sneer.  He tells Serling he just remembered an important call he has to make and asks Serling to “excuse him”.  Serling gets the hint and exits, giving Darius privacy.  Darius watches the Turtles approach on the holo screens, waits a beat, and begins a bogus phone call intended to make the Turtles suspicious.  He talks about planning a special “surprise” for Cody, and needing to go downtown later to arrange it.  His voice is sinister.  Just as Darius planned, the Turtles stop short and eavesdrop, suspecting foul play.  Leo whispers to his brothers that they also will be going downtown, to trail Darius!"

To make this bit play well and make sense, I think Darius's overheard phone call MUST be able to be interpreted innocently as well as malevolently. After all, WHY would he DELIBERATELY make himself seem OBVIOUSLY evil and guilty in the Turtles' eyes? That makes no sense to me, as he is still trying to maintain the cloak of innocence he has worn since they met him. Because the Turtles already suspect that Darius is not the good guy that he would like to be seen as, it would be enough that what Darius says in this phone call could be INTERPRETED as being an evil plot. Obviously, the "sinister" voice bit would not be appropriate.

3.) Re: the following:

"MIKEY: “This is just like the time Doc Dome had to fight his evil twin back in the old Justice Force comics!”

DARK MIKE: “Justice Force, that book bit the big one!  It stinks!”

MIKEY: (in disbelief) “justice force…stinks???…BLASPHEMER!!! – YOU ARE NO EVIL CLONE OF MINE!!!”"

Referring back to my first note above -- this whole Dark Turtles vs. Light Turtles fight sequence (and by that I mean ALL four match-ups) is kind of boringly predictable. And how would a recently alien-created "clone" of Mikey know about the "Justice Force"?

4.) Re: the following:

"While Cody sits at the bar inconspicuously, O’Neil Nano Bots skitter back to the warehouse to hunt for clues.  Cody’s recon is going without a hitch, until one of the devices starts to act screwy and broadcast O’Neil data through the bar.  This is followed by screechy feedback sounds that blare in Cody’s ear and make him howl in pain.  This gets the denizens attention and he is recognized.  Cody Jones!  My, wouldn’t he make a handsome ransom…or at the very least…a nice midnight snack.  The thugs in the bar start making their way ominously to Cody, ready to pounce!"

This is all pretty silly. First, a kid who looks like Cody "sits at the bar inconspicuously" in a joint like Abroc's Abyss? I don't think so. And the goofy slapstick way Cody get's noticed -- the nanobot which "starts to act screwy and broadcast O’Neil data through the bar" (and what's the point of THAT??!!) and causes "screechy feedback sounds that blare in Cody’s ear and make him howl in pain" -- is pointless. I mean, the kid would stand out like a sore thumb ANYWAY!

5.) Re: the following:

"Cody makes his way to Splinter (with Serling’s help) and tells him he thinks he knows where the turtles are!  Splinter tells him to go…to find his sons.  Splinter assures him they will be along as soon as they can."

This seems way too casual. It should be made clear that Splinter is only telling Cody to do this VERY DANGEROUS THING BY HIMSELF because time is of the essence if they are to save the Turtles' lives.

6.) Re: the following:

"At that point Dark Raph catches himself and pulls his attack back – leaving Cody to wail on him while he takes it like a defenseless puppy."

It's not "wail" -- it's "whale".

7.) Re: the following:

"With that, he presents Cody with an incredible assortment of old comic books, vintage items, and lots of other stuff Darius has formally referred to as junk. "

Should that be "formerly", not "formally"?

8.) Re: the following:

"Sh’Okanabo reminds him that he has access to alien technology that would complement O’Neil Tech nicely (the Dark Turtles are an example of that).  Perhaps together, they can reproduce the time travel anomaly and create a time/space portal.  Darius is uninterested.  He is a businessman, what does he want with time/space portals?  Sh’Okanabo sways him.  He calls Darius shortsighted.  It doesn’t take much imagination to envision how a time/space portal could be very, very lucrative for business.  The entire universe would be at your disposal!  Darius’ interests are piqued, and a hellish partnership is born."

It seems preposterous to me that someone like Darius -- I mean, he runs O'Neil TECH, fer cripes sake! -- would not IMMEDIATELY understand the potential of a time portal and JUMP on it right away. I seriously doubt it would take any "swaying" by Sh'Okanabo to get Darius' interest "piqued".

-- Pete


Subj: Re: Show 128 Premise
Date: Friday, September 16, 2005 4:20:55 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine


Here are my notes on the Ep128 premise.

There are two really big problems with this premise as I see it.

One, the fact that it is SO easy for our characters to be infected and then turn into "Kanobo Drones". If we establish NOW that it can happen so quickly, then we might as well hang it up -- there's no hope for Earth if the infection can progress this rapidly.

And two, the fact that it's so EASY to destroy the Kanobo drones and turn the afflicted back into their normal selves -- just expose them to YELLOW SUNLIGHT! That's a GIGANTIC flaw in Sh'Okanabo's plan... and it's preposterous that he wouldn't have seen it before. What's going to be their weakness next time -- WATER?
Although as a setup for what I assume is a nefarious future plan for Sh'Okanabo to get rid of our sun, it's not a bad idea, it still doesn't work for me. And if Sh'Okanabo DID get rid of our sun somehow, wouldn't that -- by essentially causing the Earth and its population to FREEZE -- defeat his purpose of "finding a planet and sucking it dry of its populace and resources by "infecting" host bodies with their DNA and slowly consuming them"?
And if (a) Sh'Okanabo has the capacity to somehow destroy our sun, and (b) the "Awakening" can work even though the lifeforms that the Gene Seeds are feeding on are frozen solid, then why doesn't Sh'Okanabo just skip the hassles and destroy the sun FIRST?

1.) Re: the following:

"Meanwhile, Raph and Cody track Mikey Kanabo Drone as he bounds across the rooftops of the mostly abandoned boarded-up brownstones.  Now this kinda chase is a lot more familiar to Raph.  The shadowy neighborhood has Cody's spooked.  Raph promises to protect him."

It occurred to me while reading this that it might be a cool, emotional moment if they stop for a breather... then one of them says "Guys... do you realize where we are?" And then it dawns on them... this was April's (or Casey's) old apartment. 

3.) Re: the following:

"Meanwhile, Sh'Okanabo can't risk having his plot exposed.  He slashes open a gas main in the basement and disappears into the shadows.

In the building above, the last of the Kanabo Drones shrivels, their human and alien hosts (including "Original Ray" and many of his patrons) safe and sound, but thoroughly confused and with no memory of what happened.  Then Splinter smells gas.

The guys help the innocents haul shell outta there before the entire building goes up in a massive fireball, leaving no evidence behind of the gene-seeds or Sh'Okanabo's plot.  The guys know the truth, but who'll believe them?"

THIS is the only way Sh'Okanabo can destroy the evidence -- by setting fire to a broken gas line?! Pretty lame for such a powerful entity.

4.) Another problem with this "infect fast/turn into drone fast/turn back into regular self fast" approach is that it really makes the menace of the Gene Seeds seem pretty tame. I mean, if they can turn you into a drooling alien monster one minute, but then the next you're back to normal, what's the big deal?
In my opinion, this story needs a serious re-think. I would suggest considering NOT having ANY of the Turtles or Splinter turn into drones, but maybe someone a little more vulnerable -- i.e. Cody or maybe even Starlee. And I would further suggest that whoever DOES get infected, they STAY that way for at least a few episodes, so that this infection thing seems SERIOUS.
One scene that occurred to me which might be very cool is is one in which Cody gets infected, turns into a slavering drone -- and Starlee has to climb into Cody's TurtleBot armor to fend CodyDrone off.

-- Pete


Subj: Re: Show 125 Final
Date: Friday, September 16, 2005 4:31:49 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine


I really have no further comments, though I am mildly disappointed that you kept the "plastic candy" instead of my suggested "one hundred year old candy", but that's a minor thing.

Speaking of which -- do you know the scene in "Strange Brew" that I was referencing? Have you seen "Strange Brew"?

Anyway, it's the scene where brothers Bob and Doug Mackenzie are being shown around the brewery where they are going to be working, and in the cafeteria, one of them (the one played by Rick Moranis) excitedly puts coins into a vending machine for a container of milk, which he opens and chugs right away... just as his brother reminds him that those machines have been turned off for the last seven months.

D'oh! Hurl!

-- Pete


  1. On an unrelated note, is the inking/toning done for TMNT Vol. 4 #32, and if not, what are the chances of that issue being completed sometime this year?

    1. See Mr Laird's reply in the comments section of Ask PL #8.