Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Blast from the Past #539: February 24, 2007: Re: TMNT: FF 145 notes and February 27, 2007: Re: TMNT146 First Draft

Subj: Re: TMNT: FF 145 notes
Date: Saturday, February 24, 2007 1:11:00 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

"Hey Pete –

 Checking to see if you had any notes for 145.

 Anxious writers are standing by!

 Sorry you’re not coming to the convention here; I’ll be seeing all the other Mirage crew for dinner tonight!

 Hope all is well.



  Here are my notes on the Ep. 145 second draft script.

  (As with my previous comments on the second draft of Ep. 144, I did not see a first draft of this episode's script.)

1.) Re: the following:

And, remember, all space salvage goes in the cargo hold to be shared equally after we sell it!  No skimming, you hornéd space garbage!"

  I think I understand the intent here, but the language is a little off -- there can't be any equal shares of the space salvage AFTER they sell it. However, the COULD share equally of the PROCEEDS from such a sale.

2.) Re: the following:

"*ON - The Automated Food Processing Unit is still creating pies … and now it’s a huge pile!  Michelangelo gets a pie in each hand and rushes out of frame with them and the unit makes another pie (as it keeps making pies automatically) making the pile even bigger …"

  I wonder if it might be fun at the beginning of this pie fight to have Mikey accidentally bump the machine/press the wrong button or dial and set it to "Random Pie Generation", so that we could have a little more variety, including perhaps some pretty disgusting variations. A minor point.

  3.) Re: the following:

Yeah … but … he actually wanted to learn something.  I couldn’t resist."

Don doesn't say "Yeah". He says "Yes".

  4.) Re: the following:

"LEATHERHEAD steps forward and HUGS the turtles in a massive kind of bear/crocodile hug."

While I am not completely sure this is a good idea, it might be fun to consider giving Leatherhead a new "look" for this episode. After all, he is at least 100 years older than he was when we last saw him, so he may have changed somewhat. Perhaps he is even into wearing clothes of some sort. Just a thought... might make for a new and different toy figure.

  Two other things about the reintroduction of Leatherhead and the Utroms. First, it might be good to put in a throwaway line about how the Turtles haven't seen Leatherhead since he and Hun fell -- apparently to their deaths -- in the big battle in the Shredder's lair (at least I THINK that was the last time they saw him). The Turtles could ask him how he managed to survive, and he could promise to tell them the whole long story later.

The second thing is that there should be here at least some mention of the fact that it is 100 years later and the Turtles are still around and looking as youthful as they ever were. Perhaps this could be a question from Leatherhead and/or Mortu which could be followed up by a similar "Long story, tell you later" line.

5.) Re: the following:

I am afraid to have to cut this reunion a little short, though, due to the severe nature of my visit."

"Severe" doesn't sound right here -- I would use "serious".

6.) Re: the following:

I must go there to investigate, but unfortunately, the political climate on the Utrom Homeworld has changed somewhat.  The threat of the Shredder has been forgotten.  In keeping vigilance, I am alone."

  Given the fact that we played up the "worst criminal Utrom of all time" aspect of the Shredder/Ch'rell when we had his trial a few seasons ago, it seems a little odd that the Utroms would so easily forget him. Let's find another way to put it... perhaps suggest that the Utroms have moved on to other pressing issues (without necessarily getting into what those issues are). Or maybe suggest that the current Utrom government is less concerned with what they might consider "done deals", i.e. a criminal sentenced to an icy asteroid whose "life signal readings" may very well have ceased because he's, well, DEAD. And good riddance!

  7.) Re: the following:

Yeah, if the Shredder’s managed to get loose, it can’t be a good thing."

  See point 3 above. Also, this is kind of a dumb, obvious line more suited to Raph or Mikey than Don.

  8.) Re: the following:

Perfect.  I love space travel … not."

The "not" is dated and extraneous. Serling's distaste for space travel could be better "sold" by the voice actor's inflection.

  9.) Re: the following:

Hailing the Triceraton Vessel Demeter.  Come in, Demeter."

  For some reason, naming this Tricraton ship "Demeter" (after the Greek goddess of cereal grains) bothers me. Let's think up some more Triceraton-sounding name. "Horn of Zog" or something.

  10.) Re: the following:

Commence docking procedures."

  Why do they dock instead of just beaming over? This proves to be even more problematic later when there's all that kerfuffle about the Utroms trapped on the about-to-blow Triceraton ship -- why not just beam them to safety? I mean, IN THAT SAME SCENE, the Shredder uses the Utrom transmat!

  11.) Re: the following:

This isn’t a mining vessel.  It’s a ghost ship!"

  That line sounds SO un-Leo like. Kind of juvenile. MAYBE Mikey would say it. But in any event, to say the ship "isn't a mining vessel" is silly. I mean... it IS! Yeah, maybe it's now a "ghost ship" (whatever that means) too... but it IS a mining vessel, regardless.

12.) Re: the following:

Full alert.  The Shredder is on this ship…"

It's a little odd that Mortu has leapt to the conclusion that the Shredder is on this ship. How has he done so? There was nothing in the previous scene which confirmed this, as far as I could tell.

13.) Re: the following:

The Shredder!
Woah, and I thought the Shredder couldn’t get any uglier."

Raph repeating "the Shredder" right after Leo says it is a little odd. Why not have him say "he" instead"

14.) Re: the following:

(on vid-screen)
Quite right, Raphael.  Enough talk.  Time for you perish.  All of you!"

I don't think the Shredder would bother referring to Raph by name.

15.) Re: the following:

"CODY (O.C.)
Serling!  I’m so happy you’re alive!"

  Let's find another word other than "alive". Serling is, after all, a robot. Perhaps "I'm so happy you're still with us!" would work.

16.) Re: the following:

The Shredder transported here, stole one of Cody’s hover bikes … and went that a-away."

  What, is Don a cowboy now?

  -- Pete


Subj: Re:   TMNT146 First Draft
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2007 1:51:28 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

notes on Ep. 146 outline

  1.) Re: the following:

On the honest. After the last time we crossed swords, I took a long look at my life. It was one selfish pursuit after another…

ON THE GUYS, flat out stunned as he continues."

  "On the honest"...? Sounds kind of dopey, like some "hip" slang which will be painfully dated in five years.
  And -- "flat out stunned"? I doubt it. I would more expect reactions ranging from mild surprise to outright eye-rolling disbelief. Come on -- the gys aren't stupid! They KNOW this Zixx, and what a scammer he is.

  2.) Re: the following:

"The TURTLES leap into action, LEO and DON each looping an arm under Bishop’s and leaping out of the way as RAPH and MIKEY leap for the Orbs, weapons <POWERING UP>.
Protect the president!"

  This seems a bit off. Isn't Bishop the same character who in past episodes almost single-handedly kicked all four Turtles' asses? I suspect he can take care of himself.

  3.) Re: the following:

Used to be a time where ‘Boss Zukko’ was someone to be feared…not an errand boy working for overgrown shrimp."

Should that be "AN overgrown shrimp"?

4.) Re: the following:

<KAFF> Any chance we can work this out?
ZIXX’S POV –Red leans in to gloat, FILLING THE FRAME. The <GENTLE SOUNDS OF A SCUFFLE are heard> as he speaks, and as he straightens up…The thugs are gone, replaced by the TURTLES!
Not unless you got the Matter Transmitter you owe me in yer pocket. Or the half a mil in Denubian gold...
What about four handsome ninjas?"

  I appreciate that a funny crack from Mike is appropriate at this point, but I really don't think "What about four handsome ninjas?" is it. Let's keep in mind that whatever it is that Mike says does NOT have to refer to the Turtles or indicate their presence.

  5.) Re: the following:

"RAPH’S SAIS RICHOCHET off of the wall and <DETONATE> next to ZIXX’S CHAIR. The blast sends him ROLLING out of the tank’s path as LASER BEAMS slice through the floor, nearby VEHICLES, etc."

This seems like such a contrived, imprecise and potentially dangerous (to Zixx) way to move Zixx and his chair out of the way of the tank. Why not just PUSH him out of the way?

  6.) Re: the following:

"Don cocks his head, hearing a <BEEPING NOISE.>
You guys hear that?
MIKEY leaps away from RAPH, who looks down at his body.
It’s the pudgy one! He’s gonna blow!
ON RAPH’S BACK – A small HANDHELD DEVICE is attached to his belt, blinking. DON grabs it.
It’s a homing beacon! Zixx must have planted it on you just before he was captured!
THE GUYS huddle around DON as he examines the device.
He’s going up. WAAAAAAAY up…like, to the MOON!"

  Uh... wouldn't a "homing beacon" planted on Raph only tell us (or anyone else) where RAPH might be, NOT Zixx? This needs reworking.
  Also, Don's last line is -- for Don especially -- REALLY dumb. I MIGHT buy it coming from Mike.

  7.) Re: the following:

You ain’t the only one who decided to make a change, Zixx…
Zukko presses his belt and <TRANSPORTS> away, sneering at Zed."

  Uh... Zukko can TELEPORT? Why didn't he use this ability earlier in the dust-up with the Turtles?

8.) Re: the following:

"As the TURTLES race from the bar, Zixx sneaks back and whispers to the encased aliens.
I’m very open minded…Call me!"

  Dumb, and inconsistent with Zixx' previous line when the ladies reveal their monstrous nature ("Okay, that just did serious damage to my fantasy life right there…").

  9.) Re: the following:

"Raph surprises Zixx by clamping HIGH-TECH HANDCUFFS on him.
The “plan” is I ain’t getting scooped by Zukko again! Wherever you go, I go.
As they run, Zixx notes (somewhat conspicuously)…
Berilium, nice…nothing but a xenon laser can cut through these babies.
THE O’NEILTECH SHUTTLE awaits among some other ships. THE TURTLES and ZIXX race across the hangar, when suddenly—
Everyone cringes as A FLASH washes the entire hangar in white!
<Surprise Grunts>
AS THE SCREEN FADES BACK FROM WHITE - Find Raph rubbing his eyes…the CUFF dangling limply from his wrist."

It should be made clearer -- and I guess it will be when animated -- that the cuffs Raph slaps on Zixx not only restrain Zixx but connect him to Raph. Otherwise, this last bit makes no sense.

  10.) Re: the following:

…ain’t the only one who’s changed, Zixx…"

  I can't figure out what this (partial) line is supposed to mean.

  11.) Re: the following:

"Leo and Mikey rush Zixx to a NEARBY ALIEN SHIP.
We’re not taking any chances. Time for our own little “shell game...”
Zixx climbs into the waiting ship, while Don and Raph join Mikey and Leo. As Don speaks…
Leo and Raph take our shuttle. I set the auto pilot to double back to the moon.
PAN UP to the ship’s cockpit where ZUKKO <TRANSPORTS> in!
Mikey and I will split up and figure eight the globe with Zixx until—
ANGLE - The <SOUND OF ENGINES> powering up cuts him off as the SHIP floats away.
IN A RAGE, Raph runs at the ship—"

I find this almost completely incoherent. I can't tell which ship they are getting into, nor does what Don says seem to make ANY sense as a plan.

  12.) Re: the following:

"AT THE OPENING – Raph’s shell just pierces the force field as <KLAKT> the CHUCK sticks to his belt and he’s YANKED forward.
RAPH lands with a thud, ICE already on his back. His brothers run over…"

  I don't buy "ice" here. "Frost", maybe.

  13.) Re: the following:

"An UTROM ALIEN floating on a pod device with small mechanical arms fills the frame, screaming angrily.

  That's funny!

  14.) Re: the following:

We need back up on this one. I’m calling Bishop. Zixx is his “new guy!”"

I don't think all of this is necessary. If Leo thinks they need back up from Bishop, he can simply say "I'm calling Bishop for back up!"

  15.) Re: the following:

"RAPH AND MIKEY flank ZIXX, and as they kick the heads off of TWO ROBOTS, Zixx taps Raph on the shoulder and points down…
Hey, what do you think? Worth a shot? Zukko’s not gonna find me down there.
A SEWER CAP. MIKEY’S CHUCK <MAGNETIZES to it> and with a yank—"

  Riiiggghht... because, as we all know, even the best of 22nd century technology is completely FOILED by people going into underground tunnels. I understand that within the context of the scam that he is running with Zukko, Zixx doesn't care if Zukko can find him that way... but it might help verisimilitude if Mikey doesn't buy it. Maybe he could shrug and say something like "It's worth a try, dude!"

16.) Re: the following:

Go DIRECTLY to BISHOP an’ the Alliance. Don’t pass go, don’t collect 200 credits! Just GO!"

  Dumb (especially coming from Leo), cliched "Monopoly" joke (almost, but not QUITE as overused as "We're not in Kansas anymore")... and Leo doesn't say "an'" -- he says "and".

  17.) Re: the following:

"ANGLE ON ZIXX, still dumbfounded at the loss of the Turtles. MR. X looms over him…
We…we pushed it too far. We pushed the con too far, and now they’re gone."

  Since when was Zixx so emotionally connected to the Turtles that their disintegration would "dumbfound" him? This doesn't feel right at all.

  18.) Re: the following:

Drop your weapons. You are all under arrest for violating intergalactic law."

  Why "intergalactic law"?

19.) Re: the following:

Thanks for the memories, Zixxy! Call us when you make parole! NOT!"

Could we please, PLEASE never, ever do the "Not!" thing again? It is SO played out.

-- Pete


  1. I was thinking crocodiles lifespans averaged 75-85 so Leatherhead being alive at 120ish seems off.

    Interesting twist with the Starro the Conquerer bit. Still can't get into Chre'll though.

    As always thanks for sharing!

  2. The Ooze must have increased his lifespan. Rats only live a couple years and Splinter has lived the turtles whole life, and Peter was wrong the last time we saw Leatherhead was in season 4 "Good Genes".