Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Ask PL #10



Hmm... it looks like I haven't done one of these for about three months. Maybe it's time. -- PL

144 comments:

  1. Did you ever have a methodology for managing the characters/locations/etc of your stories? (i.e. filing, binders, etc...)

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    1. No, not really. I would occasionally make notes in sketchbooks or on my computer. -- PL

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  2. Guess I might as well ask about the newer stuff:

    - Have you seen the various trailers posted online about the new Nick TMNT cartoon? Several more have popped up over the last few months to hype up the series which begins on September 29th. You can actually view them all on Nick's official TMNT website right now. What do you think so far?

    - Kevin Eastman has apparently read the script of the new live-action TMNT movie, and according to him, it's "easily going to be the best TMNT movie ever." I really hope what he says is true, the TMNT franchise really could use an awesome movie. Thoughts?

    - Which underused characters in Mirage continuity did you wish you had more time to flesh out more? Several characters like Jay, (Shadow's boyfriend in Volume 4), Mr. Braunze, Cha Ocho and others kinda fell to the wayside as the series progressed.

    That's all I can think of for now.

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    1. "- Have you seen the various trailers posted online about the new Nick TMNT cartoon? Several more have popped up over the last few months to hype up the series which begins on September 29th. You can actually view them all on Nick's official TMNT website right now. What do you think so far?"

      I think it has potential, but I'll wait until I see a whole episode or two before saying more.

      

"- Kevin Eastman has apparently read the script of the new live-action TMNT movie, and according to him, it's "easily going to be the best TMNT movie ever." I really hope what he says is true, the TMNT franchise really could use an awesome movie. Thoughts?"

      The TMNT franchise HAS had at least one awesome movie, in my opinion… but if you are saying it could use ANOTHER awesome movie, I can't disagree with that. Whether this next one will fit that description, I can't say. I don't know what Kevin has seen. All I can say is that I have seen nothing as yet which would inspire me to think that the next TMNT movie will "easily… be the best TMNT movie ever." Of course, very little has been released about it so far, so it's hard -- well, impossible, really -- to fairly judge. I suspect that the next TMNT movie will be significantly DIFFERENT from previous outings. Whether different=better is anyone's guess.

      

"- Which underused characters in Mirage continuity did you wish you had more time to flesh out more? Several characters like Jay, (Shadow's boyfriend in Volume 4), Mr. Braunze, Cha Ocho and others kinda fell to the wayside as the series progressed. "

      If you are referring to the TMNT Volume 4 comic book series, I must clarify that I still DO have time to flesh out the characters more if I chose to do so… and right now, I choose not to. In any event, I can't think of any one in particular that I feel a need to flesh out more. -- PL

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  3. Doesn't New York get cramped with all the variety of heroes and villains living in it, in any comic series?
    Yeah, that's the only question I can think of...

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    1. I don't think so -- it's a very big city. -- PL

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  4. Two questions:

    1) Was the Ninja Tribunal season always intended to only be 13 episodes? Or would it have been 26 episodes, had they not decided to air Fast Forward first, after season 4?

    2) Why were the original TMNT comics black and white? Was this personal preference or budgetary reasons?

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    1. "1) Was the Ninja Tribunal season always intended to only be 13 episodes? Or would it have been 26 episodes, had they not decided to air Fast Forward first, after season 4?"

      It's my understanding that the "Ninja Tribunal" season was always intended to be thirteen episodes, regardless of when it aired.

      "2) Why were the original TMNT comics black and white? Was this personal preference or budgetary reasons?"

      In large part, yes... we were working on a shoestring budget at the time, and color would have been prohibitively expensive. But I don't think we ever really considered it anyway, as we were both fans of black and white comics, and we really wanted to get that first issue of TMNT out as quickly as possible -- doing all that would have been required for color, even if we could have afforded it, would have taken us a lot longer.

      I think doing it in black and white worked out okay. -- PL

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  5. You've answered every Turtle-related question I could think of, so I guess this is less Turtle related and more general life questions.

    1) How are you feeling, since freeing yourself from the Turtles? In better spirits? Are you sketching or drawing at all? Enjoying life any more or less? Any regrets?

    2) If you're pursuing something like self-publishing, how long would you give it - or how long would you have given the Turtles - before deciding "this isn't catching on, I think I'm done" and moving on to something else? A couple years? A few months?

    3) When you guys were first publishing the Turtles - were you on any kind of schedule, or was it "finish this issue, then advertise it, then sell it"?

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    1. "1) How are you feeling, since freeing yourself from the Turtles? In better spirits? Are you sketching or drawing at all? Enjoying life any more or less? Any regrets?"

      I have a number of regrets, but I am trying to learn to live with them. I am doing a little bit of drawing in a sketchbook, though not nearly as much as I used to. I have also recently taken up -- after forty years! -- an artistic pursuit I first experienced in college, and always wanted to try again, but only recently got off my ass and did it. And it's been a lot of fun.



      "2) If you're pursuing something like self-publishing, how long would you give it - or how long would you have given the Turtles - before deciding "this isn't catching on, I think I'm done" and moving on to something else? A couple years? A few months?"

      I honestly don't think self-publishing works that way. Perhaps in a purely dollars and cents approach, such questions are germane, but to me, self-publishing is just another avenue of self-expression… and to my way of thinking, that's something you do until (a) you don't want to do it anymore, or (b) you CAN'T do it anymore.
      I guess we were fortunate in that the TMNT comics quickly became self-sustaining, at least in a financial sense… unlike my previous attempts at self-publishing.
      



      "3) When you guys were first publishing the Turtles - were you on any kind of schedule, or was it "finish this issue, then advertise it, then sell it"?"

      In the very beginning, it was definitely the latter. But as the comics took off and became a real business, we had to make our best efforts to keep to a schedule. I will be the first to admit that we didn't always succeed. We tried, though. I have a lot of respect for comics creators who can do that. Stan Sakai is a great example of someone who can keep to a schedule -- I don't know how he does it! -- PL

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  6. I was at a flea market in Maine this weekend, and you'll be happy to know that the guy selling action figures out of a big plastic tub said "These are all $2, except for the Ninja Turtles which are $5." The strength of your ideas is lifting the economy in unexpected places!

    Q: Have you ever been to the Toy Museum in Waldoboro, Maine? Just went there for the first time this past weekend. It's more of a huge collection than a museum, but it's a fun way to spend $5, and a nice place to stretch your legs on route 1. There's a ton of old Mickey Mouse, Peanuts, and Lone Ranger stuff, and a fair amount of original comic strip and comic book art. Seems up your alley if you're ever in the area.

    Q2: I live in Boston, but a short trip coming up may take me to Northampton for a day. Anything in particular I should seek out there?

    Thanks for the comics, blogs, and for posting all those emails. I read them all, though I don't comment.

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    1. I was at a flea market in Maine this weekend, and you'll be happy to know that the guy selling action figures out of a big plastic tub said "These are all $2, except for the Ninja Turtles which are $5." The strength of your ideas is lifting the economy in unexpected places!

Q: Have you ever been to the Toy Museum in Waldoboro, Maine? Just went there for the first time this past weekend. It's more of a huge collection than a museum, but it's a fun way to spend $5, and a nice place to stretch your legs on route 1. There's a ton of old Mickey Mouse, Peanuts, and Lone Ranger stuff, and a fair amount of original comic strip and comic book art. Seems up your alley if you're ever in the area."

      No, I haven't -- in fact, I've never been to that area of Maine at all. Maybe I should check it out.



      "Q2: I live in Boston, but a short trip coming up may take me to Northampton for a day. Anything in particular I should seek out there?"

      Not knowing much about you, it's hard to say. But there's a good comic book shop on Main Street called "Modern Myths". If you like good food, there are any number of excellent restaurants -- my favorite is Paul and Elizabeth's, but the Eastside Grill and Spoleto's are also great. Smith College has a good art museum, and if you want to drive over to Amherst, which is just about eight miles to the east, you might find the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art an interesting place to visit. If you bring your bicycle, there are some great rail trails (paved former railroad beds). You can start in Leeds, MA and ride all the way to Amherst and a little bit beyond -- I think it's about twelve miles altogether, one way. Northampton's downtown is fun to walk around and shop in. Make sure you go into Thorne's on Main Street -- it's a cool collection of shops (and Paul and Elizabeth's in in there as well).

      

"Thanks for the comics, blogs, and for posting all those emails. I read them all, though I don't comment."

      You're welcome! Glad to hear that you enjoy them. -- PL

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    2. Thanks for the Northampton tips.

      Re: Maine, I don't know about anything in Waldoboro other than the Toy Museum, but it's reasonably close to the Rockland area. There's a lot to do and see there (well, for a small town!). There's the Farnsworth art museum, about a million antique stores, a recently renovated old cinema, and of course the ocean. In neighboring Owl's Head, there's the neat Owl's Head Transportation Museum. It occurs to me as I write this that you seem very interested in different modes of transportation--it would probably be right up your alley.

      If you ever do go, the ride along route 1 is nice except for the passage through Wiscasset, which is reliably jammed in the afternoon.

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  7. Did you see this, Jim Lawson is apparently finishing the inking on issue #32 of Volume 4!

    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Jim-Lawson-Illustration/155495057879245

    Here's what he posted:

    "If you’ve followed me on FB, you already know about TMNT issue 32 and the trials and tribulations regarding that book. Well, I have an update.
    This past Tuesday, Eric handed me the original pages and basically said that if I wanted to finish inking them, to go ahead- that he wasn’t able to.
    This was exciting news to me- I’ve had a little obsession about this issue, and the fact that that it was done, but never finished, always kind of bothered me. I don’t blame anybody, and getting it out there might not make any difference at all, however I’m pretty certain some of the old Mirage fans might appreciate this small furtherance in the TMNT series 4 saga.
    So- since earlier this week, I’ve been noodling on the pages, with the ultimate goal (naturally) of finishing it. The few pages that I’ve done, I’m pretty happy with however I must admit that very often, when you have 2 inkers on the same book, the results are a little un-unified. Not sure that’s a word, but you know what I mean- the art doesn’t really look cohesive. I do notice this on the done pages, but hopefully, it won’t detract from the finished book. Maybe I’ll post a completed page in the near future.
    Anyways, I thought that this might be of some interest. The page posted is from 32, and shows the degree of inking already done. There are some pages with much more, and perhaps a few with a little less, but I think it provides a little inside glimpse inside the backstory of this issue.
    Woohoo" - Jim Lawson



    If he finishes the inking could this entire final issue be posted online on your blog so we could read it? I've been dying for the next issue of Volume 4 and it would be quite exciting to see this put up for us long-time fans!

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    1. I am aware that Jim is finishing the inking on issue #32 -- he and I discussed it a few days ago. It is the next step required to get #32 to the public. However, the steps after THAT are me doing the tones, finishing the scripting and doing the lettering. I'm not sure when that will happen. -- PL

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  8. "I'm gonna ask you a bunch of questions and I want to have them answered immediately!" Well ok you don't have to answer that immediately. (That was a Kindergarten Cop reference if you didn't get that).

    1) What happened to Klunk in the 4Kids series? He sort of just disappeared during the 4th season and didn't show up again until BTTS.

    2) Why did Fugitoid never appear in the old show despite the fact that he had an action figure?

    3) How did Splinter live so long? I guess the ooze could have extended his lifespan but in the 4Kids show he was with Yoshi in the 60's and wasn't mutated until like 1990.

    4) When Splinter is telling his origin story how did he know what Saki was up to when he wasn't around?

    5) Splinter named the Turtles from an old Renaissance art book, but how did he know how to read it?

    6) Why was Hun so loyal to Shredder, and was there any thought about doing an episode showing how those two met?

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    1. "1) What happened to Klunk in the 4Kids series? He sort of just disappeared during the 4th season and didn't show up again until BTTS."

      Well, I think Klunk just sort of disappeared during the fourth season and didn't show up again until "Back to the Sewers".
      In all seriousness, I can't remember exactly why Klunk wasn't in the series during the time in question. I suspect he was just not considered that important a plot element.


      
"2) Why did Fugitoid never appear in the old show despite the fact that he had an action figure?"

      You would have to ask Fred Wolf to get an answer to that question. 



      "3) How did Splinter live so long? I guess the ooze could have extended his lifespan but in the 4Kids show he was with Yoshi in the 60's and wasn't mutated until like 1990."

      As I have said a few times before, Splinter was never a completely ordinary rat.

      

"4) When Splinter is telling his origin story how did he know what Saki was up to when he wasn't around?"

      If I understand your question, I think Yoshi may have had contacts back in Japan who surreptitiously were keeping him abreast of what was happening with Saki and the Foot Clan. Yoshi probably talked about this with Tang Shen, and Splinter probably was in the room at the time.

      Of course, that begs the question of how Splinter understood human speech… maybe there was another way it happened. Maybe Splinter himself, post-mutation, did some spying on the Foot Clan in New York and found out the pertinent details.
      To be honest, it never seemed that important to me… and it still doesn't.


      

"5) Splinter named the Turtles from an old Renaissance art book, but how did he know how to read it?"

      After being mutated, Splinter became much more intelligent, and learned the language of humans. How did he do that? Beats me… but it might make an interesting story. Or not.



      "6) Why was Hun so loyal to Shredder, and was there any thought about doing an episode showing how those two met?"

      I don't really know exactly why Hun was so loyal to THE Shredder -- I suppose some tale could be told about the how and why of that, but for our purposes, it was enough to know that he was. Again, possibly there is an interesting story there.

      Or not. -- PL

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  9. I know this is a question asked far too often, but when will you finish Vol 4? I think whatever ending you have, you could see if you could publish it as a Graphic Novel with IDW; or if not that, take advantage of the 18 issues a year you can still produce. You could back track, a little, too - re-release the issues that where made but where put on the web for free (they aren't there anymore, from what I can see). Now I finally have an ipad - digital copies now work much better for me.

    However, I can utterly sympathize with you needing a break from that kind of work. If you did go back to it, it wouldn't have to be a lengthy stay.

    Another question:
    Are you and Kevin Eastman ever going to be able to get back on good terms?

    I was thinking you could team-up for a extra-sized one-shot story -- through Mirage or IDW (using whichever universe; most appropriate would probably be set during the original volume 1.)

    I know thats a longshot, if not an impossibility given how complicated things with TMNT have gotten.

    But are you and he at least on good terms? I get the feeling there's resentment, over a host of disagreements; Eastman advocating the alien movie seems like the latest thing.

    I guess I bring it up, because I've been going back over the Turtle series and reading the IDW issues. The reincarnation thing did throw me for a loop, but the issues have been good; I knew I'm reading a book that still has indy sensibilities when Leo and Don argue between faith and science. Thats the one thing, beyond all the cartoon re-interpretations, the actual series never compromised on delivering an intelligent and different perspective than any other comics out there, which I greatly appreciate. (Since I was raised on the original cartoon, discovering the 2000 tv show, and Vol 4 issues - it was like TMNT had grown up with me, and I could enjoy my favorite childhood characters in a more mature context.

    Sorry for rambling - its just that recently I was able to look through the Ultimate Hardcover collections, and it struck me how powerful and solid you both where; and after, when you began doing issues separately.

    Just suggestions. Hope for the best, whatever the current situation between you two is.


    OH Yeah - Here's one more less intrusive question: are you looking forward to Stan Sakai's '47 Ronin' project? Yesterday I had gone to put Usagi Yojimbo back on my pull list, but was surprised to find it hadn't been coming out in months. I had to dig through the internet just to findout that it was merely on hiatus - and a worthwhile one given opportunity Stan has, to tell one of Japan's most defining moments. (I've actually never read or seen a complete telling of it; so I'm looking forward to it.)

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    1. "I know this is a question asked far too often, but when will you finish Vol 4? I think whatever ending you have, you could see if you could publish it as a Graphic Novel with IDW; or if not that, take advantage of the 18 issues a year you can still produce. You could back track, a little, too - re-release the issues that were made but were put on the web for free (they aren't there anymore, from what I can see). Now I finally have an ipad - digital copies now work much better for me.

However, I can utterly sympathize with you needing a break from that kind of work. If you did go back to it, it wouldn't have to be a lengthy stay."

      I don't know when, or if, I will ever "finish" Volume 4. I hope it happens at some point, but I am not in a big hurry to get back into Turtle comics. It's also quite possible that when and if I get the urge to do more TMNT comics, the ending I had in mind for Volume 4 won't work for me… and I'll have to figure out a new direction.



      "Another question:
Are you and Kevin Eastman ever going to be able to get back on good terms?

I was thinking you could team-up for a extra-sized one-shot story -- through Mirage or IDW (using whichever universe; most appropriate would probably be set during the original volume 1.)

I know thats a longshot, if not an impossibility given how complicated things with TMNT have gotten.

But are you and he at least on good terms? I get the feeling there's resentment, over a host of disagreements; Eastman advocating the alien movie seems like the latest thing.

I guess I bring it up, because I've been going back over the Turtle series and reading the IDW issues. The reincarnation thing did throw me for a loop, but the issues have been good; I knew I'm reading a book that still has indy sensibilities when Leo and Don argue between faith and science. Thats the one thing, beyond all the cartoon re-interpretations, the actual series never compromised on delivering an intelligent and different perspective than any other comics out there, which I greatly appreciate. (Since I was raised on the original cartoon, discovering the 2000 tv show, and Vol 4 issues - it was like TMNT had grown up with me, and I could enjoy my favorite childhood characters in a more mature context.

Sorry for rambling - its just that recently I was able to look through the Ultimate Hardcover collections, and it struck me how powerful and solid you both were; and after, when you began doing issues separately.

Just suggestions. Hope for the best, whatever the current situation between you two is."

      To employ two old cliches: Regarding me and Kevin, there is a lot of water under the bridge, and there are some bells which can't be un-rung.

      That being said, Kevin and I have been in cordial email contact with each other for a while. I wouldn't mind working with him on some project in the future, if something mutually agreeable and exciting came up. After all, despite whatever differences we've had, I have always said that my time of collaboration with Kevin on the TMNT (especially the first five years or so) was one of the most thrilling, creatively-speaking, times of my life.


      

"OH Yeah - Here's one more less intrusive question: are you looking forward to Stan Sakai's '47 Ronin' project? Yesterday I had gone to put Usagi Yojimbo back on my pull list, but was surprised to find it hadn't been coming out in months. I had to dig through the internet just to findout that it was merely on hiatus - and a worthwhile one given opportunity Stan has, to tell one of Japan's most defining moments. (I've actually never read or seen a complete telling of it; so I'm looking forward to it.)"

      I'm always interested in what Stan does, so I will definitely check it out. -- PL

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  10. My questions are in regards to the creation (or adapting) of characters on the old Fred Wolf cartoon and toy line. Even though I know you weren't a fan of that show, I really do appreciate some historical insights from your point of view.

    1. Was the female mutant lizard, Mona Lisa, originally going to be a 5th mutant turtle who might have become a recurring character on the show? If so, did you or any of the Mirage folks veto that idea and force the cartoon and toy folks to alter her design?

    2. Were you aware of any plans to introduce the Fugitoid (your favorite character!) into the old cartoon? He had an action figure in the old Playmates line, but they gave him a much different look than his Mirage Comics counterpart. (BTW, this "gold" version actually made a cameo as an enemy in one of the old Nintendo video games!)

    3. I remember reading that "Man Ray/Ray Fillet" was going to appear in one episode ("Rebel Without a Fin") as a villain until some Mirage intervention prevented this from happening, and the character was simply changed to a generic looking fishman named "Ray." Do you recall the true story on this?
    (Interestingly, in that same episode April O'Neil was mutated into a fishwoman who bore a remarkable resemblance to the Fishwoman from "Sons of the Silent Age" comic; I couldn't help but assume there was some connection.)

    Thank you again for fielding such random questions from TMNT fans, Peter!

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    1. "My questions are in regards to the creation (or adapting) of characters on the old Fred Wolf cartoon and toy line. Even though I know you weren't a fan of that show, I really do appreciate some historical insights from your point of view.

1. Was the female mutant lizard, Mona Lisa, originally going to be a 5th mutant turtle who might have become a recurring character on the show? If so, did you or any of the Mirage folks veto that idea and force the cartoon and toy folks to alter her design? "

      Yes, Mona Lisa was originally planned to be a fifth Turtle, and it was one of the few times, sadly, that Kevin and I were in total accord and managed to put our foot (feet?) down and get her changed into some other type of creature.

      

"2. Were you aware of any plans to introduce the Fugitoid (your favorite character!) into the old cartoon? He had an action figure in the old Playmates line, but they gave him a much different look than his Mirage Comics counterpart. (BTW, this "gold" version actually made a cameo as an enemy in one of the old Nintendo video games!)"

      As far as I can recall, there were never any plans to put the 'Toid into the old TV series, at least none that I knew about. In a way, that's probably a good thing, as the character would likely have been butchered in the migration from the Mirage comic books to the old animated show. At least when I worked on the 2003 4Kids TMNT series, I was able to get the Fugitoid in that show in a significant supporting role… and his character was consistent with the comics.



      "3. I remember reading that "Man Ray/Ray Fillet" was going to appear in one episode ("Rebel Without a Fin") as a villain until some Mirage intervention prevented this from happening, and the character was simply changed to a generic looking fishman named "Ray." Do you recall the true story on this?"

      I don't recall anything about that.

      
"(Interestingly, in that same episode April O'Neil was mutated into a fishwoman who bore a remarkable resemblance to the Fishwoman from "Sons of the Silent Age" comic; I couldn't help but assume there was some connection.)"

      Hmm… interesting supposition. I don't know if there was any such connection.

      

"Thank you again for fielding such random questions from TMNT fans, Peter!"

      You're welcome, Adam! -- PL

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    2. Your responses were thorough and very helpful. Bless you, Peter!

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    3. Apparently is was Ryan Brown and Stephen Murphy that intervened in getting Man Ray removed from the series.
      http://tmnt.wikia.com/wiki/Man_Ray#1987_Series
      http://tmnt.wikia.com/wiki/Ray

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  11. Someone asked about how Splinter could have known human languages as a rat above, I have a similar sort of nerdy fanboy question. Ever given any thought to what languages Splinter and the TMNT speak? Thinking of their history, my best guess would be something like Splinter learning Japanese as a rat, then teaching the turtles, and then the 5 of them learning English together as they grow up. Pretty unimportant details, but there was a discussion about if the TMNT know Japanese awhile back and I'd be curious to hear your take on that question.

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    1. While we never specifically addressed it, as far as I can remember, my gut feeling is that they could all speak (and write and read) English and Japanese. I suspect Don might have known some additional languages. -- PL

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  12. You've mentioned a few times that Splinter was never an ordinary rat. In the new IDW series, he is actually reincarnated from Hamato Yoshi, which I actually think is a perfect explanation on how a rat could know ninjitsu without it feeling too silly or convoluted. The turtles are reincarnated too, but I'm not too crazy about that...

    What do you think about the idea of Splinter being reincarnated? Does this fall in line with what you had in mind or was it something else?

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    1. I have never developed to any significant degree my thoughts about Splinter not being an ordinary rat, but whatever they are, they don't have anything to do with reincarnation. To my way of thinking, making Splinter and the Turtles reincarnated humans in rat and turtle forms immediately reduces them as interesting and original creatures... now they're just re-runs. -- PL

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  13. When the Fugitoid went to live with the Utroms why didn't he change his body? I mean the Triceratons and Federation knew what he looked like, and the Utroms knew how to build exo-suits. So couldn't they have given him a human looking body?

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    1. As shown in TMNT Volume 4, he DID change his body. In fact, in the first issue of that series, he appears in a new form.

      But that's beside the point.

      The Fugitoid didn't feel any great need to hide while he was with the Utroms, as (a) he was safe with them, and (b) his outward form is that of a common worker 'droid, the SAL-9000 if I recall rightly. So just looking like a common robot is not going to make him a target for the Triceratons and Federats, even if they knew where to look. -- PL

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  14. Hi Peter,
    Thank you for your time again. I don't really have much to ask about but since Fugitoid was brought up I thought you might be interested in knowing that IDW will be doing a Fugitoid micro series the next month.

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  15. Thanks for the reply! Another question I've always had in the back of my mind was whether the idea for the Shredder clone was inspired by Alan Moore's take on Swamp Thing at all. Plants and worms consuming human beings, taking on their characteristics; I know you guys were big Moore fans during that time period after all (as am I), and his re-envisioned origin preceded Shredder's return by some years. This is not to detract from yours and Kevin's taken on it. One thing I always admire is when someone is able to walk the fine line between outright homage (or ripoff!) and using that inspiration to make it their own.

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    1. It's true, I loved much of what Alan Moore did with "Swamp Thing", and it is altogether possible that some of what he did in that book influenced how we conceived of the Shredder's return. But it is also possible -- and I think more likely, actually -- that Moore and I were both influenced by reading about the studies which had been done with training tapeworms to follow a maze, then grinding up those tapeworms and feeding them to other tapeworms, and that second group of tapeworms were somehow able to navigate the maze like the first group -- apparently absorbing their skills through eating them. (At least, that is how I remember it.) -- PL

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    2. I'd heard this from some other sources, about the tapeworms, so I did a little internet research. If you're curious, I found a pretty good link that explains the original studies and how they were discredited. (Most of the comments after the article are spam, but the article itself is pretty good.)

      http://schpatdope.blogspot.com/2006/02/is-there-such-thing-as-genetic-memory.html

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    3. I'm not sure how much to take from a site where the creator can't be bothered to spell "straight" correctly in the title, and it does seem a bit sketchy, but interesting. I'll have to look in to this further. -- PL

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  16. What was your most unpleasant experience dealing with a fan in real life, either at a convention or just someone recognizing you on the street? As you said in the past, behind the internet people can generally be more rude due to not being face to face with one another. But in real life, the situation is probably a bit more rare.

    Have you ever had an unpleasant experience with a TMNT fan in real life?

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    1. "precita (http://precita.livejournal.com/) has left a new comment on your post "Ask PL #9":

      What was your most unpleasant experience dealing with a fan in real life, either at a convention or just someone recognizing you on the street? As you said in the past, behind the internet people can generally be more rude due to not being face to face with one another. But in real life, the situation is probably a bit more rare.

      Have you ever had an unpleasant experience with a TMNT fan in real life?"

      You know, I've never had a truly nasty experience with a fan in person. I've had a few pestering trolls online, but the closest I've come to a truly unpleasant experience with a fan face-to-face was at a show in Toronto. And it wasn't even that unpleasant, come to think of it -- really more ludicrous than anything. I was sitting behind my table, with a row of various issues of TMNT Volume 4 comics spread out in front of me, my name in large letters on a card next to me, as well as a badge with my name on it pinned to my shirt. A young guy -- probably in his late teens, maybe early twenties -- and a friend of a similar age stopped by and started telling me how much they hated the stories in the current TMNT comics. I replied "You mean the ones that I'm writing?" That stopped him in his tracks, and after mumbling a few things, he moved on.

      It was weird -- I mean, here I am, sitting at one of the Mirage tables, with my name card on the table and a name badge on my shirt, and this dude didn't make the connection.

      It's possible I've had other less pleasant experiences with fans, and I'm blocking them out. But I don't think so. Fans are, generally speaking, a nice group of people. Probably I have from time to time been slightly annoyed with certain fans who hang around the table too long -- there are definitely a few of them. -- PL

      Delete
  17. In issue #11 Casey's full name is shown to be "Casey Bernid Jones" why did his name later become "Arnold Casey Jones"?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Do you mean issue #11 of Volume One of TMNT? I don't have it available to me right now, but I will check later. I must say I don't remember the name :"Casey Bernid Jones". -- PL

      Delete
    2. Yeah it was in April's journel.
      http://miragelicensing.com/comics/mirage/eleven/pg27.html

      Delete
    3. I'd have to dig out my copies of that issue to be sure, but it looks to me that it reads "Bernard", not "Bernid".

      There are two possible explanations which spring to mind, the first being least likely and the second being most likely.

      The first one is that during the events in this issue or previously, Casey had lied to April, for some reason, about his actual name.

      The second one is that by the time we got around to revealing Casey's name as "Arnold Casey Jones", we'd forgotten the dopey name given to him in issue #11. -- PL

      Delete
  18. Hey Peter,
    I just wanted to say thanks for everything TMNT and then some. At the moment, I just moved into a new apartment and I have all of my TMNT/Leonardo art at the ready to hang up including your head sketch on the Fugitoid figure box. I'm pretty sure my friends are overwhelmed with my accumulation of TMNT art (I believe 15-20 pieces including Con sketches but mostly from the staple TMNT artists) in my short 22 years. But, hey, it's pretty awesome.

    Thanks again,
    Elliott.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Why do you think Baxter Stockman, Leatherhead and Rat King are the most used TMNT villains other than Shredder in all the TMNT mass media outside the comics?

    They were all used in the original Fred Wolf cartoon, they all appeared in the 4kids series, and Nick confirmed all 3 will appear in their show as well. Also all 3 appeared in the Archie TMNT Adventures comic series as well.

    It seems like after Shredder and the Foot, they're the 3 most used villains otherwise. Do you think its because they were created very early on in the franchises' lifespan, so they're characters used more often than some of the later creations?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, I think it might be argued that Hun and Bishop from the 2K3 series, for example, have been used more that Leatherhead or the Rat King, if you consider total number of appearances.

      But I think the theory you posit in your last line is quite likely accurate. -- PL

      Delete
  20. What do you think of this short animation, a extended preview if you will, of the upcoming TMNT show from Nickelodeon?

    http://www.nick.com/videos/clip/teenage-mutant-ninja-turtles.html

    I really like how fluid the animation is. The voice acting is great. The modeling is pretty good too. As a fan I think there might be some promise after watching this clip. I am curios what the creator of the Ninja Turtles thinks of this clip.

    Warning, you will have to watch a 30 second commercial before you can watch the clip.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As CO-creator, I can say it looks intriguing and has potential... to either be good or bad. As I have said before, I will wait and see. I am not taken with some of the odd stylizations, the voices (and the dialogue) have the potential to be either really fun or incredibly annoying, and certain details seem weird to me (for example, when Raph breaks Don's bo staff and the broken ends are perfectly smooth, as if cut by a laser or a fine saw). And things like Leo being able to take Mike out because he TURNS HIS SWORD AROUND AND HITS HIM WITH THE HILT, and Donatello closing his eyes before he hits Raph, just to set up a silly bit where Raph takes Don's weapon away from him BECAUSE he closed his eyes, are just GOOFY.

      However, it's kind of fun to watch, and it will be interesting to see it evolve. -- PL

      Delete
    2. I meant CO-creator. I did not mean any disrespect to Kevin who is pretty awesome in his own right. I really like the way Sean Astin does the voice of Raph in this show. Although I may be biased because I thought he was an excellent Samwise Gamgee. I too noticed little things that can be improve upon, like the splitting of Don's bo staff. I know that modeling and animating things, such as dynamics (splintering shards of wood), can be difficult depending on the rendering software used. My hope is that with time the little details will get better. The "Star Wars Clone Wars" animated show started out a little rough but, each season they improve the lighting and dynamics within the show. Giving the show more depth and atmosphere. I still have to give props to the animators in the new Turtles show. The movement and expression is well done. That takes a lot of serious work to make 3D models come to life like that. The new turtles are very expressive. I'm looking forward to watching the Ninja Turtles show next month. I know my ten year old son (a turtle fanatic) is bouncing off the walls with anticipation. He made me watch the video I posted in this forum on my compute about a dozen times. I agree, it is kinda fun to watch.
      Have you seen the new toy line? For my birthday, a couple weeks ago, my wife gave me the new Donatello action figure. I must say, I am really impressed with the job Playmates did with these figures. They are very articulate. The head sculpt on the Donatello figure is fantastic. The only things that bug me are the three toes and the bandages all over him. I tell myself the bandages are to avoid blisters and injuries when doing ninja flips and, handling weapons. It is a logical explanation at least.
      Thanks Pete,
      -M

      Side Note: I thought this was cute. This is my son on his tenth birthday opening his autographed Fugitiod figure. The expression was priceless. You would have thought I bought him a car.

      Fugitiod for Birthday


      Delete
  21. here's one.. how come shredder's VA didn't say Shredder's line in the first 4Kids open? :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Neil... you've got to be kidding. -- PL

      Delete
    2. nope.. little details like that always catch my attention :)... my guess is he wasn't casted yet :)...

      Delete
    3. I think your guess is quite possibly true. I really don't know. -- PL

      Delete
  22. Is it true for the new live-action TMNT movie a NEW turtle will be introduced and IF SO what is the significance of this new turtle?

    P.S. Loving your default photo :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As I have mentioned before, I have nothing to do with the upcoming live-action TMNT movie (I had the opportunity to be involved and declined), have not seen a treatment, an outline, or a script, and thus have no idea whether there will be a new Turtle introduced or not. -- PL

      Delete
    2. Peter-

      With all do respect, you are listed under the writing credits on imdb.com for the upcoming live action TMNT movie as "characters" along with Josh Applebaum (screenplay), Kevin Eastman (characters) and Andre Nemec (screenplay). Therefore you have some involvement with the feature it shows.

      I am confused?

      Tiano Owens

      Delete
    3. Peter-

      You also said you had the opportunity to be involved and you DECLINED??

      Peter you are best known for co-creating TMNT.

      TMNT is and was in your words an "unexpected success"

      TMNT changed the lives of millions of kids and young adults.

      You were also involved in the 1990 TMNT live action movie which is one of the all time great fantasy adventures!

      The 1990 TMNT live action movie is one of the best comic-book adaptations ever made and one of the defining films in a LOT of people's childhoods ALL OVER THE WORLD. A fantastic film for anyone with direction and storyline that remains highly enjoyable through the test of time.

      ....and you had the opportunity to be involved and you DECLINED. That breaks my heart just to hear you say that.

      YOU ARE A LEGEND PETER and I know for a fact the new live action TMNT movie will NOT be the same without your involvement. I am speechless.

      Tiano Owens

      Delete
    4. "With all do respect, you are listed under the writing credits on imdb.com for the upcoming live action TMNT movie as "characters" along with Josh Applebaum (screenplay), Kevin Eastman (characters) and Andre Nemec (screenplay). Therefore you have some involvement with the feature it shows. "

      I can see several possible interpretations of this scenario.

      One, I'm lying about my involvement.

      Two, IMDB is not the ultimately reliable source for movie information that you think it is.

      Three, I am listed in that way because I -- with Kevin Eastman -- co-created the "characters".

      I suspect it is some combination of two and three, because I know one is false. -- PL

      Delete
    5. Maybe's it's that "Bob" Peter Laird that is involved in the new movie XD

      Delete
  23. In Vol. 4 Leonardo suspects there is something wrong with Karai. There is also one issue where it appears she might have slept with Casey.

    In the Battle Nexus we see an alternate Shredder named, "Oroku Yoshi," and then in #31 we see an alternate Splinter. Could the Karai currently leading the Foot Clan not be "our" Karai, but an alternate version of her from another dimension like that Shredder/Splinter?

    That was a really cool plotline brewing, its a shame we didn't get to see more of it. Since Jim is inking #32...could you happen to say if Leonardo meets the alternate Splinter in that issue? Would be cool to see soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I generally don't like to give away stuff from future issues of TMNT Volume 4, but I can say that the Karai in the Volume 4 comics is the same Karai who appeared in Volume One. And it's been a while since I've looked at issue #32, but I don't think Leonardo meets that Splinter in that issue. -- PL

      Delete
  24. Hi Peter,

    Thanks for coming to Shellback Artworks and doing a signing with the rest of the Mirage crew, you guys are great! All of you are really down to Earth and extremely nice for taking time out of your busy schedules to do something like that. I love the sketches you guys did for me too. I can't begin to explain how much I freaked out when I saw what you were drawing for me. Just think, my girlfriend had to hear me talk about it for the three hour ride home.

    So here are my questions...

    1. How did you and Kevin go about hiring the artists for Mirage? All of them have extremely different art styles that are all unique and completely different.

    2. How did you and Kevin decide what bandana colors to use for the original Cartoon Show? Was Raph red because he was the angry one, or did you want to have him stay the color of the original turtles?

    3. What if any, do you think was the worst moment in turtles history? What I mean is, is there any comic, movie, action figure, episode, license agreement you would do over (or not do at all) if you could?

    4. Does it make you as mad as I me (which is very) when you see people selling sketches you've done for them on e-bay? Personally this gets me extremely angry. You take time out to do something nice for someone (that you don't have to do) and they just sell it!

    5. If you were to come out of retirement would you A) Start right back where the Mirage series left off, B) Re-boot the Turtles and start from scratch C) Start something completely new?

    6. You can do 12 (I think) issues of Mirage turtles a year. Does this mean that Mirage as a group can continue to publish them or do you have to be involved with every issue that is published?

    7. I'm pretty sure that you've seen the hardcover IDW re-releases of the the Mirage TMNT. Based on the quality that they are (bad scans, etc) have you ever thought of re-releasing them too? I have a few Mirage issues and the quality of those seem really good. Perhaps, Mirage could release a box set of every Mirage TMNT comic?

    Thanks for advance for reading this, if you don't get a chance to answer I completely understand.

    Thanks,

    Chris

    P.S. Hope I wasn't that "certain fan(s) who hang around the table too long", on Saturday, haha.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Hi Peter,

      Thanks for coming to Shellback Artworks and doing a signing with the rest of the Mirage crew, you guys are great! All of you are really down to Earth and extremely nice for taking time out of your busy schedules to do something like that. I love the sketches you guys did for me too. I can't begin to explain how much I freaked out when I saw what you were drawing for me. Just think, my girlfriend had to hear me talk about it for the three hour ride home.

      So here are my questions...

      1. How did you and Kevin go about hiring the artists for Mirage? All of them have extremely different art styles that are all unique and completely different."

      It happened very organically -- we never really went out looking for artists. Steve Lavigne was a good friend of Kevin's from high school, and he moved in with Kevin when we were living in Connecticut, with the thought that his talents in art might prove useful… which they did. Mike Dooney exchanged fan letters with us after the publication of the first few issues of TMNT, and over time he became a friend and after a few visits to our area, he decided to move up and lend us his awesome talents. Dan Berger was someone we met at a convention in Detroit, I think, along with Ryan Brown, and he impressed us with his inking skills, leading to him following Ryan out to Massachusetts. Ryan went back to Ohio, but Dan stayed (thanks, Dan!). Jim Lawson was someone who lived in the area of Connecticut where we were living for two years, and my wife was teaching in the high school Jim had gone to years earlier. One of her colleagues there thought we should meet this talented guy named Jim Lawson, and the rest is history. I think Eric Talbot was also a friend of Kevin's from Maine, and he ended up moving down here to help out with a few projects, and stayed on.

      "2. How did you and Kevin decide what bandana colors to use for the original Cartoon Show? Was Raph red because he was the angry one, or did you want to have him stay the color of the original turtles?"

      It really was not our idea to give them different colors -- that was the idea of either Playmates or the animation studio. I can't remember at this time if there was any discussion about which color was most appropriate for which Turtle… I don't think it mattered too much, to be honest.

      "3. What if any, do you think was the worst moment in turtles history? What I mean is, is there any comic, movie, action figure, episode, license agreement you would do over (or not do at all) if you could?"

      "The Next Mutation".

      "4. Does it make you as mad as I me (which is very) when you see people selling sketches you've done for them on e-bay? Personally this gets me extremely angry. You take time out to do something nice for someone (that you don't have to do) and they just sell it!"

      I sometimes find it mildly irritating, but it doesn't drive me crazy.

      Delete
    2. "5. If you were to come out of retirement would you A) Start right back where the Mirage series left off, B) Re-boot the Turtles and start from scratch C) Start something completely new? "

      Probably "A".

      "6. You can do 12 (I think) issues of Mirage turtles a year. Does this mean that Mirage as a group can continue to publish them or do you have to be involved with every issue that is published?"

      I believe it is the latter.

      "7. I'm pretty sure that you've seen the hardcover IDW re-releases of the the Mirage TMNT. Based on the quality that they are (bad scans, etc) have you ever thought of re-releasing them too? I have a few Mirage issues and the quality of those seem really good. Perhaps, Mirage could release a box set of every Mirage TMNT comic?"

      I actually like the IDW reprints. It is true that I have not gone through each one with a fine-toothed comb looking for flaws, but in general, I think they look fine. There is the possibility that what you are perceiving as poor quality/bad scans actually comes from the fact that they are reprinting the art in almost exactly the same size as it was drawn. When we printed them, the art was reduced somewhat for publication, and that always makes things tighten up and look better.

      I am pretty sure that MIrage does not have the rights to do reprints of that material.


      "Thanks for advance for reading this, if you don't get a chance to answer I completely understand.

      Thanks,

      Chris

      P.S. Hope I wasn't that "certain fan(s) who hang around the table too long", on Saturday, haha."

      No, you don't fall into that category! -- PL

      Delete
  25. Hi Peter: I hope this question doesn't sound dumb to you, but if it is... Shame on me.

    Ok, here it is:

    Are the TMNT superheroes?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "margui118August 15, 2012 11:00 AM
      Hi Peter: I hope this question doesn't sound dumb to you, but if it is... Shame on me.

Ok, here it is:

Are the TMNT superheroes?"

      It's not a dumb question at all. And, at first, I thought it would be an easy one to answer, at least the way I think of superheroes: If a character has no superhuman powers, that character is not a superhero.

      But… I decided to check the definition online, at both dictionary.com and wikipedia.com. Here's what I found at the former:

      "World English Dictionary
      superhero  (ˈsuːpəˌhɪərəʊ)
       
      — n  , pl -roes

      any of various comic-strip characters with superhuman abilities or magical powers, wearing a distinctive costume, and fighting against evil


      su·per·he·ro   [soo-per-heer-oh]
      noun, plural su·per·he·roes.
      a hero, especially in children's comic books and television cartoons, possessing extraordinary, often magical powers.


      … and here's a relevant quote from the Wikipedia entry:

      "By most definitions, characters do not strictly require actual superhuman powers to be deemed superheroes,[3] although terms such as costumed crime fighters are sometimes used to refer to those such as Batman and Green Arrow without such powers who share other common superhero traits. Such characters were generally referred to as "mystery men" in the so-called Golden Age of Comic Books to distinguish them from characters with super-powers."

      So by my definition, the TMNT are not superheroes… but by other people's definition, they are.

      Does that help? -- PL

      Delete
    2. Yes! Thank you so much, Peter. The TMNT are much better than most superheroes. But I think they could fall into the Batman category. But they are still heroes. There is no doubt about that.

      Delete
  26. hi mr.laird. my keyboard is broken and now i can't use capitals and exclamation- and question marks,i'm sorry1 anyways, here's my question; in the 4kids series, do you think the utrom shredder/ch'rell truly cared for karai, or did he see her as just another one of his puppets. thanks for answering all of our questions, i and i'm sure everyone else really appreciates you posting all these behind-the-scenes blogs.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I always felt that the Utrom Shredder DID care for Karai in some fashion, even if it wasn't as deeply emotional as Karai might have liked. -- PL

      Delete
  27. Hi Peter. First off, I would like to thank you for your marvelous work on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles this past decade. I enjoyed the 4Kids series very much, and although I wasn't too caught up in the comics, they were very interesting to read.

    My Questions:

    1. What was the reason the 4Kids series wasn't as successful as it was hoped to be? Dan Berger and (I think) Lloyd Goldfine have mentioned this, around the time when Fast Forward and Back to the Sewer were on the air.

    2. How did you feel about the 4Kids series moving in a different direction with Fast Forward and the drastic design changes prompted by Back to the Sewer, to make them look more inline with the fourth movie?

    3. When you sold the franchise to Nickelodeon, were you certain that the Turtles were in good hands?

    4. Have you gotten your hands on the new action figures for the Nickelodeon series? To be honest, more work seemed to be done on the 4Kids figures than on the new ones (the old ones had painted weapons, but the new ones don't).

    Thank you for taking your time to answer!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "DudermeAugust 15, 2012 8:18 PM
      Hi Peter. First off, I would like to thank you for your marvelous work on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles this past decade. I enjoyed the 4Kids series very much, and although I wasn't too caught up in the comics, they were very interesting to read."

      Thanks!

      

"My Questions:

1. What was the reason the 4Kids series wasn't as successful as it was hoped to be? Dan Berger and (I think) Lloyd Goldfine have mentioned this, around the time when Fast Forward and Back to the Sewer were on the air."

      I have to say that I've always thought that an animated series which stayed on the air for SEVEN SEASONS was, in fact, a success.

      I suppose it is true that it could have been MORE successful, and that's what the "Fast Forward" and "Back to the Sewer" seasons were all about -- shaking up the show and changing things around as an experiment to see if it could be more successful. Personally, I think -- and thought then, as well -- that we should have stuck with the continuity and approach that we'd taken in the first five seasons. But, while I certainly had strong approval rights, I was not calling all the shots on that series, and had to compromise to some extent with Mirage's partners in that production, Playmates and 4Kids.


      

"2. How did you feel about the 4Kids series moving in a different direction with Fast Forward and the drastic design changes prompted by Back to the Sewer, to make them look more inline with the fourth movie?"

      I preferred the original approach, though in retrospect I have come to like the FF designs more than I did at the time.

      "3. When you sold the franchise to Nickelodeon, were you certain that the Turtles were in good hands?"

      Pretty certain. So far, the evidence is pointing in the right direction.

      

"4. Have you gotten your hands on the new action figures for the Nickelodeon series? To be honest, more work seemed to be done on the 4Kids figures than on the new ones (the old ones had painted weapons, but the new ones don't)."

      I was pleasantly surprised last week to get a shipment of most of the new toys from Playmates, and spent some time looking them over. The packaging is a little odd but cool, and the figures themselves seem well-done, although I still raise and eyebrow at some of the extraneous detailing (three toes, random wraps). I have to say that the new Splinter is perhaps the oddest iteration of that character that I have ever seen. But they all look like they have plenty of "play value"!

      

"Thank you for taking your time to answer!"

      You're welcome! -- PL

      Delete
  28. Hi Peter. Thanks again for answering all these questions! My next one is regarding the latest TMNT (2007) film.

    What was the extent of your involvement in its development? Do you have any insight as to how the story came about; particularly why no established TMNT villains were utilized as opposed to Max Winters?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was quite closely involved in the development of the 2007 movie, mostly on the story end.

      And contrary to what a few somewhat confused TMNT fans have claimed, I was not averse to trying new things with the Turtles (as even a cursory examination of the TMNT world during my solo tenure will show). The plot of the 2007 movie is evidence of that, as -- except for Karai and the Foot (and of course the Turtles, Splinter, Casey and April) -- the story centered around all-new characters. If we had done a sequel to that movie, it is VERY likely that the Shredder would have appeared in it... but I really wanted to try something different with that 2007 film. -- PL

      Delete
    2. Any idea if patrick stewart is a turtle fan? I know he loves beavis and butthead :). Met him at a convention for a few seconds and told him I loved that he did this movie...wonder if he had fun working on it...

      I liked the 2007 movie myself. It had a few great little moments in it. "you'd think they'd be more worried about the final monster"...any reason why a sequel was never done? It was #1 for a week.

      Delete
    3. Hi Peter!! : just read that you were involved in the 2007 TMNT, which I'm happy to know that. In another entry you said the Turtles and Master Splinter speak both Japanese and English. About the 2007 movie, you do think Leo learned Spanish while he was in Central America?

      Just curious. And how Donnie learned Italian? ( in the Darkness within episode)

      Delete
    4. Neil, I don't know if Patrick Stewart is a TMNT fan, but I think he enjoyed doing the voice work for the movie, if I am remembering the interview I saw correctly (where he talks about working on it).

      Margui, I think it is very likely that Leo learned some Spanish while he was in Central America... although probably more to understand what was being said than to actually talk to people. Don probably learned some Italian because he is insatiably curious. -- PL

      Delete
    5. Thank you, Peter!! Learning languages is tough if you don't learn it when you were young, but for some people seems quite easy like in the case of Donny.

      I wonder what is Donny's IQ?

      Delete
  29. Hey Pete, so you mentioned it really was not your idea to give the Turtles different colored bandanas. But in this old interview of Kevin, he claimed you were the one who came up with the different color bandannas and the belts with the letters on them. http://www.tcj.com/the-kevin-eastman-interview-part-i/2/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's possible... the thing I remember most clearly from those early discussions with Playmates is that they wanted to find some ways to distinguish one Turtle from another -- something that never occurred to us as we were drawing the comics, because we could tell which was which.

      So when I say it was not our idea to give the Turtles different-colored bandanas, it is true in at least this way -- we didn't see the need for it (or any other way to tell them apart, like the belt buckles) until Playmates mentioned it. -- PL

      Delete
  30. Will you give us a review of the new TMNT series when it premieres?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's quite possible, if I watch it. -- PL

      Delete
    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  31. Regarding Fast Forward, why did some of the goofiness seem to return to that series? Some episodes, ignoring the futuristic setting, could have fit right in with the original cartoon. Even the villains, like Jammerhead and Viral, seem like they would have fit right in with the old 90's toyline and the old show.

    I think part of the reason the change to FF seemed so jarring wasn't just that the turtles were stuck in the future for a season, it was that the show seemed to regress from what the 4kids series stood for, and brought back several amounts of goofy storylines and made the turtles less competent.

    I still enjoyed FF, but a few of its episodes, particularly all the Triple Threat episodes, were IMO the worst episodes of the entire series.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Adding more humor and goofiness to the show was an experiment to see if it would boost ratings. I would have preferred to stay with the original approach we'd taken with the first five seasons of the 4Kids show. -- PL

      Delete
  32. Was the falling out with Kevin Eastman personal? If I overstep any boundaries, I apologize.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was both business and personal, and probably more of the former. -- PL

      Delete
  33. If the 2007 CGI TMNT movie had gotten a sequel,what would you have liked to have seen happen in it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have never given it a lot of thought, but it would have been fun to do a "Return of the Shredder" thing (which was hinted at in a line at the end of the movie), or maybe do some of the "Turtles in space" stuff.

      Or we might have come up with something completely new. Who knows? -- PL

      Delete
  34. From what I've heard, Karai, the Flaming Carrot, and maybe even Fugitoid have been confirmed to appear on the new series. Thoughts?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Flaming Carrot? Really? Interesting. -- PL

      Delete
    2. Well now I'm hoping I'm right.

      Delete
  35. in rewatching 2003 (god, ten years..still seems new)...one question comes back to me.

    Was there any talk into what the elite ninja actually where? Did they have magical properties? Did they have the super hero technique of deteleportation (or was that smoke and mirrors?) They have red glowing eyes without masks, so it seems to me that there was something more to them than was told to the viewer. could have made a fun story

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There was, as I recall, no in-depth discussion about what the Elite were, other than just super-skilled ninja warriors. That's how I always viewed them, anyway… and I always felt that they way they were animated was a little over-the-top. I never saw them as having mystical powers.

      But it's an interesting idea. -- PL

      Delete
  36. Hey Peter,

    It's been a while since we've heard from you. I hope you're doing well. I was wondering what you thought of some of the super hero flicks that came out this year. I loved The Avengers and The Amazing Spider-Man! I haven't yet seen The Dark Knight Rises, though I've heard a lot of good things about it!

    I wasn't going to ask a Ninja Turtle related question, but one just popped into my head. Ever since I read the Mirage comics I've been a major fan of Renet and Savanti Romero, and I can't help but wonder what the third movie would've been like if they had been written into the film instead of that dumbass Walker character. Do you think that would've improved the plot?

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    1. That's an interesting notion, though I am having a bit of a hard time trying to envision those characters in the plot of the third TMNT movie. -- PL

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    2. Doesn't seem too hard to (re?)imagine. Probably the Turtles would go back in time as they did in the movie, but istead of finding a Feudal Japanese people oppressed by Walker and his gunmen or Lord Norigawa... the Turtles would find a Feudal Japanese people oppressed by a time-travelling Savanti Romero who has enslaved the people. Savanti would have trustees among the Japanese who would act as his personal army, and the movie would pretty much play out the same. Only with magic instead of cannons.

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    3. That's fine as a bare-bones sketch for a starting point, but it begs the question of how to explain the presence of characters like Renet and Savanti Romero. Maybe you should flesh it out and hire Jim Lawson to draw a comic book version of it.

      If we'd used Savanti and Renet, I think it would have been more fun to employ the setting from TMNT #8, complete with Savanti's zombie army. (Although I suppose we could have had SAMURAI zombies... that might be fun.) -- PL

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    4. Something like you describe would have been impossibly cooler than anything we've ever gotten in the TMNT movies so far. TMNT vs. the Army of Darkness, led by Savanti... basically. I'd watch it, if it wasn't played up as wacky (though you just know that'd be the inclination from above).

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  37. Hi Peter. Thanks for answering my previous questions! I have a one more though!

    1. In 2006, I saw Toy Fair images for new figures in the Fast Forward line. Unfortunately, I don't believe many of them made it to store shelves. What was the rationale behind this? Here is an image gallery of some of these figures.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/vaughnmichael/sets/72157630557241184/with/7561867262/

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    1. I really don't know why those figures weren't released -- you'd probably have to ask someone from Playmates. -- PL

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  38. Does posting all the 4kids scripts get you nostalgic to want to rewatch the entire 4kids show from beginning to end?

    I actually rewatched the entire series in the span of only 3 months because I wanted to refresh my memory of it before the new Nick cartoon starts so I could compare them. The series is quite good even if there is the occasional episode I didn't care for.

    Its a bit of a shame the 4kids show didn't get to adapt some of the storylines from Volume 4, I would have loved to see those talking mutated lizards from the early issues in the show.

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    1. Occasionally, when posting an entry I read something in it which makes me want to see again how the finished product came out. I have re-watched a few episodes in recent months... but not the whole seven seasons. -- PL

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  39. Hi!
    Do you know how the Ninja Turtles compared to other "similar" properties, like the Power Rangers, Transformers, GI Joe, in terms of ratings, sales of home videos and toys etc?

    I hope a question like that doesn't offend you; I'm just curious. I imagine you would have discussed such issues?

    (I mean of course while you where still an owner.)

    Thanks!
    Gustaf

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    1. That's a VERY difficult question to answer, and, sadly, I don't have a good answer for you. I can tell you that the TMNT were the number one boy's action figure line for three years. But it would take someone with a lot more information and knowledge about the business to really answer your question properly. Sorry! -- PL

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    2. Hi Peter, which three years were those? Just interested.

      I imagine Ninja Turtles was probably the number 1 selling toyline period except for Mattel's Barbie. That sound right?

      Ross May

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    3. Thank you for your answer, anyway. I didn't realise it was such a hard question.

      I'm glad to hear they were no. 1!

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  40. hey peter,

    i started drawing recently and recreated a couple vol.1 turtle images. here is the links to the images.

    http://i1048.photobucket.com/albums/s369/tommie55/3abfd29e.jpg

    http://i1048.photobucket.com/albums/s369/tommie55/0fc47d6a.jpg

    again i just started,at age 25 mind you, and just enjoy drawing to relax but if you have any advice to help me improve my recreated drawings, not tracings, id be much obliged.

    -tommie

    ps. my band also just released a new music video today that is avengers themed with zombies. its somewhat comic book related so i thought it might interest you since it has some jack kirby based characters. i play thor.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U0oIfB1UW2Y

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  41. Hey, Peter,

    What do you think of the "trailer" for "Odyssey"?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FiFAmp9QBvc

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    1. It's intriguing enough for me to want to read it, at the very least to see how you pull together all the disparate elements of the TMNT "multiverse".

      The zooms are repetitive enough to be somewhat annoying. And so is the flaming background.

      I also question your usage of the word "amok" in the title card "Time is amok."

      I think I actually prefer this other trailer:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&NR=1&v=u4M_uYZs7kQ

      But I commend you for the energy you've devoted to this. -- PL

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    2. Thank you, Peter. If you tell me where to send it, I'd be happy to send you the script if you're interested.

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    3. So I retouched the trailer a little bit... there's still flames, but with a twist. And the "Amok" part is revised: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hIzaivKf3QU

      Also, I think I've been a bit nervous to ask for fear of what you might say or think, but I'm truly curious what you think of my 2 issue conclusion of the Image TMNT series/Vol. 3. They can be read digitally here:

      http://www.thegreenlanterncorps.com/tmnt/vol3.html

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  42. Also, if you posted them on your blog I missed them entirely -- what are your thoughts on "Prometheus"?

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    1. http://plairdblog.blogspot.com/2012/06/review-of-prometheus-movie.html

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    2. I agree with you on every point. It's also shockingly hilarious -- and not in a good way -- how the movie is almost a shot-for-shot remake of the first "Alien vs. Predator" movie, which Ridley claimed to despise.

      Think about it... a man named Weyland hires an archaeologist and a band of ragtag misfits to personally come with him on an adventure built around joint findings from multiple pyramids. Weyland has a fancy briefing for the whole gang while underway. Etc., etc., the uncanny similarities go on and on.

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  43. This comes up a lot... where do you come down on the TMNT as "crimefighters"? It's always been a strange thing to me every time they're described as such, or painted to be such by fans. Why would they fight the battles of a society they are not welcome in, and all that.

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    1. We always treated the Turtles' "crime fighting" as something they would do, out of a sense of justice and fairness inculcated in them by the teachings of Splinter, if they happened upon a crime in the course of their activities AND if that crime was something they COULD handle. They never went out "on patrol", as it were, like Spider-Man or Batman. -- PL

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  44. Michael Bay just confirmed that the "leaked TMNT movie script" floating around was rejected from about a year ago.

    Whether they'll completely abandon the "TMNT as aliens" concept though remains in the air.

    Here's Michael Bay's exact quote:

    "The leaked script for Ninja Turtles that different sites continue to comment on was written well before I, or anyone at Platinum Dunes, was involved with the project.

    That script saw the shredder a long time ago.

    This is tired, old news -- Wait for the movie!"

    Michael


    _____

    Hopefully they come up with something less god awful.

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  45. this may be a bit of a weird question, but here goes...Did you have anyone read issue #1 to see if anyone else enjoyed it other than yourself, before publishing it? or did you just put it out there and HOPE people got into it?

    I'm trying to get my own comic off the ground..I've got four issues written, and almost 23 plotted out with an ongoing arc. I'd like someone to read the first issue, if not for creative feedback, and to make sure everything ties together as well as I hope it does... but also to see if it might catch on with the masses. If Four people might like it, there's more of a hopeful chance 400 people will ;o)..

    later!

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    1. I suspect there were a handful of people who read the first issue of TMNT before it was published -- probably my wife, my brothers, and a few friends. But that was pretty much irrelevant to our publishing plans -- we were going to go ahead and publish the thing no matter what.

      I suppose if everyone who read it before publication said "Ugh! This is HORRIBLE! This is CRAP!", we might have had a few second thoughts. But as I recall it, we were having a lot of fun writing and drawing the book, so we sort of figured people would have fun reading it. And as it turned out, for the most part, we were right.

      Good luck with your book, Neil! -- PL

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    2. thank you :) That's pretty much where i am at now. i'm having fun doing it, and out of the three ideas had, this is the one that seems to come the easiest and through the most clearly...

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  46. Hi Peter How are you? Question : when you start drawing the TMNT along with Mr. Eastman , Who got the idea of giving the guys their trademark ninja weapons?

    Thank you for your time.

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    1. Margui, I don't recall us discussing which weapons should be used by the Turtles -- Kevin just penciled that first group shot of all four -- before they'd been given names and individual personalities -- and handed it to me to laugh at and ink. It had all the weapons -- bo, nunchaku, swords, and sai. -- PL

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    2. Thank you, so much

      Another question, Peter, if you don't mind. It's about Hamato Yoshi's girlfriend/wife Tang Shen. If she was a Japanese lady why her name sounds so Chinese or Korean. Why not a Japanese name for Hamato Yoshi's girl like Oyuki Tanaka or Keiko Suzuki?(I use the western style which the given name comes first and the surname comes last)

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    3. I'd like to say that we were thinking ahead and planning a later story which would explain why a Japanese ninja would have a Chinese wife, but the truth is we didn't do sufficient research into Japanese women's names at that time. -- PL

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    4. Thank you, so much, Peter!!

      Questions: What is your opinion about the new Nickelodeon's TMNT show?

      And a non-TMNT question If you don't mind:

      Are you living in Massachutsetts? I'm curious and I apologize to you. I wanted to know what kind of Governor Mitt Romney is/was? Election Day is getting closer. At this point, I don't really know if I'll vote for President Obama or this other guy, to be honest with you.

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    5. Margui, as I replied to another person's question about when I would offer my opinion about the new TMNT show:

      "Probably after they are released on DVD and I can watch the whole season, so I could give the fairest assessment (if I decide to review them, that is). Right now, I have only seen the first two episodes online, and I don't know if that is the best way to watch them. There's a certain jerkiness to the animation which seems like it might be an artifact of the video stream not being smooth enough. -- PL"

      I am living in Massachusetts, and was when Romney was Governor. I honestly don't recall much about his term.

      I have to say I find it somewhat incredible that ANYONE, at this late date, would not know for whom they are planning to vote. It just seems very illogical to me. -- PL

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    6. Peter, I understand your point of view about the people who doesn't choose for whom they going to vote. But for me,it's hard to decide. I'm coming from a country whose politicians, when they are in campaign, they do a lot of promises. Then when they are in power, they never keep their promises and start to steal the hard earned money from people that worked all their lives. But I know, voting is a duty that every citizen must do.

      About the show, you can watch it online on Youtube, if you want. In fact, I watched the entire 2003 show online without any problems. Because of that show, I started to like Leo, Mikey and Raph, too. Like I tell you before, I love Donnie since the original series.

      I watched the "Superquest" episode again, it is my favorite one of season 7. It was your idea or Mr. Kevin's to do an episode like this? And why at the end of the chapter the boys'characters appear to be human with the exception of Raph's before they return from the game? I wish that game could be real.

      Thank you so much!!

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    7. I am not sure who you are referring to when you say "Mr. Kevin" -- if you mean Kevin Eastman, he did not work on the 4Kids show. I am pretty sure the basic idea for "Superquest" came from one of the writers who worked on the show, though I could be mistaken.

      I am sorry to say I can't answer your other question, because I don't remember enough about that episode to do so! -- PL

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    8. Yes, I was referring to Kevin Eastman when I said Mr. Kevin, unless you worked with another guy with the same name. I didn't know that Kevin didn't work with you on the show. My apologies!!

      Then writers had a very good idea about "Superquest" who turned to be one of the best episodes from season 7.

      I don't worry if you cannot answer my last question. Besides, you have a lot of questions to answer. I hope you don't feel overwhelmed.

      By the way, I hope you are safe from Hurricane Sandy. Despite she was only a category 1 hurricane, she did a lot of damage by becoming a terrible super storm.

      I live in Florida for many years and hope I never have to experience a hurricane like Andrew, the stories that I heard from my aunt and uncle about Andrew are terrible. I just escaped Andrew's fury by coming to live to the United States a year later.

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  47. Hello Peter,

    I was wondering if you had a copy of the John Fusco movie draft from a few years ago. I heard it was turned down because it was "too dark" and was based on issues 1 - 12. I would love to have a read!

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    1. No, I don't have one. I'd be curious to see it, too. -- PL

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  48. I know you've been against working with characters that were made in the 80's series, but if someone were to reinvent the characters in a direction that you think reflects the spirit of TMNT(like what they're doing in the IDW series), would you approve? I personally would be indifferent since I think many of those characters are overrated.

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    1. I had -- and have -- no interest in working with the characters (like Krang, Bebop, Rocksteady, etc.) from the first TMNT animated series. However, other people do, and from what I can gather from the little I've seen, the writers of the new IDW Turtle comics belong to that group. I wish them the best of luck with it. -- PL

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  50. Who came up with the character of Nano from the 2003 series?

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    1. I don't remember, exactly, but I think it was a collaborative effort between me and Lloyd... and possibly the person who wrote that first Nano episode. -- PL

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  52. Hi Peter!!: I hope you don't mind, but when it's your birthday? Are you left-handed? Because I saw a video that you are drawing Donnie using a special paper. Correct me if I'm mistaken.

    Is that true that the Italian sculptor Donatello was not considered a Renaissance Master until years later? A person told me that when she/he was in college taking a course about the Renaissance. Are your professors told you the same?

    Who got the idea of naming the TMNT after Italian artists? It was yours or Mr. Kevin (yes, that is Mr. Eastman)what about naming the guys' friend, April? I'm confused about her last name spelling: Is it O'neil(with one "l") or O'neill(with two "l's"?

    Thank you.

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  53. "Hi Peter!!: I hope you don't mind, but when it's your birthday?"

    January 27.

    " Are you left-handed?"

    Yes.

    "Because I saw a video that you are drawing Donnie using a special paper. Correct me if I'm mistaken.

"Is that true that the Italian sculptor Donatello was not considered a Renaissance Master until years later? A person told me that when she/he was in college taking a course about the Renaissance. Are your professors told you the same?"

    I confess I don't know whether Donatello was considered a Renaissance Master until years later. I don't recall hearing that in any classes. (Of course, that was quite a while ago.)



    "Who got the idea of naming the TMNT after Italian artists? It was yours or Mr. Kevin (yes, that is Mr. Eastman)"

    I really don't remember whose idea it was.

    "what about naming the guys' friend, April? I'm confused about her last name spelling: Is it O'neil(with one "l") or O'neill(with two "l's"?

Thank you."

    April's first name came from a former girlfriend of Kevin's, and I gave her the last name of "O'Neil" (one "l"). -- PL

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    2. Thank you, so much Peter!! I was also born in January and like you I'm left-handed.
      Taking about that, did you make Donnie a left-handed like you? There are not many cartoon heroes that are left- handed.

      Interesting to know, Mr. Kevin had a girlfriend named April. Not everyone named a comic character after an ex, unless they remained friends.

      Peter, when you're in school, did the teachers force you to use your right hand? When I was fifteen, a teacher told me: "Tell me teach you to use your right hand" and said: "No". Nobody told me such a thing before". I was upset. I can control the computer mouse with my right hand. What about you? Or you are ambidextrous?

      How the name "Klunk" for Mikey's kitten came out? It's unusual name for a cat and I really like it. Is Klunk a male or a female in the show? What about in the comics?

      Take care, Peter. Thank you for your time.

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    3. "Thank you, so much Peter!! I was also born in January and like you I'm left-handed.
Taking about that, did you make Donnie a left-handed like you? There are not many cartoon heroes that are left- handed."

      I don't think we ever said whether Donatello -- or any of the other Turtles -- were right- or left-handed.



      "Peter, when you're in school, did the teachers force you to use your right hand? When I was fifteen, a teacher told me: "Tell me teach you to use your right hand" and said: "No". Nobody told me such a thing before". I was upset."

      No, I never had that experience, but I have heard similar stories before. Very sad.

      " I can control the computer mouse with my right hand. What about you? Or you are ambidextrous?"

      I am not ambidextrous, but I also use my right hand for mousing or using the trackpad on my laptop. I am also better at doing some physical things, like hammering or throwing, with my right hand.

      "How the name "Klunk" for Mikey's kitten came out? It's unusual name for a cat and I really like it. Is Klunk a male or a female in the show? What about in the comics?

Take care, Peter. Thank you for your time."

      I think Kevin suggested the name "Klunk" -- it just sounded funny, as I recall, and that's why we liked it. I don't think we ever determined whether Klunk was male or female in either the comics or the TV show. I guess it didn't seem to matter to the stories. -- PL

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    4. Peter: It's interesting that you are using your right hand for many things. In my case, before the computer mouse, I hardly used my right hand. Have you tried you play a guitar with your right hand?

      Have your ever heard of the website The Left-handed Club or go to Left-handed day party? Using scissors are a pain for me.

      I think because of Mikey's kitten more people are naming their orange cats Klunk rather than Heathcliff or Garfield. What kind of cat breed is Klunk in the series and comics?

      Thank you so much and take care.

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    5. "Peter: It's interesting that you are using your right hand for many things. In my case, before the computer mouse, I hardly used my right hand. Have you tried you play a guitar with your right hand?"

      That is, in fact, how I play my guitar -- if you mean picking with my right hand.

      

"Have your ever heard of the website The Left-handed Club or go to Left-handed day party? Using scissors are a pain for me. "

      No, I haven't.



      "I think because of Mikey's kitten more people are naming their orange cats Klunk rather than Heathcliff or Garfield. What kind of cat breed is Klunk in the series and comics?"

      I don't think we had any specific breed of cat in mind when we created Klunk. -- PL

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  54. Thank you, Peter!! Merry Christmas to you And your family

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