Friday, September 28, 2012

Blast from the Past #598: November 12, 2002: Fwd: Young TMNT Design, other flashback idea, and Re: Color models on Episode #4, November 14, 200: Re: TMNT episode #4 - additional color model, and November 15, 2002: Re: FW: TMNT Outline - episode 021

Subj: Fwd: Young TMNT Design
Date: Tuesday, November 12, 2002 4:41:48 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 11/12/02 1:08:49 PM, Gary writes:

<< Hey Lloyd,  I defer to Pete on the overall design of a young TMNT, but I
have one element I'd like to throw out to you, Pete and Vinnie.  Does it
make any sense to have the young TMNT wear less "gear", or none at all?  The
logic for this would be that it took a while for them to choose and develop
all their gear, like bandanas, pads, weapons and belt.  Just a thought.


I think Gary has a good point. While this is a nice drawing and probably adequate to the task intended, it might be a very good idea to establish a special look for "early" or young Turtles which is similar to, but different enough from, their adult look that if we ever show them in flashbacks again (and I have a feeling we will) the audience will immediately "get" the concept that these are the young Turtles.

In fact, this is exactly what Kevin and I tried to do when we produced our (at least as far as I can remember) only "pre-Teenage" Turtle comic story in issue #13 of the original comic series. This is the one about the kid who becomes the head of the Gosei samurai clan via a mental transference from his dying grandfather via Splinter. In that issue, the Turtles had bandanas which actually were more like skull caps, covering the tops of their heads as well as going over their eyes, as well as elbow pads which looked different.

I'd suggest either of these ideas, and/or possibly giving the young Turtles only their bandana/masks and/or their belts and/or their elbow/knee pads. Perhaps they don't get their belts until Master Splinter decides that they are true ninja (much like in martial arts training you don't get your belt until you've reached a certain point).



Subj: other flashback idea
Date: Tuesday, November 12, 2002 4:55:06 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine


Just as I sent that last email, I was struck by the thought that it might at some point be fun to do another little flashback to the young Turtles, and show how they ended up with different-colored bandanas -- my idea is that is was Splinter's doing, due to the fact that when they were young he had a hard time telling them apart. (In fact, maybe we could show them all starting out with red bandanas, as a nod to the comics!)



Subj: Re: Color models on Episode #4
Date: Tuesday, November 12, 2002 6:26:13 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 11/12/02 6:00:24 PM, Lloyd writes:

<< Hi Gary -

These helmet designs have already been approved as B&W models.  Adding a
strap or jazzing them up with a graphic will, at this point, cause us
production problems down the line (for example, the storyboard won't reflect
these changed models, the B&W models have already been released to the
studio, etc.).  However, if there are color specific notes you have, we'll
be happy to implement 'em!




I'll have to dig through my ever-deepening pile of TMNT show faxes and printouts to confirm or refute my memory, but I could have sworn the art for Casey's helmet included a strap. If not -- how did we let THAT get by? I suppose from this point forward we should establish the across the board "helmet strap" rule -- "Any helmet meant to be worn by one of characters as protection while operating a vehicle MUST have a chin strap!"

I'm a little confused about the "color specific notes" versus graphics, the former being okay and the latter not. Are you talking about just changing the single color for the helmet -- i.e. making it blue instead of red? Or can we make it multicolored -- which in a way could be a new graphic treatment (i.e. the green with red bandana Gary mentions, or red flames on a green background, etc.)?

I think both bikes are looking cool!



Subj: Re: TMNT episode #4 - additional color model
Date: Thursday, November 14, 2002 6:18:51 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 11/13/02 7:19:45 PM, JoEllyn writes:

<< Dear All:  I am attaching one additional color model for episode #4.  Please
let us know your thoughts and comments on the interior of the Battle Shell
as soon as possible so that we may proceed with production.  Your help in
finalizing this model is greatly appreciated.

Thanks a zillion JoEllyn >>

I think this looks great! One comment/question for consideration: Do they have seat belts in this rig? I think I see one going across the driver's side window at a diagonal, but am not sure. Anyway, just thought it was probably a good idea to have them, and also wondered if it might be cool to have -- instead of the typical one diagonal strap across the chest type -- a double strap in an "X" configuration similar to those found in racing vehicles, and maybe the connecting clasp/lock at the center of the "X" could be a shell shape. Not absolutely necessary, but I thought I'd throw that idea out for consideration.

Also just occurred to me -- would it be fun to give the shift lever knob in the Battle Shell a cool custom look? Like make it look like the leather-wrapped hilt of one of Leo's swords or Raph's sais. Or a shell, or a skull, or an eyeball... or maybe just make it red to stand out from the overall green color scheme of the interior (this might be handy for action in the vehicle where one of the Turtles' hands will be shown going to the stick shift). 

Here's an even wackier idea -- what if Donatello has tricked out the Battle Shell with customized personal settings for each Turtle (you know, like some cars nowadays have memory settings so two people who use the same car can push one button and the seat height and position, etc. will automatically go to their preferences)? He could do this with four different-colored (red, blue, orange, purple, to match the colors of the Turtles' headbands) snap-on knobs for the stick shift, which could be kept in a tray under the dash or next to the driver's seat somewhere. When, say, Leo gets in to drive, he could pop on the blue knob, and instantly get all of his personal settings -- perhaps even including lighting effects, radio station, air conditioning, etc.. Just a thought!



Subj: Re: FW: TMNT Outline - episode 021
Date: Friday, November 15, 2002 12:46:59 AM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 11/13/02 11:34:38 AM, Gary writes:

<< I'll save most of my comments about #21 until after I read what Peter has to say, but I did want to pass along one overall comment now.  My initial understanding about the action in this episode was that the Turtles would fight floor by floor up to Shredder's Shinto Palace, not sneak in through air ducts, etc.  Also, I had the impression they would encounter different divisions of the Foot and a variety of traps as they moved their way up through the building.  Therefore, my comment/question is, what happened to that cool concept?  Later, Gary. >>


I agree with Gary -- the bit with the BattleWagon used as a diversion is cool (though is it really totally trashed?), but the rest of the Turtles' entry into the Shredder's HQ is boring and that whole bit with the "duct sweeper" (!) is really pretty silly... and it being the ONLY opposition they face until they get to the top floor and face the Shredder kind of wastes the whole ninja vs. ninja setup we have here. I would much rather have them engage in a running battle with progressively tougher Foot adversaries as they struggle to reach the top and face down the Shredder.

1.) Pg. 4: When the Turtles get back to their lair after being away for so long, and they're all reacquainting themselves with it, I thought it might be funny to have Mike (who's checking out the food situation) get himself some milk and cookies, and just as he's taking a big drink of milk, one of the other Turtles says something like "Hey, Mikey -- you know that milk's a month old...!" (or however long they've been away) upon which Mike gags as he realizes that he's just taken a BIG mouthful of sour, curdled milk! (This is taken from one of my favorite scenes in the movie STRANGE BREW where one of the McKenzie brothers greedily gulps milk from a carton out of a vending machine -- only to have his brother remind him that the power to that cafeteria had been off for weeks.)

2.) Pg. 6: Raph tells Casey "You have to stay here... in case we don't make it back." Uh... why? All four Turtles and Splinter are going -- if they don't make it back, what is Casey supposed to do? 

3.) Pg. 8: Are we going to be able to get away with all this gun use? I thought that was a big S&P  problem.

4.) Pg. 14: What's with the "large metal sphere" which pushes up through the floor, then opens up to reveal Stockman's robot thing? Or is the sphere actually the robot in another configuration? It's unclear as written. If it's the former, it makes the robot seem wimpy -- why does it need help breaking through the floor?
Also, what stage of amputation is Stockman up to here? And are we not going to do the idea used in the comics of him transplanting his brain into a robot body?


I see no problems with the final draft of Episode 19 ("Tales of Leo").


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Blast from the Past #597: November 7, 2002: Re: Utrom Office Buildings!, and November 10, 2002: Episode 25 premise and Episode 20 second draft script

Subj: Re: Utrom Office Buildings!
Date: Thursday, November 7, 2002 9:03:29 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 11/6/02 8:08:18 PM, Lloyd writes:

<< Hi Peter -

How ya been?

I have a few things I'd like to discuss with you (perhaps on the phone
tomorrow).  First, I'd like to talk with you about how you see the
interior of the Utrom office building (beyond/in addition to what we see
in the comic) and why the Utrom have constructed it the way they have.
I'd love to have this conversation tomorrow (12:30).

Second, believe it or not, I'm supposd to start working on the next 26
episode story arc for "TMNT season two!"  I have some ideas, plus there
are some stories that we've already discussed (i.e the Triceratons, the
Fugitoid, etc.), but I would love to know if you have any favorite
stories, characters, ideas, comics to direct me to, etc. I'd love to
know.  Put on your thinking cap and maybe we can get into this next

I'm also awaiting your blessings or condemnation on the final draft of
18, the revised script of 19, and the model for Don's room in the Turtle

I'll give you a call tomorrow.

Thanks Pete!



I've gotten a little behind in my reading, but I plan to get caught up tonight (Thursday) and get you some comments. (Actually, I just read the final drafts of episodes 18 and 19, and they seem fine. Though I wonder -- is there any significance to the beast young Raph rashly fights  [in #19] being a crocodile as opposed to an alligator?)

The model for Don's room looks fine.

As for the Utrom's office building, the idea that I had back when Kevin and I did issue #4 of the original comic  series was basically that the transmat device which the Utroms were building took up a large space in the core of the building, with offices and corridors built around it to fool the casual visitor into not realizing it was there. 

Next year's arc --- yahhhh! I'd like to see some more of the comic stories adapted (like issue #15 with Dr. Dome and the Domoids, among others). We should probably have another sit-down meeting to hash out this stuff. Need a break from NYC?

I just read the outline for Episode 24 ("Lone Raph and Cub") and the best thing I can say about it is that it has a cute title. There's probably a good/fun/cool story to be told about Raph and a little kid -- this isn't it.



Subj: Episode 25 premise and Episode 20 second draft script
Date: Sunday, November 10, 2002 5:36:00 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine


I've read the Episode 25 premise and Episode 20 second draft script and here are some comments:


Episode 25 premise "Aliens Among Us Part 1"

1.) Due to this odd backwards progression of stories, I'm still waiting to see what exactly happened in the Shredder's "abandoned and battle-damaged" HQ -- but I am wondering why, even if the Shredder was defeated, the Foot would so totally abandon this HQ.

2.) Are the guards in the TCRI building humans or Utroms in human disguises?

3.) Do the Turtles know that the Guardian has gone into the TCRI building? It's unclear here. If they DO know, then there needs to be something else said in this story about what a bizarre coincidence it is that this Guardian is going into the same building with the mysterious -- and significant for the Turtles -- TCRI logo on it. (And speaking of which -- shouldn't the building actually HAVE a TCRI logo [like most corporate buildings do have] and not just the words Techno Cosmic Research Institute? Then Don wouldn't have to scratch the logo with a rock, instead just pointing at it and saying something like "Look! Look at that logo!")

4.) In the "Casey creates a diversion" scene, when the guard says that TCRI doesn't make toasters, I thought it might be funny to have Casey turn the toaster over to display a TCRI label... which the guard then sarcastically points out is homemade and crudely done to boot (Casey scrawled the letters on a white stick-on address label with a Sharpie pen). Also, perhaps the first thing Casey smashes with his bat -- once he goes into his manic "diversion" -- could be the toaster.

5.) I think it's kind of a cheat to on the one hand have both the Turtles' tracking bug (that they put on the Guardian) and the Cam-Shell fail to work properly through the TCRI building's jamming system, but April's "mini Shell-Cel earpiece radio" is conveniently "extra-boosted" so it will work through the jamming. One wonders why they didn't "extra-boost" the Cam-Shell.

Actually, it's unclear to me WHY we need this jamming thing at all. It might make more sense that the Turtles continue to receive the signal from the location of the TCRI building, indicating that the Guardian is in there, so that we don't have the problem of logic arising from this situation -- i.e., if the Turtles are so intent on finding Splinter through the help of this Guardian guy, wouldn't they forgo the investigation of the TCRI building and concentrate on finding the Guardian? Isn't the fate of their sensei more important?

If we went in this direction (i.e. no jamming AND the Guardian in the TCRI building) the scene with the Cam-Shell also works fine -- it broadcasts back the information that the Turtles need to get inside, but it can't go any further due to either closed doors or the danger of it being discovered. This way, there is no problem with April later sending her "all clear" signal.

6.) I have to say I'm not too crazy about the bit with the huge "transporter relay dish" popping out of the side of the building  and knocking Mike and Don off their "perch" (whatever/wherever that is). It kind of goes against the whole idea that the Utroms want to remain inconspicuous -- to have a huge transporter relay dish which can pop out of the side of their building seems pretty attention-grabbing. (In the original comics, none of the actual transmat machinery is situated so it can be seen from outside -- it's all concealed in the center of the building. And I think it stands to reason that you wouldn't really need an exposed relay dish for a matter transporter, which I assume like all matter transporters in science fiction has the ability to beam things THROUGH other things.)

I also would really like to have the instant photo/pigeon puppet bit that Don does in the original comic book (issue #4) be part of this entry into the TCRI building -- I have a soft spot for that bit of silliness. And if there needs to be a cliffhanger ending for this episode, why not have it be on the first "reveal" of an Utrom, which can happen once the Turtles get inside the TCRI building?


Episode 20 second draft script "The Monster Hunter"

1.) Pg. 4: I don't think we really need "funny domestic violence" between April and Casey (re: the scene where she whacks him in the head with a mop, for no apparent good reason). She should just give him a REALLY dirty look.

2.) Pg. 5: "Bales" (as in "bales of hay") is spelled wrong ("bails"). Also, should the line about Leo which reads "His left arm is in a sling and having bandages around his chest." actually read "His left arm is in a sling and he has bandages around his chest."?

3.) Pp. 7-8: There seems to be an extraneous "and" in Dr. Finn's line which starts on page 7 and concludes on page 8: "If the Green Man is in these woods... and, I will bring him down." Also, I just thought of this -- is it too much of a weird coincidence that the Dr.'s name is "Finn" and her assistant is revealed later to have a "fin"?

4.) Pg. 15: It seems illogical to me that the hardware in a chamber designed to be flooded with intensely cold liquid nitrogen would also be vulnerable to that same substance, thus allowing Don to use it to effect their escape. My suggestion: Have one of the two Turtles have a bottle of water or a soft drink (might make sense for Mike, as he is eating the probably-salty nuts). Don grabs this, and pours it over/into the lock mechanism on the door, THEN directs the flow of liquid nitrogen from the broken pipe onto the lock. The rapid freezing action of the water, as it turns to ice and EXPANDS, quickly breaks the lock apart and allows the Turtles to escape. They can still kick the door open for effect, if desired.

5.) Pg. 16: Dr. Finn says to Steve "These footprints are perfect!" Perfect what? Are they a particular shape she is expecting? Or are they just perfectly formed in the dust or frost or mud or whatever they are formed in?

It occurred to me that it might be cool (no pun intended) to have Mike lose a little bit of (non-vital!) foot skin on the metal floor of the trap (because of the intense cold from the liquid nitrogen), and have Dr. Finn discover this, then rapidly analyze it in one of her techy gizmos on board her truck, thus giving her even more conclusive proof that something truly strange and non-human is lurking about. And it might be a fun bit to see Mike putting a little kid-style band-aid on his foot later. (Maybe even put in a throwaway line -- when Mike is complaining about it -- that it's a good thing his tongue didn't touch the floor. Remember that great scene in the movie A CHRISTMAS STORY when the kid touches his tongue to the metal flagpole?)

Also, Dr. Finn's "Whatever, Steve." rejoinder to his comments about whatever escaped from the trap being big and pretty smart seems odd to me. I would think she would take greater notice of this fact. Actually, her whole character is very odd and inconsistent.

6.) Pg. 18: I don't think there should be a question mark at the end of April's last line on this page ("Very funny, Jones?").

7.) Pg. 19: I would suggest changing Casey's line "Right after the store burned..." to "Right after my dad's store burned..."

8.) Pg. 27: Dr. Finn's line "I putting the SORTIs into taser mode." should read -- I think -- 
 "I'm putting the SORTIs into taser mode."

9.) Pg. 28: Steve says "Is it alright?" As far as I know, "alright" is not a word.  We should use "all right".

10.) Pg. 36: The resolve of this story re: the character and fate of the monster-obsessed Dr. Finn is very flat and unsatisfying. What exactly does Steve do to her? The description of her and him in these lines:

Steve drives as Dr. Finn sits in the passenger seat looking FREAKED out and disheveled.  Steve smiles to himself 

        … is pretty creepy, and not in a good way. SOMETHING needs to be done with her character to keep her from pursuing the monster (in this case, one of the Turtles... although it's unclear to me if she actually ever saw the sloth-thing, also) which she has encountered here (otherwise her obsessed, driven nature as demonstrated earlier in the story makes no sense).

If we keep the "Steve is a monster" thing (which I think is a neat twist, and would vote to keep it), perhaps a more satisfying wrap-up would go something like this: Steve IS a "monster" -- that is, he is a non-human humanoid, whether with fins or without, whatever. One of his peculiar "monster" characteristics could be strange, hypnotic eyes which allow him to mesmerize Dr. Finn and convince her that the "monster" that she thought she saw was actually either just a bear or moose or some local yokels dressed up in a homemade "monster" costume to have a good joke on the stuck-up monster doctor. He reveals this to the Turtles... and at the same time sadly reveals that the reason he does this -- and he's done it many times, in many locations -- is that he is searching for others of his species, and as he has little in the way of resources to do so, he has "piggybacked" onto Dr. Finn's program, which allows him to go all over the world searching, as well as PROTECTING -- by using his ability to "wipe" Dr. Finn's memories --the innocent "monsters" that they actually do turn up in their travels.

Also, one of my pet grammar peeves is on this page, where April says to Casey "Don't try and think..." Aarrgghh! It's "try TO think"!

That's it from me for now! 


Friday, September 21, 2012

Blast from the Past #596: October 23, 2002: Re: Entity, October 25, 2002: Re: Revised Kirbyland!, October 27, 2002: new stuff, and October 29, 2002: Re: Models and stuff

Subj: Re: Entity
Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2002 2:09:40 AM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 10/22/02 5:39:51 PM, Lloyd writes:

<< Hi Pete -

Just as I got off the phone with you I was handed a note from Gary with your
drawing of the Foot Mystic, suggesting that this could be a way to go with
the Entity.  There was also the suggestion that the Entity be part ghost.

I think the Foot Mystic design would be really cool to use... as a Foot
Mystic!  I think the ghost idea is probably not the right direction for this

Please send me your thoughts on this.  I kinda told everyone the previous
design was approved (provided we take another stab at the Entity's face) as
per our previous conversation.


Lloyd >>


I agree -- I would like to keep the Foot Mystic I drew a Foot Mystic (in fact, I think I'm going to use that design as such in the comic book). I think the Entity should not look too weird/non-human, so as to make it more logical that he would want humans (the "de-monstered monsters" he has captured) to repopulate his underground world.



Subj: Re: Revised Kirbyland!
Date: Friday, October 25, 2002 12:45:53 AM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 10/24/02 6:33:22 PM, Lloyd writes:

<< Hey Peter!

We've faxed you a freshly revised version of "Scene 16 Ext. Fantastic
Landscape w/ Portal," a.k.a. KIRBYWORLD, made greener and more inviting!

If you could, please send your thumbs up (or down) to us as soon as you get
this e-mail.  We have other backgrounds to generate, depending on if this
one is to your liking, and if we get your comments tonight, we can start
first thing in the morning.

Please send your comments on this model to JoEllen  as well as to me.

I will give you a call at 12:30 tomorrow (M'wah! Ha! Ha! Ha!  Ha!).

Lloyd >>


I got the revision of the KIRBYWORLD, and it looks fine. I was a little disappointed that the "Club Monster" revised drawing still has that goofy forked "Black Bolt" prong in the middle of his forhead (only now, with its middle tine removed, it looks a little less like a stylized cactus). I think if none of my suggested tweaks are appealing to anyone else, we should just take that thing off his head.

The "Leader Warrior" and "Warrior 2" revisions look fine.



Subj: new stuff
Date: Sunday, October 27, 2002 7:57:08 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine


Some comments on new stuff:

First, designs:

Exterior Verdant Plain -- Base of Bridge, Exterior Street Floating City: they look fine.

Mobile Creep Trapper: I think I like the variant of the original comic book design better -- I think it's more Kirbyesque.


First Draft Storyboards, Episode #1488-012: "The Unconvincing Turtle Titan"

1.) Pg. 128, etc.: I'm concerned about Mike looking too human (in basic body shape) when he is shown in his Turtle Titan costume. This seems to be a common problem when people (including, sometimes, me) draw Turtles in full-body costumes -- they forget about that big shell that is under the outfit and which really wouldn't allow for a classic wedge-shaped muscular human superhero torso.

2.) Pg. 337: The bit where Mike gets thrown so hard into a steel I-beam that the beam bends to conform to his shell shape (trapping him momentarily) is WAY over the top. If one of the Turtles got thrown that hard into something so tough, he'd be DEAD.

3.) Pg. 417: Why does Mike suddenly have his Turtle Titan costume on again, when back on pages 367-370 he made a big deal about taking it off?


TMNT Episode 17 final draft: This is going to be a fun episode! I have only one comment.

1.) Pg. 12: I think instead of using the word "routed" in the line "We will leave as soon as the Foot Ninja are routed from the tunnels surrounding our Lair.", Splinter should say something like "gone". For him to say "routed" implies that he and the Turtles are planning to go down there are kick the Foot out of the tunnels.


Show Profile 17 1st Draft -- fine by me.

That's it for now!



Subj: Re: Models and stuff
Date: Tuesday, October 29, 2002 10:42:30 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 10/29/02 3:46:30 PM, Lloyd writes:

<< Hi Pete -

So here's what's outstanding:

* Please resend your "tweaked" version of the other KirbyWorld
characters asap - apparently no one here could open them and that's why your
revisions got ignored (which is not to say that we won't ignore 'em once we
actually see 'em!)!  >>

Consider it done.

<<* Any notes on 18 & 19?>>

Why, yes! Here they are:

TMNT Episode 18 second draft:

1.) Pp. 15-16: The "joke" where Don points to the suit of armor and says to Mike "You talking about him?" (implying that Mike mistook the suit of armor for four Elite ninjas -- ??!!!) is pretty lame, and should be tossed... I don't think it would be missed AT ALL.

2.) Pg. 17: I don't have those issues of the original comic in front of me, but I'm pretty sure that when we introduced them in the comics, we called the Elite ninjas "the Shredder Elite" or "Shredder's Elite Guard", not "Foot Elite", as Splinter calls them here.

3.) Pg. 19: Here's another really lame joke ("DONATELLO: I’m telling you: Don’t axe me again!") which should go, I think. Also, the following bit...

(British accent)
Good sir knight, I challenge thee to a duel!

ANGLE - on the nunchaku whipping out from behind the armor to <repeatedly bonk> the Spear Elite, who responds by <knocking> the armor’s helmet off, leaving Mikey’s face grinning back at him.

(British accent)
I say, dashed poor taste, knocking a chap’s head off!

... pushes the envelope of what would be appropriate "humorous banter" -- even from goofball Mikey -- in such a serious life-and-death situation. Though it's not absolutely necessary, I think we should consider taking it out.


TMNT Episode 19 first draft "Tales of Leo"

1.) Pp. 7, 12, 13: Two instances of Don saying "gonna" -- I think he would say "going to" instead. "Gonna" is more Raph or Mikey. Also, Don says "hadda" on page 12 -- he should say "had to".

2.) Pg. 8: At the bottom of the page, there's an extra "to" ("... run into to town...").

3.) Pg. 10: Stockman refers to the exoskeleton as an "exoskeleton" -- which it is, I know, but maybe he should say "artifact" to avoid giving too much away (to the audience) too soon.

4.) Pg. 13: I know what the word "hairy" in Leo's line means as slang, but in this context it sounds odd. I'd suggest substituting "dangerous".

5.) Pg. 27: Near the bottom of the page, Leo is "...frozen in feat..." I believe that should be "fear".


Show 19 profile: No problems as far as I can see.


TMNT Episode 25 "Aliens Among Us" Part 1 premise: I'm a bit confused here because this premise refers to some stuff which happens in another episode which I have yet to see (Splinter's abduction, the Guardians helping in a fight with the Shredder), so please view my comments with that in mind.

1.) The whole bit with the "fake Shredder" on top of the Shinto Place Building being used by the Turtles as a lure for the Guardian is preposterously silly. Am I missing something? This IS the Shredder's  HQ, right? How would the Turtles be able to do this without immediately attracting the attention of the Foot?

2.) Even more ridiculous was the scene where the Turtles barge through the front door (!!!) into the reception area in the T.C.R.I. building and have the silly encounter with the receptionist (I'm still trying to figure out why, working as the receptionist for "a highly successful new technologies company that has been around for the past 25 years" she shouldn't have a telephone) and the taser-wielding Security Guards. The mind boggles...

This is all silly and unnecessary "shtick". The Turtles should use their ninja stealth to enter and explore the T.C.R.I. building, as they did in issue #4 of the original comic.


<<We're also trying to come up with a revised Hover pod that'll make Playmates
happy, but we haven't hit it yet.>>

I look forward to seeing it!


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Blast from the Past #595: October 10, 2002: comments on TMNT17 second draft and TMNT #16 second draft, October 13, 2002: Re: TMNT - Script 15 - Final and Outline 19, October 17, 2002: Re: Models, and October 22, 2002: Re: TMNT - Outlines and 1st Draft

Subj: comments on TMNT17 second draft and TMNT #16 second draft
Date: Thursday, October 10, 2002 10:49:11 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine


Here are some comments:


TMNT17 2nd draft -- Overall, very cool! I especially liked the mysterious and dangerous appearance of the Shredder Elite.

1.) Pg. 7: I don't get Raph's "You want to see a real hero on a halfshell?" line -- it doesn't seem to connect to anything.

2.) Pg. 8: Mike's "Leo's engaged?" bit is stupid. Also, immediately following, "You're" should be spelled "Your" in Raph's line (although we may not need that line anyway). And in Don's last line I think he would say "going to" instead of "gonna".

3.) Pg. 11: The bit about Raph not being able to pick up pieces of china without further breaking them in his "stubby fingers" seems very silly to me.

4.) Pg. 12: Suggest changing April's line at the top of the page to "It's tough with six... uh... people in a one-person apartment."
Also, when Splinter tells April they will leave when they find out why the Foot are in the sewers, he should probably also say that they will leave when the Foot are no longer IN the sewers. (Just knowing WHY they're there isn't really enough, after all.)

5.) Pg. 14: "Crouch" in line 2 should be "crouching".

6.) Pg. 19: "Amphibian" should be changed to "reptilian" in Raph's line.

7.) Pg. 20: "Be" should be "but" in Raph's line "No offense, April, be we really need to get back to the lair."
Also, in Splinter's line which follows, I'd insert an "at" so it reads "He will walk in the doorway at any moment."


TMNT #16 second draft

1.) Pg. 2: I'd change "we saw" to "we'd seen" in Mike's last line.

2.) Pg. 5: Question -- are we getting too much pizza in this show? Should we perhaps have them order something different, like Chinese food, spaghetti and meatballs, submarine sandwiches, etc.? 
The bit with Mikey hiding under the table and the teddy bear is almost EXACTLY like a scene in the first TMNT movie. Should we be concerned?

3.) Pg. 20: Near the bottom of the page -- "Donatello comes LEAPS into FRAME..." I think the "comes" is not needed.

4.) Pg. 30: Something should be said on this page about the "Creep Trapper" filling up with monsters, thus rendering it no longer useful in repelling the attack.

That's all for now!



Subj: Re: TMNT - Script 15 - Final and Outline 19
Date: Sunday, October 13, 2002 10:20:28 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine


I'm glad you were able to make the changes to the end of TMNT episode 15 (re: the fate of the transformed humans) -- it works much better now, I think.

I only have a few comments about the outline for episode 9 ("Tales Of Leo"):

1.) Pg.1: At the bottom of the page -- the Turtles, Splinter, April and Casey have gotten to the farmhouse, and "Don suggests they head into town and pick up some supplies..." Which "they" is being referred to here? I assume it's Casey and April, and not any of the Turtles.

2.) Pg. 2: The scene where Don is menaced by the "Battle-Bots" while chained to a wall had me thinking of the very similar scene in the "Fallen Angel" episode, where it was Casey in that position. I wonder if it might be better to make it a little more different, perhaps like this: Instead of being chained to a wall, Don is chained or tied to a generic "Battle Bot" mobile platform, only this one is unarmed. It can only move at random through the arena, giving the other 'bots a moving target (and the crowd more entertainment)... and Don does all he can to dodge/evade the swinging buzzsaws, spikes, etc. while still shackled to the unarmed 'bot.

3.) Pg. 6: Should April get involved with the attempt to save Casey from the icy pond waters?

I'm hoping that we can get in some authentic Northampton scenery in this episode. That would be cool! 


        P.S. The profile for show 14 seems fine to me.


Subj: Re: Models
Date: Thursday, October 17, 2002 2:37:03 AM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 10/16/02 3:50:09 PM, Lloyd writes:

<< Hi Pete!

Please send me your comments on the following models:

* revised Underground City>>


<<* Warrior Leader>>

     My only complaint about this guy is the enormous spike on his shoulder armor which looks like if he raised his arm, he'd poke a big hole in his head. I did a quick tweak on it which I will attach.

<<* Warrior #2
* Warrior #3
* Warrior #4>>

       All fine... like the Kirbyesque style. Actually, the only SMALL comment I would make on these is that one of them (can't remember which one) has a big sword, and I was wondering if we should keep these guys without cutting/edged weapons. Perhaps a pair of short staves (similar to the Filipino "escrima" fighting sticks), done in a Kirbyesque way?

* Dark Force Creature #1 - Version #1
* Dark Force Creature #1 - Version #2
* Dark Force Creature #2 - Version #1
* Dark Force Creature #2 - Version #2>>

     Mostly very cool -- loving those Kirbyesque critters! -- but I'm not crazy about the forehead deco on Creature #2/V2. I've done a quick tweak with a few suggestions and am attaching it.

<<I'm currently working up a final draft of "Kirby," and I'm asking for
another outline on "Tales of Leo.">>

I look forward to them!



Subj: Re: TMNT - Outlines and 1st Draft
Date: Tuesday, October 22, 2002 1:08:58 AM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 10/21/02 11:10:00 AM, George at 4Kids writes:

<< Good morning, all.
Attached, please find the 1st draft of episode 018, the revised outline for
episode 019 and the outline for episode 020.  Please forward your comments.
Thank you.
George >>

I don't have much to say about these -- they're all quite good!


TMNT Episode 18 first draft:

1.) Pg. 10: I would eliminate Splinter's "Enough of this nonsense!" line -- seems inappropriate.

2.) Pg. 24: Raph's line "Sorry Master Splinter. From where I stand, there's no other way." confuses me. Why is he saying this?


TMNT Episode 19 revised outline:

1.) Pg. 1: I believe the actual model of car Casey has in the original comics was a '57 Chevy, not a Caddie.


TMNT Episode 20 outline:

1.) Pg. 2: Does the "monster "hurl" or "kick" the log at Dr. Finn and Steve?

2.) Pg. 5: I think it's unnecessary -- and possibly provocative -- for Casey to make up that silly story about raising turtles... he should just say something like his shotgun-wielding grandpa doesn't like strangers, if he wants to keep Dr. Finn and Steve away from the house.

3.) Pgs. 5, 7, 10-11: I like the scenes of Raph and Leo making the swords, but -- keeping in mind we don't want to spend TOO much time on it -- it might be cool to enhance them with some details of actual sword-making (one detail which comes to mind is the classic bit where the hot blade is plunged into the "quench" or water trough, raising a huge cloud of steam. Also, what about showing a bit of how Leo makes the hilts of his swords?

4.) Pg. 8: I'm confused by Casey's response to Donatello's comment about science being "a celebration of life" ("What are you talking about? Aren't you the guys that keep yourself hidden away safe from some mad scientist's dissecting knife?"). What is he trying to say here?

5.) Pg. 14, 15: The "turning" of Dr. Finn by Mike's speech seems way too quick and pat for me -- I'm not at all convinced that she would completely change her personality just because of this. What if we do something different, like this: Get Casey involved, in a goofy monster costume -- he steps out from behind a tree, and laughs at Dr. Finn, jeering at her for falling for his local monster scam ("You probably believe that crop circles are made by aliens, too!"). April is with him, videotaping the whole thing ("The local news will eat this up!"). Humiliated, Dr. Finn takes off.

That's all from me!


Monday, September 17, 2012

Blast from the Past #594: October 2, 2002: Re: Kirby and Re: Stuff, and October 9, 2002: Re: Howdy!

Subj: Re: Kirby
Date: Wednesday, October 2, 2002 9:41:57 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine


Just thought of something -- it would be cool to dedicate that episode, in the credits, to the memory of Jack Kirby, king of the comics (or words to that effect). What do you think?



Subj: Re: Stuff
Date: Wednesday, October 2, 2002 10:23:33 PM
From:   Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 10/2/02 1:29:01 PM, Lloyd writes:

<< Hi Peter -

Once again you expertly and impressively evaded my grasp!

Here are a few things I'd like to hear back on asap:

* Turtle Shell color>>

It looks fine to me.

<<* A revised draft of show 14 has been sent.  As the revisions were
pretty minor, if you can give it a quick eyeball I can finalize it (it goes
into production next week)>>

No problems!

<<* Chuck had a good idea for the end of episode 18 (the second part of
"Shredder Strikes Back"):  what if we end part two with the Turtles,
Splinter, April, and Casey trapped in the back room of April's store when
Shredder sets off his incendiary device?  We end on the cliff-hanger note
that Shredder has rid himself of them once and for all!  When we start up
show 19, we'll reveal how our heroes survived (the old freezer/escape
route).  I think it could be cool.  What do you think?  >>

I think that sounds good.


I have some comments on the storyboards for the "main title". (Nice drawings, by the way.)

1.) Pg. 12: Why the heck does Raph pass right through the sidewalk/pavement? Yeah, it's a cool effect, but makes no sense, especially in the context of every thing else that happens in this intro. I think it would work better if he landed, then acrobatically flipped out of the area of light cast by the streetlight.

2.) Pg. 16: Why are there just three Turtles (Leo, Don and Raph) in this shot instead of all four? Seems odd. 

3.) Pg. 47-53: I'm really not sure about this sequence where the Shredder gets his butt kicked by the Turtles -- he ends up looking pretty silly. I also think using all of this time to show a somewhat goofy fight between the Turtles and the Shredder wastes a great opportunity to have a cool montage of quick images of OTHER characters we'll be seeing in upcoming episodes (Utroms, Triceratons, Shredder Elite, Fugitoid, Foot Tech Ninjas, Baxter Stockman/mousers, Garbageman, Silver Sentry, Dr. Malignus, etc.). Also, I wonder how cool it is to have the ONLY shot of April showing her being passively rescued by one of the Turtles. 


<<That's it for now.  Expect to get a first draft of 15 tomorrow!>>

I'll look forward to it!



Subj: Re: Howdy!
Date: Wednesday, October 9, 2002 10:08:18 PM
From:   Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 10/8/02 9:41:37 PM, Lloyd writes:

<< Hi Pete!

Here's what I'm waiting to hear from you on:

* 1st draft script show 15 (supposed to be finalized this week)>>


My comments:

1.) Pg. 4: "After-death experience" should be "After-life experience", I think.

2.) Pg. 31: I was very disappointed to see that the poignant resolution we had discussed (the "restored" humans begin to turn back into creatures the further they get from the underground city, prompting the realization that they must go back there if they want to stay completely human) has been ditched in favor of a really goofy and inappropriate "hubba-hubba" bit of shtick where there's one half-naked woman in the group of restored humans (Sydney) and all of the other restored humans (which for the sake of this stupid gag are all men) are drooling over her. 

       Not only that, but -- as Gary pointed out in his notes -- where did her "shredded clothes" come from? It makes no sense, and if the problem is that when the monsters turn back into humans they have no clothes on, I'm sure it wouldn't be too difficult to cheat it a bit where key parts are covered up by strategically placed bits of scenery, until the restored humans are able to cobble together some coverings from things found in the underground city (maybe even ancient clothes that are left there). In fact -- if the Entity's intention is to turn these monsters back into humans, he would likely know that they'd be naked when that happened, and he could prepare appropriate clothing for them, piled near each pedestal.

3.) Pg. 33: Splinter says (re: the Foot) "They've been searching the sewers for us, trying to find our lair." I understand that we need this setup to get the Turtles out of their lair and into April's apartment, but I'm unclear on WHY the Foot is searching specifically in the sewers and in the vicinity of the lair. And how long are they going to be searching? When will the Turtles feel it is safe to go back? Why is Splinter outside the lair, instead of hiding safely in the lair? Wouldn't he be in greater jeopardy if he were outside the lair, waiting for the Turtles to return so he can warn them (if that's what he's doing -- it's unclear how long he's been waiting for them, and anyway he had no idea when they would be back from their mission, if ever)? And isn't his warning about what the Foot are doing something that should be pretty obvious to the Turtles? Maybe Splinter would know that and rather than hang around in the sewers waiting for the Turtles to show up, he takes the initiative and goes to April's apartment. That way, when the anxious Turtles (who are worried about Splinter) show up there, there could be a fun moment when they knock on her door, it opens -- and to their surprise and relief, it's Splinter, with April.

<<* comments on premise(s) for 19>>

Of the two, I actually prefer Premise 2B ("Tales of Leo"), though I have a couple of issues with it.

1.) First, how close are we going to stay to the seasonal setting in the original comics? I ask this because there are several mentions to the freezing cold and ice on the pond -- is this taking place in winter? Does this ALSO mean that the previous two-parter is also set in the wintertime, and if so, can we have Leo fighting in the snow like in the original comics?

2.) Is Leo trying to say "car" because he can see from where he is laying on a couch that Casey's car is about to roll into the pond? I'm not clear exactly how this would physically be set up. Also, I think they should be at the house for a few days while Leo recovers at least enough to come out of his delirium before he does  the "kA" bit (right now as written it seems that it happens right away after they get into the farmhouse). It would seem too that most of this episode should be told in flashbacks as opposed to each character telling a story, which is how it is described here. 

3.) Did anyone realize that what Leo is saying sounds like the kid's word for shit ("kA-kA")? Does it matter?

While I appreciate the incorporation of elements from the comics in Premise 2A ("Things Change Some More"), I don't like the way it's done. I think it COULD be fixed, though.

<<* models for our 3 underground monsters, lab and Entity's City>>

They look okay to me, though I agree somewhat with Gary's comment about two of the monsters looking kind of similar.

<<* Playmates has asked us to create a "behind the scenes" video to help
them hype the show (and to prove that it's really in production!).  Are you
available/willing to be interviewed for this production?  I have to confirm
the date, but I think they plan to do it either Sunday or Monday (the 13th
or 14th).  We have to finish this entire production and ship it by Friday.>>

What would I need to do? If it involves going into NYC, I'd have to say no.


Sunday, September 16, 2012

Blast from the Past #593: September 3, 2002: Re: Turtle Titan, September 9, 2002: Premise 1488-12 ("The Unconvincing Turtle Titan") and first draft script "The Shredder Strikes" Part 2, September 11, 2002: notes on Episode 13 script, September 16, 2002: Re: Stuff, and September 29, 2002: Comments!

Subj: Re: Turtle Titan
Date: Tuesday, September 3, 2002 11:31:39 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 9/3/02 10:13:09 PM, Lloyd writes:

<< Hi Peter -

We never did connect today.  I would love your notes on Turtle Titan,
and, once I read through 'em, I would like to talk the story through
with you tomorrow on our usual 12:30 call.

Lemme know if 12:30 is a problem, as I will be in the voice record
session for show 3 most of the day (so you won't be able to get me at my

Hope you had a nice long weekend!

Lloyd >>


Sometime between 12:30 and 1 should not be a problem.

Re: "Turtle Titan" -- it is better than the last go-round, but still not quite there. My major problem with it is the bit about the "mind-controlling robo-bug" things. First, I can see why the villain might try to use them on the Silver Sentry, but why all of the other regular people (if, as stated in the outline, the Servo-Master's actual plan is to not only defeat Silver Sentry but to look like a hero doing it)? Why waster them on the purse snatcher (who's not, really), the ledge-jumper, and the bus driver? Am I missing something? Also, the "robo-bug in the ear" thing may just be a bit too grotesque (and inappropriate if we use another idea as explained below).

I also found how Mikey defeats the Servo-Master (basically somehow getting into the giant Robo-Tank -- a bit too easily, I might add -- and smashing some stuff) pretty clunky and crude -- not really making the best use of his ninja-ness. It also misses a prime opportunity set up by the "mind control" of Silver Sentry -- the classic "hero vs. hero" thing, where Mikey would have to (reluctantly) fight the crazed SIlver Sentry. I would suggest something like this: Instead of the robo-bug disappearing into people's ears, have it clamp onto the backs of their heads (perhaps underneath their hair), the implication being that it is tapping into the spinal column or brain from that position. This would allow Mikey the opportunity to -- during a fight where he has to use all of his ninja skills of evasion and dexterity to avoid being walloped by Silver Sentry -- do some kind of amazing "flip and grab" ninja-acrobatic stunt where he does some kind of wild twisting flip over the Silver Sentry's head and simultaneously grabs and pull off the robo-bug, freeing the Sentry from its mind-controlling influence. Then the Sentry could take on the Servo-Master and his Robo-Tank.

We'll talk more tomorrow.



Subj: Premise 1488-12 ("The Unconvincing Turtle Titan") and  first draft script "The Shredder Strikes" Part 2
Date: Monday, September 9, 2002 9:46:23 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine


I really don't have anything to say about the premise for episode 12 -- it's much improved, though. Actually, there is one thing -- the names of Silver Sentry and Servo Master. Are the words "Silver" and "Servo" too similar sounding?
I just remembered one other thing -- the (mis)use of the word "wail" or "wailing" to refer to beating up on somebody. I believe that should be "whale", as defined thus in the Merriam-Webster dictionary:

Main Entry: [3]whale
Function: transitive verb
Inflected Form(s): whaled; whal·ing 
Etymology: origin unknown
Date: circa 1790
2 : to strike or hit vigorously 
3 : to defeat soundly 


Re: "The Shredder Strikes" Part 2 first draft script: I have only a few comments. I think this one is going to have a lot of cool action.

1.) On page 4: "The Shredder's eyes get a wicked glint/squint as he lifts the HELMET from his revealing himself..." I think that should read "... from his HEAD revealing..."

2.) I think it might be useful to at some point have someone -- Splinter or Donatello -- identify Mike's injury as a sprained ankle (which is what I think we agreed it was) as opposed to a broken ankle or broken leg, because it would seem to me a lot less gruesome to have Mike bopping Foot guys with a sprain as opposed to a break. Also -- is splinting the appropriate action to take with a sprain? (And just as I wrote that, I had a goofy thought -- what if Splinter examines Mike's ankle and re-does the splint that Don put on it, and always-goofy Mike could make some kind of joke like "Hey, Master -- I guess this makes you a real Splint-er!")

3.) Page 22: The Battle Shell should NOT fire off rockets. If more action is desired, it could fire something less destructive, like a net.

4.) Page 23: Should the Guardian refer to himself as "THE Guardian" or "A Guardian"? There is more than one Guardian, right?

That's it!



Subj: notes on Episode 13 script
Date: Wednesday, September 11, 2002 1:10:38 AM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine


This is pretty good! I have a few comments:

1.) Where's Splinter in all of this -- especially when the decision to go after the mystery creature is made (page 11) ?

2.) Page 23 -- I don't buy Raph deflecting laser beams with his sais... not enough flat surface area. Leo's swords, okay (we did it in the Mouser episode, in Stockman's lab). Also, as we already did do a "lasers target Turtles" thing in that Stockman episode, we should really try to differentiate this scene from that one.

3.) Page 24: When Don boots up the computer, and they see the Foot insignia on it, there's the following line:

"It's our old friend... Shredder"

This line sounds kind of hokey. Why not just "It's the symbol of the Foot!" There is a line following this where Raph says "We just got rid of him." (meaning the Shredder.) How is Raph so sure they "got rid of him"? In any event, I'm not sure of the appropriateness of Raph's line here, and we could easily lose it.

4.) Page 25: The Foot scientists says, on the videotape, "Master Shredder believes his Extraterrestrial enemies have taken refuge underground. " Is this line telegraphing too much? Should we just say "his enemies"?

5.) Page 26: Again on the Foot video --

"Day 345.  The experiment appears to be a success.  The creatures are exhibiting signs of intelligence on the order of dogs or pigs."

Weren't these creatures human beings to start with, with human intelligence?


P.S. One other thing I just thought of -- would the Turtles take the noisy Sewer Slider with its bright lights out to check out the tripped alarm... or would they go more stealthily?


Subj: Re: Stuff
Date: Monday, September 16, 2002 11:23:50 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 9/16/02 1:16:09 PM, Lloyd writes:

<< Hi Peter -

Sent ya two scripts and two premises today - lots of reading!  As usual, I
need your comments asap.  I need Marty to finalize Turtle Titan early this
week, Eric to finalize Underground pt. 1 this week, and Greg (new guy) to
forge ahead on Underground pts. 2 & 3 this week!


I'll try you again tomorrow.

Lloyd >>


I read them all! Herewith my comments:

Show #12 First Draft Script: I think "Turtle Titan" turned out much better than expected... certainly far better than the early premises promised. I have only a few comments:

1.) On page one, in the preview, I was concerned about the goofiness of Mike's "grapple line" as described -- "... cobbled together from an extension cord on a retractable reel..." -- the vision I had was that of Mike actually trying to use the extension cord itself as part of the grapple line, which would be really silly. Reading further I realized that this was NOT the case, but I think it should be made even clearer than it is right now that Mike is only using the retractable reel mechanism of the extension cord gadget as a cool "utility belt" way to reel in his grappling line.

2.) "Sensei" is spelled wrong on page 9.

3.) On page 15, Mike says to the Pedestrian "Dude, you were like this close to roadkill." I think it would read better and make more sense if he were to say instead "Dude, you were like this close to BEING roadkill."


Show #13 Second Draft Script: Not much to say about this one.

1.) On page 27, we see Raph "... in the air, spinning past the darts and SLICING through the turret." I ask -- slicing with WHAT? Is this another example of confusion of Raph's stabbing sais with Leo's slashing swords?


Show #14 Premise ("Notes From the Underground" Part 2): This is promising, as is part 3. I have several comments:

1.) On page 1, "steel" is misspelled "steal" twice.

2.) More importantly, on page one I don't buy the bit with Leo saving the monster (Creature #1) from being crushed by the piece of equipment -- seems totally inappropriate after the vicious, unprovoked assault on the Turtles by these creatures. I understand that it is in here to set up the idea that Creature #1 then decides to try to communicate with Leo, but I think it can be done better. My suggestion: The piece of heavy equipment in fact DOES pin Creature #1, leaving him (albeit temporarily) at Leo's mercy. Leo stops his killing stroke and lets the Creature #1 live, moving instead to escape. It is therefore this act of mercy which makes Creature #1 try to communicate. (In addition, I don't see any good reason to have the Creatures take the Turtles' weapons away from them, as with or without weapons the Turtles are clearly no match for these Creatures, at least as described in this scene.)

3.) Creature #1 is described as being "known as Jace"... known by whom, and how? And doesn't "Jace" sound kind of goofy for the name of this threatening creature? It sounds to me more like the name some skateboarder might have. Is this supposed to be the person's actual pre-Creaturizing name? Perhaps it would be more poignant if the Creature #1 calls himself by the name the Foot scientists gave him after he was mutated ("StoneBiter" or something like that)... and only distantly remembers his human name... or part of it. Maybe he can struggle to remember it, only being able to come up with the first sound ("... B--..." at which point Mikey says something like "Dude, don't sweat it -- we'll just call ya Bob!" or another name if preferred.

4.) On page 2, we hear the beasts slam against the "electrically charged force fields". Where did these come from? I don't recall the Turtles having to get through them.
Also, the gag with Mikey making the crystals crack when he tries to activate them makes NO logical sense to me. After reading the premise for part 3, I realize it's to set up the bit where Mikey disarms the Entity... but it still makes no sense.
And when Creature #1 says that the only place to get more crystals is down in the "place deep below", isn't he forgetting the Turtles' lair? Why don't they go there instead?
And what happened to the other two Creatures who attacked the Turtles? They seem to have just disappeared.


Show #15 Premise (Notes From the Underground" Part 3):

1. ) On page one, Mike's "badass" talk ("... picked the wrong mutant to snatch!", etc.) seems more appropriate for Raph.

2.) On page 3, the Entity "tries to recapture the Turtles with his bolos, but they're too fast." Why? Earlier he took them with no problem. What has changed? Has the Entity slowed down for some reason?
Also on page 3, there is a scene where "... Donatello whips a crystal bolo at him (the Entity)". Where'd that come from? How did Don get a bolo?

3.) On page 4, the scene where Mike cracks the crystal cocoon and "Jace" is restored to his human form seems a bit out of left field. I think we need to set this up a bit -- perhaps have the Entity actually say earlier that the cocooning is the beginning of the restoration process. Otherwise, it just seems too convenient (i.e. basically so we can wrap up the episode).

Actually, now that I think of it, does it make any sense that Mike could shatter the cocoon with just a blow from his 'chuks? If that's all it took, why couldn't the Creatures' great strength and/or bizarre abilities accomplish the same result?

Also on this page, I think we miss a neat story opportunity with the resolution of "Jace" and the others (i.e. they get back to the surface and just say goodbye to the Turtles). I would suggest something like this -- as they get closer to the surface, and farther away from the underground city, their creature aspects start to come back... prompting the grim realization that the effects of the Entity's process fade the further away they get... and to be fully human they'll have to go back to the underground city... and, ironically, fulfill the Entity's plan to repopulate the city. This way, we have more emotional content, and also set up another interesting adventure for the Turtles in the underground city when they return to visit "Jace" and the others.

That's all from me!



Subj: Comments!
Date: Sunday, September 29, 2002 10:49:36 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine

In a message dated 9/27/02 8:49:33 PM, Lloyd writes:

<< Hey Pete -

If you have any notes you can send me this weekend, writers are standing by!

Either way, enjoy!  Talk to you Monday!



Here's a bunch of stuff!


Episode 16 outline ("The King": I'm probably going to be more critical than usual on this one, as I have a significant personal attachment to the "Kirby" story in the original comic book. Basically, what is in this outline is pretty good, but there are a number of places where it veers away from the original into areas which don't work for me, and for no apparent good reason.

1.) Pg. 3: The introduction up front of the character of Kirby doesn't work for me. I assume it was done to make his later appearance more easily understandable, but I don't think that's necessary, and in fact takes a little of his mystery away. I think it would work fine if she warns Don as she does in the comic about watching out for Kirby.

2.) Pg. 4: Let's substitute something else for "pork rinds", one of the more vile licensed products we were associated with last time around. Suggestions: pretzels, "SmartFood" (popcorn), barbecue soy chips, peanuts.

3.) Pg 4: Donatello says he's fixed the water heater in April's apartment "many times" before. Aside from the problem of timing (haven't they just met her recently?), it also raises the question of if he has been in her cellar many times, why hasn't he run into Kirby before? This is a change made for no apparent reason that I can see.

4.) Pgs. 4-5: The scene where Don encounters his first "Kirby critter", as written, is too much of an unnecessary fight scene for my tastes. I prefer the way it is in the comics, where he is just surprised by the critter as it flies squawking over his head. If we want to extend it for timing, we could easily make it similar to what happens when a bat or bird flies into the house -- encountering Don could fluster the critter and it could swoop around his head in confusion, freaking Don out until he grabs a handy broom and tries to chase the thing away, which he succeeds in doing, making it fly off down the corridor and around the corner.

5.) Pgs. 5-6: I don't understand why the Don/Kirby intro scene has been changed to what it is here. It doesn't work any better than the original, in my opinion, and I REALLY don't like the "Chinese gift shop" origin of the magic pen (PEN?!) which it leads into. I think it's cooler and more suspenseful if the critter disappears around the corner into a dead end corridor (it adds a bit of eeriness -- where the hell did it go to? What kind of wackiness is this??!!). Also, the change of the pencil in the original into the pen in this version doesn't work for me at all, not the least because, this being a story which is essentially a tribute/tip of the hat to Jack Kirby, a pencil is the right tool, because Kirby's greatest prowess was as a penciler.

6.) I'm not sure why the "Kirbyesque portal" thing has been replaced with the more ordinary window. The reason I did the portal in the original story was to add some more depth and mystery to the nature of the "warp crystal"... I liked the implication that there was some other (undefined) agency at work beyond what Kirby understood about the warp crystal, which is why there was only one thing (the portal) which he drew in his sketchbook that didn't quickly disappear like everything else the crystal brought to "life".
And there's a practical reason for making the portal a more permanent (at least apparently) anomaly -- would Don and/or Kirby be so quick to go through the window/portal into the other  world if the window that Kirby has just drawn should -- if recent experience should be any kind of guide -- shortly disappear... stranding Don and Kirby in wherever they've ended up? I don't think so... which is one of the reasons why I made the portal the way it was in the original story.

7.) A general comment -- there seems to be some "stuff" added to this story as a kind of padding -- I get the sense that it was felt that to fit the tale neatly into our episodic time constraints, "stuff" needed to be added. I have no problem with that idea -- but I think it should be other "stuff".

8.) Pg. 8: I'm curious about the addition of the two "stone men" who are apparently on the side of the good guys. What's up with them?

9.) Pg. 8: I think it's a mistake to immediately have Don attacked by a monster when he and Kirby enter the other world. I'd prefer that they first experience this new place as something cool and exciting and beautiful -- which makes the following battle/angst that much more effective. (In fact, if padding is desired, this might be a good place to put it -- as Kirby and Don begin to wander around this new landscape, eyes bugging out (well, not QUITE literally) as they see wonder after wonder.

10.) Pg. 9: I think all creative types should call for a moratorium for at least a decade on the use of the "warrior/wizard/savior/doom/etc. foretold by prophecy" bit. It has truly become a cliche in the worlds of fantasy and science fiction, and it doesn't work for me here, and it isn't even necessary for the story. And what's with this "Protector" guy?
I also don't like the idea of the "massive dark cloud", not the least because of the way Kirby conquers it a bit later, by tearing the page on which he had drawn it in half. (The implication there is that it's the paper on which the drawings are made which is the magic part, NOT the warp crystal/pencil combination... which is exactly opposite of how it should be.) Also, why does destroying the black cloud also get rid of all of the monsters? Doesn't make sense to me.

        11.) Pg. 11: "Kirby draws three more Donatellos." No.

12.) Pg. 11: What happened to the other two solutions Kirby tried in the comic -- the "mobile creep trapper" and drawing restraints on all of the monsters? It's unclear to me why these have been excised. The "mobile creep trapper" was specifically a nod to all of the cool cosmic machinery Kirby is well known for, and his ultimate solution -- quickly drawing restraints on all of the "bad" critters in his sketchbook -- was both a humane way to deal with them (capture versus killing) and a nod to the real Jack Kirby's legendary penciling speed.

13.) Most of what I like about the emotional content of the conclusion of the original comic story has been lost in this version. I like the fact that Kirby proves to be personally heroic by sacrificing himself (or at least the likelihood that he will ever get back to our world) for Don's sake by making Don go through the rapidly shrinking portal first. As written in this version, there's no jeopardy for Kirby at all -- apparently he could come or go anytime he wanted to.
Also, I like the fact that in the original tale we have the "bookends" of Raphael complaining about the hot water, which grounds this wild tale of fantasy in reality. (It also allows for a neat moment when Don gives the complaining Raph, who has no clue about what Don has just been through, that dirty look -- see the penultimate page of the original story.)
And I like the idea of the final shot being of the drawing/note which Kirby made into the paper airplane, instead of just the light being turned off and the door being closed as in this version.
I also object to the softening of the words of that final note, because one of the reasons I came up with that original story idea is because I was inspired by that quote (which comes from the last issue and last page, I believe, of Kirby's run on MR. MIRACLE), something I think really sums up our human existence in quite a pithy way. I don't see the ending as a downer in any way, though it is poignant. It's just an acknowledgment of reality, and I think kids will "get it".


Comments on Episode 17 and 18 ("The Shredder Strikes Back" parts one and two) treatments: Overall, I like these two treatments, not the least because they are taken from some of my favorite stuff from the original comic books. There are a number of problems though, but they are easily soluble.

Episode 17:

1.) I don't think Leo going underground into the sewer tunnels by himself works -- I just don't think he would do that kind of thing solo. The resulting battle is also telegraphed -- you kind of expect him to get in trouble if he's going down there. I like better the idea that (as in the original comic) he is attacked when he does not expect it because that makes his desperate battle for survival all the more involving. Also, because (as in the original story) Leo has just gone out for an excerise/training run, it makes more sense that the other Turtles, Splinter, and April are not as worried about him as they might reasonably be if they knew he had gone down into the sewers to check on whether the Foot were gone or not.

2.) In Act Two, I think it's a mistake to introduce a new Foot soldier type (the huge Bio-Engineered Foot guy) -- I think we should save that for a separate episode. Instead, if the idea is that at this moment we want to see Leo up against physical strength and muscle (to go along with Raph's simultaneous comments back at April's pad) why not just have either (a) a really big, muscular Foot soldier, or (b) Hun?

3.) We see Don, Raph, and April's reactions to Mikey's "belching the alphabet" -- what's Splinter's reaction?

4.) The ending needs work. First, I think it would be more dramatic if BOTH of Leo's swords are broken by the Shredder, and in front of Leo. (Having BOTH swords taken from him and broken in this manner helps to make Leo's defeat and humiliation more dramatic.) I also think it works better if Leo is thrown/kicked/whatever through a WINDOW instead of having him stagger through the DOOR (which implies that somehow, in his battered, weakened state, he managed to get in at the ground level and make his way up the stairs to get in through the door... unlikely, I think).


Episode 18:

1.) It seems like Leo is quite the little chatterbox in the first scene of Act One, where he is telling everyone about who is after him and why. A lot of this is self-evident, I think, and I think he should really be almost out on his feet at this point.

2.) I've always loved the scene where Casey enters the fracas in the Second Time Around shop, and having him come in on his motorcycle in this version is I think even a bit cooler. How about having him do a stunt similar to the one Tom Cruise did in MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 2, where he smashes into the room and does a big stoppie (reverse wheelie, bike up on its front wheel as opposed to its back wheel) and spinning the bike around as he does so, the rear end of the bike taking out a handful of Foot ninjas?

3.) I don't like the bit where Leo grabs the broken half of his sword from the Shredder's belt (see my earlier comment about the ending of Part One), nor do I like the part where Splinter takes a wound for Leo. The latter bit seems unnecessary -- that scene would work just as well -- perhaps better -- if Splinter just deflects the Shredder's blow in some fashion (with his walking stick?).

4.) In this version, our heroes pile into April's van and head out of the city at the end of Part Two. In the original comic, they take Casey's car. I think we did it that way because we wanted them to escape in a vehicle that the Foot would be unlikely to be able to trace (it having no connection to April). Does this matter?


Comments on storyboard for Episode 8 ("Fallen Angel")

1.) Pg. 66: It should be Don, not Leo, with staff.

2.) Pp. 99-100, 127: How old is Angel? The way she's drawn, she looks about thirteen... so it makes me a bit queasy to read some of the Turtles' "quips" about her, i.e. about how Casey should go for her, get her phone number, etc.

3.) Pp. 283-286: All of the Turtles are giving a military style, hand-to-temple salute to get into the Purple Dragons' arena, whereas earlier the secret signal is just a raised, three-fingered gesture.

4.) Pg. 288: It's a nice drawing, but what is this view of the Turtles' lair doing here? Is it meant to be a shot of the Purple Dragons' arena?

5.) Pp. 404-405: When the Purple Dragon goon pulls Raph's coat off, Raph is then shown to be minus his pants too. How did that work?

6.) By the way -- what are we actually going to call the character who is now going by the name "Hun" in the scripts and storyboards? If memory serves, we decided to rename him, but this has yet to be reflected in the material being generated.

7.) Pg. 461: "... Leo and Mike struggling to get up..." Shouldn't that be Raph, not Mike?

8.) Pg. 511: In the very first panel of the profile -- very nice drawing, but what the heck is it? It looks like a trailer/office or something. I don't remember it from any other drawings of the lair.


Silver Sentry: I prefer the chest insignia in version "B".

Mike as Super Hero: I think I prefer version "A", not least because the shield is a reasonable size (unlike the oddly tiny one in version "B"). I think the circular "TT" medallion is cleaner than the tunic... will the medallion bounce up and down and get in Mike's face? (I think it should.) Re: the shield -- I envisioned the shell pattern painted on it going all the way to the outer circumference -- and should Mike also paint the "TT" logo on the center of the shield? Also, are we going to try some kind of boots for Mike's outfit?

I haven't read the script for Episode 14 yet... but hope to later tonight.

-- Pete