Story: S. Sullivan
Colors: F. Mendez
Axe Grinder: V. Gorelick
Epilogue: Laughing, Splinter reveals that Leo, Mike and Raph eventually chose the weapons they use now, while Don got the boomerang. Don later lost the boomerang and went back to using his bo staff. April asks whatever became of Lynda and Splinter tells her to look out the storm drain. April takes a peek and sees Lynda’s martial arts academy prospering, now integrated into Slujj’s shining skyscraper.
*This story is continued from TMNT Adventures #71. The present-day bookending narrative will continue in Year of the Turtle #1.
*The Turtles would eventually meet Shelton Slujj themselves in “If a Tree Falls…”.
*This issue also contained a reprint of “Red Sails in the Sunset”.
And so TMNT Adventures, the longest running Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comic of all time, goes out on something of a whimper.
“How the Turtles got their Weapons” was actually a pretty fun story with some great Brian Thomas art, so I can’t really get behind the hate it receives. It’s not a great ending, no, but it clearly wasn’t meant to be anything approaching a conclusion. It’s just a cute filler story (that definitely shouldn’t have been broken in two). I guess it gets a lot of flak for not being “The Forever War”. Ah well.
Despite its title, the subplot in which the Turtles select their unique weapons is sort of secondary to the main story revolving around Lynda. The way the story ties into the 4-part arc from the first two TMNT Adventures Specials was a nice touch and helps make the universe of TMNT Adventures feel all the more solid. I was actually afraid that the shadowy boss-man was going to be revealed as Shelton Slujj and totally contradict his characterization in those stories, but Fulop pulled a fast one and had Slujj show up at the end; the same kind-hearted but environmentally neglectful guy he’s always been.
On that note, I kind of wish Don Tower had been somebody else; a previously established character. When they do the reveal (in a Scooby-Doo parody), the fact that he’s a guy we’ve never heard of kind of undercuts the suspense.
Not much else to say about this final issue, which might actually be its sole damning quality. The series goes out without much fanfare or noise. There’s still the Year of the Turtle miniseries, though, to give us a proper conclusion (at least until “Forever War” gets published… maybe).
Grade: B (as in, “Brian Thomas… I wonder what he’s up to, today? It’d be pretty cool if IDW dusted him off for a Microseries or some trade paperback covers or something”.)