Sunday, February 24, 2013

The IDW TMNT continuity timeline

Ever since completing my Mirage TMNT reading order and Archie TMNT Adventures reading order, some folks asked that I do the same for the IDW TMNT series, which has been growing increasingly more complicated.  I didn’t bother at first, as someone else was already working on it!

Users "ToTheNines" and "Chris" over at The Technodrome Forums have been maintaining this thread with help not only from fans but from IDW’s TMNT editor Bobby Curnow.  Curnow has been a great resource, taking things like chronological order seriously (something few editors particularly care about) and openly answering questions about issue placement over in this thread at the IDW Forums.

Still, for convenience, I’ll maintain a version here on TMNT Entity.  Unlike "ToTheNines’s" version, though, I prefer to try and break clusters of issues up by either story arcs or “eras” rather than years of publication.  For this version, I’ll group everything around the main arcs represented by the trade paperbacks (and storyline titles come from the trade paperbacks, as the issues themselves are untitled).


TMNT #1 (review)
TMNT #2 (review)
TMNT #3 (review)
TMNT #4 (review)


TMNT #5 (review)
Microseries #1: Raphael (review)
Microseries #2: Michelangelo (review)
TMNT #6 (review)
Hero Comics 2012 #1 – “Ready Set Go!” (review)
Microseries #3: Donatello (review)
Infestation 2: TMNT #1 (review)
Infestation 2: TMNT #2 (review)
TMNT #7 (review)
TMNT #8 (review)


Microseries #4: Leonardo (review)
TMNT #9 (review)
TMNT #10 (review)
Microseries #5: Splinter (review)
TMNT #11 (review)
TMNT #12 (review)


Microseries #6: Casey Jones (review)
TMNT #13 (review)
TMNT #14 (review)
TMNT Annual 2012 (review)
Microseries #7: April (review)
TMNT #15 (review)
TMNT #16 (review)


TMNT Microseries #8: Fugitoid (review)
TMNT #17 (review)
TMNT #18 (review)
TMNT #19 (review)
TMNT #20 (review)
Villains Microseries #1: Krang (review)
Villains Microseries #2: Baxter (review)


The Secret History of the Foot Clan #1 (review)
The Secret History of the Foot Clan #2 (review)
The Secret History of the Foot Clan #3 (review)
The Secret History of the Foot Clan #4 (review)


TMNT #21 (review)
TMNT #22 (review)
Villains Microseries #3: Old Hob (review)
TMNT #23 (review)
TMNT #24 (review)
Villains Microseries #4: Alopex (review)
Villains Microseries #5: Karai (review)
TMNT #25 (review)
Villains Microseries #6: Hun (review)
TMNT #26 (review)
Villains Microseries #7: Bebop and Rocksteady (review)
TMNT #27 (review)
TMNT #28 (review)
Villains Microseries #8: Shredder (review)


TMNT #29 (review)
Utrom Empire #1 (review)
Utrom Empire #2 (review)
TMNT #30 (review)
TMNT #31 (review)
TMNT #32 (review)
Utrom Empire #3 (review)


The placement of issues outside the ongoing series is fairly intuitive and many of the issues come with notes on the interior cover telling you where the story goes.  Still, a few of them can be a little confusing, so as always, click “review” and scroll down to “Turtle Tips” for a full reasoning of placement.  For this article, though, I’ll summarize a few of the oddities:

TMNT MICROSERIES: Most of these one-shots came with notes on the inside cover from editor Bobby Curnow explaining where they slot-in in regards to the ongoing series.  In the case of TMNT Microseries #7: April, the note on the inside cover places it between TMNT #12 and TMNT #13.  Curnow later explained that between TMNT #14 and TMNT #15 was a better placement.

INFESTATION 2: Infestation 2 was an event that affected multiple IDW titles without actually requiring any crossovers.  The event began in Infestation 2 #1, ran through the title-based Infestation 2 miniseries, then ended in Infestation 2 #2.  The Turtles do not appear in the main Infestation 2 miniseries beyond the covers and a brief appearance in a montage, so as such I felt no need to include those issues in this timeline.  The events of the Infestation 2: TMNT storyline are self-contained and thus far have not been referenced in any other issues, making fans question their canonicity.

HERO COMICS 2012: “Ready Set Go!” was a short comic by Kevin Eastman published in IDW’s charity book Hero Comics 2012 #1.  It’s “uneventful” and just features the Turtles playing around.  As it has no elements unique to the IDW series, Bobby Curnow has suggested that it could be either the IDW Turtles or the Mirage Turtles depending on reader preference.

UTROM EMPIRE and NORTHAMPTON: The events of the Utrom Empire and Northampton arcs occur concurrently with one another.  The Turtles play a minor part in Utrom Empire, with their scenes taking place at different times throughout the Northampton storyline.  Their scenes in Utrom Empire #3 actually take place before and after TMNT #32.

X-FILES CONSPIRACY: For those wondering why that issue is not included in my timeline, the events of the X-Files: Conspiracy event were rendered non-canon by the last issue of the miniseries, essentially relegating the chapters to an alternate universe.  As a result, the X-Files/TMNT: Conspiracy comic is retroactively non-canon (which may be for the best, as the issue contained several irreconcilable errors in continuity).



Anonymous said...

Brilliant job with this list! The reading order can be a bit confusing for new fans, so I always use this to show them where the micro issues fit in. Thanks!

Mark Pellegrini said...


Thanks for the feedback, man!

Anonymous said...

this is absolutely brilliant.

Robert said...

so the utrom will be before the northhampton? interesting.

Mark Pellegrini said...


I *think* Utrom Alliance is only going to feature Krang, Baxter, Fugitoid and the Neutrinos and will be a side story away from the TMNT (hence why it can slot between TMNT arcs). I could be wrong, though, and I may move it around once it comes out. But I believe Bobby said that's where it goes, if my memory isn't betraying me...

Anonymous said...

Thanks a bunch for this list, it helped a lot. IDW's TMNT is like the first actual western comic series I've ever gotten into so a lot of this side story stuff is really unintuitive to me.