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Old 03-31-2016, 12:09 AM   #1
Monte Williams
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Do the Mirage Comics Work for New Readers in 2016?

To what extent are the Mirage comics inviting and convincing for a new reader in 2016?

I started reading the modern IDW series this month. I'm on the fourth volume right now. I like it well enough, but I don't know that I would enjoy it without the benefit of my thirty years of TMNT fandom.

Where the original Mirage comics are concerned, I only ever read the first issue or three, and that was many years ago. It didn't do a lot for me at the time, but I've always assumed the first few issues are not the best.

Whatever the case, while it's almost impossible for most geeks and fans and enthusiasts of any given property to set aside their nostalgia and take an objective look at something they love, I want to ask:

If an adult fan of the Ninja Turtles property tried reading the classic Mirage comics for the first time today, without the benefit of nostalgia... how good do you suspect those comics would seem to the reader?

Thank you in advance for your input.
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Old 03-31-2016, 12:22 AM   #2
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Hard to say. They're pretty unique comics, especially to someone going into it with expectations of them being anything like the OT or society's generalized notion of what the TMNT are. I'd think there is a distinction between the average "modern reader" & fans who are dedicated enough to use these forums & ask this kinda question, though. You'd be more open to it than someone whose main experience with the turtles was Fred Wolf's cartoon 20 some-odd years ago.

While there's plenty of familiar ninja stuff & humor, that particular universe is defined more by it's brooding nature. A lot of the time it is dismissed by casual fans for being nothing more than "dark & gritty", the antithesis to their pizza loving bro-dudes, which people assume is chalked up to violent imagery or heavy inks, but really, Mirage is just thematically grim. Revenge, rage, isolation, existential crisis, introspection, grey morality, etc. There's a lot of wit & emotional depth scattered across the volumes, through the exploration of spirituality, consequence, family values, & so forth. You could pick up 5 random issues & find none of that, though, as there were a large number of books that relied solely on combat, or shenanigans, but the heart of Mirage is, well, it's heart.

They're at their best when either introspective or truly action oriented, with that being said, reading those kinda issues would be an optimal way to test the waters. Try reading Sons Of Silence, for example.

In a more broad sense though, while they are in some ways very much products of their era, I think a lot of the material within is timeless & can appeal to open minded comic readers who enjoy the turtles & want a bit more than high-kicks & Cowabunga.
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Old 03-31-2016, 12:34 AM   #3
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I am probably a good example of someone who would be best to give my two cents, since I am a new to just about everything TMNT.

And what I will say is that Mirage simply hasn't captured my heart. It's my love affair with Utroms that made me at least a little interested, with so many other names to them...but even then, there was only a single one that was even remotely interesting (Obligado!). Then there's the latter half of the fourth volume, and it just has "nope" sprayed all over the walls. It has the same problem with the Nick series in that it doesn't really finish its storylines very well, or doesn't care about finishing its storylines and that can get problematic.

The main art style doesn't help either. It's just too hard on the eyes. My favorite art styles are Jim Lawson's and Dario Brizuela's.

"Dark and gritty" would be okay - and even great - if it's done right (IDW!), and I don't think Mirage TMNT really grasps it. It comes off as baiting and heavy handed. Maybe that's because my idea of a truly dark story is fully realized in Little Shop of Horrors...which would say a lot about me as a person.
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Old 03-31-2016, 12:49 AM   #4
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I don't wanna be disrespectful, but you clearly don't "get" Mirage. For one thing, Utroms were never meant to be this captivating race of cuties, they're aliens. Logic over emotion. Individuality is a concept so very human by design, in that our emotions makes us feel the need to stand apart & be noticed, beings who operate primarily if not solely on logic don't work that way, so naturally they'd be a bit lacking in personality.

Volume 4 was panned both by fans & critics, but you've gotta understand, that isn't Mirage to most of it's fans. I mean, yeah, it is, it's a canon extension of what came before, but nobody's gonna suggest it to you. Very few are entirely happy with it, let alone consider it a favorite. Besides that, most of Mirage's loose threads were tied up in Tales Of The TMNT, that's literally why it exists; not simply to throw in additional adventures but to close gaps & finish plots. The only unresolved stuff that I can think of is what goes on between the turtles' middle age life & their passing, but considering we know their life-paths & where/when/how they die (sans Mike, though there are fair assumptions to be made), it's not necessary to address.

I dunno what you consider the "main art style" to be, considering how many different artists came & went. Eastman & Laird did the first dozen, Jim had wildly different looking runs in volumes 2 & 4, but Tales & most of volume 1 were a revolving door of indie interpretations, many of which highly detailed, though there are also very wacky & basic looks too. Maybe I'm being unfairly defensive, you are after all a modern/new reader, whose opinion this thread serves to bring about. I guess you prefer simpler/cleaner design aesthetics (Jim & Dario's work being your favorites is definitely suggestive of that), which is a completely fair stance to take!

But uh, yeah, I think maybe your idea of dark & gritty is a bit off. IDW, while great, has not really come anywhere close to Mirage in that respect. Beheading Shredder was a bold move, that I give major props for, but otherwise it has been hindered by the awareness of young readers, accessibility, this "no-kill" rule, etc. Mirage, being the original, had the benefit of pure creative freedom, which is why it's "dark & gritty" has everything from bloodthirst & depravity to suicidal allusions. Mind you, their Donatello is one who literally kept Baxter chained to a wall in an area of the sewers unknown to his family for like 15 years, killed a dog for science, etc. Raph tried to kill Michelangelo. There's some crazy sh*t in there.
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Old 03-31-2016, 12:53 AM   #5
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Powder, I couldn't have asked for a more insightful and generous reply to start off this thread. Thank you.

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I'd think there is a distinction between the average "modern reader" & fans who are dedicated enough to use these forums & ask this kinda question, though. You'd be more open to it than someone whose main experience with the turtles was Fred Wolf's cartoon 20 some-odd years ago.
I suspect you are probably right, and thanks for the implied vote of confidence. Like so many people my age, I was in fact introduced to the TMNT concept through the '80s cartoon. However, while I will always have affection for it, I find it difficult to get through an episode as an adult. (Except the five-episode story that started it off. I've watched that a few times). Same with G.I. Joe, Transformers, and most any other cartoon from my '80s childhood; I love 'em, but I love 'em from afar, and I do not believe they are better than cartoons today simply because they came out when I was young and impressionable.


When Nickelodeon released the first teaser for the new cartoon, Rob Bricken, then of Topless Robot, defended the silly tone with a quote that has always stuck with me:

”Look, I just can’t look at an anthropomorphic turtle wielding ninja weapons and say, ‘They’re not taking this seriously enough!’ I just can’t.”


I feel the same way, and yet I like stories that have the courage to take themselves seriously, and while I have a strong dislike for Man of Steel (to cite a random, recent example) because it does a disservice to (my personal take on) what Superman is supposed to be, I'm also wearying of all the Marvel fanboys who dismiss DC for not being buoyant.

Not everything should be quippy. People have come to dismiss Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight in recent years, but I just revisited it last year and I'm not sure anything from the Marvel Cinematic Universe has topped that movie.

The idea of a series of Ninja Turtles stories that tackle dark themes is almost counterintuitive to me, and yet it's the series that started it all, and so I am intrigued at the notion.

Which is my longwinded way of saying two things:

1. I'm a walking contradiction and a bit of an A-hole who's hard to please.

2. I love silliness and levity in my Ninja Turtles stories, and yet this:

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Originally Posted by Powder View Post
Mirage is just thematically grim. Revenge, rage, isolation, existential crisis, introspection, grey morality, etc.
...is also in my wheelhouse.


Which just leaves the question of where to begin. I'd rather not start at the beginning, but instead with something commonly regarded as a high-water mark. (After making fun of Buffy the Vampire Slayer for years despite having never seen it, I decided one night to watch an episode, expecting to laugh at it the entire time. The episode was "The Body". I was crying five minutes into it. That experience made me realize that context is meaningless; if a story is sufficiently stirring, the lack of context for plot and characters will do nothing to diminish the reader's or viewer's conviction that "this series is for me".)

Powder, you were kind enough to make a suggestion:

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Originally Posted by Powder View Post
Try reading Sons Of Silence, for example.

Which volume or collection includes that story? I find the labyrinthine TMNT comics library a bit overwhelming.


(Utrommaniac, your reply appeared when I was in the middle of this bloated rant. I'll comment on it in a moment).
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Old 03-31-2016, 01:03 AM   #6
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Thanks for chiming in, Utrom!

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Originally Posted by Utrommaniac View Post
Mirage simply hasn't captured my heart.
I worry on the one hand that this will prove to be the case for me, as well. On the other hand, the Ninja Turtle "universe" I carry around with me in my mind (and which I think about more frequently in a given day than I care to admit, heh-heh) is such a hodgepodge of Old Toon and 1990 live-action film and toy designs and original ideas of my own that I like to think I still might find things to love in the Mirage comics, even if the entire run doesn't wow me.


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Originally Posted by Utrommaniac View Post
It's my love affair with Utroms that made me at least a little interested...
See, while I can have a good chuckle at Krang's goofiness in the old cartoon, the utroms and kraang and the more cosmic, inter dimensional aspect of the property has never appealed to me much. I like my Turtles in an urban setting.


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The main art style doesn't help either. It's just too hard on the eyes. My favorite art styles are Jim Lawson's and Dario Brizuela's.
I respect the art I've seen, but it's not really my style. I'm not sure which artist was responsible for whichever issues and pinups and such I've studied, but I don't care much for the art style that I think of as "classic Mirage," and yet I flipped through some Mirage collection ten years or so ago and loved its artwork, which was less stylized and more lifelike and realistic.

You've given me more to think about. Thanks again!
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Old 03-31-2016, 01:11 AM   #7
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I found my way as an adult back to Turtles-fandom because of the Mirage comics.

As a kid, I was a big fan of the first movie and the Achie comics, the Playmates toys and the Fred Wolf cartoon. But it wear of with the time, my toys and comics were spent to some poor kids, and I almost forget about the turtles.

For some years I stumbled upon a picture from Mirage #1 - the full page shot of Raph on a rooftop. It was a complete different look on the turtles I knew. I investigated, read some articles on Wikipedia, and after a few months I grabbed vol. 1 of the Ultimate Collection. The others followed in the next months.

The first step for my newly found love for the turtles.

So: yes, I think Mirage can be appealing for an adult in 2016.
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Old 03-31-2016, 01:15 AM   #8
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I think the older colorized "book 1-4" releases help a lot in getting over the "i'm reading an old black and white comic" hump some people would experience, but those are also not so easy to come by these days. But if you can, I think that might be a potential best way to hook in a new reader.

The halftone stuff will look totally different, though.
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Old 03-31-2016, 01:16 AM   #9
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Powder, you are absolutely right about me not getting Mirage and preferring cleaner art styles. In fact, you're right about a lot of what you just said.

Now that I think about it, my idea of "dark and gritty" is more psychological, and the tearing down of one's stability and integrity (again I say, Little Shop of Horrors.) Another example I can think of is the John Gardner's take on Grendel. It's still incredibly violent, but that's not the grit I was interested in. Yeah, it's got bloodlust and depravity, but that wasn't the part I was interested in. It was the psychology.

Being from younger generation, Mirage might just be best described as "tedious", and I'm not quite sure why. The AP English student in me wants something to dissect and analyze, and I'm sure Mirage has it, but something about it makes me not want to.
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Old 03-31-2016, 01:28 AM   #10
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Thank you, Chabrendeki, that is quite an endorsement!

Cryomancer, I've got no problem with black and white comics, and I'd prefer to skip the origin and introduction and get right to a story that many fans cite as one of the best, even if it means I'm confused and a bit lost.
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Old 03-31-2016, 01:29 AM   #11
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You're quite welcome. You can probably tell it's an iteration I am very passionate about, as well as an avid spokesman for, given it is the underdog wing of the franchise despite everything else being built from it's bricks.

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The idea of a series of Ninja Turtles stories that tackle dark themes is almost counterintuitive to me, and yet it's the series that started it all, and so I am intrigued at the notion.
See, part of why it works so well, at least to me, is that it can be so unbelievably human & adult (in the mature sense, not the boobs & blood sense) for something based on a bunch of mutant animals with hardcore weapons. Unlike their animated counterparts, they don't go looking for things to fix, they don't consider themselves heroes, they're not big fans of humans. They're teenagers, they struggle with their place in the world, when to use words or fists, how to find happiness in a society they can never be a part of. These are things we can all relate to, but sometimes it just feels better coming from cool-ass creatures. In other universes, jokes are just jokes. They're there to make the viewer laugh. Mirage Humor, it's kinda like, these guys are making themselves laugh. Making light of the situation is the only way to get through it sometimes. I'm probably giving it a bit more credit than deserved, to be entirely fair, but there are some issues that make that quite clear, & you carry that insight with you as you ride along for other events.

Quote:
Which just leaves the question of where to begin. I'd rather not start at the beginning, but instead with something commonly regarded as a high-water mark. (After making fun of Buffy the Vampire Slayer for years despite having never seen it, I decided one night to watch an episode, expecting to laugh at it the entire time. The episode was "The Body". I was crying five minutes into it. That experience made me realize that context is meaningless; if a story is sufficiently stirring, the lack of context for plot and characters will do nothing to diminish the reader's or viewer's conviction that "this series is for me".)
A lot of people will surely suggest Return To New York, City At War, & The River, arguably the 3 most popular story arcs. Dramatic, dark, action-packed, heavily detailed art. If that sounds good to you, have at it! If you're specifically looking for issues with emotional impact, that's another thing. http://www.miragelicensing.com/html/comics.html You can read issue synopses here, if our suggestions aren't enough or you have curiosities, that'll be a helpful guide. Tales Of The TMNT Vol. 2 (70 issues total) was my main gateway into the Mirageverse, because many of the issues are standalone stories, but plenty of them pick up from random issues that are 10, 20 years old, so it can also be daunting depending on which you get. Maybe check out the descriptions on those & pick a few out. #20 made me cry the first time I read it, there's a short about an encounter with hunters that really tugs at the heart strings if you're an animal person.

Quote:
Which volume or collection includes that story? I find the labyrinthine TMNT comics library a bit overwhelming.
I'll have to leave that to one of my well-read peers, I collected the individual issues before IDW ever got the license, so I'm unsure which works contain certain stories. The lone issue was Mirage Vol. 1 #28 though.

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I worry on the one hand that this will prove to be the case for me, as well. On the other hand, the Ninja Turtle "universe" I carry around with me in my mind (and which I think about more frequently in a given day than I care to admit, heh-heh) is such a hodgepodge of Old Toon and 1990 live-action film and toy designs and original ideas of my own that I like to think I still might find things to love in the Mirage comics, even if the entire run doesn't wow me.
It might be, & that's alright. Giving it a fair shake is all anyone can ask of you. Though I do think all TMNT fans kinda owe it a chance, I personally think it's important people understand that that "their" TMNT, while the most iconic, are not "the" TMNT. But I realize I'm a bit of a turtle snob... At any rate, the first movie is almost entirely comprised of Mirage stories, actually! The only elements that weren't, were the inclusion of those new human characters, the foot being a youth group, & April's job. There are a few small changes, naturally, but the Casey encounter, all the Raph trouble, the farmhouse, roof-top scene, so much if it was directly lifted from the comics. It's so rad. If you like/love that movie, you should at least be able to appreciate Mirage, even if you don't necessarily want to read it all the time. Better still, 4kids adapted all sorts of stuff, so the same applies there if you watched that show.

Quote:
See, while I can have a good chuckle at Krang's goofiness in the old cartoon, the utroms and kraang and the more cosmic, inter dimensional aspect of the property has never appealed to me much. I like my Turtles in an urban setting.
The Utroms play a very significant part in TMNT lore, but they're not too active across the series. Early volume 1 deals with them a bit, & they're around a lot more in volume 4 (as well as some Tales issues that take place during that part of the timeline) but they're hardly equal to Krang or even The Kraang in terms of involvement.

Quote:
I respect the art I've seen, but it's not really my style. I'm not sure which artist was responsible for whichever issues and pinups and such I've studied, but I don't care much for the art style that I think of as "classic Mirage," and yet I flipped through some Mirage collection ten years or so ago and loved its artwork, which was less stylized and more lifelike and realistic.
The art is a big mixed bag. You'd probably be a Michael Dooney fan.
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Now that I think about it, my idea of "dark and gritty" is more psychological, and the tearing down of one's stability and integrity (again I say, Little Shop of Horrors.) Another example I can think of is the John Gardner's take on Grendel. It's still incredibly violent, but that's not the grit I was interested in. Yeah, it's got bloodlust and depravity, but that wasn't the part I was interested in. It was the psychology.

Being from younger generation, Mirage might just be best described as "tedious", and I'm not quite sure why. The AP English student in me wants something to dissect and analyze, and I'm sure Mirage has it, but something about it makes me not want to.
Word, I get that. I didn't think I was muddying the waters, but my mentioning the high-octane violence was not meant to imply that's it's main drive, in the context of being dark. The psychological side is very much prevalent. Like I said in my previous post, there's plenty of mental anguish & emotional turmoil.

While some people don't consider it canon, volume 3, done by Image, was written as a continuation in the Mirage universe, & I think it explored some of those themes better than anyone else. Donatello has serious issues with being brought back to life as a cyborg, bringing on an identity crisis stemming from being reborn to a metal body whose tech is self-aware & can act on your behalf, but not necessarily in your best interests. He reaches a point of putting a gun to his head in front of his brothers. That sh*t is heavy. Their master is captured & subsequently mutated a second time, losing his humanity in the form of a mindless beast. The turtles kinda fall apart; Mikey turns to writing, Raphael rebuilds the Foot Clan as their new leader, Casey has to accept that he's a father/husband & put aside the vigilantism. I'd highly recommend that run to any interested turtle fan.
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Old 03-31-2016, 01:51 AM   #12
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Well, I'm probably not the most normal example, but my love for the TMNT came from the first movie, not the cartoon, so that was for nearly two decades my gold standard as to what made a great TMNT story.

Turtles Forever actually ended up being what got me to check out the Mirage books out of curiosity. It didn't take long to realize that the film I enjoyed so as a child took heavy influence from the early Mirage run (specifically various bits of the first 11 issues and the One-Shots).

I think whether a new reader can get into it factors into two important questions:

1. Can they enjoy a more grim/serious take on the Turtles?

2. Can they enjoy or at least accept the art that comes with it?

If so, I think it's reasonable.

The first issue is a fantastic single-issue read (which we don't get much of in comics these days, something one and done), and is compelling, but the Turtles don't quite start coming into their own until a little later in the comic (Raph is quick to his role, that's for sure).

That said, I think Mirage provided some fantastic stories, and once the Turtles started to grow, you could really care about them and their struggles. I liked that they weren't really beholden to some set arc structure and could just go about things at the pace they felt appropriate. Sometimes, you can really enjoy those slower issues.

At this point, Mirage's TMNT is my #1 Turtles thing. It's the first thing I think of when I think Turtles. Given I started with the 1990 movie around the time it came out, yet only got to Mirage in the last few years via IDW's release is rather impressive.

Honestly, I recommend going from the beginning. Not every issue's a winner, but a lot of them are enjoyable, and it gives you an appreciation of how far they go when you do make it further into the story.

I doubt Return to New York or City at War would be quite as appreciated if you skipped right to them (If you'd prefer to focus on Eastman/Laird issues, the Ultimate Collection Hardcovers are good with that).

Also worth checking out the Tales of the TMNT.

If you'd like a non Eastman/Laird story to check out, I was rather partial to Soul's Winter myself.
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Old 03-31-2016, 01:57 AM   #13
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Buy the first 5 Ultimate Collections that IDW put out, they collect the most important and best Mirage issues.

Those are the absolute best Mirage comics worth reading, so make sure you get those before anything else.
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Old 03-31-2016, 03:38 AM   #14
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I started reading and collecting Mirage comics in late 2013 (not exactly 2016 ). I love this iteration and truly consider it the one and only. Other iterations may be pleasant but do not please me as much as Mirage does. Now in 2016, I own most of Mirage issues (all volumes considered) and recently started IDW and Archie.

Yet I have to admit I was already a comic collecting zealot before 2013. I even already had most of TMNT vol.3 issues (buying them was driven by my Savage Dragon completism) but I had barely read them because I was waiting to have the whole set (it is only on the Technodrome forum that I realized how hard they were to come by).

Regarding my ninja turtles affinity, I loved the original cartoon as a child in the 90’s and owned several of the playmates action figures (classic turtles, Bebop, Shredder, Ace Duck) so of course I was receptive to trying Mirage material. Yet I am aware only now that I knew nothing of the turtles then such as all the weird characters you guys are always referring to when asking IDW to expand their cast.

While I’ve been a long-time comic book collector and always found the Ninja Turtles appealing, I guess I can still say with my example that Mirage is inviting and convincing to new readers .
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Old 03-31-2016, 05:16 AM   #15
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I started collecting/reading the Mirage comics 5 years ago (I was 24). Before that I wasn't really into TMNT or comic books (except for some Batman novels like "Year One" or "The Man Who Laughs"). But when I accidentally discovered the 4kids show I loved it and wanted to check out its roots.

Well, I am very close to having read every single Mirage story in existence now and it's by far my favorite TMNT incarnation (I also checked out IDW, Nick, the OT, the movies, etc.). It's so great to never know what to expect whenever opening another book - Action? Sci-Fi? Horror? Drama? Comedy? It's all there! Of course, there were issues which I don't care much for but considering the diversity that's not much of a surprise.

So, recommendations? Of course the original Triceraton arc, the exile to Northampton and Return to New York are some of the most commonly known highlights. But you should also check out the already mentioned "Sons of the Silent Age" (collected and colorized in this tpb), "A Day in the Life" (Tales Vol.2 #55, not yet collected by IDW), World’s Deadliest (Tales Vol. 2 #50, not yet collected by IDW), Twilight of the Ring (collected and colorized in this tpb), Halls of Lost Legends (collected and colorized in this tpb), Masks (collected and colorized in this tpb) and the Gang Wars (Tales Vol. 2 #36, #56, #59, #61 and #64, not yet collected by IDW).

Sons of the Silent Age, A Day in the Life, Twilight of the Ring and Halls of Lost Legends are very calm, philosophical stories. World’s Deadliest, Masks and the Gang Wars are more action oriented.
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Old 03-31-2016, 06:33 AM   #16
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I watched the cartoon as a kid, for me the action figures and the NES games was were i spent most of my time.

Sometime in 2012 or 2013 i stumbled on the IDW series and once i figured out it was a complete reboot, i jumped on.

It wasn't until after the IDW city fall arc came out in trade that i started looking for the original B&W comics in some kind of collected format.

I own the first 5 ultimate collections and all of the trade classics that have been released so far. I really enjoyed the first ultimate collection. Once i got into the guest era of Vol. 1 i kinda slowed down. I still haven't read the city at war arc even though it gets such high praise. I still need to read classics vol 7 trade to get to that arc.
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Old 03-31-2016, 10:29 AM   #17
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My story is a lot like others on here. When I was young I lived for the cartoon and the movie. Those were my first real introductions into all things TMNT as well as the action figures which were the real driving force.
I tried at the time to read the comics but every time I looked, I saw TMNT books with turtles I didn't recognize (Zullies Souls Winter Comes to mind) which turned me off and the Archie books were too heavily environmental for me. Because I was coming in in the middle and couldn't recognize them, I shied away from the comics. Eventually my interest faded and I lost contact with the franchise.
Then some time in 2012 I herd that the comics were being rebooted. I had just had a retro craving to watch the first couple of FW cartoons and started researching. I went and got the first IDW trade and instantly was hooked. I was about 10 issues behind and was able to get the individual floppies and i got the collecting bug. I joined as a member here and everyone said I had to go back and read the originals. I found a copy of the collected Vol 1 books and instantly loved them. I think I read the first 3 Ultimate Collection books in one night. Since then I have tried to get my hands on every story I can of the TMNT with only the Archie Series missing some higher issues now.
Now when I think of TMNT I instantly think of the original Mirage books. Those Eastman and Laird stories (as well as what IDW are doing) are my favorite parts of the franchise to date.
So from my point of view its all about finding a point that interests you.
When I was a kid I couldn't and that lost me. Now as an adult I found my spring board to my re-found love for all things Turtles (except Next Mutation...That s**t is just unbearable)
P.S. the 4kids TMNT is a great way to get through the Mirage stuff as MOST of it is adapted there
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Old 03-31-2016, 10:48 AM   #18
CylonsKlingonsDaleksOhMy
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I'm too late to contribute anything, as Powder beat me to it.

Mirage is not only what started TMNT, it's main themes and heart is what TMNT always SHOULD be. The closer a retelling of TMNT reaches that, the better it is.

City at War is simply the best TMNT story there ever will be. Because at its heart, it's not about the action, violence, or chaos; it's about the Turtles wondering what their place in the world is and why they should even continue fighting a battle that they were forced into long ago by their father.

So when people come along and say "screw the Mirage TMNT" or that they don't like it, or it's too dark and violent for them, I say that they have a fundamental misunderstanding of what TMNT was and should be. Don't settle for the kiddie versions. We've all grown up and we should let our understanding of characters grow up with us.
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Old 03-31-2016, 10:57 AM   #19
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At any rate, the first movie is almost entirely comprised of Mirage stories, actually...
I've heard that. And that connection does intrigue me, although I hope Don and Casey's alphabetical insult game isn't taken verbatim from the comic, 'cause sheesh, that was some distractingly goofy dialogue.

But while I do like the movie...

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If you like/love that movie, you should at least be able to appreciate Mirage...

So much of what I love about it is the Henson suits. It's not like the plot is particularly amazing (though I do find their flight to rural isolation compelling), so I'm not sure I'll like Mirage simply because the movie's plot is taken from it.

(I'm pretty set on giving the Mirage comics a chance, mind you; I just don't think this particular selling point is relevant for me).

Although I do like the visual tone of the film, so if that's similar to the comic, that's a solid endorsement.


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Better still, 4kids adapted all sorts of stuff, so the same applies there if you watched that show.
That's a funny case for me. I only ever caught glimpses here and there of that series as it was airing, and I was blown away by the quality and seriousness. But when I finally tried to actually watch the series, I found it something of a chore.

A few years ago I bought the first DVD, collecting the initial ten episodes or so, and I watched it with my daughter, who was probably six or seven at the time, 'cause I'd gotten her into the OT when she was very young. She and I both enjoyed the 4Kids episodes well enough.

Last week, I wanted to watch some 4Kids episode I'd read about. I think it might have been the episode that introduced Usagi, but I can't recall for sure. Whatever the case, my daughter, twelve now (twelve today, in fact) sat down with me while I watched it on YouTube, and the opening credits sequence gave her a nostalgic thrill ("I've missed this!"), but she was mostly quiet throughout the episode, and when Leo got especially earnest near the end, she said, "That's kind of cheesy."

And she was right.

I admire that the 4Kids series was willing to take itself so seriously, but its animation and dialogue were not quite strong enough to carry that seriousness, in my opinion, with the result that, lacking opportunities to laugh with the series, it is discouragingly easy to laugh at it.

I still admire the show, and the 2003 versions of the Turtles action figures remain some of my favorites. It's just another thing I have to love from afar.


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While some people don't consider it canon, volume 3, done by Image, was written as a continuation in the Mirage universe...
I've been reading about that series for a long time, and while it sounds like a trainwreck, I am definitely interested in checking it out.


I wish IDW would publish a secondary archive of the Mirage material. Low-grade paper, black and white, any other budgetary cutbacks necessary; I am interested in reading these old stories, but when they're only available (or so it seems to me, anyway) in deluxe, high-end tomes that reprint only four or five issues each, I get discouraged. I don't want to put together a literary museum, I just wanna read some stories. Hell, unless I am mistaken, even the Comixology versions of the Mirage are pricey!
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Old 03-31-2016, 11:04 AM   #20
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I can't speak for new readers of the Mirage books, because I started reading them in the early 1990, but...the Fred Wolf cartoon was my first introduction to the characters and I had no issue transitioning from one to the other.

I find Volume 1 far less dated with regards to storytelling and overall design than say...Volume 3, which is so late late 90s it's damn near painful.

I think it all really depends on how you like your stories told. Mirage has always had a slower pace. It's more "show" than "tell," which is almost the exact opposite of the IDW run.
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