Judge Dawn Hunt would also watch TMNT Ultimate Chowdown. Imagine all the pizza!
Our reviews of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Volume 3 (published February 1st, 2006), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Volume 4 (published May 31st, 2006), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Season 6 (published April 9th, 2008), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Season 9 (published August 21st, 2011), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: 25th Anniversary Collector's Edition (published August 14th, 2009), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: 25th Anniversary Collector's Edition (Blu-Ray) (published August 17th, 2009), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Enter Shredder (published July 13th, 2013), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Rise of the Turtles (published March 23rd, 2013), and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Complete Classic Series (published November 26th, 2012) are also available.
2012 saw the rebooting of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise on the Nickelodeon network. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Ultimate Showdown is the last twelve episodes of the first season gathered onto two discs.
"The Alien Agenda"
"The Pulverizer Returns"
"Operation: Break Out"
"Showdown [Parts 1 and 2]"
The turtles continue to be loveable goofballs who happen to kick butt. These last twelve episodes see the foursome battling the same enemies they have all season: the Foot Clan, the Kraang, Shredder and his mutants. But by the end of the season the Kraang and Shredder have banded together, providing a more worthy challenge for the turtles. There's also some character development, which bodes well for season two. Leonardo (Jason Biggs, American Reunion) learns that being the leader means being willing to make any sacrifice, even the ultimate one. Michelangelo proves his training makes him as competent as his brothers. Donatello deals with April finding out about his crush and Raphael (Sean Astin, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King) tries to appreciate his brothers more.
One of the things to admire about Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Ultimate Showdown is the video transfer. A standard 1.78:1 aspect ratio it nonetheless attempts to blends four different types of animation: CGI, hand-drawn, comic book and graphic novel. The graphic novel shots are by far my favorite though I have to tip my hat to the team which works with the water and smoke in the CGI segments. They are beautifully done. The palette is the unifying factor across the differing animations and works well, with a darker look to emphasize the underground nature of the turtles as well as the nighttime during which most of the scenes occur. I do wish the purple and blue of Donatello and Leonardo's masks were a bit more well-defined during the night shots but overall I've learned to embrace the visual style of the show. The Dolby 5.1 audio track continues to go above and beyond, providing the fullness the Foley and music cues need to feel as though they are all-encompassing. No issues to report there.
Special features include some storyboard comparison animatics, volumes three to six of the animated comic book Tales From the Lair, and a paper comic book with some random turtle adventures as well as word scrambles and hidden pictures to engage readers.
The more I watch these Turtles, the more I can see their show gaining traction. Fans will not be disappointed with a purchase. If you're a newbie you may want to check out some of the earlier episodes first as the show does build upon its own mythology and certain events and characters will be confusing without a proper backstory.
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