Wednesday 26 September 2012


The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles need no introduction. If by some absolute stroke of bizarre fate you have found yourself on this page and really don't know - here's two handy clips that will explain as much as you probably need to know. Choose your poison!

Learn about TMNT.....

...via a rare live performance of their 90s RAP movie theme with turtles in suits on stage 


....via their good timey animated cartoon intro that's also being re-enacted by live action split-screen cosplayers.

I know it's a tough decision. Why not do both? What? Do you have to be somewhere?

Back to the story, it's not hard to find....

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have been getting made into plastic figures now for longer than some of their fans have been alive. Nothing wrong with that.

For the most part, toy company PLAYMATES have released them (although NECA also had the TMNT license a few years back) and it's no different with this current batch of "classics."

As you can see from the photos (and as Raph and Don have discovered for themselves), the packaging for the TMNT Classic line is incredibly reminiscent of the original 80s cartoon style as well as the original Playmates Toy packaging. I think this is a smart move. It's great for nostalgia purposes but also the packaging is really vibrant and colourful - they look so nice mint-on-card, you ALMOST don't want to open them. Almost.

Let's have a quick look at each Turtle separately and then we'll see them all hang out as a family.

Raphael is cool but crude - give him a break.

One thing you might not realise without having seen them in person is that these guys are HUGE. Here's a size comparison with Classic Raphael and Nickelodeon's recent Raphael.

Raphael looks amazing. Once you get over the size (these guys are bigger than Masters Of The Universe Classics as well) you start to focus on just how cool they look in just about any pose you can think of. 

Whether Raphael's losing a sai, explaining to Casey Jones that "you've gotta know what a crumpet is to understand cricket" or learning Daniel-San's Crane Kick -  you'll be able to pose it.

Each figure comes with their weapon(s) of choice and a grey sewer lid stand with their name on it. Radical.

Michaelangelo is a party dude? Partaaaaaaaaaay?

Michaelangelo's Nunchuks are awesome. I can not articulate how much I love his Nunchaku. Maybe I need to get out more. Maybe I'm having a flashback to Ninjor's nunchuks from Masters Of The Universe and how often I used to make Mikey use those instead because they had an actual chain. I also think they've captured his cartoon likeness incredibly well.  


The photo of Mikey meditating is a perfect example of the variety of poses you can get these Turtles into as a result of their 34 points of articulation. I was pretty surprised myself. Sure, 34 points is a decent amount by any standard but it matters just as much WHERE it's placed. Playmates have really outdone themselves with their articulation choices on these releases.

Donatello "does" machines. That's a FACT, Jack.

It's true. He really does do machines. I can vouch for that. I've seen 'im do it. However, he doesn't quite do it for ME. Donatello is probably the weakest of the four. He's not even close to a bad figure per se, but I doubt many people are picking him up by himself unless they're massive Donny fans. He doesn't hold up well by comparison to his Turtle brothers.

If you weren't going to cherry pick one or two favourites (I can see any of the other three selling out separately before him) you'd only get him to complete the set, because it's silly not to have all four. I'm not sure what it is exactly about him. Maybe it's something as dumb as he doesn't have two weapons like the others, which somehow psychologically represents slightly less value even if it is a big two-handed stick. I have heard talk that he has a lazy eye. I have no firm foundation for any of my criticism, really. I just don't like him the best. He still looks great talking to Vintage Undercover Don or sitting on a nice stool having a good hard think to himself. I bet he's thinking about machines.

Leonardo leads. Or at least he used to.

Leonardo is probably my favourite figure of the four. I mean, let's face it, for the most part you are buying the same figure FOUR TIMES with some slightly different features (face, paint job, accessories) so it really just comes down to minor aesethics and for me, Leo looks the best. He's the  best of what is already a great set. One's favourite turtle is purely subjective, ofcourse.

Overall, I think Playmates have hit this one out of the park. I wasn't sure which side of the fence I was on when they were first announced as I'm already pretty locked down financially with Masters Of The Universe Classics and I wasn't sure I was going to bother. The second I saw them in real life - I knew I had to have them. I convinced myself that I was just buying them to review on the blog and that I'd sell off the loose figures afterwards but after the photo shoot I came to the conclusion that they needed to be proudly displayed on my shelf at all times.

They're just too much fun. 

There's still sets floating around on ebay if you're interested. For Australian readers, they have turned up on some comic store shelves for pretty reasonable prices ($25-$27 each) but you'd have to ring around to see if any are left or which stores are stocking them. I'm pretty sure they're not licensed for Australia which is why there's no local sellers on ebay with them and also why I'm not listing specific comic stores that have them.

The pictures speak for themselves.

There's heaps more pics from this Turtles shoot over at The Hoard Board on pinterest AND there's a whole bunch of pics with captions over at The Hoard World facebook photo album so don't forget to take a look at those if you're keen for more green!

I'll leave you all with this loving tribute to various incarnations of The Ninja Turtles* as edited by an Eminem fan on YouTube.


yr turtle-ly pal,


*The Next Mutation is noticeably absent.

Hear No Pizza. See No Pizza. Eat No Pizza.

Find more TMNT action at The Collectionary!

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