The GeeksverseIDW’s Ninja Notes: Snake Eyes #17 and TMNT #14

IDW’s Ninja Notes: Snake Eyes #17 and TMNT #14
Published on Monday, October 1, 2012 by

I’ve recently taken to reviewing multiple books together for a variety of reasons. This week, the commonality is the new ninja stories being turned out by IDW’s licensed products. To quote V. Ice, “Go Ninja Go!”Each step is at the mouth of two different paths, a hard path of peace and an easy path of violence. Splinter and Raphael explore that point on the point of a sai and the throat of an abusive father that has been clobbering his way through this series.  Snake Eyes is exploring the same lesson in his own way while holding an uzi.

I’m not overly enamored with ninjas. I grew through the phase where everything ninja was cool just because it was ninja. It was a good time of 90s movies, Power Rangers, and Teenage Mutant Ninja turtles. At some point I wanted more story than kicks to the face. When story and kicks to the face can be added together I’m a fan. Ninja Turtles: Next Mutation, the live action Turtle show, kept the camp and safe kicks to the face of Power Rangers but without any shred of story telling from the comics. The TV show after the live action movies probably needed to explore live action regular installments of people in rubber suits. When the show works–and at times I argue it does–it is superior to Power Rangers. When the show fails—and it does without argument–it is a mix of Power Rangers and Dick Tracy that is painful.

I’m a fan of both the newer G.I. Joe and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles because they explore the story along with the kick to the face.

Ninja Turtles and G.I. Joe are both exploring the back story of the ninja and clan to provide the story that the kick to faces need.

In the case of Ninja Turtles the story is told with the addition of extra dimensional life forms, civil wars, and other odd trappings yet it still works.

I now want to buy a Krang action figure or three. This issue makes me want to buy the next issue and the toy. That has to be a success given the type of property.

Some of my TMNT fan friends are quick to point out that the Next Mutation is not cannon and thus should be ignored. I always chuckle. Unlike Star Trek or Star Wars the cannon for TMNT is muddled and confusing. All of the shows and movies are only loosely related by the ninja turtles. The back story is always in flux. To me IDW is quickly becoming my favorite version and may be what I adopt as my personal canon.

G.I. Joe is not only exploring Snake Eyes which has been done before, but exploring the entire clan of masters that trained the super Joe ninja. While I tire of “ninja saves the day” stories, I do like exploring the outsider’s training. How ninja is the uzi using Snake Eyes has always been a matter of some fanboy debate. The past several issues have explored his background as well as his mentors.

The best part of the current issue is not Snake Eyes or Hard Master but instead how Soft Master is fitting into the overall story arc. Soft Mast may lose something in translation but it is clear that he is going to be a threat to everyone through games and manipulation. He is a threat building into a major problem for everyone.

Of the two ninja comics this past week from IDW, TMNT  #14 has the emotional resonance and Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow #17 has the best new villain. Neither are perfect. My understanding of the sai as a sword breaker doubts it will slice a throat but instead be better suited for puncturing a throat. Ninjas in winnebagos seems like a Peter Fonda movie with satanists attacking a mobile vacation trailer. Even with those oddities these are great comics.

What is happening next?

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #15

October 17, 2012
Something has escaped Stockgen labs and is hunting the Turtles. Its unrelenting and deadly force compel the Turtles to question how far they’ll go.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Adventures Vol 2.

October 17, 2012
Tales from the Archie era of TMNT come back to life as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Adventures continues!
Cobra #18.
October 17, 2012
OKTOBER IS COMING! Who are the OKTOBER GUARD? The deadliest group of elite killers and assassins ever faced by G.I. JOE or COBRA! FLINT’s covert operations.
The hunt for Snake Eyes may pick up the ninja thread but it isn’t the only upcoming Joe story to explore fan favorites with new back stories and current events.
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