doombutton's Tales of the TMNT #61 - Sometimes They Come Back review

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    I'll just say it: Reading this comic was pure joy. For the millions and millions of you out there who avidly read my reviews (stop it, stop laughing at my dreams) you may remember that I reviewed another TMNT issue a while back that was written by Tristan Jones and was greatly impressed with his writing. In fact, I gave him my highest rating ever at that point: four and a half bullets. Well, this issue Jones has been teamed up with an artist that is of the highest caliber and let's just say that this review has set a new record for my highest ever rating.

    This issue we find the Turtles caught up in intrigue as mysterious building collapses seem to be being used as a means of assassination in the city. Writer Tristan Jones brings back a little something from the old cartoons (the Mousers) and actually manages to make them not silly while also introducing those of us who haven't read the Turtles comic exploits to a very cool cyborg adversary named Razorback.

    Jones' writing here is spot on as he not only sets up an intriguing story but he also adds in some hilarious lines from the Turtles while simultaneously giving us a healthy dose of action (a shot that Raphael takes at Michael Bay is probably my favorite). Jones sets up the Turtles with the air of mystery that helps take them seriously as characters, then gets us steadily moving forward into the story before throwing it into high gear and not stopping until the last page.

    Ponce handles art duties on the issue perfectly, bringing a noir quality to the stealthy Ninja Turtles and dynamic life to every action scene. Ponce uses a variety of distances and perspectives as well as bringing emotion to the story with intensity in the expressions. Normally the fact that a comic is colorless bothers me, but within a few pages I didn't even notice anymore. In fact, with the some of the scenes (the Turtles cloaked and perched on a rooftop, or leaping down with cloaks whipping behind them, Batman style) the gray-only tones of the book may have only helped.

    The only complaint I have about this issue at all is that I won't be seeing more like on a monthly basis. Tales of the TMNT is an anthology series that varies in creative team and story line, but if this creative team stayed working together on an ongoing, linear Turtles comic series I would pick up every single issue. Mirage isn't one of the industry's big comic studios, but they definitely have top tier talent with Jones and Ponce. I can see these two going far in comics and could see them working on a top selling title like the Avengers some day.

    Tales of the TMNT #61 isn't flashy or earth shattering enough to likely win awards, but it's one of the coolest, most fun comics I've read in a long time. If you're a fan of the Ninja Turtles, heck if you've ever even heard of the Ninja Turtles...screw it, if you read comic books at all, you should pick up Tales of the TMNT #61. 

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