A dream of mine was dashed last week, when the TMNT property transfered hands (for $60 million) from a flesh-and-blood man, Peter Laird, to a corporate entity, Nickelodeon. What had seemed a plausible book idea that would storm the world whenever I, you know, got around to proposing it (A TMNT book in the vein of "Batman Collected" meets "Bizarro World" by way of Kramer's Mome meets the "Marvel Encyclopedia" and, of course, "BEASTS!"*) is almost surely a lost cause now.
My Argentian "Kalkers", my ceramic French mini-figures, that baby-turtles animation cell up above, and my whole lot of compulsively collected TMNT merchandise* is going back in the closet. Also going in the closet is my hope of convincing Dash Shaw to do a TMNT story that the original series should have made when Eastman/Laird decided to bring on outside artists who got "wacky" instead of exploring the complexity of the characters' personalities (ala the flicker that was the "Return to New York" storyline and more akin to the trend in the Marvel universe that has made such successful films possible).
Sure, Fantagraphics' Eric Reynolds had his fun at my expense: "Yeah, it'll be a shame to see them commercialized." But I'm not the only one here at Comics Cred Central who loves the Turtles. Fantagraphics office manger, Zuniga, is pretty broken up about this sale too. And this is a guy who's serious about comics--a guy who was personally invited out by the Wu Tang Clan at ComicCon but said "No, I've gotta sell comics."* I'm telling you, it's a shame what the property could turn into. Especially when a great book could still be made.
But hey, I'm optimistic and somebody at Nickelodeon showed up to work this week with a big pile of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles tasks on their "To-Do" list and I want to make that person's job easier: I'm the graphic designer you need.* Note: I'm marginal at "wacky." Also "testestorone-fueled." But, man, have I got a book idea for you!
...I hope they at least get Chris Duffy involved. He's already in their payroll system and the man's been good to comics.
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