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TMNT New Animated Adventures #1 [Review]

TMNT New Animated Adventures #1Story: Kenny Byerly
Art: Dario Brizuela
Colors: Heather Breckel
Letters: Shawn Lee
Edits: Bobby Curnow
Cover: Dario Brizuela
Published by: IDW
Cover Price: $3.99

I’ve been quite looking forward to this premiere issue for a couple months now, since at least the FCBD issue back in May. In many ways, this is sort of a #2 issue, as it fits excellently with the FCBD issue (which was itself a full issue and not just a few pages’ preview or a short one-off amidst so-called “dvd-style extras” or such.

As I’d said then and hold with this issue, this truly feels right at home within the continuity of the Nickelodeon animated series–the characterization is consistent, and I even “hear” the voices from the show as I read this.

The visuals are a great blend of simply “comic book art” and “adaptation form another medium” as the characters are very recognizeable as based on the CGI designs of the animated series…yet Brizuela‘s art is distinctive and does not seem to “try too hard” to BE what it is not–it’s 2-D art and works very well, and avoids being particularly “cartooney” or over-simple.

Story-wise, this is an April-centric issue, focusing largely on her integration into the turtles’ family unit, and showing her increasing skills unter Splinter’s tutelage while we see her equally as fallible as the turtles themselves–also teens.

After showing off her stealth and receiving praise from Splinter, April accompanies Donatello to a junkyard to track down a piece of of tech for his inventions. Unfortunately, the junkyard turns out to be a bit more than they bargained for, and April is captured by the military, and the turtles have to intervene. Ultimately, a lesson is learned by all, and things continue on.

I’ve enjoyed the main/”real” TMNT continuity from IDW these past couple of years, and despite not being entirely enamored with the animated tv series, I did enjoy reading this issue. As long as I’ve been into TMNT in general, I very fondly remember the original Archie-published TMNT Adventures, so this TMNT New Animated Adventures is a bit reminiscent of that in intent, it seems. It remains to be seen if this will branch off into its own individual continuity, but I’m content to follow this as an extension to the tv series’ continuity.

As with the tv series, this story is a done-in one/self-contained story…you get a full story in one issue, and there’s no need to get the next issue to FINISH this story…which is another nice thing about this. Though the next-issue ad indicates one of my least-favorite characters of the series, I’ll happily give it a chance simply for being TMNT, and of course Brizuela‘s art.

The Trouble (for me) with Marvel’s Digital Comics

Wolverine: Japan's Most WantedI saw on Comixology last week that the premiere “issue” of the weekly Wolverine “Infinite Comic” was now available–having read about its upcoming release awhile back. I naturally “assumed” it was 99 cents, but didn’t feel like even paying that much at the time. A few days later–newest non-rent paycheck in my bank account, I thought to splurge and go ahead and give it a try, drawn back by a guilty “interest” in Batman ’66 #2…but was dismayed to see the price as $2.99.

Granted, this thing’s listed as having about 79 “pages,” but as an “infinite comic” designed for the Guided View technology, that reads as “79 screens” to me–where the only difference in one “page” might be a word balloon or caption box, not an actual, unique story-page in the sense I think of for a comic, so that $2.99 might–for all I know–be the equivalent of a 10-12 page story in a standard print comic.

So Marvel–and Comixology–lose out on my sale for this, given the price-point.

Additionally, I’ve several times found myself halfway interested in a new-ish Marvel comic that I maybe passed on at the comic shop(s) or otherwise would be likely to impulse-buy digitally, just to read because I’m in the mood “at the moment.” However, the digital comics being the same as the print comics for $2.99 issues, I’d just as soon have the print edition to read.

And for the $3.99 books…knowing that if I buy the print edition, I then–IN ADDITION for my same $3.99–also get access to a digital copy, I’m not ABOUT to spend $3.99 for a digital-only edition with no access to the print counterpart, so those “sales” are lost on me.

I just wind up sticking with the 99-cent sales, or half-off collected-volume sales where I may pay $3.99 but am getting at least as much if not significantly more content than I would paying $3.99 for a print Marvel comic (such as recent Star Trek volumes and Doctor Who volumes Comixology‘s offered for “special sales.”

DC–with their New 52–had dropped the price of the digital editions after a month (though sometime in the last year or so they bumped that two TWO months’ lag-time), whereas a look last night through some Marvel Now stuff (we’re what? 10 months into the Now age?) didn’t yield anything that I saw for under print editions’ cover pricing.

I look forward to the Monday and Friday “sales” specifically for the chance to get digital comics (when they’re ones I’m actually interested in) for the 99-cent price point…but I am not willing to–as a matter of course–spend “full print-edition cover-price” for a digital comic.

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