29th Apr2013

Monday Musings – Mutation Inconsistencies in the 80s TMNT Universe

by Will

This is the kind of thing that’d go into West Week Ever, but I’ll forget it by then. So, anyway…


I have real problems with the mutations of both the Ninja Turtles and Splinter. I mean, I’m sure there’s no real “science” behind it, but certain things don’t match up. OK, going by the 80’s cartoon (I never read the comic, and I’m omitting the movie for now), human Hamato Yoshi is exiled to the sewers, but has 4 pet turtles to keep him company.


Now, first off, why the Hell is he in the sewers?! I mean, this is pre-Giuliani NYC, meaning there’s all kinds of hooker panties and dirty needles down there. Surely he could’ve gotten a job at a Radio Shack, and a roommate, right? Anyway, he and these turtles live in the sewer, and Oroku Saki/Shredder dumps mutagen into the sewers to kill Yoshi. Again, this is fucked up. He’s gonna risk New York’s already questionable water quality to kill ONE DUDE?! He could just jump down a manhole cover with a pistol. Bitch move, Shredder! Here’s where things don’t make sense to me: the turtles get into the ooze, and Yoshi picks them up to wipe it off. Since they were last in contact with a human, they change into humanoid turtles. HOWEVER, Yoshi turns into rat, Splinter, even though he actually last touched turtles! So, shouldn’t he be some weird human turtloid? Or, at the very least, a human/turtle/rat hybrid? Was it ever said that a subject could only undergo one mutation?


Also, most mutagen experiments were the result of a merger: Bebop and Rocksteady were gang bangers who essentially had a warthog and rhinoceros merged into them. They were humans with animalistic traits and features, kinda like the splicing trend in Batman Beyond. This is basically was happens with Splinter – human who develops animal features. What happened with the turtles, however, is a fluke that isn’t supported by other depictions of mutations: they were animals who basically underwent personification. There’s no precedent for this! Even Baxter Stockman was a human who took on fly characteristics. In all known cases, the human side exerts dominance over the mutation, EXCEPT when it comes to the Turtles. If anything, Hamato Yoshi should’ve mutated into a human/turtle hybrid with multiple personality disorder INSTEAD of four, basic turtles mutating into humanoid teenagers.


And why teenagers? That was the worst possible age for this to happen. It’s like being born right into puberty, yet this was never dealt with. No zits, no dateless Saturdays, nothing. Even with April walking around with her omnipresent cleavage! And what kind of weird chick hangs out with turtles. Sure, they saved her life, but she was hot. Was she trying to act out some kind of freaky fantasy. I mean, a busty chick, hanging out in sewers, and banging a dude in a hockey mask? That’s a chick who needs some therapy!

Anyway, I could go on about this for hours, but I’ll stop now. Has any of this occurred to any of you out there? Let me know in the comments!