2009 is the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ 25th Anniversary. This quirky, ragtag bunch of comic book characters have made good. Mirage Studios has launched a new site honoring their achievement, www.tmnt25.com. The site has a lot of cheesy stuff, like Michaelangelo blogging and words of wisdom from Splinter, but it also speaks to the fact that the Ninja Turtles weren’t just a silly 80s toy line, but have had a true cultural impact. Just as long as you pretend the movie Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III doesn’t exist.
Playmates has reissued the original Ninja Turtles figures. They did a beautiful job too, keeping the original artwork on the cards and everything.
I ran into these old friends during a weekend stop at Toys R Us. I knew they were issuing 25th Anniversary figures, but I pictured something cheesy and lame. Then I saw these completely awesome reissues, remaining true to even the crummy plastic weapons. Be still my beating heart.
Yes, that piece of plastic is what I’m excited about. There was always a struggle of getting those weapons off the plastic frame with my clumsy hands. Then I’d have a bunch of barely identifiable hatchets and ninja stars that didn’t even fit into the turtle’s hands. It would be complete crap. You’d then try to rig the weapons to the turtle’s belt, but they would just fall onto to the floor and blend in with the carpet, breaking your little damn heart. Usually I’d play with the frame piece too, pretending it was some sort of .. Ninja Frame. Yeah, I got a freaking Ninja FRAME.
God, they just don’t make complete crap like they used to.
In what felt like the most critical decision of the year so far, I had to pick out which figures to buy. I went with Bebop and Rocksteady, because I hadn’t seen them in a long time. Still crazy after all these years too. A pig with a purple mohawk and a rhino in military drag. Like I said, they don’t make complete crap like they used to. With those guys, I felt completely justified in buying two. They’re a pair.
Additionally, the four turtles each come with a DVD containing an episode of the cartoon. It ruins it only a tiny bit for me, seeing a DVD stashed behind the figure. The reissues can be found probably at any toy store. I bought mine at Toys R Us for $9.99 each, and saw them at Target for $8.99.
There’s the back of the card, and you see the whole family is here. Splinter, April, the foot soldier, and that weird naked Shredder. The original Shredder figure seen here wore just a purple cape, and like a bikini girdle. I really hated this figure for its lack of modesty. And then I lost the purple cape, having a naked dude in a bikini girdle that my Ninja Turtles were too embarrassed to fight.
One thing missing on these reissues are pizza points. Here’s an original card:
An original card with 2 Pizza Points. Also of note is the 2nd issue of Shredder, finally getting around to putting on some pants. Pizza points were valuable pieces you could save up and one day redeem to buy a car. Or some piece of complete crap. I am skeptical however that a single human being on this planet has ever actually exchanged a pizza point for a good or service.
Think about it. Even if you managed to con your parents into buying you 12 TMNT figures a year, which would be about one a month, you’d still only have about 24 Pizza Points after a year. 24 Pizza Points that you cut out, saved, and didn’t lose. You’d have to have the patience of God for something like that, and you didn’t even have the patience to chew before swallowing back then. But then, even if there was ever in fact a Pizza Catalog, it would surely scoff at your 24 pithy points. Everything would probably start at a trillion points.
I don’t know though. I could be wrong. If you successfully redeemed pizza points, come forward. Tell us your story.
Well, this original TMNT figure I own is a Wacky Action Rock ‘N Roll Michaelangelo. He does a wind-up version of the Twist, according to the box. I can’t resist showing you his face:
Give me a Michaelanglo afterworld so I can sigh eternally.