Comic Review – TMNT: Jennika #1

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Jennika #1 (of 3)


Writer(s): Brahm Revel; Ronda Pattison

Artist(s): Brahm Revel; Jodi Nishijima

Cover Artist(s): Brahm Revel; Jodi Nishijima; Freddie Williams II

SRP: $4.99

In Shops: Feb 26, 2020

Following the 8-part “City at War” story-line including the landmark #100 issue, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles start a new chapter in their lives with a new teammate, a fifth turtle named Jennika or Jenny. First appearing in issue #51, Jennika was a young (human) assassin in the Foot Clan and after the death of the Shredder, Splinter and the Hamato Clan took over and she became the ninja chūnin of Splinter’s Foot Clan. Following the events of issue #93 (“City at War” Part 1) Jenny was stabbed by Oroku Karai (Kitsune’s granddaughter). In order to save her life, Leonardo donated blood as Donatello performed an emergency transfusion, but due to an unfortunate side effect to his mutagen blood, she mutated into a turtle!

As she tries to adjust to life as a mutant, Jennika embarks on a solo adventure in this new 3-part limited series “TMNT: Jennika.”  While patrolling the streets in the Mutant Zone/Town of New York City, she chases a Mutanimal rabbit in the streets and runs into the Purple Dragons and Casey Jones, where she and Casey have a rather awkward exchange. Afterward, she follows the rabbit to a concert at a Mutanimal nightclub, where she gets into a fight with a bull and a baboon! Coincidentally, she runs into an old boyfriend, Silas (a rat, or possibly a ferret or a mongoose?), who doesn’t recognize her at first. While they argue and catch-up on recent events, Silas drops a bomb and mentions there might be a mutant cure!

This first issue of a 3-part limited series consists of one major story line and  a secondary story which reveals more of Jennika’s backstory of her life in prison before she joined the Foot, which is a follow up to the ‘TMNT Universe’ (issues #6-9) story “What is Ninja?”

Although Jennika’s only been a part of the Turtles and the Hamato Clan, she has proven herself to become Splinter’s right-hand when he was head of the Foot. While having a fifth turtle, and a female to boot, certainly presents some new ramifications, it does present an appeal to women readers. The team has for the longest time, been an all-male, {unless you count April O’Neil). However, many fans of the TMNT franchise will know that this is neither the first/fifth or female turtle have had. For those lucky (or unlucky to remember the short-lived Saban’s live-action TV series Ninja Turtles: The Next Mutation (1997-1998), which introduced the character Venus de Milo as the 5th mutant turtle. While this character caused much controversy within the franchise, with her cyan-colored bandanna and noticeable turtle shell bosom, she was however not well-liked by most of the fans.

The latest IDW TMNT comic series has certainly had its fair share of female characters, not to mention April and Karai, but this presents an interesting story arc for the Turtles and an opportunity to explore more about Jennika. The only criticism I can say of this newest turtle is her appearance with a yellow bandanna and her ninja Tekkokagi hand claws, she bears a striking similarity to Marvel’s Wolverine and/or X-23, however seeing as the Turtles were originally created as a parody of the Daredevil comics, it seems merely to be an homage. As a fan of the “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” since the original 1987 animated series when I was just 8-years-old, I admit I haven’t kept up with the comics since the original Mirage comics and of course the Archie comics adventures. But I found this to be an interesting milestone for the Turtles and I was willing to see what Jennika could do. With her previously unexplored troubled past and conflicted present, to joining the rest of the Turtles, since Master Splinter gave her the chance to prove her worth, I thought I would too.

TURTLE POWER!🐢 🐢 🐢 🐢…🐢 

Written by Dave Whiteman, a Native Texan, Metalhead🤘, Writer, Star Woid, Funatic, and all-around Fanboy/Nerdy/Geeky Guy! 👓


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