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DVD Review:    Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

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Children's DVD Reviews: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles


Released: 2004

Reviewed: May 2004

Our Recommended Age: 7-up

Our Rating: A






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"Heroes in a half-shell...turtle power!"


Those hilarious, irreverent turtles are back! Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Volume One (Season One) has been released on DVD, and includes the first five episodes from the animated series produced in 1987, as well as bonus features on the DVD edition: four never before seen episodes. This DVD premiere features 110 minutes of full screen Ninja Turtles action.


Fans of the show will enjoy sharing the first classic animated episodes, featuring Leonardo, Michelangelo, Raphael, and Donatello, with their children. Turtle Tracks reveals how the mutant turtles came to be: once pet turtles who were thrown into a sewer by accident, the turtles quickly became friends with Hamato Yoshi. Yoshi, a member of a Ninja army in Japan, lived in the sewers of New York after being banished from the army unfairly (Harkoa Saki, who later turned the Ninja army into criminals, was responsible). Yoshi enjoyed the company of pet rats and turtles during his lonely exile. A mutant "goo", with properties that transformed anything it touched into the animal they last contacted, turned the turtles into human-like turtles (because they had last touched Yoshi) and turned Yoshi into a giant rat. Yoshi, of course, became known as Splinter. Viewers learn how the turtles came to be through Splinter's story intended to explain their unusual appearance to April O'Neill, a news reporter who stumbled upon the turtles after a scuffle with criminals. 


After the introductory episode comes the next four in the classic animated series: Enter the Shredder, A Thing About Rats, Hot-Rodding Teenagers from Dimension X, and Shredded and Splintered


Viewers will notice the difference between these original episodes produced in 1987 and the four bonus episodes produced in 1996. In the original series, for example, Michelangelo's weapon was nunchucks which later were replaced with a hook. Our testers enjoyed the earlier episodes, but the bonus material is definitely...well, a bonus! 


Although certainly nostalgic for older fans, kids will enjoy this DVD as well. The humor is laugh-out-loud for some kids (with one-liners like, "Who's the dude with the metal face?" and "Ninja Dentist, ouch!"), and the action is exciting.  



Our Rating:




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Reviewed May 2004
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