By Mike Costa, Ben Epstein, Mike Henderson and Ian Herring
The micro-series books have been an excellent companion to the main ongoing Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series. It not only gives more insight into characters but also ties in with the current storyline in the main run. This particular issue focuses on the character Hun. He was a character introduced into the Ninja Turtles-verse in the 2003 animated series and since then has seen iterations in the comics. In IDW’s run, Hun is still a part of the Purple Dragons street gang, the major difference to note is that he is also Casey Jones’ father. This book focuses on how Arnold Casey Jones Sr. reverted to his former self and became the leader of the Purple Dragons once again.
Mike Costa & Ben Epstein use the story framing device of an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting to tell the story of Jones Sr.’s journey to becoming his alter ego, Attila the Hun. It was a nice touch as we had only seen the man as a drunk throughout the run. Now, he is seen bulked up and bleach blonde. Costa & Epstein tell a compelling story and gives him real pathos. Hun is clearly not just some street thug, he wants to do right by his son, Casey, by “improving” himself. He is able to do this by working for the man who injured his son and caused Jones Sr. to go down this path in the first place. Sounds like the making of a Greek tragedy to me. Excellent character development on their part!
It seems what stood out to me this week in comics was the work of the colorists. Ian Herring used the primary colour palette to great effect during Hun’s flashback sequences. Specifically, the emotions of rage and fear were imparted to the reader powerfully with his expert skill of red and blue respectively. Mike Henderson’s pencils don’t lose out though. His character sketches are excellent takes on some of the notable characters, such as the Shredder and Leonardo. Arguably one of the most memorable panels was Shredder speaking to Arnold with Leonardo at his side. A simple splatter background, but beautiful orange light streaks makes the panel stand out. It forces one’s perspective to the characters and allows for the appreciation of Henderson’s work. These two artists are wonderful together.
This was an insightful side-story that progresses the ongoing City Fall story arc. With fantastic visuals to accompany this intriguing narrative, it is without a doubt a worthwhile, fun read!