Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Utrom Empire #3
Paul Allor, Andy Kuhn & Bill Crabtree
This mini-series was short and sweet. The chronicling of the fall of the Utrom Empire concludes. Meanwhile, Krang works with Fugitoid to try and save the Utromians that were in stasis. Now facing two foes on Burnow Island, Fugitoid sends out a distress message to several factions, including the turtles, for help to stop the Technodrome.
The main reason this book was so successful is that it was able to humanize the tyrant Krang, or at least allow the reader to understand the method to his madness. He lives to restore his dying race to their former glory at any cost, including his own life. I never thought it would be possible to empathize with a villain I’ve always believed to be pure evil, dating back to the animated series from the late 1980s/early 1990s. Paul Allor did a fantastic job developing the character! Also, the outcome of Professor Honeycutt trying to halt the completion of the Technodrome and his relationship with Dr. Stockman adds to the main storyline and wasn’t just some side-story that had no real merit.
Despite not being a fan of Andy Kuhn, his work on the battles in the flashbacks are intense and grand. Nothing like seeing a Triceraton dual-wielding weapons in a full page spread! Bill Crabtree’s colors were what really captivated me, truly vibrant. There was a clear contrast in the palette between the events of the past and the present and it was a fascinating dynamic that helped keep the reader glued to the page.
This mini-series was only three issues; there is no reason why any TMNT fan should not pick this up. It not only gives great insight into some of the villains, but also sets up what is to happen next in TMNT comic-verse.