Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Baby New Year Mike!


























Best wishes to you for 2009! I re-inked this old piece of licensing art for the holiday!

Looks like Steve penciled this straight from the spread in the first issue of TMNT. Licensees liked to request poses from
the original comics.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Market Update


























Lots of TMNT toys are showing up at local closeout stores for under $5 bucks. Time to hit your local liquidation store and complete your collection cheap! Alien hunter turtles and the aliens, mutations, assault turtles, as well as lots of turtle motorcycles and vehicles. So when you're out bargain shopping tomorrow spend some holiday cash on the TMNT and help save the economy from total collapse.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Season's Greetings!


























Turtle fans are the greatest! Best wishes to all for a prosperous 2009!!



The artwork above is based on the cool International Silver Company wooden ornaments from 1990.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Storm Drain Savers Reprint



























A few weeks ago Murph asked if Steve and I could reproduce this TMNTA cover for an Australian reprint of the mini-comic, "Storm Drain Savers." No problem! Here it is.

Get your copy today!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

One Man's Trash...






Here we have the junkyard theme. Two designs from 1990, both curiously called Junkman, one by Mike and the other by Jim. Playmates passed on both.


A third design, submitted to Mirage in the fall of 1991, featured a junkyard robot made from cast off stereo equipment. Mirage passed on that one.






Playmates even went so far as to have their rendition sculpted up for presentation.



They would do this sometimes when they felt particularly strong about a certain character. Still, no deal.

Body Of Work


































In 1990, Murph and Dan imagine what Krang's real body looked like in Dimension X. Playmates didn't go for it.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

World's Deadliest 2 - The Sequel!




















A while back I submitted a story that continues immediately after the events of Tales 50 and, as luck would have it, Dan has just informed me that it has been approved! More details as they become available.

At Playmates No One Can Hear You Scream!





























More for the "Mirage Mutants that Playmates Rejected" toy line, my lame xenomorphic Alienator!




























A shameless attempt at cashing in on a Playmates "theme" turtle. Rejected!































Ripley: "These people are here to protect you. They're soldiers."
Newt: "It won't make any difference."

It's Only Rock 'n Roll (But I Like It)

























Here's another one for the "Mirage Mutants that Playmates Rejected" toyline.
The Aerosmith-Cinderella-Guns & Roses Mondo Gecko!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Market Watch




















While searching for Red Hulk Marvel Legends and Kalibak DC Universe figures this holiday season we came across a couple karai figures, a movie Don and some Mini-Mutants turtle figures at Walmart and Target. Nothing much to speak of. The aisles were packed with panicked parents pushing carts full of Star Wars, Hulk, Batman and Iron Man stuff though.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

"Do you hear the grasshopper that is at your feet? "



























My grasshopper-man mutant action figure, a homage to one of my favorite shows! Needless to say, Playmates rejected it.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Cryin' Hound





















One character from the TMNT Adventures got closer to being an action figure than anybody else.
Cryin' Hound made it to the "sculptural input drawing stage" but I'm afraid that's where he stayed.

Snake in the Grass



























We love Pete's snake character Scalien! This was submitted to Playmates to be included in the TMNT toy line but was rejected.
I think we need a "Mirage Studios Rejected Ideas for Action Figures" toyline.
We'd collect them all for sure!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

What Do We Know?

























Back in the day Murph and I tried relentlessly to get Playmates to do
something, anything from the TMNT Adventures book. But there was real resistance to our ideas at every turn.

One thing we pushed hard was the "wrestling turtles" --
actual legit early Pete and Kev designs. Playmates was pumping out every conceivable turtle variant they could think of except the one that Murph and I thought made the most sense -- the wrestling turtles! Oh well, what do we know, we're
just artists.

Would you have bought Archie "wrestling turtle" figures?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Keep On Truckin' !


















Don poses for this pic on the movie studio backlot. Wish we had this truck, it's a part of TMNT history. Wonder where it is now? We always thought it'd be cool to have this as a Matchbox or Hot Wheels type of toy truck with a tiny turtle figure in it.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

On The Road Again


























Back in the day we logged a lot of miles traveling to comic book stores and conventions for appearances to promote the TMNT books. Most of the time we packed into Pete's Honda Wagovan to make the drive or we would board a crowded, over-booked plane for the trip. But once, for a trip to the Mid-Ohio-Con, Mirage rented a tour bus with driver, used by the Rolling Stones no less, to make the haul in style. Everywhere we stopped people would ask us if we were in a band.

Pictured inside the bus are, among others, Steve Bissette, Kevin, Eric and Dan.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Trick Or Treat!



















Okay, we're late with this but we just remembered we had this picture set aside for Halloween. Here's a pic of April and Donatello taken on the set of the first TMNT movie.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Billy the Kidder Strikes Again




























































Here are the fantastic first 3 pages of the Tristan Jones and Fernando Leon Gonzalez Wild West C.O.W.-Boys of Moo Mesa project! Awesome! Now only 93 more pages to go!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Unruly Cowlick


While in the midst of our creative pow-wow about the direction and
plot points for the 3rd installment of the continuing TMNT/MooMesa
saga, Dean and I, oops...I mean Murph and I were pleasantly surprised when Pete, out of the
blue, suggested that Cudley the Inter-dimensional Cowlick show up on
Moo Mesa!





















We whole-heartedly agreed and quickly set about to make it
happen! Be sure to pick up a copy of Tales of the TMNT #52 this month.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Turtle Soup Misprint



























With Halloween fast approaching we thought it relevant to mention this marvelous misprinting of Turtle Soup.
Imagine our surprise when we opened the box and found this fiasco, a Tales cover stapled to the interiors of the new Mirage title Turtle Soup.
Can't remember if any them shipped or not. This one has been kicking around the studio for over 20 years and has seen better days.

Take a look at that snazzy ad on the last page. Did any of you attend the show that year and purchase the limited edition tour shirt? Ah, those were the days!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The Dean Clarrain Exposé


























Summer:1989. The archie book is in utter chaos and on serious brink of
breach of contract. I get the idea to take over the title and dump the
adaptions for new,original stories that meld the Mirage TMNTs with the
animated TMNT and combine the best of both worlds. But I can't do it alone
so before approaching Kev and Pete I go to new-found friend Steve Murphy and
discuss my plans with him and ask if he'd be interested in writing it. He's
reluctant. I explain what a great opportunity this is. He's mum. I force the
issue with him. He's totally emersed in THE PUMA BLUES and all of it's DAVE
SIM, DIAMOND controversy at the moment. Threats are made, arms are twisted
and I berate him until he caves! His only stipulation... that he write
under a pseudonym. We move forward with a story about a new character I've
just created in honor of, and based upon, him! Steve Murphy!! (more on that in a later post)
We pull it all together post haste and approach the Dynamic Duo. They are
ecstatic. We get their blessing, hoo-rah! With time fleeting and everything
due "yesterday" , we hit the ground running trying to catch up to a mess of
already missed deadlines and a totally insane schedule looming on the
horizon. We try to cover all the bases, the cowabungas, the pizzas, the
constant pressure from Playmates to make every damn panel on every
frickin' page a toy commercial. Dire jeopardy reins, but with sleepless
nights, hard work and lots of mountain dew we get The New Direction to the
creative team and history is made...the triumphant issue five of Teenage
Mutant Ninja Turtles Adventures!!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Dramatic Effect


























When Paul sent this page in for final approval I suggested adding a shaft of lightning in the last panel for dramatic effect.

Paul cheerfully obliged but for some reason it didn't make it into the book.
So here it is. Didn't want Paul's extra effort to go unnoticed.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Who Can We Turn To...












































...now that the Mighty Mutanimals are dead?



They lay bathed in black blood. Archie would not allow it to be colored red.

Dean Clarrain is Steve Murphy and Vice Versa


























Yes, my old partner in crime, Steve Murphy is Dean Clarrain. Or rather, Dean Clarrain is actually Steve Murphy. Read his shocking confession at The 5th Turtle!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Armaggon Would Love This


















Evidence that millions of tons of methane gas is being released into the atmosphere from beneath the Arctic seabed has been discovered by scientists.

The sea is foaming with gas bubbling up through "methane chimneys" rising from the sea floor. The sub-sea layer of permafrost, which has acted like a "lid" to prevent the gas from escaping, has melted away to allow methane to rise from underground deposits formed before the last ice age.

Methane is about 20 times more powerful as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide and scientists fear that its release could accelerate global warming leading to further permafrost melting and the release of yet more methane. Earth is doomed.



This mutant shark was created by Pete and submitted to Playmates Toys as a possible addition to the TMNT toy line. They soundly rejected it. Years later, Murph salvaged the design and used it as the look for his character Armaggon, a shark monster he had created for the Archie Adventure series. A copy of Pete's original design was inked for this blog post.

Needless to say, this shark mutant was a huge hit with the fans and would have made a most radical action figure.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

All The News That's Fit To Print





























Behold! Here is a copy of the Mirage Times. These were available to retailers to pass out in comic stores. Do any of you collect these?

Mondo Trouble

























Environmental degradation, massive corporate and government
corruption leaving
the U.S. economy in shambles,
seems the Mutanimals were right in their fight.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Go Mutanimals Go !














These Mighty Mutanimals by Kyle A. Carrozza are mighty cool!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Extra Digit


























Hey, the Fugitoid only has 3 phalanges not 4 as pictured in the cover above. Where's the quality control?

Who Wants To Be A Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle?


A while back I was hit with this idea for a new reality show to celebrate the TMNT's 25th anniversary entitled "So You Want To Be A Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle" (working title). Stupid, right? Well the idea kept nagging at me and with time growing short I fired off a proposal to Mirage. who in turn fired it off to the appropriate parties.

What follows is a portion of said proposal:

This is a reality based television game show where 20 hard-core TMNT fans are
outfitted with a tortoise shell vest, a carapace back with a plastron
front, elbow and knee pads and bandana which they must wear until they
are eliminated. The contestants are isolated in a NYC sewer setting
and compete for cash and prizes by learning martial arts from Master
Splinter, a martial arts expert in rat's clothing. They must live
like the TMNT and endure rigorous activity with, daily training
sessions, the constant odor and filth of the sewer environment, and
can eat nothing but pizza for the duration of their stay. The show
would use progressive elimination, allowing the contestants to battle
each other, both physically and by answering Ninja Turtle trivia,
until only four final contestants remain and must use their combined
strength to defeat an actor portraying the Shredder in a series of
Battle Nexus bouts (of varying mental/physical forms). The final
contestant wins a cash prize in the season finale and the right to
be named "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle."

Other than Murph, no one really shared my enthusiasm. End of story.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Dangerous Crossing




























While running errands today I came across a little turtle trying to cross the road. So, just like Michelangelo, I quickly jumped from my civic and transplanted the tiny terrapin into the creek on the other side of the road. Animals just don't have a chance in hell anymore and it's only getting worse as we humans overpopulate the planet.

Monday, August 25, 2008

50/50


























Spoke with Dan this morning and the orders for Tales 50 are in. Only about a 10% jump in sales. The books should ship around the middle of September and should be available for purchase at your friendly neighborhood comic shop about a week after that.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

"Always Low Prices"



























Was in Wally Mart yesterday and saw a slew of Mini Mutants in the clearance aisle. Discontinued already? Seems like they just shipped. They had quite a few TMNT movie figures and vehicles in the clearance aisle too.

Dollar General had a bunch of Fast Forward figures at $5 each and TMNT vehicles and motorcycles too. Box sets were $15.


For fun and practice, I inked over a copy of an old pin-up by Kevin for this post's artwork.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Saturday, August 2, 2008

NECA Buyer Beware!



Looks like Leo is down to one katana now. The other one broke as I excitedly pulled it out from underneath the tape. Snapped right off. I thought they were made of that thick, rubbery plastic. Stupid,stupid me...should have cut the tape.

Needless to say, I was quite inconsolable after this happened.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Paul Pages

























Just received a brand new batch of pages from Paul. Words cannot describe how awesome they are! Tales 50 ships in September and I can't wait!

This is from a character study of the Mothman for that issue. Vile.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

7 Lovefield Street

























Want to thank my good buddy Dan Berger for snapping this pic of where Leatherhead was created. I occupied the basement apartment on the right.





So when you're on your TMNT pilgrimage to western Massachusetts be sure to stop by 7 Lovefield St.in the beautiful town of Easthampton. It sets directly across from the abandoned Rat King factory. At least it did way back in the late 80's.




































In the Utrom tongue, the name Leatherhead translates as "Moment of cognizance, birth of understanding."