A Raphael and Alopex story? Count me in!
First Read Reactions
- Immediate points to Alopex for calling out a really bad stake out trope (and not falling for it, either).
- Points off for Raphael for being a hot-headed dumbass (as usual).
- “I swear Splinter trained samurai instead of ninjas…”
- You should always listen to your girlfriend, especially when she’s a better hunter/tracker than you.
- You know things are bad when you actually wish Donatello was around.
- It’s the security guards with dead, lifeless eyes that you’ve really got to watch out for.
- Never good when Zodi shows up (…for our heroes, at least. As a villain, she’s all types of fun to read).
- Oh $#%&
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Universe #19 is about the most standard stake-out-discovery-ambush story you could imagine. As a reviewer/reader, that probably should bore me at least a little. Thankfully, it’s also so dang good that you can’t help but enjoy it.
Let’s start with the artwork by Dave Wacther. In addition to being aided by Ronda Pattison’s usual great work on colors, I’m not sure I’ve ever seen Wacther’s pencils look this wonderful. Alopex and Zodi in particular are rendered in perhaps the best manner that we’ve ever seen them.
Story-wise, writer Ian Flynn absolutely nails the Raphael/Alopex dynamic, both with some fantastic dialogue and even funnier body language. Flyn also goes straight to my heart with wonderfully vicious takedowns of two well-worn superhero story tropes. His story, on the other hand, molds a fairly run-of-the-mill narrative into something that ends up with pretty terrifying ramifications.
Whether that final page ends up being a big new chapter or a self contained crisis, it’s safe to say that the next issue of the series is going to be great. Add in a fun/creepy back up story about the Rat King to this one, however, and TMNT Universe #19 absolutely belongs on your pull list this week.
Like what we do here at AIPT? Consider supporting us and independent comics journalism by becoming a patron today! In addition to our sincere thanks, you can browse AIPT ad-free, gain access to our vibrant Discord community of patrons and staff members, get trade paperbacks sent to your house every month, and a lot more. Click the button below to get started!