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Review – TMNT: Macro-Series Donatello #1 (IDW Publishing)

Art by David Petersen; via davidpetersen.blogspot.com
TMNT: Macro-Series Donatello #1
Overall
8/10
8/10
  • Writing - 8.5/10
    8.5/10
  • Art - 7.5/10
    7.5/10
  • Overall - 8/10
    8/10
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Summary

Writer: Paul Allor

Artist: Brahm Revel

Colorist: Cris Peter

Letterer: Shawn Lee

Maturity Rating: Teen

Publisher: IDW Publishing

Release: October 3, 2018

Donatello needs some help with a problem that only Harold can help with, but can the two ever see eye to eye again?

 

Metalhead Returns in TMNT: Macro-Series Donatello #1

Donatello and Harold have been on the outs as friends for a while. Ever since Harold’s ex-wife (they have since reconciled and now live together) was injured by Dunn and his street phantoms, Harold has wanted nothing to do with the Turtles. You can’t blame him really; his life has been a mess since Donatello popped up (see TMNT Micro-Series Donatello #3). In TMNT: Macro-Series Donatello #1, Donnie needs some help and only Harold is smart enough. Can they rekindle their friendship or will Metalhead’s interference ruin everything?

Writing

Having Paul Allor writing TMNT is always a treat. He has a great sense for these characters and always nails emotional story points. TMNT: Macro-Series Donatello #1 is definitely an emotional story. Allor really focuses on Donatello’s continuing endeavor to be better; he is always looking to improve something or figure out a way things could work more efficiently. Allor focuses a lot on how that effects Donatello personally and those around him. TMNT: Macro-Series Donatello is a great character study on the turtle who “does machines”.

Allor also focuses on the friendship between Harold and Donatello. Obviously, Harold has been mad at the Turtles for a long time and has had nothing to do with them. But he has also helped them out a lot in the past and even helped save Donnie’s life by transferring his consciousness into Metalhead for a while. It was very interesting to see Allor break down Harold’s character and really give him some good grounding as a character instead of just a grumpy scientist guy.

Art

Cover art by Brahm Revel; via tmnt-ninjaturtles.com

Brahm Revel is on art duties for TMNT: Macro-Series Donatello #1. I have always been a little at odds with Revel’s art on TMNT books. I generally like his style and it works well in the more action-oriented TMNT issues, and he continues to do that extremely well in TMNT: Macro-Series Donatello #1. He paces them well, with some dynamic structure and great pacing. His sketchy, rough ink style works tremendously well in making those scenes unique and exciting to look at. But I don’t think I will ever like his tendencies to make everyone have tiny legs and the Turtles perfectly round heads. Those will probably always bug me.

I was surprised at how well Revel caught the emotional aspects of the issue. He has great body positioning and posture that help reflect the characters’ feelings. He also catches Harold’s facial expressions extremely well. The round heads of the Turtles hurt Donatello’s expressions a little though.

TMNT: Macro-Series Donatello #1 also features another colorist besides Ronda Pattison. Cris Peter did the coloring on this issue and it is always interesting to see how another colorist works with these characters. Peter does a lot of work with different lighting in this issue which makes for some interesting color options. I am not a huge fan of how Donatello looked almost lime green in some lighting, but other than that Peter does some cool things. For example, how the computer screen lights up Donnie’s body in a dark room and how Peter makes the lighting change throughout different scenes.

Conclusion

I am always a fan of these Micro and Macro series from TMNT. Having the sole focus on one character helps bring out great story points for the rest of the series to build upon. Allor once again knocks it out of the park with TMNT: Macro-Series Donatello #1. With great emotional storytelling, he gets to the heart of these characters like no one else. Brahm Revel’s art is very dynamic and, while I have my dislikes, it still works well in this issue. As always, it’s exciting to see a different colorist get a shot with these characters. TMNT: Macro-Series Donatello is well worth the $7.99 price tag; you get 48 pages of a fantastic story that not only has a solid beginning, middle, and end, it also has ramifications for future events in the Turtles’ lives! 


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About the author

Brent Jackson

Brent is happily married and an avid comic book consumer who loves nothing more than the smell of comics in the morning and diving through a long box of back issues. By day he is a nutritionist and has also been training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for over 10 years. He is probably not the coolest person you have ever met. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @brentjackson30

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