Written by: Kevin Eastman, Bobby Curnow & Tom Waltz
Art by: Mateus Santolouco & Charles Paul Wilson III
Colors by: Ronda Pattison
I think I need to take a week off for my emotional stress. Things looked pretty final for Donnie when we last saw him. I mean, his shell was cracked, there was blood everywhere and his brothers were holding his limp and broken body. Not to let the tears and fear of losing one of the turtles dry up, Waltz’s script brought Fugitoid into the scene where we had to relive the emotions of being told Donatello was dead. Ok, now take a breath and roll your eyes. Because in comic books, especially with main characters, no one ever dies. Even when they were split open by a sledge hammer wielded by a mutant rhino and a chainsaw slashing mutant boar.
This issue picks up the pieces from the fall out of Burnow Island. The turtles scramble to save Donatello and each of the remaining brothers deals with this in their own way. We even see Michelangelo blow up and scream at Raph. We are reminded that The Shredder is not dead as we see Baxter gloating with his advantage and favor being held over the ninja master. The Foot Clan tries to gather their loose ends as the evil mutants are now being effectively lead by Karai as they all assume that Shredder is finished. Another loose end is tied up as Krang was sent back to Dimension X but we don’t actually see if that holds up from the previous issue or not. This issue also wraps up the Purple Dragons arc, as they start to push their territory forward only to be halted by Casey Jones.
For a comic without a lot of action, I was glued to each page as I frantically read about the fallout of a battle royal. Donatello might still be alive, but as the final page came, it is not how you would have thought it to happen. I think it makes sense… and I like the idea that they are going to go forward with, it just seems cliché to not kill off a main character. Just when I thought I had grieved enough over the loss of Donnie, we are reminded that nothing is final in comics.
A huge highlight for this issue was the artwork. With such an emotional scene by all parties that have lost members of their groups, the artwork had to match the emotion. The feelings were clearly visible in each characters face. The highlight of the issue comes when we the reader is transported into the consciousness of Donatello. The colors were lighter for areas that had symbolism, the outlines were soft and almost blurred looking and for some reason I read the words slower as if I was there as the art allows the reader to take in the emotion of each and every panel. While it was rewarding to see the turtles pick up the pieces of their falling comrades, the really accomplishment of this issue was the organic and emotional setup for the collision course to come in issue #50