Back in 1981, Superman II debuted on movie screens, demonstrating how easy it can be to title a movie. If it’s a sequel, just add a number, because the original title says enough. Honestly, I consider it lazy writing. So, Batman TMNT III – yeah, we got problems.
TMNT – not even the full name of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, just an abbreviation consistent with this Twitter world in which we live in. And the Roman numeral III – meaning, yes, there’s already been a number II. I must admit, that’s a significant commitment to an unlikely team-up for DC Comics. Apparently, fretting over the brand of their characters is only a part-time concern. The more of these to happen, the less entertaining it becomes. Just ask Jason of Friday the 13th, parts I-X.
But this time around, rather than reunite the Dark Knight with the Heroes in a Half Shell, we seem to have entered an alternate universe, in which young Bruce Wayne has been taken in by Master Splinter and raised alongside the turtles. The two realities seem to be a blend, the Turtles being variants of Batman various sidekicks, and their lair having certain nods to the Batcave (giant coin, dinosaur, etc)
But there appears to be some spill-over from alternate realities, complete with Anti-Monitor references. Could it be that DC Comics will be taking over the Turtle franchise in the near future? Why not? It’s about the only successful pop culture property Disney hasn’t absorbed.
I initially considered this project shameless pandering to fans of both franchises, but the closer I looked, the more I realized how subtle the sub-references can be. For this, I give credit to the art team. The rendering is exceptional, merging the gritty, grainy quality of early Eastman & Laird efforts with the current over-stylized DC fare.