TMNT/Ghostbusters #4

Originally written for Flickering Myth.

“The supernaturally awesome conclusion to the blockbuster crossover is here! Ghostly forces converge on the Ghostbusters HQ, and the Turtles’ opportunity to get back home is fast dwindling! The two teams’ last-ditch efforts may come too late!”

I had concerns about this whole enterprise. With both franchises forming pillars of my childhood, the initial fangasm (Mikey with a proton pack!) gave way to thinking that they couldn’t possibly match the level expectation now focused on them.

It’s OK though! IDW have proven they have a strong grasp on how to do a crossover, with this story giving us some details which help flesh out the main storyline without being required reading. It’s a balance that ticks boxes for both the casual reader drawn in by the title, and those who pick up every TMNT issue. The opportunity afforded by holding both licenses has been used to tell a good story, and is more than just a cash grab. It gave me a nice warm feeling in my crossover centre with a series of moments and conversations that I didn’t think I’d ever see in anything other than fac-fic.

With our group of ninjas, scientists and satirists working to a strict timeline, everything had to come to a head. It does so in great fashion, showcasing the abilities of both teams as they battle Chi-You and his soldiers. Character and dialogue shines through each action and speech bubble, deftly sidestepping any concerns that with so many characters involved they could easily be diluted or ignored. Burnham and Waltz manage to bring everyone in to play their part without dragging the story out.

I’ve really enjoyed Delgado’s work on this series, tempting me into looking at the Ghostbuster series. His designs are far from realistic, which is fine by me, but I’m not sold on the design of Casey Jones; he appears way too mature in the face and is ripped to shreds. Here he looks like he’d give Hun a good run for his money. His turtles however are brilliant, capturing everything from Mikey’s exuberance and enthusiasm to Raphael’s stubbornness.

There is plenty of fan service here for the avid Ghostbuster, but to dive into that could take away the pleasure of finding out for yourself. I’ll resist the urge.

Sharing the same home (basically) lead to a natural relationship between these characters which gave them a good basis to work from. I’m not sure how a jaunt with another team would work, but since this has been handled well I’ll set my default level to ‘hopeful’ if anymore are announced.

Kudos IDW. I didn’t think you’d be able to pull it off. But you’ve merged two of my favourite New York’s together and created a story that made great use of both worlds.

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