Home / Film / DVD Review: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – Season Seven

DVD Review: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – Season Seven

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In Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles — Season Seven, facing facts, Shredder (or any other super villain) has to be completely brain dead to continue attacking the sole city where his arch-enemies live. If the Ninja Turtles live in the sewers of New York, why not attack Los Angeles once in a while? Surely there must be something to power the Technodrome in LA, and stealing it would be far easier without those meddlesome Turtles around.

Of course, it is a bit late to offer that advice since the Shredder stopped his evil schemes in 1996 when this series went off the air. Season seven was the beginning of the end for the Turtles, with Mighty Morphin Power Rangers pushing in on the same territory.

The goal of the seventh season was to mix it up a bit, moving the TMNT out of New York as they take a global vacation. Kids could learn history and about art, plus there's a nifty episode that even teaches kids about the artists who inspired the naming of the Turtles. Edutainment at its worst, but at least it was mildly refreshing.

As expected, Shredder continued his idiotic ways, choosing to invade Paris while the Turtles were in Paris, plus, of course, the same time intrepid reporter, April O’Neil, happened to be doing a story there. Mathematicians could not calculate the coincidence of Shredder unluckily planning an attack in the TMNT’s vacation spot multiple times over. It’s amazing this guy wasn’t regularly struck by lightning too (especially since he wears metal).

Even when season seven does end up back in New York, the show’s urgent focus on merchandising is blatant, bringing back pointless, irritating bit characters like Mondo Gecko and Genghis T. Frog. Mondo Gecko was undoubtedly the result a few too many late night planning sessions, or the weird effect ‘90s culture had on people. We’ll probably never know exactly what spawned that thing, but it was certainly a mistake.

Season eight would radically alter the formula, switching the theme song, dropping Shredder, and taking on a darker tone. Unfortunately, it was too late, the target audience was growing older and the younger set switching the channel to new shows. After watching season seven, who could blame them?

Like previous Lionsgate TMNT seasons, this DVD is a product of its source. Colors are slightly flat, sharpness is a bit dull, and source artifacts are common. When you add a layer of MPEG-2 compression on top of that, things become increasingly fuzzy.

Still, this is a watchable effort, with little blame falling on the studio. This is a large step up from the VHS and cable broadcasts of old, the animation is maintained as well as possible. None of the episodes exhibit any specific flaw, existing on equal ground across all 27 episodes.

True to the source, this is a 2.0 mono mix. Dialogue is clean, and the theme song comes through adequately. There are no noticeable moments of distortion or skipping in any episode. The classic laser sound effect is crisp, although explosions are somewhat muddled.

Originally released in four separate cases, Lionsgate has re-released season seven in a single set for a lower price. All extras are maintained.

One featurette is on each of four discs, beginning with A Shellabration of the Most Turtletastic Toys, a disappointing and repetitive feature that replays some of the earliest commercials as those involved with the show and merchandising discuss the brand. A Shellabration of the Turtles Creation contains interviews with Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird as they recount how the show came to be, and their thoughts on how it turned out.

A Shellabration of the TV Sensation brings back writers and voice actors to discuss their area of involvement, happily reminiscing about their time on the show. A Shellabration of a Fan-Nomenon Sensation focuses on a few collectors while they talk about their passion, although it would have been nice if more items were focused on.

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About Matt Paprocki

Matt Paprocki has critiqued home media and video games for 13 years and is the reviews editor for Pulp365.com. His current passion project is the technically minded DoBlu.com. You can read Matt's body of work via his personal WordPress blog, and follow him on Twitter @Matt_Paprocki.