Trading heavily on nostalgia for the animated shows we grew up on, IDW’s Saturday Morning Adventures comics are fun, deliberate throwbacks to a simpler time.

Heroes were heroes, villains were villains and everything was hyper colourful, action packed and often devoid of realism.

Yet in this issue, the line between hero and bad guy is blurred, as rock warrior Thrum is blasted with a device that changes his nature. Can the Turtles convince him of the error of his ways before Shredder and company get their hands on him again?

Though not quite as convincing at aping the visual style of the cartoon it’s based on as the GI Joe Saturday Morning Adventures series was, this Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comic does at least get the tone and silly plots of the animated show pretty spot on.

There’s also a few self aware pieces of dialogue thrown in (one about resolving a plot within 20 pages was particularly clever) and it even comes with a neat moral message, which was practically essential for these shows in the 80s.

It’s especially refreshing in 2022 to be able to pick up a single issue of a comic and know that – beyond the basic concept of the characters – no prior knowledge of the story or any particularly lengthy stretches of continuity is required in order to enjoy it; a real one and done issue is such a rarity these days, but Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Saturday Morning Adventures certainly provides that.

Which makes it feel like a very welcome throwback in more ways than one; both to the animated shows that obsessed us as kids, as well as the comics we enjoyed at the time – which were rarely multi part epics and instead, could be picked up and enjoyed in isolation.

This issue felt like a good improvement over the first too; it’s just a shame, like the GI Joe series before it, that it’s such a short, limited series.

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