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tmnt the ninja tribunal


super-hero wannabe
Feb 13, 2002
Reaction score
heads up turtle clan members
i was looking at my digital listing for my fox/4kids tv affiliate and i learned that they will repeat the first episode leading into the ninja tribunal storyline it airs at 10.00 a.m. eastern time this saturday feb 9th
i now bump this as a public serviceto fans of the REAL tmnt cartoon
10;30 am eastern on 4kidstv
heads up turtle clan members
i was looking at my digital listing for my fox/4kids tv affiliate and i learned that they will repeat the first episode leading into the ninja tribunal storyline it airs at 10.00 a.m. eastern time this saturday feb 9th

sorry i had the time wrong when i first posted this its at 10;am
www.ninjaturtles.com confirms this (actually on 1/31). They also claim that Right Stuf, an online catalog that sells mostly anime DVD's but also TMNT DVD's, claims a Ninja Tribunal box set is due out at the end of May 2008.

"The Ninja Tribunal", the end of Season 4 which originally aired in 2006, reaired today, but "Lap of the Gods", episode #105, is slated for next week. If 4kids airs all 12 in a straight run, they will have new episodes through April.

The irony is I caught this by accident; I set my alarm to wake me before THE BATMAN but accidentally set it an hour early, catching the end of "Ninja Tribunal" (which I had already taped when it aired years ago) and the promo for the rest of the Ninja Tribunal series. Hopefully a potential new job won't prevent me from watchin' 'em. Can't wait for this. Welcome back, TMNT. You've been missed.
they have indeed dread, they have indeed
It airs at 10 a.m. in NY, although I would suggest checking individual listings.

It is a shame that the TMNT forum was squashed. The cartoon in some form never left the airwaves and TALES OF THE TMNT has remained shipping new episodes. The toys are continuing. No word of a movie sequel and it was banished, yet a JUSTICE LEAGUE movie enters the beginning of pre-production about a year after the cartoon ends and THAT gets a forum? Oh, well.

I bet the guys at Technodrome are going nuts, if they hadn't already DL'd the Tribunal episodes.
I got impatient and downloaded the lost season. It was so much better than Fast Forward. There were parts I didn't like at first, but it all ultimately pays off really well.
I got impatient and downloaded the lost season. It was so much better than Fast Forward. There were parts I didn't like at first, but it all ultimately pays off really well.

As expected. :up:

It is seriously scary how I stumbled ontp finding out about the Tribunal airing. It was as accidental as I said, the sort of stuff you can't make up.

TMNT was the last cartoon show that was truly good and dear to my heart. It is so overrated but very good, offering stuff for kids and adults alike without talking down to them, or skimping on character and plot development. The show pushed the envelope almost weekly. It allowed me to rediscover characters who dominated 6 years of my childhood and enjoy them again as an adult. That's something magical, in a way.
Bumping this. We used to have a whole TMNT forum so hopefully all of 'em see this topic. If they haven't DL'd the Lost Season by now.
WARNING: Post below contains SPOILERS!

After almost two entire years of waiting and 25 episodes worth of FAST FORWARD (or Season 6 if you look at it Mirage's way), 4kids finally begins to air the 12 "Lost Season/Ninja Tribunal" episodes. Last week they ran the prologue, which was the semi-cliffhanger ending circa May 2006 that kicked things off. In a way, Saturday mornings have not been the same. THE BATMAN's gotten better than it was in '06, but still nothing near TMNT 2k3's heyday. There is LEGION OF SUPERHEROES, which isn't too shabby. And to be fair, FAST FORWARD was no worse than a slew of other cartoons that air on network TV, even if I lost patience with it after 7-8 episodes. Having a morning to look forward to new TMNT, the TMNT that I consider THE TMNT cartoon, was like welcoming back an old friend. It felt good to anticipate a Saturday morning with that kind of vigor again.

Of course, it has been a while; I was 24 when Season 4 ended, and I am nearing 26 now. As great as 2k3 was, there is a part of me that wonders if the lapse of time between new material for me has led me to raise the show on too high a pedestal. Can even the Lost Season, the last material that the creative team put together before the network demanded lighter fare be able to top the past, even if said past is iconified somewhat by fan memory?

"LAP OF THE GODS" is hardly the best that TMNT has to offer in terms of episodes, but it has some of what TMNT did best. Solid animation, good voicework between the core characters, some good designs, and above all a sense of subplot. No Western cartoon in recent memory built up subplots over a season's time as well as TMNT did. There was the 90's Spider-Man series, but that suffered via censors and a shrinking animation budget. TMNT's probably not in THE BATMAN's league but it still looks better than some shows, and the character models are FAR better than FAST FORWARD's simplier, more angular designs. The episode as itself isn't the greatest, but as the continuation to the build-up to the Turtles' next and possibly greatest challenge, it serves it's role well.

The intro to the episode is a little different than the usual intro's, where one of the main characters, usually the Turtles, sets things up. It was more of an overhead sort of view at the characters as they dock upon the shore of Japan. Where we last left things, Leonardo had grappled with feelings of anger and self-loathing after their final battle with Saki in space ended in a near-suicide and a chance save by the Utroms via the training of the Ancient One and the faith of his friends and family. Donatello's worth had been re-established after a series of battles where he was a key and then after he contracted the Bishop-created mutagenic virus that turned him into a hulk-like Giant Turtle. Splinter was still the same protective father and sensei that he always was, although age seemed to be dulling his reflexes slightly and he had learned that his sons had to go their own way at times, and the best he could do is support them. Casey & April's relationship grew stronger. Raph was no longer plagued by his rage but still had a temper and still had a rivalry with Leo, only it was less bitter and there was still respect, as if Raph set to push Leo to be better if he did ill. Mikey...was still Mikey. Despite instances of being serious, he was the goofy-funny one and by Season 4, his "girly scream" had probably been overused for comic relief. Of course, after FAST FORWARD's overkill of "goofy Mikey", I am sure the Lost Season won't be as outrageous. After saving Don from Bishop, and after Saki's old Elemental Ninja manipulated Bishop into getting an artifact for them, they sought to resurrect their true Shredder, who is apparently a demon.

This is interesting because while Seaon One was fresh, many fans were thinking that Saki would turn out to be a tengu himself, given his "Sword of Tengu" and seeming immortality and unkillablity. Then it turned out he was an Utrom, a move that split fans. I actually thought it worked for the show, but I know that was at times a minority opinion. So in this storyline, I see the writers as literally having their cake and eating it too by introducing a Tengu Shredder. I mean of course I know it allows the Turtles to fight Shredder, or at least A Shredder, again, and new toys and all that. But I think it is interesting.

After arriving in the seemingly mystical Japan and entering the Tribunal's Lap of the Gods temple, the "acoltyes" as they are called are issued amulets that allow them to better harness their chi energy (Raph, distrustful about the whole ordeal and irked that Leo is "going along" with their kidnappers, calls them "dog collars"). The Tribunal introduce themselves and shed their Shredder-esque robes for SAMURAI SHOWDOWN-esque designs. Khan Shi-Sho, the Ninjitsu Master of Spirits, Juto Shi-Sho, Ninjitsu Master of Weapons, the hard-as-nails lady Shikara, Master of Strength, and Hizoma Shi-Sho, master of Stealth. They are all mystically powered and seemingly larger than most mortals, not unlike the Daimyo of the Battle Nexus realm. They seek to train the ninjas in this supreme battle, yet in true "wise one" fashion are deliberately vague about said threat. I actually liked these designs for the Tribunal and they had a very Eastern anime feel for them without going too overboard.

I wish I could say the same of the human fighters; Adam, Joy, Tora, and I forget the name of the black dude with the sword. They're not bad designs, but they seem a little generic, and their characters are not rising to the fore so far. I think it is because all four are shoved at us at once, rather than one at a time to build. The only one of them I like is Adam, the large bald guy with the ball & chain. Joy reminds me too much of the bland Sonya Blade from MORTAL KOMBAT for some reason. Tora and the African Swordsman are again decent enough designs, just not my favorite from TMNT. Part of me would have rather seen warriors that I'd seen before, like Usagi & Gen, or even Jhanna from "The People's Choice". I mean I guess in a way it is nice to get some more "human fighter" characters besides Casey, April, Hun and Karai, it just seems as if so far they aren't growing on me fast enough. They at least give the Turtles other characters to talk and train with besides each other.

One of the storyboarders for the series, with the handle, The Boardman, used to post at SHH and I met him at a NY Comic Con in 2005 I believe, and he and the other artists at that con stated (and showed in their art samples) that they draw influence from anime and manga, and that NARUTO was a fave. That was back before it was being dubbed and aired on CN. Well, this episode had some homages to Naruto to me, with some of the mystical incantations and the hand gestures. Raph even got a quip on it, "Every time they do patty-cake", bad stuff happens (or words to that effect). He also got in line about their "ol' Turtle luck" and I wondered if it was like "the ol' Parker luck". Raph had some good lines this episode.

When the first part of the training involved studying tomes, Mikey groans but Donatello was naturally in his element, being the first one to start to summon chi. Of course, the cynic in us would groan about color-coded chi abilities for the Ninja Turtles and how it fits a video game or toy better than a cartoon, but TMNT has always had elements of magic in it and it does make sense for the Turtles to train in some sort of mysticism. It beats light-saber blades to me. After that, the Turtles and the humans start to train under some exercises set up by the Tribunal which reminded me of that SOUTH PARK skit about "montages", but their lack of immediate progress disturbs the Tribunal and frustrates the Turtles. I would think that at this stage of the game the Turtles should have fared a little better, but I understand it is plot convience. There is a trippy scene when the Tribunal starts to tell them of thing beyond their knowledge and the theme that perception is not all it seems. I was surprised to see one camera shot that, er, focused on Shikara's legs. Not that I was offended, far from it, I just thought it was something you rarely saw on Saturday morning cartoons. That is an, ahem, short kimono. But that is what I always liked about TMNT 2K3, it pushed the envelope, it tried new things. It was rarely content to provide the bare minimum and be done with it. It strived to be more, and not to insult the intelligence of the kids at home.

Just when the arguements are starting to grow dire, Splinter suddenly emerges, demanding that his sons return home (and with the Ancient One in tow). "Ninja Tribunal" ended with Splinter demanding to be taken to the Tribunal by the Ancient One and naturally Splinter would travel though heaven and earth, or at least stretch his will across time and space, to find his sons ("The Real World, Part Two"). Adam seems astonished that a rat is their master (as if large ninja turtles are any less fantastic) and immediately afterward, the fire demon Hyashi-Ocki is seemingly summoned by the Elemental Ninja to kill everyone, and he lays waste to the ninja assembled with ease. I did like that the Turtles naturally had a better "team rapport" than the humans, with Mikey trying to free the Tribunal and Donatello using his chi to fend off Ocki briefly. The animation for Ocki is done well, with cliche tentacles included, even if there was some repeat animation of Leonardo screaming. They all are seemingly defeated and Leo apologizes to Raph about getting them involved, which was the sort of nice, small scenes that TMNT has a lot of. Granted, it was all a spell of sorts, meant to prove the Tribunal's point. It did remind me of "Bad Day" a little, which is ironic as the Elemental Ninja were behind that one, too. Building them as the new threat after being near behind the scenes for ages is a masterstroke; EVERYTHING has repurcussions in TMNT. Because Splinter & the Ancient One did arrive, they had been included as well. The introductions over, now the real training begins.

And that is where the NINJA TRIBUNAL episodes will be made or broken, on how that training goes and what is presented. The ball is rolling on something huge and I naturally expect an all out brawl at the end of the season. Watching THE BATMAN about an hour later deliver another pretty if not average episode that has no sense of subplot or building up of things further proves that TMNT still has it, at least as it was. After a lengthy wait, I can't wait for the next 11 Saturdays. Welcome back, TMNT. You were missed.
i wish i could get training like that
Saturdays feel "right" with 2k3 TMNT on the air again, even if only for another 11 weeks.
Now that the season has kicked into high gear, some thoughts about New World Order pt. 1.

Random thoughts:
  • Chaplin! Good to see him again, and with a new look and voice, to boot--it's nice to see a sign that time has passed between seasons. He also seems much more serious now, in contrast to his original Otaku-like personality.
  • Between the Shredder's resurrection and Sandman's origin over in Spectacular Spider-Man, it was a good week for transformation sequences. Very nice opening, and not something I would have ever expected to see in a Saturday morning cartoon.
  • I liked seeing the Shredder mow down the Foot Ninja--makes the point across while not being to excessive. We've come a long way since the episodes when the creators would go out of their way to show that no one actually died fighting the turtles.
  • I like how this new/old Shredder's personality is very different from the old/new Shredder and he's just doing his own thing. It makes perfect sense that they would be different--the Utrom Shredder never had the luxury of raw power his predecessor enjoys, and the Demon Shredder had a need for subtlety (not that a guy with spiked armor is ever subtle, but you know what I mean). Still, this Shredder has nowhere near the staying power of the old/new one, and I'm glad he doesn't overstay his welcome.
And for Dread's benefit, should he ever post here again, the names of the Ninja Tribunal and their Acolytes.
  • Kon Shisho, Ninjitsu Master of Stealth
  • Juto Shisho, Ninjitsu Master of Weapons
  • Chikara Shisho, Ninjitsu Master of Strengh
  • Hisomi Shisho, Ninjitsu Master of Strengh
  • Adam McKay
  • Joi Reynard
  • Tora Yoshida
  • Faraji Ngala
Next episode: Things really heat up.
After watching the LOST EPISODE one week at a time as 4kids desired, the Pope's visit cut over last week's episode so I just bunkered down and watched the final three episodes of the LS on Veoh.com. I must say, while it stunk that this and SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN ran at the same time, it wasn't a problem due to having a VCR (go late 70's technology!) and the two shows made for a great Saturday. Due to a lack of time from a new job and, well, not as many TMNT fans here as there used to be, I didn't crank out a 5,000 essay for every week's episode. But now having seen the complete saga, I felt it was time to let some feelings be known and shared, even if no one reads this. Just to get things down.

Naturally, the Lost Season symbolizes a few things for me. It is the culmination of 4 seasons worth of stuff from the 2k3 TMNT show. But it also is the end of an era. After this season was produced, and even during, the 4kids network apparently got serious about wanting lighter fare, which brought TMNT: FAST FORWARD. While not horrible, TMNT: FF was nowhere near the pedigree of this earlier incarnation, with cornier stories, less dark suspence and a more mainstream and IMO interior character design scheme, even if it probably animates better. Sneak peeks of the 7th season of TMNT show that this design scheme will remain and while the gang is back in the present, no one expects the level of maturity or darkness that was the 2k3 series.

Does that make me bitter? No. The 2k3 era, mostly untouched for most of it's run my 4kids until the end, when episodes aired out of order, one was only shown overseas, and one, "Nightmares Recycled", cut production. But still, that is 5 seasons and 116 episodes, a mighty run. That's more episodes than Batman the Animated Series had across two networks. And the Lost Season has a climatic finish that ties up a lot of loose ends and could be seen as a series finale.

As a brief summary, after managing to save Donatello from Agent Bishop, the Turtles find themselves training with the enigmic Ninja Tribunal and alongside a few other ninja warriors, learning how to harness their physical and spiritual prowess against a terrible foe. This foe would naturally turn out to be the "original" Shredder, who was a horrible demon overlord capable of turning into a dragon, SLEEPING BEAUTY style. It was this warlord that the Utrom Cherell imitated when he came to earth and it is this legacy that Karai now continues. The Mystical Ninjas, once throwaway combatants in Season 1, returned in full force as major king-makers, which I thought was a stroke of genius on the writing front. Perhaps the biggest bummer is while the Ninja Tribunal themselves have interesting designs, the human Acolytes are a bit generic. Their personalities never come to the forefront much and their designs aren't bad, but are hardly classic, either. They ate up a bit of time for some of the Tribunal episodes, but they did serve their purpose.

Another hurdle was getting past the idea of the Ninja Turtles summoning color coordinated chi manuvers with "special moves" that are spoken; at the end, they even get animal-themed avatars and turn into dragons. This was a bit of a departure and naturally reminded me of anime (there actually was a Ninja Turtles anime, but it was too cheesy for words and only lasted 2 OAV episodes). This wasn't exactly a bad thing, and as the Turtles have always been involved in Eastern mysticism, it did make more sense than, say, stock futuristic weapons in TMNT: FF. I didn't mind the mystical weapons or the chi-moves much, especially since they were animated well. Characters transforming into dragons isn't my cup of tea, but it didn't happen too often.

Once Tengu Shredder is revived, the storyline really kicks into high gear as the Tribunal and the Acolytes are seemingly killed, leaving the Turtles back in NYC and having an impossible task before them to save the world. The Tengu Shredder has a really great design and arguably some of the best lines I have heard from a Saturday morning villain in ages, and Scottie Ray knocked them all out of the park; every line oozed pure evil in a way that was spooky without being cheesy. This Shredder radiated with raw physical and magical powers and saw little need for imitators or mortal armies, laying waste to Karai's Foot Clan as an insult to him. The Turtles are naturally forced to rescue their enemy, and the finale is something to behold.

I remember before the first Shredder was revealed as an Utrom, some fans guessed he was in fact a Tengu and so it was interesting that this show basically got to go with both choices.

Literally every ally of the Turtles besides Usagi, Gen, the Fugitoid and probably a few others are summoned for one final battle, even enemies like Hun and the Purple Dragons. The Justice Force, Chaplin & the Foot, and the Earth Protection Force with one of the show's best characters, Agent Bishop. His armor had to be a beast to animate and yet he gets in some great action sequences as the gang has to battle past demonic hordes and zombie ninjas while the heroes in a half-shell take on the Shredder. Despite the fact that FAST FORWARD basically told us everyone lived, the pacing and subplot of Splinter's "bad omen" dream kept the suspense at a fever pitch. I did regret that Casey Jones really didn't rise into action one last time, but it made sense having him stay behind with April to watch her. The Justice Force and the EPF almost stole the show from the Turtles in terms of sheer action and it felt great seeing all of these characters one last time, even the ever-annoying Baxtor Stockman or a simple thug like Hun.

Tengu Shredder was showcased as being so impossibly powerful that when it did seem like he was being weakened, it seemed like a big deal, but he would always come back, like some horror monster. Karai would drain his mystical strength, the Turtles did their dragon forms, and the Shredder still kept coming. Hamato Yoshi makes a decisive cameo in the end, and while I can't begin to explain why, it did sort of bring things full circle and allow him to sort of avenge himself. Hey, it's magic, right? Some of the violence was pretty hard core, with monsters being sliced and blasted in two and whatnot.

The Tribunal and the Acolytes turned up alive, although I kind of liked the added weight to the story with them being dead. Splinter accepts the Tribunal's earlier decision to ignore the threat of the Utrom Shredder because, after all, Yoshi's death caused the creation of Splinter & the Turtles, who just vanquished this ancient evil. The heroes win and we get a final wide shot of the city, and quite honestly I don't see how this could be topped. It was the culmination of years of effort and whatnot. For another site I listed the 2k3 TMNT as one of my Top 10 favorite comic book cartoons, all the way at #3. After Lost Season, that remains my feelings on this.

TMNT, from 2003-2006, was a comic cartoon show that was rarely matched in quality on network TV. It was a gazillion times better than the original 80's show and managed to please both kids and adults, provide merchandise as well as a long spanning, intense storyline with tons of action and character development. It homaged and adapted many comic stories from Mirage as well as doing something new. It offered great animation and VA performances. But most of all, it allowed me to rediscover characters as an adult that I worshiped as a child and still find them worthwhile. This is one of those shows that doesn't come along very often and soon the entire 2k3 run will be available on box sets and they belong on every animation fan's mantle place right next to B:TAS, JLU, BATMAN BEYOND, and S:TAS. The Turtles may never have it this good again and not even their last feature film could touch this show.

It's been an honor.
it has indeed been an honor dread, let us all enjo the final two lost episodes for one will be sorry to see this version of the tmnt end i' give the new one a fair chance:ninja:
I'm looking forward to the new version, myself. Ninja Tribunal was great, and the whole 2k3 Turtles series has been great overall, but it's languished on the back burner for too long, I think. First Fast Forward chased away a lot of loyal fans, and then it took forever for the Ninja Tribunal stuff to air for most people; seems like a good time for a fresh start.

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