Credits: Dean Clarrain & Ryan Brown (plot), Dean Clarrain (writer), Ken Mitchroney (penciler), Dan Berger (inker), Gary Fields (letterer), Barry Grossman (colorist)
Following Screwloose’s revelation of Krang’s genocidal tendencies, the Turtles are determined to track him down. Taking Splinter’s advice, the Turtles follow their only lead to Krang, Shredder. While they search the sewers for his underground base, Shredder calls an exterminator to deal with his roach problem. If you guessed that Shredder’s mundane problem will lead to the creation of a giant mutant roach, you might not be a genius, but you do understand how this series works.
The nameless exterminator chases one unruly roach on a wet floor, which leads to him accidentally slipping down an open manhole. He lands in the sewers, where Bebop and Rocksteady were dumping toxic waste weeks earlier. Unbeknownst to everyone, a planarian flatworm has also been exposed to the toxic waste. Soon the Turtles run across the mutated exterminator (who seems to think the Turtles are “green roachboys”)…
…and the mutated worm (who calls himself “Wyrm”).
Wyrm longs to “suck the sweet flesh from their warm young bones,” but the exterminator (named “Scumbug” in the indicia but not the actual comic) wants the Turtles for himself. The two fight, accidentally disrupting gas mains and electrical wires. The ensuing explosion apparently vaporizes the monsters, but that shouldn’t discourage you from purchasing their action figures, of course (although it seems like the characters were severely redesigned when they later became toys).
The Turtles are fine, but they’re suddenly surrounded by dozens of rats. To be continued…
Review in a Half-Shell: This mainly involves two characters with little to do with the Turtles, but Mitchroney’s art is nice, especially when he’s drawing Wyrm’s freaky design. The pages that have Wyrm stalking the Turtles give the story a horror movie vibe, which helps to build the tension before the inevitable fight. The story has a little brotherly interaction between the Turtles, which is one of the aspects of the book I had forgotten over the years. When Raphael decides to keep his black wrestling outfit “because it is always dark nearly half the time,” he basks in Splinter’s approval while Leonardo’s jealousy is obvious. I like these little touches.
Turtlemania: The movie and NES game are advertised. There’s also an ad for a catalog of original art from the animated series.
Meanwhile in Riverdale…: Archie’s Explorers of the Unknown!¸ the Archie superhero series, is launching. It lasted six issues.