TMNT: Bebop & Rocksteady Hit the Road is what I would describe as a “hangout” book. The two brutal besties and their relationship dynamic are far more interesting than the plot. There is a wild story going on here, but this comic shines in the moments we get with Bebop and Rocksteady simply being buds. They are rude, they have loads of attitude, and they are out on the open road. Honestly, this is good enough for me.
The book is written by Ben Bates and Dustin Weaver. What I love about their depiction of Bebop and Rocksteady is how over the top they are. The creative team has truly captured what it is to be utterly lame in an attempt to be totally rad. Bebop and Rocksteady look like two misguided bad boys out of time. For example, they think the nickname Razzmatazz sounds awesome. (That name does not sound awesome.)
On the flip side, the boys have mutant strength and size which makes them incredibly dangerous. They are like two hulking Lennys from Of Mice and Men. Somehow, their stupidity makes them even more formidable. If they like you, then you are probably safe (for the moment), but if they don’t like you, they might just blow you away.
Oh, and these freak boys are packing real heat, mind you.
That’s right. Bebop and Rocksteady are armed to the teeth. This brings me to a greater question I have with the series: Who is this book aimed at? My hunch is that the series is aimed at adult fans who grew up loving the Ninja Turtles. This would make sense, because there is real blood in this issue. The art style and content seem to be aimed at children, though, which would also make sense because TMNT is normally aimed at children. If this is the case, then it makes me wonder how kids are going to react when Rocksteady cuts his own ear off. That being said, I would have loved that as a kid. I guess what I am saying is, I don’t really know what is appropriate for children, but this might not be.
If this first issue is any indication, then there will be lots more mutant-on-mutant, jam-packed action to come. Don’t sleep on TMNT: Bebop & Rocksteady Hit the Road. It has been my experience that these side stories are usually passion projects from the creators who bring more excitement to them than you usually get from your mainline story arcs.
Creative Team: Ben Bates (writer and art), Dustin Weaver (writer)
Publisher: IDW Publishing
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