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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Tournament Fighters (TT Top 50 Edition)

Daikaiju

Rated Ages 6+
(He, Him)
Poor Zog. Stuck on Earth after the TCRI/Fugitoid arc and barely able to breathe our atmosphere. A grunt caught up in the larger machinations of his superiors. By the time the Return To New York storyline happens, he's suffered so much brain damage (O2 saturation I think?) he thinks Raph is his commander and dies in a conflict not of his making.
 

Dracula

Plastic Vampire
(He/His)
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#23 Mutagen Man​

Points: 98 | Lists: 4​

“Does whatever a mutagen can?” – Johnny Unusual

Given that one of the most common themes in TMNT is mutations of course you would eventually have a dude whose whole gimmick is mutating. And that’s Mutagen Man! Based on a sketch by Peter Laird, Mutagen Man first showed up in the Playmates toyline as one of the sickest action figure designs in human history.

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“You fill it with water and get to see his organs and junk float around! What fun!” – Flawgic

He’s basically a Frankenstein with a jar of organs for his body. He came with a bunch of little goobly bits that you were supposed to drop in the tank and fill it with water (or ooze, if you wanted to ruin your toy). I had this dude as a kid after finding him in a thrift shop and he was a quick favorite for me. I also caught the episode of the TV show that featured him and it was the moment I realized that oh, sometimes Ninja Turtles is pretty disturbing!

“Had a surprisingly horrifying origin story for a CG kid's show. He's a gross container of organs, but aren't we all?” – Dr. Nerd

Doc is talking about the 2012 cartoon here, but Mutie has always been surprisingly horrifying. The original toy bio says he was a “victim of Krang’s insidious experiments.” In the animated series, he’s a delivery man (named “Seymour Gutz,” geddit?) who falls into a vat of mutagen. The ooze dismembers him and he’s soon rebuilt in his containment suit by Krang and Shredder, which requires a steady supply of mutagen to keep him alive.

The 2012 show easily takes the taco for the most gut-wrenching version of the character. The turts have an annoying teen sidekick that they hate named Timothy (think Zack from the old show, who thankfully received zero nominations on this list). Timothy becomes obsessed with mutating himself to be like the turtles, but it all goes wrong in a way I won’t spoil.

Anyway Mutagen Man is a top fave for me for combining weird colorful monster design with fun toys and body horror. Heck, I even have a podcast named after him! An essential part of the TMNT family.
 

jpfriction

(He, Him)
Ah man, I had forgotten about good old Timmy in the 2012 series. Donny just kind of left him in the lab when they moved out, eh?
 

Lokii

(He/Him)
Staff member
Moderator

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#22 Foot Soldier​

Points: 103 | Lists: 4
Birthplace: Catacomb, Nebraska
"I'm going with the human versions rather than the robots. Robots are cool and they are just a parody of the Hand but all the same, good and actually threatening cannon fodder." - Johnny Unusual​

"Foot Soldiers doing random things." - Kirin​

"Plunger foot soldier." - Issun

Ah the Foot soldier, anonymous mooks for them turtle boys to cut no slack upon in the run up to a more interesting villain. After all, the Turts are partly defined by their weapons and not having something to use those weapons on takes a big bite out of their character. This rhetorical device is known as "Chekhov's Bo-staff."

As Johnny notes, The Foot originated as a parody of The Hand, a secret group of Japanese ninjas prowling around Frank Miller's New York. Frankly a ridiculous idea and one ripe for depegging. Oddly though, over the years the satirical element fell away and "Foot" became a menacing moniker despite how silly the premise is. After all, a boot can't stomp on a face forever without without a foot getting involved somehow.

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Sometimes a turtle property will lean more into the ninja aspect of the Foot solider but the most recognizable incarnation comes from the original TV show. These Foots with their alien-like purple hoods and skeletal physiques don't scream "ninja" so much to me. Instead their faceless and somewhat generic design pushes them closer into the role of platonic goon, icons onto themselves. Adding to this is that the cartoon made them into robots to facilitate family-friendly violence. Bonus: now they explode.
The best thing about this incarnation is that they're color-coded. Konami hit the jackpot with these guys. A generic everyman of a baddie, they're tailor made for a belt-em-up, and by swapping the pallet Konami provided needed variety and made it easy for the player to identify in a split-second what kind of threat they're up against.

I love a color-coded mook. Be they koopa troopa, dalek, or lonely hearts club band there's something immensely appealing about a group of baddies that resembles a bag of skittles.


Top 10 Feet

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10. Hot Pink

Years before the Barbie Movie made it cool to rock pink these stealthy shinobi were setting the trend.

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9. Raygun
Or plunger. Traditional ninja weapons they're famous for.

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8. Heavy Lourde
Practical and impressive.

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7. Tuning Fork

What was the plan here?

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6. Pterodactyl
I'd like to see you come up with a better way to get the drop on those turtle teens.


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5. Alton Brown
Educational!

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4. American Graffito

They just want to enjoy their last summer before facing the real world.

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3. Fire Freak
Not technically a Foot. But a generic guy who just happens to be on fire easily fits in as a soldier variant. I say we make him an honorary member of the clan.

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2. Projectile
More than ironic, they're iconic!


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1. Nameless Chattel Wasting Away Their Existence Endlessly Pounding Away at a PC
I'm under attack.
 

Dracula

Plastic Vampire
(He/His)
Kid Drac thought it was weird that the movie Foot ninja weren't robots, then Teen Drac had his mind blown that they weren't robots to begin with.

One of the best parts of the 80s cartoon is in the first season when da boys get to fight da foot for the first time on a rooftop and they discover they're actually machines. "Clang? Did you say clang?" says Raph after punching a Foot in the noggin. "Let's party!" As if he knew the censors were watching his sai. And I mean, he probably did, seeing as how Raph is constantly breaking the fourth wall. And in that episode he breaks a lot of Foot Soldiers, and it looks gorgeous, unlike 99% of the rest of the cartoon.
 

Bulgakov

Yes, that Russian author.
(He/Him)
If we're talking about Foot Soldiers, I think we all need to acknowledge that, as is cannon in the original movie, Shredder was just trying to run an effective youth center.


By far, "angsty teens" is my favorite iteration of the mooks in any version of the series.
 
One of the things that sums up how wonderfully creative Shredder's Revenge is is that they were not afraid to just throw the darts and see what happened, and so we got bullseyes like Foot Soldiers that are office drones and Foot Soldiers that shoot plungers out of a gun.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
One of the things that sums up how wonderfully creative Shredder's Revenge is is that they were not afraid to just throw the darts and see what happened, and so we got bullseyes like Foot Soldiers that are office drones and Foot Soldiers that shoot plungers out of a gun.
Gremlins 2 but robot ninjas.
 

Torzelbaum

????? LV 13 HP 292/ 292
(he, him, his)
I had Foot Soldier / Foot Ninja at #6 on my list. As others have said - they are like the Platonic ideal of nameless, faceless, interchangeable goons to serve as the villain's army and be dispatched in droves by the heroes.

Ah the Foot soldier, anonymous mooks for them turtle boys to cut no slack upon in the run up to a more interesting villain. After all, the Turts are partly defined by their weapons and not having something to use those weapons on takes a big bite out of their character. This rhetorical device is known as "Chekhov's
Kun

I also love the part with the Foot Soldier office workers / salarymen.
I extra-love that one of these guys totally lost his keyboard and is just gamely keeping on regardless
The guy behind him has lost his monitor - maybe they should pair up. Especially since no keyboard Foot Salary Man also doesn't have a computer tower.

... And the guy on the end doesn't have a mouse. (Did the Mousers get to it?) Geez, Shredder - what kind of an office are you running here!?

Also also - are all of those Foot Soldiers left-handed? How sinister.

If we're talking about Foot Soldiers, I think we all need to acknowledge that, as is [canon] in the original movie, Shredder was just trying to run an effective youth center.

By far, "angsty teens" is my favorite iteration of the mooks in any version of the series.
Partnerz in Kryme said:
she was cornered by some wayward teens.
Headed by Shredder they were anything but good.
Misguided, unloved, they called them The Foot.
They could terrorize and be angry youths
The Oroku Saki Center for Wayward Teens, located in the refurbished east warehouse on Lairdman Island, NYC.
 
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Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
@Dracula has an update. (edited for relevance, some of it is a response to me directly. Posting with Drac's permission)
Hey! I'm so sorry, honestly we just kind of fell off of updating. ... We may be able to pick this one back up, but it won't be until early next year if we do.

No problem. Can't wait for the comeback. I'm going to unstick this and I'll remember to stick when the list returns.

Until then, Drac and @Lokii's list has been a ton of fun. In case you weren't paying attention, @Violentvixen has a list going on now too. It's a good read. And I'm looking for participants for my list of Holiday songs and music! It would mean a lot if ya'll took part!
 
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