Some TMNT stuff really isn't for little kids.
The third installment in IDW's first micro-series. This issue follows Donatello.
Story: Brian Lynch
Script: Brian Lynch & Tom Waltz
Art: Valerio Schiti
Colors: Scarlet Gothica & Ilaria Traversi
Letters: Robbie Robbins
Editor: Bobby Curnow
Donatello is thinking about how he and his brothers unite and form a cohesive unit, a nearly unstoppable fighting force, but in their down time all share seperate interests. He sometimes feels like the odd one out among his brothers, as none of them share his interest in computers and technology. Donatello has taken to hanging out in forums on the internet to be amongst like minds. Although he gets along with most of the other visitors to the forum, one user, KirbyFan_01, always antagonizes him. While visiting one forum Donnie received an invitation to the New World Expo, a gathering of the best and brightest in the scientific community with a hefty grant as the prize for the best innovation. At first Donnie laments that he won't be able to attend, but then reasons that he would be able to use his ninja skills to blend in and avoid attention.
The next day Donnie attends the exposition, dressed not-so-inconspicuously in a hat and trenchcoat. He marvels at the inventions all around him. One of the inventors, a Harold Lillja, demonstrates one of his creations, an anti-gravity gauntlet, and makes a hot dog cart fly around the room. Although disqualified from winning the grant for accidentally dropping and destroying the hot dog cart, Harold still tries to impress by demonstrating his cloaking device, becoming momentarily invisible. As Harold begins to pack up his stuff armed security guards show up and tell him they're escorting him to someone who wants to meet with him. Donnie, sensing something is amiss, retrieves his bo staff (hidden in a potted plant) and follows them. He knows he's being reckless, but his inquisitive nature can't allow him to sit back. Donnie tails them, able to keep up thanks to Harold's loud ranting. Harold is brought to a conference room on an upper floor of the building and Baxter Stockman reveals himself as the one who organized the expo, all to coax Harold out of his isolation. Donnie listens in as Stockman offers Harold funding to continue his research, provided he can do one thing for him: find a certain group of turtles.
Stockman hands Harold a device called a turtle tracker and explains that it will hone in on the DNA signature in the blood of giant mutant turtles he's looking for. Harold activates it, immediately showing everyone in the room where Donnie is hiding only feet away. Donnie tells Harold he's better than this and shouldn't get mixed up with Stockman's lot. Harold at first thinks Donnie may be right, but during their brief conversation they realize that they know (and hate) each other from one of the online forums they both frequent. Harold attacks Donnie with pocket grenades, another one of his inventions. Luckily, Donnie manages to destroy the turtle tracker and put some distance between them. Harold makes it hard for Donnie to get away by using his anti-gravity gauntlet and sneaks up on him using his cloaking device. Donnie attempts to reason with him again and nearly reaches him but accidentally offends Harold. After a few more moments of fighting he tries again, telling him it would be unwise to accept working for Stockman and risk having credit for his inventions stolen again. As heavily armed guards close in on Donnie, Harold sees the light and helps Donnie fight them off. As the fighting escalates, Donnie borrows Harold's anti-gravity gauntlet (which is powered by the user's own body, and Harold's energy is nearly gone) to propel the two of them to safety. One harsh landing later, and they're in the clear. Harold, however, is very upset that he'll know have to live in fear of Stockman hunting him down and he leaves angrily.
Back at his family's home in the sewers, Donnie reports the events of the day to Splinter and his brothers. Splinter is upset at the risks he took but is glad he made it home safely and appreciative of the intel he was able to gather. As Donnie settles in to feel like the odd one out amongst his family, he receives an online invitation from Harold.
- Donatello's username on FAC.forum is DUZ_MACHINES_84, reference to the old cartoon theme song where is said "donatello does machines", as well to the year the turtles were created by Laird and Eastman, 1984.