The series, which was published by Archie Comics, but produced in-house at Mirage Studios, started out with adaptations of the ’80s animated series. After a mini-series and the first four issues of the regular series (which comprise the contents of volume one in this new collection) the format changed to original content.
These stories, written primarily by Stephen Murphy (under the pen-name Dean Clarrain) and drawn first by Ryan Brown and later Chris Allen, saw the turtles travel the world, learn about other cultures and religions, and fight to protect the environment. They met allies and enemies unique to this iteration of the franchise, and saw many of them die along the way. In some ways, it was an amalgamation of the original Mirage Comics version and the cartoon; in which the wacky, Saturday morning characters faced real, serious challenges.
The series ran 72 issues, in addition to numerous specials and mini-series. There was also a spin-off series, The Mighty Mutanimals, whose storyline was interwoven with that of the TMNT, which leaves me wondering how IDW will handle them.
It’s a great series, and I recommend it. The only flaw with these collections is the price, $19.99 for four issues. For something this old, with a limited potential market, a price-tag this high can doom the series before it starts.