Episode 21 started off strong and stayed that way throughout the rest of the episode. It not only balanced the 2 simultaneous stories in a great way but it did it in an action packed and humorous fashion that this show has been providing on a regular basis. The cold open featured Shredder and Karai trying to get info out of a Krang, ("do they always talk like that?") apparently he has decided to listen to his daughter and take a closer look into the Krang. Even if it is just a means to get to the Turtles and Splinter. I've found it interesting that after all the effort they put into Shredder and Splinters back story that Shredder still comes off as a one-note villain. Maybe its coming in future episodes, but I'd like to see more of whats going on behind that helmet of his.
After the opening credits (which are still fun for me after 21 episodes) we jump right into some training with April, the turtles and Splinter. Its been cool to see April become more proficient with her training. It wasn't long ago that she couldn't even throw a punch. The scene ended with a lesson for the trainees; use whatever you can to unbalance your opponent, which was displayed in a hilarious way when Splinter licked Raph in the face to gross him out. From the beginning of the episode we knew that Karai was after April so you had a pretty good idea that this would come back up later on.
After another great episode of Leo's favorite show Space Heroes (which also tied well into the theme of the episode, funny how that works hey.) we jump right into what will be occupying the turtles attention. The Krang are trying to change the water in New York into Krang water, which is apparently bad because it can melt pizza? But when the water spilt on April nothing happens. We are never told why the Krang water didn't hurt her but it probably has to do with what the Krang said at the beginning of the episode about April being the key to their invasion. Which I guess makes some sense, after-all they did kidnap her dad.
The underwater scene with the turtle sub was fun, especially the giant sea monster when they made their escape, but really it just came off as a means to get April separated from the turtles so the writers could get Karai and April on their own. Not that I'm complaining, because what we got was very entertaining. The scene at the restaurant before April discovers Karai's identity was nicely done and had some good tension. (turtle soup anyone?) But when it came time for the 2 female ninjas to fight, albeit one of them is still very new at this, it didn't disappoint. It was cool to see April use her fan weapon, if only briefly before she was disarmed, but what really stood out to me was how vicious Karai was when she got April against the wall. Another thing that stood out was hearing how Karai reacted when April said she lost her mother, what does this mean for her going forward? I'm still interested in seeing if she isn't shredders missing daughter. What is more of a slap in the face to your arch nemesis then stealing and raising their daughter as your own to fight against you?
The episode came to an end with a touching scene of April recounting her triumph over Karai only to be knocked back down to earth when Splinter tells her she must stay in the sewers. She's already missing both her parents now she wont even have access to what was left of a normal life. Even though it might suck for her, it'll be nice to see her around a little more and maybe see her training go to the next level.
A few side notes:
- It was nice to finally see people and cars on the streets of New York. Its been too long that the city looked and felt empty.
- Mikey continues to be absolutely hilarious. That celebration dance was great.
- Lastly, Space Heroes should be its own show. Every time the captain slaps someone I cant help but burst out laughing.