Characters / Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1987)

Characters created for, and exclusive to, the 1987 Fred Wolf-produced TMNT cartoon. For tropes relating to characters who originally appeared in other incarnations or were created here and went on to appear elsewhere, please visit the franchise character page.

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     Heroes 

As a whole

  • Airplane Arms: The turtles consistently run like this.
  • Badass Family: The turtles and Splinter, undeniably so.
  • Bald of Awesome: By virtue of being hairless reptiles.
  • Brown Eyes
  • Color-Coded Characters: In the Mirage comics, the Turtles all wore red bandanas (not that it mattered much in a black-and-white comic), leaving their distinct weapons as usually the best way to tell them apart. Obviously, this series didn't go that way - giving Leonardo blue, Donatello purple and Michaelangelo orange, while Raphael kept red. All succeeding adaptations have maintained this approach.
  • Divergent Character Evolution: The Turtles were more or less identical in the original comics, but the 1987 series gave them different colored bandanas and the toys based on that series gave them different skin tones.
  • Five-Man Band: The Turtles including their allies
  • Foil: All four of them as a group and in pairs
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: To quote the theme song: Leonardo leads (phlegmatic); Donatello does machines (melancholic); Raphael is cool, but crude (choleric); Michaelangelo is a party dude (sanguine).
  • Happily Adopted: The Turtles love and respect Splinter as if he were their real father.
  • Highly Visible Ninja: They can frequently be seeing putting around on a blimp. With a giant "Turtles" on it.
    • Not to mention the Turtle Van, which was customized with armored plates resembling turtle shells and laser turrets on the roof.
  • Metamorphosis: From turtles to humanoid turtles.
  • Named After Somebody Famous: They are all named after iconic Renaissance artists.
  • Ninja: They are ninjas.
  • Totally Radical: Justified with the turtles, since, in the first episode, Michelangelo tells April that they learnt all about humans from watching TV.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Though pizza is the favorite food of all four turtles, Michelangelo eats it more obsessively than the other three.
  • True Companions: Badass Family plus friends.
  • Undying Loyalty: The turtles to Splinter.

Leonardo

Voiced by: Cam Clarke

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/1987_leo_03.jpg

Leads. Always in control. Does anything to get his ninjas through. Identifiable by his blue bandana and his twin swords.

Donatello

Voiced by: Barry Gordon

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/87_donnie_analyzing.png

Does machines. Is the brains of the bunch. Marked with a purple headband, and fights with a bo staff.

Raphael

Voiced by: Rob Paulsen (most episodes), Thom Pinto (1989 alternate), Hal Rayle (1993 alternate), Michael Gough (Season 10)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/raphael_beats_mousers.jpg

Is cool but rude. Throws the first punch. The muscle with the most attitude. He wears red and fights with a pair of sais.

Michelangelo

Voiced by: Townsend Coleman

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/1987_mikey_01.jpg

Is a party dude. The wiseguy. The wild one and one-of-a-kind. The most laid-back of the turtles, who lists among his interests pizza, comic books, and more pizza. Wears an orange-yellow bandana, and duels with nunchaku.

  • Badass Adorable: Silly, loves him some comic books, childish, always willing to crack a joke and and can kick tons of asses with his nunchucks.
  • Big Eater: He'd often annoy his brothers by eating all the pizza.
  • Brilliant, but Lazy: He's usually portrayed as having great potential, but because of his more laidback personality, he'll focus on something more fun instead.
    • This is enforced with his Weapon of Choice (the chucks, see below), the laziest of the turtles is the one wielding the most complex and difficult weapon. That's not something one can do without a gift for it.
  • Butt Monkey: If any of the Turtles klutzes out or has something bad happen to them for comic effect, it's Michelangelo.
  • Catch Phrase: The most famous "Cowabunga!"
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Generally the most whimsical of the turtles.
  • Friend to All Living Things: He has had several pets in the past, including his pigeon Pete and his parrot Ditto.
  • Fun Personified
  • The Heart: Although he exasperates his three brothers on a constant level, when a serious rift between their bond takes place, he usually is the one to try and patch things up...usually via humor.
  • Keet
  • Kid-Appeal Character: Indeed was the most loved by young viewers.
  • Large Ham
  • Leeroy Jenkins: He doesn't usually think of a strategy before heading into battle.
  • Likes Older Women: Michaelangelo has been shown to have a little bit of a crush on April, despite only being a teenager and she's nearly thirty, though this is completely justified considering her appearance.
  • Nice Guy: Genrally is the most friendliest, most outgoing and most soft-hearted of the Turtles.
  • Plucky Comic Relief: He got this role in the show and held onto it throughout all other incarnations.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": When he's briefly turned into a human, and goes, "Look out world, here comes Michael Angelo! Michael J. Angelo, that is!"
  • Surfer Dude: He talks like a California surfer.
  • Weapon of Choice: Fighting with Chucks.
  • Wolverine Publicity: Gets much more attention in the merchandise than the other Turtles.

Splinter

Voiced by: Peter Renaday

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/master_splinter_19871.jpg

Formerly human Hamato Yoshi mutated into a ratlike form. He serves as the turtles' mentor and father, raising them from when they were young. Taught them to be ninja teens.

  • Badass Grandpa: He's much older than the Turtles, but is still a capable fighter when he needs to be.
  • Cool Old Guy: Sometimes joins the Turtles in their pastimes.
  • Composite Character: In the original comics, Hamato Yoshi was murdered and his pet rat became mutated into Splinter. In this version, Yoshi himself is mutated into a rat-man. A rather poignant episode lampshaded the fact that Splinter was pretty lonely because of this, since he couldn't interact with other humans anymore. He was mostly a quiet man after all.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Fans tend to agree that he has some of the best lines in the show.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Splinter destroys the Retro-Mutagen Ray to save the turtles from Shredder, which was the only way to return to being human again.
  • Metamorphosis: Human to rat.
  • The Napoleon
  • Old Master
  • Papa Wolf: He will not take kindly to anyone who harms his four students.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Splinter's kimono looks like pink, or is it some light purple? Depending on the Artist.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: As quoted above, in the original comics Hamato Yoshi was murdered.
  • Team Dad
  • Vague Age: Splinter sounds and acts like a very old man, but in his human form he can't be above early 40's.

     Friends and allies 

April O'Neil

Voiced by: Renae Jacobs

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/april_oneil_87.png

April Harriet O'Neil is a television reporter for Channel 6 News and one of the turtles' first human friends and allies. Normally wear a yellow jumpsuit.

  • Absolute Cleavage: Subverted. Although April's jumpsuit was occasionally left open enough for this trope depending on the artist, her cleavage was usually left undrawn whenever this happened, as seen in her character modelnote . Fan artists, on the other hand...
  • Animorphism: April underwent multiple brief mutations over the course of the series, though each of these mutations was reversed by the episode's conclusion:
  • Bag of Kidnapping: Happens to her in the episode "Turtles On The Orient Express".
  • Belly Dancer: April and Irma are dressed like this in the episode Shredderville
  • Bound and Gagged: She always ended up being bound and gagged by the bad guys, especially during the earlier seasons, to the point that the turtles can even recognize her mumbles.
  • The Chick
  • Cool Big Sis: April was somewhat like this to the turtles considering she is older than them at 28.
  • Cursed with Awesome: April is turned into a fish mutant in one episode. She's understandably upset about it, but it saves her life when the villain's base is flooded and she's able to breathe underwater like the Turtles.
  • Cute Bruiser: Sometimes.
  • Damsel in Distress: April is frequently kidnapped by Shredder, quite often as bait in order to lure the Turtles out of hiding in order to unleash his latest attempt at destruction upon them.
    • Turtles Forever exploited this plot device to comic effect when the 2003 Turtles arrived in the "1987" Turtles' dimension, with 1987 Donatello commenting that they saved April at least once a day to the extent that watches could be set by it.
  • Damsel out of Distress: Depending on the Writer.
  • Demoted to Extra: After Carter showed up, April was relegated to sitting in her apartment and researching stuff on the internet for all of Season 9 and the first few episodes of Season 10. Fortunately, she started taking a more active role in the final few episodes once Carter was written out.
  • Fainting: Occurs after she first sees the turtles (like many incarnation).
    Michelangelo: She ain't no fun, she fainted.
  • Going for the Big Scoop
  • Hot Goddess: April wearing a magical amulet in the episode "The Lost Queen Of Atlantis".
  • Hot Scoop: She is an attractive news reporter.
  • Iconic Outfit: Her yellow jumpsuit.
  • Idiot Ball: She occasionally becomes so reckless in trying to get a good story that she doesn't consider the potentially fatal outcomes some of her attempts may lead to.
  • Intrepid Reporter: She was employed by Burne Thompson, though due to her headstrong nature and passion for her work.
  • Married to the Job
  • Older Than They Look: She has 28 years old, considering that she looks like she just hit her twenties, but is almost thirty.
  • Plucky Girl
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: In the episode "April's Fool". Of course, April is always hot no matter what. It was just nice to see her in something other than a yellow jumpsuit for a change.
  • Unfazed Everyman: After her intial scream and/or faint upon meeting the turtles she becomes this.

Irma Langinstein

Voiced by: Jennifer Darling

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/TMNT_Irma_9476.jpg

April O'Neil's boy crazy best friend. She has a crush on Donatello, though shows interest in several male characters throughout the series.
Tropes associated with Irma:
  • Adorkable: At times.
  • All Women Are Lustful: Irma's boy-craziness is one of her most defining traits. She is forever pining after a dream boyfriend, and always interested in the possibility of scoring a date. Species is no object, either.
  • Ambiguously Jewish: The name is Jewish, or at least sounds Jewish, but that's the only clue.
  • Anything That Moves: She's so desperate for a boyfriend that she'll flirt with (or just fantasize about being with) almost anyone as long as they're male. In one episode she ends up falling for a robotic policeman.
    April: Forget it, Irma. He's not human.
  • Apologizes a Lot: In The Turtle Terminator, she repeatedly apologizes whenever she accidentally hurts Shredder.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: In "Attack of the 50 Foot Irma" she is accidentally enlarged by an enlarging ray powered by Exaporon, by Krang (who meant to fire the beam at Shredder). Upon being giant, Irma's clumsiness gets the better of her. Eventually, the Turtles manage to shrink her back to her normal size.
  • Belly Dancer: April and Irma are dressed like this in the episode Shredderville
  • Beware the Nice Ones: She was able to defeat the Rat King after he paid more attention to April than her.
  • Brainy Brunette: Brown-haired Hollywood Nerd type.
  • Canon Foreigner: She was created for the 1987 animated series.
  • Character Development: She went from a generic boy-crazy ditz to an Adorkable Genki Girl with a Hidden Badass side.
  • Cute Clumsy Girl: Cute is a matter of opinion, but she's certainly clumsy.
  • Damsel in Distress: Many times like April.
  • Damsel out of Distress: Depending on the Writer.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Tends to react with a lot of dry sarcasm to all the looniness she gets involved in.
  • Desperately Craves Affection
  • Genius Ditz: She's boy-crazy and kind of silly, but also very smart.
  • The Klutz: She is really a klutz tending to step on people's feet and often addressed as this by others including Bebop and Rocksteady.
  • Mars Needs Women: Inverted. Her obsession with finding a romantic partner eventually reduces her to craving for monsters, mutants, and even the Turtles themselves at one point. She bonded the most with Donatello during the course of the series.
  • Meganekko: She wears large nerdy glasses at all times.
  • Put on a Bus: Halfway through the 8th season, she stopped appearing on the show.
  • Ship Tease: With Donatello.
  • Took a Level in Badass:
    • In "Super Irma", Irma gets hit by a beam from a magnet, which made her think she had gained super powers. She then changes into a leotard, cape, and knee-high boots in an outfit in design similar to Wonder Woman.
    • In "Shredder Triumphant!"
  • Vague Age: Irma looks and acts like a young teenager but is apparently old enough to own an apartment and have a steady job.
  • Whole Costume Reference: She dresses (and looks, with her hairstyle, coloration and glasses) like Jeanette from Alvin and the Chipmunks.

Vernon Fenwick

Voiced by: Peter Renaday

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Vernon_Fenwick_6875.jpg

April's cameraman, who is constantly trying to climb the corporate ladder and steal April's job.
Tropes associated with Vernon:
  • Butt Monkey/The Chew Toy: He often suffers humiliating misfortunes, but a lot of times he has it coming.
  • Camp Straight: He's very effeminate and such, but he's sometimes implied to be attracted to Irma.
  • Canon Foreigner: He was created for the cartoon.
  • Characterization Marches On: In season 1 he was friendlier terms with April, and helped her get the scoop on Krang's attack in New York even though she was in trouble with Burne at the time.
  • Dirty Coward: Often flees at the first sign of danger, leaving April on her own.
  • Face–Heel Turn: 8th season. Shortly before the entire Channel 6 staff was Put on a Bus, Vernon Fenwick ends up siding with Burne Thompson, and agreeing that the Turtles are a menace to society, and all because they didn't save the Channel 6 building from Shredder's explosive device in time.
  • Hate Sink: Starting in Season 2, where he becomes more cowardly and selfish as well as antagonistic to both April and the Turtles, likely to justify his Butt Monkey status.
  • Hypocrite: Will knock others for showing any cowardice despite being a huge one himself, such as in "The Case of the Killer Pizzas".
  • Jerkass: He's mean to April and the Turtles, often for no good reason.
  • The Load
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: He's often portrayed as analogous to Geraldo Rivera.
  • Put on a Bus: Halfway through the 8th season, he stopped making appearances.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: He literally has a pink shirt.
  • The Rival: Sometimes he tried to take April's place as a news reporter.
  • Sitcom Arch Enemy: In general, he plays the role of a smaller antagonists for the Turtles. Vernon and Burne Thompson often blamed the Turtles for crimes they are seeking to prevent.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: He thinks he's the best there is in the news business.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: He goes from someone who's April's friend for the most part as well as part of her main newscrew in season 1 to a rival reporter constantly trying to steal all her jobs.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: Like Burne, he strongly believed that the Turtles were a menace to society and often actively participated in Burne's anti-mutant campaigns, even though the Turtles had saved his life on many occasions.
  • Yes-Man: To Mr. Thompson, his boss.

Burne Thompson

Voiced by: Pat Fraley, Townsend Coleman (some episodes of Season 3)

The boss of Channel 6 news. He's very bossy, and hates the Ninja Turtles, disliking it when April's reports view them in a positive light.
  • Canon Foreigner: He was created for the cartoon.
  • The Chew Toy: Not as much as Vernon, but he usually does wind up on the receiving end of some negative karma, especially depending on just how much of a Jerkass he is within the episode.
  • Da Editor: He gets on April's case for reporting positive stories about the Turtles.
  • Fat Bastard: He's overweight and not very nice to April or the Turtles.
  • Fat Slob: His action figured portrayed him with his shirt unbuttoned and stained, chewing with his mouth open, and with paper stuck to his shoe.
  • Hate Sink: Like Vernon, his main role in the series is to constantly blame the Turtles no matter what they do all for the fans to hate him.
  • Irrational Hatred: In the Red Sky episodes, Burne blames the Turtles for the destruction of the Channel 6 Building and goes J. Jonah Jameson on them.
  • Jerkass: Never gives any respect towards April and is very unrelenting to the Turtles.
  • May–December Romance: Has a younger, airheaded girlfriend called Tiffany, who is implied to be the reason he hates the turtles. Notably when she asked how old he was, Burne said he was thirty something, while his employees were celebrating his fiftieth birthday.
  • Mean Boss: He tends to yell at his employees, particularly Vernon.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Probably his one redeeming trait is even though he's a huge jerk and has some major biases, he's (mostly) a fair newsman. This is best displayed in "Return of the Shredder" where despite his hatred of the turtles he still runs April's report that clears their names after the Shredder framed them, even though doing so causes his equally turtle-hating girlfriend to dump him.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: No matter how many times the turtles save him, he always immediately blames them for whatever's transpired.

Mona Lisa

Voiced by: Pat Musick

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/TMNT_Mona_Lisa_8783.jpg

A human college student who was mutated into a lizard and fell in love with Raphael.
Tropes associated with Mona:

Carter

Voiced by: Bumper Robinson

A college student who seeks out Splinter in order to gain some ninja training. Becomes an ally of the turtles in their fight against Dregg.
Tropes associated with Carter:
  • Ambiguously Brown: He has brownish skin, but it's unclear whether he's African American or just has a tan.
  • Cursed with Awesome: In his debut appearance, he gains a Hulk-like mutation power that sporadically causes him to turn into a huge, muscular yellow-skinned mutant with a metal arm and spikes.
  • Magic Pants: Averted the first time he transforms, but played straight on all subsequent occasions.
  • Only One Name: He has no surname.
  • The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: We never actually see Carter at college. Either his attendance rates are lousy, or his college has one heck of a long summer break.
  • Put on a Bus: Halfway through the final season, he's taken away to the future to get his mutation cured. We never see or hear from him again, so whether or not the cure was successful, we'll never know.

Punk Frogs

Voiced by: Townsend Coleman (Atilla the Frog), Jim Cummings (Genghis Frog), Pat Fraley (Napoleon Bonafrog), Nicholas Omana (Rasputin the Mad Frog)

Four ex-pet frogs who mutated into humanoid forms after being released into a region of the Okefenokee Swamp in Florida that had been contaminated by some lost mutagen. Shredder tracked them down and tried to train them as his own elite mutant warriors to take down the Turtles. Unfortunately for Shredder, they were naturally docile, and defected from his side to become allies of the Turtles.

  • Hulking Out: The episode "Napoleon Bonafrog: Colossus of the Swamps" had Napoleon turn into a muscular behemoth when enraged after exposure to a ray invented by Krang.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: The initially meet the Turtles in combat, but quickly realise they'd rather befriend the Turtles than serve Shredder.
  • Nice Guy: All four of them.
  • Non-Indicative Name: There's absolutely nothing "punk" about them.
    • Also, Rasputin's full name is "Rasputin the Mad Frog". He's as nice and level-headed as his buddies.
  • The Psycho Rangers: They were intended to be Evil counterparts to the Ninja Turtles.
  • Theme Naming: Like the Turtles, they were named by their human mentor's favorite historical figures/personal heroes. Of course, since that mentor was Shredder, he named them after tyrants and lunatics: Attila the Hun, Genghis Khan, Napoleon Bonaparte, and Rapustin.
  • Toyless Toyline Character: Attila and Rasputin never had toys, which is presumably why they got phased out.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: They like eating Chinese food and flies.

Zack

Voiced by: Rob Paulsen

A young boy who considers himself the "Fifth Turtle".

  • Kid-Appeal Character: He's much younger than the Turtles and his immaturity is rather blatant.
  • Older Than They Look. He claims to be "almost fourteen". He doesn't look it, or act like it. Maybe he was lying?
  • Put on a Bus: In season 7, he was phased from the show.
  • Sixth Ranger: He's trying his hardest to be one.
  • Tagalong Kid: Whenever he appears, he tries to join the Turtles on their missions.
  • The Team Wannabe: He's a regular human child who considers himself the "Fifth Turtle."

Neutrinos

Voiced by: Thom Pinto (Dask), Pat Fraley (Zak), Tress MacNeille (Kala)

A group of elf-like aliens from Dimension X who act like beatnik hotrodders. Their dislike of authority and war made them fugitives in their home dimension. Kala, the female of the group, develops a crush on Michelangelo.

Casey Jones

Voiced by: Pat Fraley

A crazed vigilante who goes after all sorts of crime, from armed robbery to littering: apparently adopting a "Filthy Harry" like persona.

  • Bare Your Midriff: A male example. It doesn't make him any less intimidating though.
  • Demoted to Extra: In this show, he is only a minor character who appears in 5 episodes.
  • The Faceless: It should be noted that you never see his face in the series, since he never takes off his mask, even when once going undercover in a business suit.
  • I Know Madden Kombat: Casey Jones attacked villains with various sports equipment like baseball bats and hockey sticks. In season eight, he gets a sword and faces off against Shredder, which could be a fencing reference.
  • Put on a Bus: Until the eighth season.

Mondo Gecko

Voiced by: John Mariano

A skateborading gecko who is friends with Michaelangelo

  • Evil Counterpart: To Michaelangelo initially, being a hip skater mutated by the same mutagen that mutated the Turtles.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Mondo Gecko was a member of a gang who worked for "Mr. X". Michelangelo convinced Mondo Gecko to turn on Mr. X. Together they fought Mr. X. After this, Mondo Gecko ends his career as a criminal and moves to the sewers and becomes "neighbors" with the TMNT and Splinter.
  • Metamorphosis: From gecko to anthro gecko.
  • Non-Mammalian Hair: He has long black hair even though he wasn't human before his mutation.

     Villains 

The Shredder

Voiced by: James Avery (Seasons 1-6 and first half of Season 7), Dorian Harewood (some episodes of Season 3), Jim Cummings (In "Napoleon Bonafrog: Colossus of the Swamps" and most of the "Vacation in Europe" arc), Townsend Coleman (later half of Season 7), William E. Martin (Seasons 8-10)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/tmnt1987_shredder.png

Oroku Saki (also known as The Shredder) was the leader of the Foot Clan. He is the main villain of the show. Shredder was frequently assisted by his Mutant henchmen, Bebop and Rocksteady, and was bossed around by Krang, until season 10, where he was replaced by Lord Dregg.

  • Affably Evil/Faux Affably Evil: Depending on the Writer.
  • Always Someone Better/Always Second Best: To Splinter.
  • Ambiguously Brown: Depending on the Artist. His skin is sometimes darker.
  • Arch-Enemy: To Splinter and the turtles.
  • Ascended Extra: The Shredder was killed in the first issue of the original comic. (Although he came back a few times, including in the form of a giant, mutant shark.) Here, he collaborates with Krang as the longtime Big Bad of the series.
  • Bad Boss: The Shredder constantly abuses and insults Bebop and Rocksteady. He also wasn't very nice towards Baxter Stockman when he was his lackey.
  • Baleful Polymorph: The "Mutazoo" ray gun Baxter acquires in one episode turn him into a regular housefly giving Bebop and Rocksteady the chance to boss him around while Michelangelo is transformed into a gerbil.
  • Big Bad: He and Krang are the main villains for the first eight seasons.
  • Big Bad Duumvirate: Shredder and Krang are the main villains of the show and almost always work together in their plans.
  • Big Brother Bully: Shredder belittles and mocks his little brother Kazuo Saki.
  • Bishōnen: He looks rather feminine without his helmet on.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: The Shredder proves himself more than a match for the turtles in armed combat, yet on many occasions when confronted he 'escapes', often with the words "another time turtles!" Why another time? Why not now!?
  • Brother Chuck: After Shredder and Krang are defeated at the end of Turtle Trek, they simply stop appearing in the show. Even in the show's final episode, when the Turtles explore the Technodrome's ruins, Shredder and Krang are nowhere to be found.
  • Butt Monkey: Shredder became one by the third season, as his defeats became more and more humiliating, such as being reduced to a child, trapped in block of cement, or turned into a tiny fly, among others. By the end of the seventh season he gets out of this territory.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Briefly as chairman of Octopus Inc. He seemed to be quite competent and had some success.
  • Darker and Edgier: The "Red Sky" episodes were more serious in tone and had Shredder become a more competent villain.
  • Darth Vader Clone: Bucket helmet: Check. Mask: Check. Cape: Varies, but Check.
  • Deadpan Snarker: He sometimes makes remarks about Bebop and Rocksteady's incompetence and Krang's inistence on giving orders instead of doing things himself.
  • Demoted to Extra: In the ninth and tenth seasons, he was no longer the main focus and only appeared in a three-part episode before disappearing again.
  • Depending on the Writer: He got hit with this pretty bad considering his level of competence and maturity shifted with practically every writer. This made it so he either completely overpowered the turtles without breaking a sweat ("The Incredible Shrinking Turtles") or was on the opposite side of the spectrum and was completely defeated without even putting up a decent fight. ("The Case Of The Killer Pizzas")
  • Dragon-in-Chief: He sometimes falls into this starting in season 2 (though he's still the Big Bad, while Krang is a Bigger Bad), though the relationship between him and Krang is basically a Big Bad Duumvirate since the plan seems to be for both of them to rule the world.
  • Enfant Terrible: As shown in the clips of his life from "Shredderville". He is seen angrily breaking toys as a baby and picking fights with other kids when he was a child.
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: The episode "Shredder's Mom" proves that even Shredder himself is not immune to this trope.
  • Evil Counterpart: To Splinter
  • Evil Is Hammy: His hamminess is often as blatant as his villainy, especially in the episodes where Dorian Harewood voices him.
  • Evil Is Petty: There is almost nothing he wouldn't do to hurt the turtles.
  • Evil Laugh: He quite often laughs evilly.
  • Evil Me Scares Me: He is terrified of the 4Kids version when he meets him in Turtles Forever.
  • Highly Visible Ninja: Even Shredder, a proclaimed "ninja master", wore outlandish Samurai armor and would often broadcast threats with as much publicity as Dr. Doom.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Shredder is many times this, particularly in later crossover after the initial story arc of the first season. This is the only media where is this.
  • Large Ham: He is especially hammy in episodes where he is voiced by Dorian Harewood.
  • Laughably Evil: He often provides some of the show's humor thanks to being highly conceited and having to put up with the idiocy of Rocksteady and Bebop.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Much to Krang's dismay, he doesn't always think before he acts.
  • Meaningless Villain Victory: In "April Fool", Shredder manages to get away with a rare isotope. Unfortunately for the bad guys, the isotope is unstable under high atmospheric pressures (especially those deep within the Earth), and the sample explodes after the Shredder returns to the Technodrome parked many miles beneath the Earth's surface.
  • The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: Shredder's attitude towards Splinter and the Turtles, so much so that they taunt him with it over the interstellar radio from a slave camp on Dimension X. His twisted code of ninja ethics forces him to bring them back to Earth...where they proceed to defeat Krang's bid for global domination.
  • Put on a Bus: Like all the Technodrome villains and the Channel 6 crew (except April), once the retool occurred.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Surprisingly in one episode.
  • Shoulders of Doom: He has bladed armor over his shoulders.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: The villainous Shredder's younger brother Kazuo Saki is actually a cop fighting for justice.
  • A Sinister Clue: His signature weapon is always on his left hand if he doesn't have two sets.
  • Spikes of Villainy: By way of wearing armor that's covered in blades.
  • Surrounded by Idiots: He laments this quite frequently.
  • Take Over the World: His goal is to take over the world.
  • Vague Age: He's implied to be younger than Splinter, but exactly how much isn't made clear.
  • Villainous Crush: Strangely enough, Shredder sometimes seems blatantly attracted to April in some episodes. It really depends on the writer, though.
  • We Used to Be Friends
  • Would Hit a Girl: Shredder has no problem physically threatening April and Irma in multiple episodes.

The Foot Clan

  • Conservation of Ninjutsu: Ridiculously prone to this. The Turtles plow through them with ease even when the Foot Soldiers outnumber them.
  • Faceless Mooks: The rank and file ninja have virtually no defining characteristics.
  • Ninja: They are ninjas.

Baxter Stockman

Voiced by: Pat Fraley

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/baxter.jpg

A mad scientist and creator of the mouser robots.

  • Adaptational Heroism: Downplayed. While his comic counterpart was a one-dimensional monster to the end, 1987 Baxter is a well-meaning, yet misguided scientist.
  • Animorphism: Eventually gets turned into a fly.
  • Anti-Villain: He started out as one, but went crazy when he became a fly.
  • Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: In his later episodes he would sometimes suffer from this due to having the mind and attention span of a fly.
  • Body Horror: His fly-man form isn't exactly pretty.
  • Butt Monkey: Prior to his transformation into a fly mutant, he often got pushed around and subjected to slapstick.
  • Cut Lex Luthor a Check: Baxter starts out trying to sell his Mousers to exterminators, but no one was willing to invest. Ironically, it wasn't because they thought the Mousers wouldn't work, but that they would work way too well and put the exterminators out of business.
  • The Dragon: He was briefly the Shredder's right-hand man prior to his transformation.
  • Evil Is Hammy: He's often prone to giddy gloating even when nobody is listening.
  • Four Eyes, Zero Soul: He wears glasses and is a bad guy.
  • Horrible Judge of Character: He agrees to help Shredder even though he approaches him on the streets in his full villainous garb and it gets worse from there. Even when Baxter turns into a fly as a result of Shredder sending him to Dimension X, as all it takes for Baxter to change from wanting revenge on Shredder to wanting revenge on the turtles is Shredder telling him that it was the turtles' fault.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: His motivation.
  • Mad Scientist: He creates inventions to fight the Turtles.
  • Metamorphosis: From human to giant fly.
  • Omnidisciplinary Scientist: His primary field is usually robotics, evidenced by his famous Mousers, but he'll show expertise in everything from genetics to archaeology as suits the plot.
  • Race Lift: From African American to Caucasian (and vaguely European), because the writers didn't think that having the only black person in the cast be a villain would sit too well with audiences.
    • Another reason in Baxter's case is that the writers feared that Shredder constantly abusing his black assistant would be seen as racist.
  • Sanity Slippage: He grows more and more unstable after his transformation.
  • The Starscream: He also had shades of this, using the powers of the Eye of Sarnath for himself in "Curse of the Evil Eye" to get back at Shredder for bullying and abusing him, and later turning on him completely after turning into a fly mutant in "Enter the Fly".
  • Younger Than They Look: Baxter looks like a middle-aged man but is implied to be younger than Shredder.

Krang

Voiced by: Pat Fraley

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ice5.png

An alien general fighting a losing war, and who turns to Earth for assistance. A small, brain-like creature, he often uses a robotic exoskeleton to move around.

  • Big Bad Duumvirate: Along with the Shredder, he is the main threat for most of the series.
  • Bizarre Alien Biology: His brain, having been scooped out of its original skull, can survive perfectly well on its own in the open air and has primitive arms (tentacles), eyes and a fang-filled mouth in its own right.
  • Canon Foreigner: Began as a creation of the Fred Wolf cartoon, where he merely looked like the Utroms, but has since been used in other series.
  • Dark Lord on Life Support: Krang's android body is a variation. He doesn't need it to survive, just needs it to survive as anything but a barely mobile brain-like creature.
  • The Exile: Part of his backstory is that he's an exiled warlord from Dimension X.
  • Expy: His appearance of a tentacled brain-like creature operating a humanoid robot from its stomach is based on the more benign Utroms of the original Mirage comics, while his desire for interplanetary conquest and destruction appears to be borrowed from the Triceratons.
  • Fat Bastard: His android body gives him the appearance of one due to resembling an overweight man.
  • Lost in Imitation: The Fred Wolf Krang actually did not look so Utrom-like naturally; his body was destroyed, leaving him a disembodied brain, before he was exiled to Earth. His true form was... well, see Reptiles Are Abhorrent below.
  • Genius Cripple: Sure, he's a genius. (His IQ is in the 900s) But as a brain, there's not much he can do on his own. Without his biosuit, he's pretty much helpless.
  • Jerkass / Insufferable Genius: Krang is brilliant, but not easy to work with. He insults and belittles Shredder all the time, and goes out of his way to make things difficult for his allies when he thinks he can get away with it. For example, in "The Return Of The Shredder" while he allows Shredder to return to New York, but denies him any tech or help, forcing Shredder to work on his own. Then there's his reasons for preventing Bebop and Rocksteady to return as well;
    "Because, I enjoy watching people and animals suffer! And you, my friends, are both!"
  • Laughably Evil: He sometimes childishly mocks Shredder, Bebop, and Rocksteady for their incompetence.
  • Leitmotif: Has one and a remixed version of it plays in the video games where he's fought as a boss.
  • Mark of Shame: He was reduced to his brain-like state by the people who exiled him, and he is quite embarrassed about it.
  • Negative Continuity: While it was established early on that Krang was reduced to being a disembodied brain after being stripped of his body, some episodes, like "The Three Musketurtles", suggested that he was naturally brain-like.
  • Put on a Bus: Like all the Technodrome villains and the Channel 6 crew (except April), once the retool occurred.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: The episode "Invasion of the Krangezoids" shows us what Krang originally looked like — essentially a vaguely anthropomorphic Tyrannosaurus Rex with an overlarge cranium.
  • Surrounded by Idiots: Krang actually says a variation of this in "The Dimension X Story". "Morons! I'm surrounded by morons!"

Bebop and Rocksteady

Voiced by: Barry Gordon (Bebop), Cam Clarke (Rocksteady)

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/rocksteady_bebop_cartoon_laser_pistols.jpg

Human gang members who were mutated into a warthog and rhino respectively, and serve as henchmen to the Shredder. Neither of them are particularly bright.

  • Animorphism: Were transformed from humans to humanoid animals by the mutagen. In the Archie comics, this eventually starts influencing their mind.
  • Bald of Evil: Rocksteady had blonde hair in his human form, but he inexplicably went bald after he mutated into a rhino.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: Initially. They're still Dumb Muscle, but they're also pretty tough and significantly stronger than the turtles, to the point that they could seriously threaten the turtles — they had to be out-thought rather than simply beaten up.
  • Canon Foreigners: Created for the franchise as part of the Fred Wolf cartoons.
  • Cool Shades: Bebop.
  • Dual Boss: In a few of their video game appearances (namely the arcade games), they're fought as a pair.
  • Dumb Muscle: Justified; they were always dimwitted punks and toughs, and Shredder simply tried to upgrade their physical prowess.
  • Expressive Mask: Bebop's sunglasses were sometimes depicted in this manner.
  • Flanderization: While they weren't exactly geniuses in the first season, they were still extreme physical threats to the turtles, especially in their second appearance after being mutated. From that point on, they became more or less ineffectual against them, and even some humans.
  • Goofy Print Underwear: Rocksteady is wearing heart-print boxers when Leonardo cuts through his belt.
  • Harmless Villain: At least from the second season on. They were always idiots, but after the first season, their stupidity grew to the point they were completely ineffectual. They also became a lot more laid back and put-upon as well.
  • Laughably Evil: Unavoidable, since they're pretty dumb and often end up screwing up their bosses' plans in hilarious ways.
  • Lightning Bruiser: They both possess incredible strength, power, toughness, as well as great speed.
  • Metamorphosis: Changed from human thugs into a warthog and a rhinoceros.
  • The Millstone: On many occasions Shredder may well have won if not for their bumbling. Of course then there would be no more show. They even end up costing Utrom Shredder an otherwise clear-cut victory in Turtles Forever.
  • Musical Theme Naming: Bebop's name is derived form a form of jazz, while Rocksteady's comes from a precursor to reggae.
  • Pig Man: Bebop, being a warthog.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: Bebop and Rocksteady were shown to spend a lot of their downtime playing video games, reading comic books, and watching cartoons. Bebop even was shown to still believe in the Tooth Fairy when he heard Shredder sarcastically say "No, it's the Tooth Fairy" in response to Rocksteady asking him if he was The Shredder.
  • Put on a Bus: Like all the Technodrome villains and the Channel 6 crew (except April), once the retool occurred.
  • The Quincy Punk: Bebop has a purple mohawk and a nose ring.
  • Rhino Rampage: Rocksteady is a mutant rhinoceros.
  • Salt and Pepper: Rocksteady's human form was Caucasian and Bebop's was African American.
  • Simpleton Voice: Both of them speak in voices that make their idiocy apparent.
  • Super Strength: Bebop alone can singlehandedly pick up a car and throw it at the turtles. Rocksteady is implied to be even stronger. This is why it's so important that the Turtles can out-think them, as they're actually pretty dangerous if they can get a grip on you.
  • Those Two Bad Guys: They rarely appear apart.
  • Token Minority: Technically Bebop counts considering he was African-American before his transformation.

The Rat King

Voiced by: Townsend Coleman

A man dressed up in rags and bandages who shares a rapport with rats.

  • Ambiguously Human: While he may look human, no explanation is given for his power over rats and he takes offense when Scumbug calls him a human in "Night of the Rogues".
  • Bandaged Face: His face is covered by bandages.
  • The Beastmaster: He controls rats.
  • Karma Houdini: He often isn't punished for his evil plans, though subverted in "Leatherhead Meets the Rat King" when he ends up trapped in a cave-in, as well as in his last appearance where he is finally captured by the Turtles, and also episodes where he plays a neutral role, since he isn't really doing anything wrong then.
  • Magic Music: He used a flute to control rats.
  • Mind Control: His power over rats also affects Splinter.
  • Mysterious Past: We know absolutely nothing about the Rat King's backstory.
  • Those Two Bad Guys: In some of his appearances he teamed up with Leatherhead.
  • Villain Exit Stage Left: He would often escape after the Turtles defeated him, and it was not uncommon for him to bail out in episodes where he teamed up with other villains. Averted in "Leatherhead Meets the Rat King" (where he ends up trapped in a cave-in) and "Wrath of the Rat King" (where the Turtles finally capture him).

Dregg

Voiced by: Tony Jay

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/TMNT_Dregg_8277.jpg

An alien warlord from Dimension X with aspirations to take over Earth. Stop us if this sounds familiar...
Tropes associated with Dregg:
  • Bad Boss: He ejects Hi-Tech into space in the season 10 premiere, leaves Mung to be swarmed by Nanobots, and absorbs the mercenaries he hired to gain their powers.
  • Big Bad: He is the main villain for the last two seasons of the Fred Wolf cartoon, replacing Krang and Shredder.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: Like most characters played by his voice actor, he has a deep and menacing voice.
  • Knight of Cerebus: An appropriate villain for the darker "Red Sky" seasons.
  • Manipulative Bastard: After trying to defeat the Turtles by force fails, he tries using propaganda against them.
  • Motive Decay: Deconstructed in Season 10. His actions in Season 9 were part of his larger goal of conquering the universe. However, he keeps losing to the Turtles and becomes obsessed with destroying them. Mung even points this out in the last episode.
  • My Brain Is Big: His brain is giant, and throbbing. When he absorbs Krang's mind, somehow an image of Krang even appears out of it!
  • Obviously Evil: He's a giant alien with a huge brain, glowering red eyes, and large fangs. Somehow he still managed to convince the citizens of Earth he was a good guy.
  • Revenge Before Reason: His vendetta against the Turtles in Season 10 costs him everything.
  • Toyless Toyline Character: As with other characters introduced in the Red Sky seasons, Dregg never had any merchandise, presumably because of the later seasons not being well-received.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Goes from being calm, and collected to entirely focused
  • Villain with Good Publicity: Initially, he makes humanity believe he's a peace loving alien
  • You Have Failed Me: Dregg is a lot more willing to punish failed subordinates than Krang or Shredder ever were, to the point of giving his right-hand man a Fate Worse Than Death in the Season 10 premiere.

Hi Tech

Voiced by: Rob Paulsen (Season 9), Cam Clarke (Season 10)

Dregg's minion

Mung

Voiced by: Cam Clarke

Hi Tech's replacement in Season 10

Lotus Blossom

Voiced by: Renae Jacobs

A merceneary hired by Shredder

Chronos

Voiced by: Maurice LaMarche

He used to be a man named Winston Fripp. He robbed a bank only to be captured by the Turtles and left tied up in a clock tower for the police. It was hours before the police found him, and by then he was driven insane by the ticking of the clock and the ringing of the bell. He returned years later as the supervillain Chronos to help Dregg defeat the Turtles.

Don Turtelli

Voiced by: Peter Renaday

The head of a major crime syndicate in New York. He is the grandson of Tony "The Tickler" Turtelli. Turtelli went down in infamy for his torture methods, which he inherited from his grandfather. He specializes in the interrogation of people he captures through tickle torturing the soles of his victims' feet with a feather to make them talk Including April, Vernon, Zach and his friend Caitlyn.

Titanus

Voiced by: Ron Feinberg

The leader of the organization H.A.V.O.C., he's a mutant who traveled to the present day from the future to take it over while humanity was much more vulnerable.

  • Arc Villain: He shows up for three episodes in the middle of season 8, then after he's defeated Shredder returns and serves as the main villain again for the rest of the season.
  • Fat Bastard: He's extremely corpulent and not a pleasant person at all.
  • Non-Action Big Bad: He leaves the fighting to the mutants he creates.
  • We Will Meet Again: Swears to get even with the Turtles at the end of his last appearance even though he's now stranded in the time of the dinosaurs.

Leatherhead

Voiced by: Jim Cummings, Peter Renaday ("Night of the Rogues")

An enemy of the Turtles, who fought them on several different occasions.

  • Adaptational Villainy: Leatherhead is a recurring villain in this version, when he's an ally in other continuities (though it was common for him to start off as having a misunderstanding with the Turtles).
  • Catchphrase: "I guh-rantee!".
  • Ragin' Cajun: He's a Cajun in this version.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: The main turtles, having sufficient Turtle Power, are depicted with minimal reptilian features. He and Slash, instead have more pronounced reptilian traits (scales, spikes, claws).
  • Those Two Bad Guys: Every episode that featured him (with the exception of his debut appearance) had him paired with the Rat King.

Slash

Voiced by: Pat Fraley

A humanoid turtle with a fondness for palm trees.

  • Dumb Muscle
  • Evil Knockoff: An evil mutant turtle.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: The main turtles, having sufficient Turtle Power, are depicted with minimal reptilian features. He and Leatherhead, instead have more pronounced reptilian traits (scales, spikes, claws).


http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Characters/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtles1987