- What exactly was Leonardo's complaint about the Nightwatcher? It makes Leo look like a gigantic hypocrite for hunting down a guy for doing the exact same thing the Turtles had been doing for years. Once revealed as Raphael it makes more sense (his antics could bring attention to the Turtles and risk their family's safety) but Leo wasn't using that rationale before. IIRC, he didn't really use any rationale. Even the writers themselves seemed to know this: when Leo was chewing Nightwatcher out (before the Raph reveal) we don't get to hear what Leo was saying. It's as if they knew that there wasn't any logical argument Leo could employ that couldn't easily be turned back around on him, so they just didn't try.
- Being a violent vigilante is wrong and a crime. What the Turtles do is literally all they get to do in the human world, it's a bit hypocritical yes but Leo's not wrong.
- Leo is being hypocritical — at best, his argument is along the lines of, "Only me and my brothers should be doing the ninja vigilante thing, because we know how to do it right and you're going to get yourself and others hurt."
- Probably a bit of hypocrisy, probably a bit of the Nightwatcher's (rather overblown) reputation. It seems the Nightwatcher is rather known for just beating the ever-living crap out of criminals, and while what we see isn't really any worse than the stuff the brothers usually do, Raph does have a temper so it's possible he's taken it a little far a few times. Leonardo might be protesting less the vigilantism than the violence level.
- The novelization offers a few tidbits. Don says the Nightwatcher is a criminal because he basically has no accountability (Raph does call out the hypocrisy but that is dropped). When Leo finds out about the Nightwatcher he says "this guy could bring heat on all of us" and "showboating isn't a replacement for justice. Someone needs to talk to this thug". I personally don't get this. Nobody raises an issue with the violence or that they were doing the same thing. The problem I feel is no matter how they frame it would be odd. If they made it an issue that the Nightwatcher was too violent, Raph would seem really unlikable and extreme plus it would be weird how the other Turtles put up with him. Going for a vague "he's bringing heat plus showing off" keeps the characters in the clear even when it doesn't really make sense.
- Have the Turtles ever approved of other vigilantes? A vigilante is a wild card, they never know if they're going to be unstable or go too far. The Turtles have not only been taught how to fight, but also how to restrain themselves so as to not seriously hurt people unless absolutely necessary.
- Agreed. In the 2003 series, when a new superhero came out, Leo was wary and said they needed to make sure he wasn't a maniac in a suit. The turtles may be vigilantes, but they were taught to hold back. Very little is known about the Nightwatcher, but his temper was pretty clear, so Leo, already in a bad mood because of Raph quitting, clings onto that and probably believed he wasn't of good enough character to be trusted. And in his defense, right before he calls the "Nightwatcher" out, Raph was yelling at a clerk for treating him like a bad guy, and to a passerby that looks pretty bad. That's not even getting into the clear Creator's Favorite going on... Leo's side of the story seems to be deliberately told badly (we never see his motivations while we see Raph's) to make Raph's side seem better. Not to say that Raph is in the wrong; both sides have points to be made, but Leo's was given the short end of the stick.
- How in the world did Leo fail to recognize Raph as the Nightwatcher until he knocked his helmet off? The clues were all there. Heck, even Casey Jones knew upon his first meeting with the Nightwatcher and he hasn't known Raph nearly as long!
- Casey had likely been watching/reading about the Nightwatcher's exploits for quite some time, whereas Leo had only recently learned about him. Remember also that they have fought other turtles in the past (Road Hogs, Tokka, Slash, Metalhead). It could have been one of them or yet another turtle.
- The Stone Generals say that they have 12 of the 13 monsters and conspire to fake Leo as the 13th. But the Loch Ness Monster and Jersey Devil have yet to be captured. Are there 14 monsters?
- They may have captured the Jersey Devil offscreen during the Leonardo vs Raphael fight. Since it could only have happened immediately after it escaped from Raph, that would also explain why they found Leo right after the fight: because they were already close after catching the Jersey Devil.
Headscratchers / TMNT