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Recap / Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2012 S 1 E 9 The Gauntlet

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After April receives a warning from her imprisoned father, she and the Turtles embark on a mission to save him and stop The Kraang from detonating a mutagen bomb in the city. Meanwhile, Shredder takes the matter of destroying Hamato Yoshi's disciples into his own hands.

This episode provides examples of:

  • Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: Pete gets distracted from delivering his message when Mikey mentions bread. Doubles as Through His Stomach later, since Pete agrees to take April and the Turtles to where the Kraang have her dad in exchange for sourdough.
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  • Authority Equals Ass Kicking: The Shredder turns out to be the first guy the Turtles are unable to beat by any mean.
  • Bad "Bad Acting": April acting as bait for Pete. Donnie even gets into an argument with her about how good bait is supposed to act.
  • Big "NO!": Two of them. First from April when the Kraang hold her dad at gunpoint and then drag him away, later from Shredder when the turtles escape him.
  • Big "NEVER!": From Xever.
  • Blah Blah Blah: Raph in response to Donnie's explanation of how to make ninja smoke bombs.
    Raph: Blah blah, science, blah! Do it again!
  • Break the Haughty: The Turtles' victories start to cause them to get a bit arrogant, and they only realize it as they get smacked down by the Shredder.
  • Cerebus Syndrome: Episode 9 has officially pushed the series into this direction.
  • Call-Back: April's dad remembers the Turtles from when they saved his daughter in Rise of the Turtles Part, 2.
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  • Continuity Nod: Leonardo listing off previous enemies to Splinter.
    Leo: Sensei, in the past few months, we've taken down giant spiders, plant creatures, alien robots and an army of ninjas.
  • Cry into Chest: April cries into Donnie's chest after they are forced to leave her dad behind with the Kraang.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: The Turtles' first encounter with the Shredder. They were lucky to escape alive.
  • Damsel in Distress: Exploited. In order for the Turtles to catch Pigeon Pete, April goes out in the open as live bait.
  • Darker and Edgier: Turned Up to Eleven.
  • Downer Ending: The Turtles fail to save Kirby and suffer their first major defeat when they meet the Shredder.
    • Bittersweet Ending: They did succeed in stopping the Kraang bomb and saving the city, while proving themselves capable of handling Xever and Bradford (though this is also the episode they have now mutated in).
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: Nobody wants to be paired with poor Mikey when the turtles split up.
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  • The Exit Is That Way: When the Turtles are arguing about which of them should get stuck with Mikey, he is offended, proclaims he'll just go off on his own and vanishes via smoke bomb. Seconds later, he pops out of a closet.
  • Exotic Eye Designs: Pete has bulging eyeballs with red sclerae, yellow irises and horizontal pupils.
  • Family-Unfriendly Violence: The Shredder's No-Holds-Barred Beatdown of the Turtles include kicking Raph into an electric sign and dropping pieces of said sign on Mikey.
  • Fish People: Xever after getting doused in Mutagen.
  • Foreshadowing: There's a reason Bradford and Xever are shown touching a dog and a fish, respectively.
  • Freudian Slip: Donnie does this again with April, combined with Verbal Backpedaling this time.
    Donnie: There's a creature out there trying to hurt my April! (Beat) Our April. (Beat) April.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: April's dad grabs a gun and covers the Turtle's escape so they can protect his daughter, throwing away his own chance at freedom.
  • Honor Before Reason: Bradford and Xever's motivation for attacking the Turtles. Doubles as Revenge Before Reason.
  • Innocently Insensitive: April to Pigeon Pete.
    April: That must have been horrible, being turned into a pigeon.
    Pete: Actually, I started out as a pigeon.
  • Instant Messenger Pigeon: And a mutant one, at that.
  • Lightning Bruiser: The Shredder
  • Mood Whiplash: The mood is pretty light after the Turtles defuse the bomb and beat Bradford and Xever. Then, out of nowhere, the Shredder shows up, then the Turtles try to escape with a smoke bomb that turns out to be a normal egg, then the fight begins...
  • Mythology Gag:
    • Pigeon Pete is named after Michelangelo's pigeon friend from the episode What's Michaelangelo Good For? of the 1987 cartoon.
    • Wolf Tower is a shout out to Fred Wolf of Murakami Wolf, the animation studio responsible for the 1987 series.
    • The Curb-Stomp Battle part of the fight with Shredder plays out frame by frame like the original fight with the Shredder in the Mirage Comics.
  • Neck Lift: Shredder does this to Leo.
  • Neutral Female: Invoked. Leo stops April from going into the Kraang's lair with the turtles because she doesn't have the necessary ninja skills. She is left to wait on the roof for the turtles to come back, and her only job on the mission is to lower the rope for them to climb out (much to her annoyance).
  • Never Trust a Trailer: The commercials for this episode focused only on April being hunted by a giant pigeon and said nothing about Shredder.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: Not only does Chris's attempted Taking You with Me disarm the Mutagen Bomb, it covers him and Xever in Mutagen, mutating them into a dog man, and a fish man. They also distract Shredder in time for the Turtles to escape.
  • Oh, Crap!: Subtle one, but the Turtles do have one when the Shredder shows up.
    • They have another moment when they use a real egg instead of a smoke bomb before the Shredder attacks them.
  • Papa Wolf: April's dad becomes a Heroic Bystander.
  • Present Company Excluded: Bradford says this word for word when Xever handles an ugly fish.
    Bradford: That's the ugliest thing I've ever seen. Present company excluded.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: Donnie to Mikey. "Don't. Touch. Anything."
  • Reality Ensues: The Turtles are barely able to lay a blow to Shredder, who has decades more training and combat experience in martial arts than them. He is also a pragmatic fighter, using his environment to electrify Raph and later cause a letter to fall on Mikey.
  • Recurring Extra: The guy with the cat from New Friend, Old Enemy who also appeared in I Think His Name is Baxter Stockman can be seen hanging out by April's building in the first shot of the episode.
  • Shout-Out: Shredder's dog Hachiko.
  • Static Stun Gun: Donnie uses one of these to subdue Pete.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: The turtles are masters of this by default, but taken Up to Eleven when Donnie invents egg smoke bombs.
    • So good that even after getting Curb-Stomped by the Shredder, they were able to escape from him when he was distracted for a few second, even without a smoke bomb.
  • Taking You with Me: Said word for word by Bradford. Failed hilariously.
  • Tempting Fate: The turtles brush off Splinter's warning about them getting overconfident. It comes back to bite them hard.
  • Trick Arrow: The turtles use explosive arrows to take out the droids guarding the mutagen time-bomb.
  • Vagueness Is Coming: April's dad warns that the Kraang are about to do something terrible to the city, but he doesn't know what it is.
  • Was Once a Man: Inverted with Pete; he started out as a pigeon. Played straight with Bradford and Xever.
  • Wham Episode: It starts out innocently enough with the Turtles investigating a mutant pigeon...then the turtles plan to break out Mr. O'Neil from the compound he's being held only for them to make a Sadistic Choice and save themselves rather than free him. THEN they have to defuse a bomb that's going to cover the entire city in ooze while fighting Xever and Bradford (both of whom get mutated by the chemical in said bomb). If that wasn't bad enough they then get their first battle with the Shredder which ultimately ends with them all nearly getting killed and Splinter ending the episode by stating that the Shredder won't go away and tells his sons that they (the Hamato clan) are now at war with Shredder and the Foot Clan.
  • What Does This Button Do?: While Donnie tries to hack into the Kraang's computer, this is how Mikey gets in the way.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Pigeon Pete disappears from the episode after delivering the message.
    • Hachiko bites Bradford, which is to make way for his mutation into Dogpound. Afterward, however, Hachiko never appears again.
  • Wire Dilemma: Donnie's main problem with defusing the Kraang's Time Bomb. With only seconds left on the clock, does he cut the black wire, or the green wire?
    Mikey: Go for the green!
    Donnie: Eh, why not?
    (cuts green wire, bomb shuts down)
    Donnie: Guys! Guys! Mikey was right about something!


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