What Tmnt Character Are You – Imagine a late Saturday morning: you’ve just woken up but your first instinct isn’t to brush your teeth or make your bed. You instead run downstairs and quickly pour a box of your favorite cereal before sitting on the couch and turning on the TV.
Nothing says childhood nostalgia more than waking up on a weekend morning to watch cartoons over a bowl of cereal. Whether you’re a kid now or still a kid at heart, you probably grew up humming a theme song from your favorite cartoon and naming all your favorite characters. Whether you still have fond memories of the cartoons you watched growing up or you’re still an avid follower of the cartoon, everyone is familiar with the hit franchise Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
What Tmnt Character Are You
In syndication for more than three decades with season renewals, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has grown as a franchise since its debut, premiering to more than 3.9 million viewers with the 2012 Nickelodeon-hosted series. While the Ninja Turtles characters were introduced as a crime-fighting team in past TMNT reboots, the latest Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series, Rise of the TMNT, takes us back to a time before our favorite evil-killing Turtles became crime fighters. Whether it’s your first time in the series or you want a refresher before you start all over again, we cover the history of our favorite, recurring TMNT characters as well as explore the changes to the new series without any spoilers!
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Named after the Renaissance leader Leonardo da Vinci, Leonardo is usually the eldest brother and leader of TMNT characters. Wearing a blue mask and wielding twin katanas, Leonardo is the more serious and mature of the four brothers. He has a strong bond with the brothers’ adoptive father, Splinter, due to his dedication to learning the ninja arts.
As the leader of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Leonardo is seen as the brother who brings everyone together in both good and bad moments of the franchise. His role as a leader also brings a lot of pressure. A common character development point for Leonardo is to work on his perfectionist side and accept his flaws as well as failures. And even though Leonardo may be the head honcho, he still has his moments where he’s more like a big brother, like bickering with his other siblings.
The tech whiz of the group, Donatello supports the Ninja Turtles with his smarts and his inventions. His name is a Renaissance sculptor who developed a new sculptural style based on classical Italian sculptural techniques. Donatello’s primary weapon is a bow staff and he wears a purple mask. He is the most tech-savvy and technically literate of the brothers—he receives his college diploma by mail in the 2003 series. Although he has the highest intelligence of all his brothers, he shows the most resistance to coexisting with mankind, stating on multiple occasions that he wants to live an ordinary life as a turtle.
In addition to his book-smarts, Donatello is also known for being the gentlest of the brothers and getting along well with most of the characters in each series. Although he does not instigate fights with his brothers, he occasionally loses his cool when the other Ninja Turtles do not understand his explanations for his inventions, and there are moments when his siblings tease him in brotherly fashion.
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The comic relief of the team, Michelangelo’s weapon of choice is a pair of nunchucks and stands out from the other TMNT characters with his orange mask. Named after David Murthy and the famous artist of the Sistine Chapel, Michelangelo is an easy-going, happy-go-lucky bro, often quoting from pop culture favorites like Star Wars. If you’re more familiar with the 1987 or 2003 series, his most distinguishing traits are his love of pizza and shouting Californian surfer slang between battles like “quabunga”.
Although Michelangelo’s mischievousness sometimes draws the ire of his brothers or his adoptive father, his social and outgoing personality complements his positive outlook on life as a mutant. He is ultimately an optimistic character who tries to support his brothers with his jokes and his lighthearted personality.
The only Turtle to be given a red mask for all series incarnations, Raphael is the hothead of the group and takes his name from the High Renaissance Vatican painter. His main weapon is a pair of sai. Prone to sarcastic remarks and losing his temper, Raphael often clashes with his brothers, especially the motormouth Michelangelo. In some incarnations, such as the 2012 series, Raphael has a love-hate relationship with his older brother Leonardo, and often conflicts with Leonardo over his role as leader of the Ninja Turtles.
However, despite his temperamental side, Raphael has consistently developed throughout each series of the franchise as a character who can be blamed for his quick temper and learns to work past his more explosive moments. He also has a deep sense of concern for the Ninja Turtles, and is usually the first of the brothers to respond when one of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles members is injured or in serious danger.
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Splinter is the Turtle brothers’ adoptive father and teacher, depicted as a humanoid, bipedal mouse. A devoted master of ninjutsu, he imparts his knowledge of the martial arts to the brothers after adopting them. How he learned ninjutsu depends on the series: In some series, Splinter was a rat owned by ninjutsu master Hamato Yoshi and had the intellectual ability to copy his master’s moves. In another series, Splinter is Hamato Yoshi himself but turned into a rat after coming into contact with the Ninja Turtles.
Regardless of the series, Splinter plays multiple roles as a father figure, martial arts instructor, and teacher to the Turtles. While he is in charge of their well-being and overprotective of them, Splinter eventually allows the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to challenge themselves to improve their martial arts skills.
Appearing in virtually every installment of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise, April O’Neill is the first human ally of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles brothers. Portrayed as a young woman of Irish descent, April O’Neill plays an older sister or adoptive mother role for the TMNT gang. In the 2003 series, April gets along particularly well with Donatello as he has more of a scientific flair in his supporting role.
A masked vigilante who fights crime with DIY weapons, Casey Jones is an ally, or at least a friend, of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles team. His main arch-nemesis is the leader of the Purple Dragon Gang-hoon. In most incarnations except for 1987, she forms a friendship with Raphael due to their similar personalities and situations. Along with April O’Neill, Cassie helps and supports the Ninja Turtles in their mission and their crime-fighting expansion.
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An alligator-turned-mutant, Leatherhead is usually an associate of the TMNT team except for his incarnation in the 1987 series. For the 2003 series, Leatherhead is portrayed as an intelligent mutant who uses his research to help the TMNT gang. However, despite the fact that he has gained human-like intelligence as a result of being a mutant, Leatherhead still has an innate aggressive ferocity and lives in isolation so that he does not harm those close to him with his alligator instincts.
Hamato Yoshi is a master of the ninja arts in feudal Japan. His martial arts style is passed down and practiced by Splinter and the TMNT brothers. In his many incarnations within the franchise, he is either Splinter himself or Splinter’s owner. Although Yoshi is one of the side characters, he has had a major influence on the plot development and background of the Ninja Turtle franchise, especially playing a large role in Shredder’s history.
The Foot Clan is a group of ninjas who are the main antagonists of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Although the Foot Clan originated as a ninjutsu and black magic-practicing group in feudal Japan, they are now a crime syndicate with extensive activities in drug smuggling and murder. While the Foot Clan’s faceless drones are easy to take down by the Turtles, they prove to be a persistent foe with their numbers and tenacity.
Shredder is a recurring antagonist and primary nemesis of the Turtle brothers and Splinter in the franchise. Its origins can be traced back to feudal Japan. His character development from ninjutsu-practitioner to evil-doer is closely related to Hamato Yoshi. Shredder’s appearance in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise has changed consistently over the years, but regardless of his role, he is the Foot Clan’s first-in-command.
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Depending on the series, Kara is either Shredder’s adopted daughter or biological granddaughter. He is usually the Foot Clan’s second-in-command and learns martial arts as well as ninjutsu directly from Shredder. In some incarnations, Karai is Leonardo’s love interest and while she is usually an enemy of the Ninja Turtles, she sometimes teams up with them.
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