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I keep on rolling, but I never seem to get any closer to those giant letters floating in front of me . . .

Mikey Fought The Ball
(And The Ball Won)

Now I know how a thin crust pizza feels . . .

Yes, I'm blue, yes, this is a ball, and you can keep your 'blue balls' jokes to yourself.

"How many times do I have to tell you, Michelangelo?
Look both ways before crossing the street!"

        - Master Splinter

I could tell you that I have extraordinary balance, but, honestly, Mark just super-glued my feet to the ball.

One day, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles' arch-nemesis, Shredder, got a really great deal on a warehouse full of wrecking balls (if by great, you mean free, and if by deal, you mean stolen). Now, Shredder was feeling pretty good about his acquisition, until he got back to the Technodrome with his haul, and was confronted by his not-so-best-buddy Krang, who was less than impressed with the 732 metric tons of shiny black orbs cluttering his loading bay.

"What are you going to do with that junk?" grumbled the pulsating, disembodied brain. "I know you lost your marbles a long time ago, but this is overcompensating a bit, yes?"

Truth be told, Shredder really hadn't considered . . . well, anything. He suffered from an almost irresistible compulsion to empty unguarded warehouses, regardless of the goods inside. It was a rare thing indeed when Shredder actually managed to pull off one of his criminal schemes without getting thwarted by some do-gooder, and the way things had been going lately, his bruised ego really needed the boost a small job like this provided. Not that he was going to tell Krang any of that--so Shredder did what he always did when the pink tentacled blob got on his case: He lied through his teeth.

"These . . . these . . . " Shredder stammered. ". . . are the weapons I'm going to use to eliminate those blasted Turtles once and for all!"

"What?" Krang snarled. "How?"

Thinking fast, Shredder retorted, "Well . . . we could roll a bunch of them off the back of one of the Mutant Modules and let them go bouncing down the street. Pow! Those green goofs will never know what hit them!" The evil ninja master rubbed his blade-clad hands together in glee, imagining the carnage.

"Are you serious?"

"Wait!" Shredder exclaimed. "I know! My Foot Soldiers can carry them around over their heads and lob them at those insufferable terrapins! They couldn't possibly dodge them at point blank range."

Krang rolled his eyes and shuddered, imagining what would happen to their robotic minions in such a scenario. "You mean if their arm servos don't fail under the strain first and the balls don't crush them."

"That only happened once . . . okay, maybe twice, and only because you're too cheap to purchase quality servos!" Shredder growled, stomping his foot for emphasis.

"What else?" Krang sighed.

"Never mind the throwing idea, I just thought of something better!"

"I'm waiting . . ."

"The Foot Soldiers can get up on the balls and ride while balancing on top! That way, they can redirect them on the fly and roll right over those wretched reptiles no matter which way they run." Shredder beamed, or at least Krang assumed as much from the tone of his voice, one couldn't really tell when everything but the eyes of the person you were talking to were hidden behind a masked samurai helmet.

"Did one of those balls fall on your head when you were unloading them? The Soldiers' balance gyros will never be able to compensate, you moron. They'll lose their footing, fall off, and get flattened like pancakes!" Krang sneered, "That has to be the stupidest thing I've ever heard come out of your grilled mouth!"

"But . . ."

"You've given me a headache, Shredder, and when all you are is a head to begin with, that's saying a lot. I'm going to go lie down. Get out of my sight."

"If you'd only . . ."



Some time later, Krang was enjoying a lovely dream involving both genocide and creamed Draptfly larvae when he was awakened quite rudely. For a moment, his sleepy mind thought that the commotion was just a part of his fantasy, but cracking open an eye quickly dispelled that notion.

"I told you, Krang! I told you!" Shredder brayed, leaping up-and-down with reckless abandon, waving a garish flag wildly in one hand, and beating on Krang's sleeping capsule with the other. The vibration of each strike bounced the alien warlord's sensitive body painfully into the plasteel dome that encircled his resting chamber.

"Shredder! Have you gone stark raving mad? And who let you into my private laboratory anyway? If it was those two halfwits, Bebop and Rocksteady, then I'm going to make them wish th-"

"Look! Look, you gelatinous freak!" Shredder interrupted, pressing his trophy up against the transparent wall separating them. "I did it! I finally did it!"

Krang was slowly inching one of his tentacles behind his back to push a hidden switch, one that would direct several thousand volts of electricity into Shredder's very conductive metal-encased head, when he actually took a second to do what the deranged human suggested. What he had first assumed a flag, was, in fact, something far more grisly.

"Is . . . is that what I think it is?" he gasped in wonder.

"Yes! Yes! Yes!" Shredder howled maniacally, raising his clenched fists to the ceiling in triumph. From the ninja master's iron grip hung the tattered body of a bloody, man-sized turtle, presumably squashed thin as a sheet by one of Shredder's wrecking-ball-riding Foot Soldier henchmen.

"Just perfect," Krang moaned. "I'm never going to hear the end of this."

I made this figure set as an entry for a "TMNT Custom Contest VI: Team Battle" contest that I initiated at the Technodrome Forums.

Newsprint, tissue paper, lined notebook paper, white glue, acrylic paint, super glue, and plastic (transparent base only).

Foot Soldier: 3.0 cm/1.2 in. x 7.3 cm/2.9 in. (widest point x highest point)
(4.3 cm/1.7 in. high excluding the ball)

Flattened Michelangelo: 4.5 cm/1.8 in. x 0.3 cm/0.1 in. (widest point x highest point)

Four days: January 9, 10, 11, and 13 (2011).

Mikey Fought The Ball photo collage.

My illustration professor in college advised me many times to stop drawing on lined paper, obviously it never sunk in.

Foot Soldier and ball mid-construction photos.

Flattened Michelangelo mid-construction photos.

For comparison purposes, below is an edited screenshot from Konami's 1992 TMNT III: The Manhattan Project NES video game (the sprites have a tendency to flicker/break up when there's too much going on at once, which I corrected in an art program):

Did anybody happen to get the license plate number of the giant ball that just smashed me flat?


  •   Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III: The Manhattan Project video game.

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Any and all copyrighted imagery, terminology, etc., depicted here belongs to its respective holders/owners, namely Mirage Studios.
The background images are sprites/tiles from the TMNT III: The Manhattan Project video game that I edited.