Michael Zulli produced 3 frankly disturbing issues of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, right about the same time a Turtle craze swept the nation. While soccer moms drove minivans full of 8 year olds to theaters to enjoy Secret of The Ooze, artists like Rick Veitch, Michael Zulli, and Jim Lawson subversively created dark and violent stories in the comic book.
Originally created by Eastman & Laird as a parody of Frank Miller and “grim and gritty” comics in general, Ninja Turtles became a showcase for indie comics talents to tell tales they could tell nowhere else.
In the gallery below, you’ll find most of the splash and double-splash pages from Zulli’s Ninja Turtles story. Zulli also produced Puma Blues at nearly the same time. We really love the artwork in Puma Blues. Problem is, we have no clue what’s going on. And that’s with 2/3 the complete series at hand! If you’d like to fill us in, please do.
Zulli’s tale appears in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #31, #35, and #36. These three issues plus some additional Ninja Turtles work by Michael Zulli are collected in Soul’s Winter: The Collected TMNT Work of Michael Zulli.