Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Season 4, Episode 6 Recap And Review: Journey To The Center Of Mikey’s Mind


The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are now officially behind the 8-ball when it comes to setting everything right. The Triceratons have the first piece of the black hole generator, meaning they are one step closer to enacting the calamity that Fugitoid brought our heroes back in time to prevent.

They won’t go down without a fight, of course, and in this week’s new episode, they’re also out to prove there’s nowhere they won’t go to undertake their current quest. I think the title, “Journey to the Center of Mikey’s Mind,” pretty much proves that.

Will it be as bizarre as it sounds like it could be? Man, I hope so. Let’s find out!

Turtle-Powered Recap: Though Raphael can’t get Michaelangelo to settle down and pay attention, the other Turtles are informed by Fugitoid that they need to stop at an outer space cantina to meet up with an alien whose name more or less translates as Bellybomb. He’s supposedly got the plans for the Tricertaton mothership, though “Terrans” aren’t welcome where the meeting is set up, so April and Casey will have to stay behind.

As soon as they arrive, Mikey wanders away, literally running into Bellybomb. The brothers apologize, but their good moods soon disappear when Bellybomb tries to change the deal he made with Fugitoid, declaring the agreed upon payment only half of what they need to provide for the info. He tries running with the money, belching a noxious cloud as cover, but Mikey chases him down. The Turtles surround and beat him, with Fugitoid landing the final punch. Before canceling their deal and departing, Mikey brags about how he’s got all kinds of secrets in his head, making Bellybomb wonder if he actually does and summoning something valled the Neutrinos.

Back on Fugitoid’s ship, Mikey blows off training in the holo-room to watch Chris Bradford’s 2 Ruff Krew with Casey. He nods off while watching, allowing tiny robots, aliens or alien robots (who kind of look like the Mindless Ones from Marvel Comics) to crawl in through Mikey’s mouth. The Turtles arrive to find Mikey “zonked out,” and Casey is alarmed when even the smell of pizza won’t revive him.

More from Animation

As usual, Fugitoid knows what’s going on, declaring that the Neutrinos have invaded Mikey’s mind to steal his inner self: his memories and knowledge. The process will leave him a mindless shell –though Casey jokes that Mikey is already “kind of mindless” — but the cyborg has an idea to save him that will require some psychic help.

The other three Turtles hook themselves up to a machine that will insert them into Mikey’s mind, where April will try guiding them as best she can. They are warned that if the Neutrinos defeat them, they will be left mindless husks in the physical world, which is how these things tend to go. There’s also a warning from April that Mikey’s memories may not be totally accurate, because, well, he’s Mikey.

Though the Turtles quickly find themselves in a familiar memory in the NYC sewers, the Neutrinos find them, slicing through the mental reality in one of the episode’s coolest visuals to do so. They’re too heavily armored, so the Turtles hastily retreat to the farmhouse, and later to Mikey’s subconscious, where April loses contact with them. There, they are confronted by four different versions of Michelangelo: his weird side, his angry side (which is also giant), his gluttonous side and his annoying side, though Mikey himself claims it’s his funny side. Together, they perform a rap that clues the Turtles to where they need to go next, which is into Mikey’s imagination.

The door is locked, but the password is easy to figure out. Yep, it’s pizza. Inside is a magical land where pizza grows on trees, cartoon characters watch other cartoons together and Ice Cream Kittie has a prominent place. A six-year old version of Michelangelo is king, having Chris Bradford feed him pizza on his throne. It’s not long before the Neutrinos find them there, though Donatello quickly surmises that Mikey can help defeat them since he’s got such a huge imagination that it gives him power in this realm.

After a pep talk from his brothers, little king Mikey conjures the Mutanimals, Mondo Gecko and a bunch of his favorite cartoon characters to aid in the fight, and the Neutrinos are no match for all of them. A giant version of Renet swats them out of the door of his imagination.

When Mikey wakes and is told it wasn’t a dream, his angry side comes to the forefront as he spots the tiny Neutrinos trying to escape. Later, the Turtles meet with a surprised Bellybomb, who has just finished reporting to Lord Dregg that he’s about to have more info for him. Mikey demands the plans from the alien, as well as one of his exotic muffins. He finishes the episode with a flourish, belching in Bellybomb’s face.

Favorite Moment: All of the stuff inside Mikey’s head was a treat, but the way the writers and animators portrayed his imagination was fantastic. Surreal and silly all at once, as it should be, and any time the Neutrinos cut their way through reality was a very cool visual effect.

Next: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 405 Recap: Riddle of the Ancient Aeons

Final Thought: The whole “Michelangelo is so dumb and immature it’s actually helpful” thing has almost become one of this series’ tropes at this point, but it was still an effective way to send the cast on a different kind of adventure. I’ve said before that the best episodes keep the overall arc on track while presenting something that we haven’t seen before, and this one qualified on that count. Kudos to the talent for coming up with a creative little story to match what goes on inside Mikey’s noggin.