No childhood was complete without Saturday mornings with cereal and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
We all grew-up loving Leonardo, Michelangelo, Raphael and Donatello and their adopted father, Splinter. But did you know that back in 1997 a female Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle was introduced in the first episode of the live-action show, Ninja Turtles: The Next Mutation. Her name was Venus de Milo. In The Next Mutation our favourite heroes in a half shell aren’t related by blood and are rescued by Splinter who raises them and trained them to be ninjas who fight crime. But in this adaptation, there is a fifth, female Mutant Ninja Turtle who was accidentally left behind by Splinter when he rescued them from the sewers after they have all been exposed to mutagen.
Poor baby Venus is left to survive on her own and lands up in Chinatown where she is rescued by Mei Pieh Chi, a Shinobi magician who raised her as his daughter. Mei and Venus move to China where Venus trains and lives out her life as Mei’s daughter, oblivious to the fact that she is not the only one of her kind. Mei however knew of Splinter and the four other turtles and regularly communicated with Splinter via the Dream Realm. Mei gets assassinated and, on his death bed, he tells Venus who she is and instructs her to move to New York to be reunited with the other turtles.
Venus soon learns that the fact that she is the only female Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, is not the only thing that makes her different to the other four turtles. Venus is the only one of the turtles who was not named after a famous artist, but she was instead named after a famous Greek statue. Venus was also the only turtle who was not trained in the art of Ninjutsu like the four other turtles, but rather she used Shinobi magic to manipulate orbs as her attack weapon.
Ultimately, Venus was suppose to end up falling in love with one of the other turtles, turning the story into a love story. But the show didn’t air long enough for the story to eventually get there and was cancelled after only 28 episodes. Needless to say, Venus wasn’t everyone’s favourite characters and creator Peter Laird hated this female Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Laird has completely banned her from ever appearing in anything Ninja Turtles related, which means she has almost been completely forgotten.