In 2003, a new generation was introduced to the Heroes in a Half Shell! A brand new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series debuted on FOX and was an instant success. The show is still going strong having aired six seasons with seventh on its way this September!
Fans of the original series from 1987 reacted very negatively to this new version of the heroes they grew up with. Gone were the cartoony characters, goofy catchphrases and shallow storylines. This new version follows the original comicbooks far more carefully. The stories are darker and they follow a serial format rather than self contained episodes. The dialogue is better and the animation is far superior to the original.
During the show's third season, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles aired its Christmas Special. It follows Michelangelo as he saves a truckload of toys from some thugs who want to ruin Christmas for a group of orphans. And while Splinter, April and the others are setting up a nice Christmas dinner in their sewer home, Mike takes part in a high speed car chase to retrieve the stolen toys.
The Christmas Aliens is a retelling of an old Michelangelo one-shot comic book. The Christmas story follows very closely to the original, only straying with the "family dinner" scenes featuring characters from the show. Fans of the comics will be happy to see Klunk, a kitten that Michelangelo befriends, make his first appearance in the show in this episode.
While the episode is not overly 'Christmasy', the inclusion of the family dinner was a nice touch. It is great seeing all of the supporting heroes in one room eating together. Silver Sentry, Usagi Yojimbo, Angel and others sat down to eat alongside series regulars like Master Splinter, April O'Neil, Casey Jones and the Turtles.
The episode states that a real Christmas activity is not being together with friends, but being with those less fortunate than us. So the crew packs up dinner and goes off to spend Christmas with the orphans.
The Christmas Aliens was released on DVD before it aired as part of the shows third season and is still available for purchase.