Turtles in Space Part Four: “The Arena”
Written by Michael Ryan
Original Air Date: November 29, 2003
Supervising Producer: Lloyd Goldfine
Producers: Gary Richardson, Frederick U. Fierst, Al Kahn, Norman Grossfeld, Thomas Kenney
Supervising Director: Chuck Patton
Story Editor: Lloyd Goldfine
Donatello (Sam Regal)
Leonardo (Michael Sinterniklaas)
Michelangelo (Wayne Grayson)
Raphael (Frank Frankson)
Prime Leader Zanramon
Gruell, the arena master
Traximus, Triceraton gladiator
Alien gladiators: Paz, Monkey Face, Fists, Toady, Twins and Took
Four member Triceraton All-Star team led by Monza Ram
MAIN LOCATIONS, VEHICLES AND ACCESSORIES:
Triceraton guard flying harnesses
Double ball and chain of Hastor
Triceraton All-Star team weapons
Intro: Raphael recaps the previous “Space” episodes, leading us up the Turtles entering the “games” arena…
Act 1: Two Triceraton sports announcers, Raz and Zed, introduce us to the Tri-Sports Arena “games.” And the first event: the four TMNT vs a Spasmosaur. The monster’s tough, rubbery hide proves to be a big problem for our heroes and the battle does not go well for them.
Cut to Zanramon and the Fugitoid watching the fight. Zanramon tells the ‘bot that the fate of the TMNT lies in his hands – if he doesn’t agree to build the Teleportal for the Triceraton empire, the Turtles will perish in the arena. Fugitoid is agonized over the decision, but he steadfastly refuses to build the machine.
Back to the arena, where the Turtles determine that fighting the beast is futile, so Leo orders a retreat. Initially Raph refuses to run, but as his brothers create a cloud of dust and the gigantic creature closes in, the hot-headed ninja sees the better part of valor and follows his siblings. The TMNT run headlong down an alley that has a gigantic statue pf Zanramon towering over the end of the path. The Spasmosaur is in hot pursuit, but at the last moment, Leo orders his team to jump onto the wall and the ninjas catapult themselves backwards over their pursuer. The monster crashes into the wall, sending debris flying. The force of the collision rocks the giant statue and it falls on top of the Spasmosaur, crushing it and taking it out of commission.
Inside, the Fugitoid does a happy dance to celebrate his friends’ victory. Zanramon is not so pleased. The Turtles are then beset by laser-toting Triceraton guards in flying harnesses, who force our heroes backwards until they fall into a pit that has silently opened in the middle of the arena.
Act 2: The Turtles land in a pile of hay and are now locked up in a slave pen with other gladiators of various races – surprisingly, one is a Triceraton named Traximus. The slavers arrive, lead by the corpulent Gruell, a cruel task master that utilizes an electric whip to keep the gladiators in line. Gruell orders the Turtles to become “practice dummies” so the other warriors can practice their moves – the slaver orders the ninjas to not use their hands. The TMNT comply with this order and are attacked by their fellow slaves – but the ninjas aren’t about to take punishment without a fight, so they use their ninjitsu skills and teamwork to kick and dodge their opponents into submission. This strategy angers Gruell, who uses his whip on Raph and orders the Turtles to stop cooperating – but the temperamental Turtle manages to disarm the task master and informs him that they always fight as a team. Gruell, in a panic due to being disarmed, offers extra portions for their next meal to any gladiators that can defeat the TMNT.
Act 3: The warriors attack with renewed vigor. Traximus faces off with Leonardo, and the mutant quickly defeats his saurian foe. Traximus tells Leonardo to do him a favor and finish him off, but Leo sheaths his weapons and instead helps Traximus stand up. Don, Raph and Mikey also win their battles and the TMNT earn the respect of the gladiators – but by now Gruell and his guards have regrouped and they get the slaves under control. Later, the Turtles are waiting in line to get gruel from Gruell, their last meal before their epic battle in the arena. However, once the Turtles get to the front of the line, the slave master tells them that there’s no food left and they’ll have to go hungry. The guys sit at the table and look forlorn (especially Mikey). Leonardo is seated next to Traximus, who takes a portion of his slop and puts in on Leonardo’s plate. The Triceraton gladiator tells the ninja Turtle to eat, as he’ll need fuel for the upcoming fight. The other gladiators also share their meals with the other Turtles. While everyone eats, Traximus explains why he has been imprisoned and forced to fight as a gladiator. The warrior states that he spoke out against Zanramon and his current regime for putting victory above the rights of individuals, something that Traximus could not abide. His reward for speaking his mind was being tossed into the gladiator pit.
Meanwhile, the Federation’s General Blanque receives a report that Federation agents were able to trace the Triceraton homeworld. Blanque assembles the Federation Battle Fleet and the armada sets off to attack the Triceratons and recapture the Fugitoid.
Back at the Tri-Sports Arena, a huge crowd anxiously awaits the Turtles and their next fight. The gladiators are assembled in the pit and given weapons – save for the TMNT, who Gruell refuses to arm. The fighters stand on a platform which begins to rise towards the arena above. On the way, Traximus informs the TMNT that he still has connections with some guards and he was able to get their weapons. The ninjas are overjoyed and Traximus states that the gladiators must stick together (echoing Raph’s comment from earlier). Then the warriors enter the arena as the crowd roars.
Act 4: Prime Leader Zanramon introduces the games and orders Mozar to bring the Fugitoid in so he can watch his friends die. Soon, the Fugitoid arrives and the Prime Leader orders the gladiators to kill the Turtles. Fugitoid screams “No!” – but to everyone’s surprise, Traximus and the others refuse to fight. Zanramon is enraged and orders his soldiers to lock up the gladiators, who are forced into a cell via laser fire. The TMNT stand alone in the arena until Zanramon announces the Triceraton All-Star team, lead by reigning champion Monza Ram. The warriors attack our heroes, but since the TMNT have their weapons, the Triceraton fighters are no match for the ninjas and are quickly dispatched. The crowd roars in approval – but Zanramon merely sneers and gives the TMNT a thumbs down, indicating that they should be killed despite their victory. The audience is not pleased and a chant to let the ninjas live begins. Sensing an opportunity, Don tells his brothers to catapult him into the air. Don launches off of Mikey’s nunchakus onto a nearby air car – the brainy Turtle pulls the pilot out and commandeers the vehicle as his brothers hop on. Unfortunately the air car proves to be difficult to fly, and Donny crashes into a wall – fortunately, it’s the wall above Zanramon and the Fugitoid!
Our heroes are quickly surrounded by angry Triceraton soldiers, but Leonardo jumps beside Zanramon and holds his blade to the evil leader’s throat, ordering his minions to stand down. Zanramon tells the TMNT that they cannot escape, but Raph puts a sai up to his nose and tells him to pipe down. The episode ends with the guards closing in on the Turtles and their captive…