“East Meets West Part” 1
Originally aired 9/12/97
From the darkened sewers of New York to the mysterious splendor of China and beyond our world to the shadowy realm of the evil Dragon Lord, this is the initial episode that reignites the blazing glory of the Ninja Turtles universe!
Things have changed quite a bit since we’ve last visited the Turtles: approaching age eighteen, each Turtle has grown more individualistic. Michaelangelo is still a fun-loving dude and Donatello is still (if not more of) a techno-whiz, Leonardo has become a more serious leader, while Raphael has grown wilder and seemingly less disciplined. Tension exists between Leo and Raph where it didn’t before. And Master Splinter, ever the wise mentor, seems to have aged greatly.
Shredder and the Foot Clan still plague our heroes, more desperate than ever to defeat Splinter and the Turtles. Meanwhile, far more dangerous adversaries begin to emerge from the shadows.
In China, the Shinobi master Chung I, whose role is to keep the dread Dragon Lord and his warriors trapped inside an ancient mystic mirror, sees that the villains have begun to gain a foothold in the Realm of Dreams. This mystic plane is the spiritual refuge often visited by Splinter in astral form.
It is when Splinter’s spirit is captured by the Dragon Lord and his physical body is left dying on Earth that Chung I sends his adopted daughter to New York to lead Splinter’s pupils into the dream realm to rescue their rat master.
The Shredder, meanwhile, recently defeated in a skirmish against the Turtles, escaped with the knowledge of the Turtles’ headquarters… and now plans a full-scale attack on the TMNT and their dying master.
Our initial episode closes as we learn that Chung I’s adopted daughter is a mutant turtle!