I've had the opportunity to familiarize myself with Santolouco's drawings after reviewing multiple TMNT comic books over the past few months, but his original artwork is an honor to behold. His use of shading depicts emotion and sense of surroundings without the need for color. His attention to detail suits our story well, especially when all text is written on a separate page. All in all, they don’t call this comic book release a “workprint edition” for nothing.
Which brings us to our story, also written by Mateus Santolouco himself, with the help of script writer Erik Burnham. The story is quite beautiful, taking us back and forth between present-day New York (home of our pizza-loving heroes) and ancient Japan, during a time when legends were real and the Foot clan was born. And, there’s something very special to be said about a writer who appreciates his enemies as much as his saviors. Some of the greatest villains we’ve ever seen in movies or read about in comic books grow ever so stronger when we learn about their back story. Every villain has a past the same way every hero does. Santolouco gives us a wonderful view into the world of The Foot in this comic book, and the story supports his passion for characterization. Bravo!
Unfortunately, the comic books I get sent to review are in PDF format, which makes a special edition like this one slightly difficult to read. Whereas one page holds the text, I then have to swipe to the next page to preview the panels I just read about. So, naturally, I don’t encourage buying this comic book on your iPad. But, if my imagination is correct, a real-life copy of Secret History of the Foot Clan must truly be a work of art, because one should be able to see both pages of text and artwork at the same time. If this is the case, I recommend RUNNING to your local nerd shop to buy this workprint edition as soon as it releases. For those of us who view comic books as another expression of art, Santolouco’s work is definitely a masterpiece to add to your collection.