WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #113 by Kevin Eastman, Tom Waltz, Sophie Campbell, Ronda Pattison, and Shawn Lee, on sale now.
In the world of the Ninja Turtles, life in Mutant Town has been rough ever since Old Hob’s mutagen bomb kickstarted the mass transformations that led to the area having been cut off from the outside world. While political unrest, mutant rampages, and the ever-looming threat of the Foot Clan all constantly rotating in and out of the spotlight, it’s a wonder that anyone in Mutant Town has any time to just sit down and think. Surprisingly, it seems that Old Hob himself, the longtime antagonist of the Splinter Clan, might just be turning over a new leaf, even if he hasn’t quite gotten around to acting like it yet.
It wasn’t all that long ago that the Turtles liberated some of the youngest citizens of Mutant Town from under Old Hob’s thumb, though the villain seemed particularly conflicted over how hard he should try to get them back. Now in debt to Karai, Hob has handed over two of the strongest mutants around, Tokka and Rahzar, yet once again his intent lies with getting them back from the Foot as fast as possible. That might be happening sooner than later after the helicopter the two were carted away in crashed, but Old Hob is painfully unaware of the tragic accident that the two have just been in (and caused). Instead, Hob is at home, listening to the local talk radio station, trying to wrap his head around how he became the hot topic of the evening’s program.
Michelangelo is hosting his regular podcast, this time with a special guest in the form of Mona Lisa. The two dive right into the topics of Old Hob and the Mutanimals, as well as the possibility of open elections being held in the near future, which Hob himself is ready to throw his hat in the ring for. Unfortunately, popular opinion is almost unanimously against Hob, as he and his gang are seen as one of the most dangerous and disruptive aspects of Mutant Town as a community.
At best, someone who can prove they’re both willing and able to enact effective and lasting change for the better in the community is elected. At worst, Hob somehow takes office and can finally be held properly accountable for all the damage he has caused.
While Hob listens to Mona Lisa explain precisely how he is personally responsible for ruining her life, not to mention so many others, all he can do is gaze somberly at the radio. From the looks of things, Old Hob genuinely seems to be feeling remorse over all the wrong he has done, or at least some of it.
This isn’t an overnight change, but rather one that readers have seen taking place gradually over the past few months. Still, it’s unexpected, to say the least. If Old Hob really is growing a conscience, he might just be the Turtles’ most important new ally, assuming they can stomach the thought of that particular partnership.