Any 80’s kid will remember the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, whose franchise hit its peak between the late 80s and early 90s. While the most memorable moment in TMNT history was the release of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles TV series that first aired in 1987, that was not their first appearance. In fact, the four green loveable ninjas first appeared in a comic book series presented by Mirage Studios in 1984.
If you are a hardcore fan of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, there are likely a few toys and action figures you owned as a child. However, there are certain collectible items that every fan must own. Any devoted fan of these actions heroes will enjoy the kid-friendly action based items for the memories they inspire. You will find a list of 11 of the most notable collectible TMNT items below to help you get started.
1. The Original 1984 TMNT Comics
One of the most important collectibles you can own as a TMNT fan is any part of the original TMNT comic book series from 1984. Fans who came to love the franchise by any method – TV show, movie, or otherwise – would enjoy flipping through the pages of the comic. The comic books allow you to see where the story began.
Whereas comics were once filled with more brutal creations for your most loved superheroes, the original TMNT comics took a more kid-friendly approach. You will find comic book prints in both black and white and in color. Whether you decide to buy just one book or the complete collection is up to you, but they are well worth the purchase for any diehard fan.
2. The Original 4 Ninja Turtles – Basic Figures from 1988
No loyal fan can resist the original four Nina Turtles, which were the first basic figures produced in 1988. If you are lucky enough to have one from your childhood still, you will find that it is worth more if it remained unopened. If you do not own one or you do not have an unopened original, they are worth the purchase.
Keep in mind that there are several variations of the original four turtles, all of which are great in many ways. However, the original four from Playmates are a must have. Nothing beats an original variation of any of the characters, in fact, ranging from the turtles to April O’Neil and every other original character in between.
3. Krang’s Android Body
Shredder is, of course, the most villainous character in the TMNT series, and therefore the most popular. However, Krang is a close second among popular villains known by the team of green machines. The figurine stands approximately a foot tall and is a worthy addition to any TMNT collectible items.
An unboxed version of this action figure fetches a decent price, so finding an unboxed version is truly spectacular. It is rare to find an unboxed figure, so prepare yourself to pay a pretty penny if you do find one.
4. TMNT PVC Figures
Why not relive the glory of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in action with the TMNT PVC figures? The one memory every 80s child relives is of the turtles flipping, jumping and performing their slick ninja moves on the Foot Clan. Under the guise of the shadows, the turtles used their ninja skills for justice. The TMNT PVC figures capture those moments with incredible detail, making them a definite must have.
5. Turtle Party Wagon
Who can forget the fun turtle party wagon that converted to a mutant attack van? Thanks to Donatello, the fun foursome of ninjas always had the latest high-tech gear and equipment. Among their high-tech gear and equipment was the Turtle Van. The van served as their mobile command center and enabled them to minimize crime throughout New York City, making it a highly sought collectible toy.
6. Turtle Blimp
The van was not the only mobile crime-fighting unit the turtles had. Eventually, the turtles headed upward and into the skies above the city to fight the Foot Clan using their Turtle Blimp. Every childhood fan of the series gawked at the credulousness of the massive blimp. Those very same children found themselves thrilled when they could fly their very own thanks to the release of the Turtle Blimp toy.
The importance of adding the Turtle Blimp to your collection comes without question. Any devoted fan should at least have the original characters, the van, and the blimp. If you find one that is still in excellent condition and unsealed in its box, you will find that it fetches a decent price.
7. ShellRaiser with Leonardo
Look for the Playmates 2012 version of the Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles ShellRaiser. Not just any ShellRaiser, of course. Instead, look for the one that comes with Leonardo, which is a rare find. Although it is newer than some of the other suggestions on this list, the ShellRaiser with Leonardo is a rare find, making it a worthwhile addition to your collection.
8. NECA 16.5-inch Action Figure
NECA released a 16.5-inch action figure for all four of the turtles. The 1:4 scale action figures offer realistic features, making them one of the coolest action figures around. Their size alone is rather impressive, and when combined with the level of detail, they become a must have. When added to your shelf of collectibles, you will find that they quickly stand out among all others.
9. The 1992 Bodacious Birthday Turtles
As with any popular figures, many companies dedicated a line specifically geared toward birthdays. Even Barbie had her own birthday version, making her a popular birthday gift for several years. Fortunately, Playmates picked up on the hype and created a line of birthday themed Ninja Turtles. The line included Raphael dressed as a magician, Leonardo in a party hat, and Michelangelo resembling a clown.
Whether you choose to purchase one or all three of these wacky characters is up to you, but you should own at least one. You will find that it is a fun and unique addition to your line of collectibles. Not only are they memorable, but they also serve as a wonderful conversation piece.
10. Batman/TMNT #1
No one can argue that a comic book is almost always a needed addition to any collector’s case. That is especially true when you reference the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles joining forces with Batman. IDW Publishing joined forces with DC to create teamwork as you have never seen before. The Dark Knight and the turtles team up together to stop Shredder, and his Foot Clan from terrorizing Gotham City in this must have comic book.
11. Usagi Yojimbo – Basic Figure from 1989
Owning a set of TMNT’s most notable villains is an obvious must, but what about allies to the incredible green team? Although there were plenty of memorable allies, none were as cool as Usagi Yojimbo, the samurai rabbit who assisted the turtles in their fight for justice. Originating for the Usagi Yojimbo comics, the character is also known as Miyamoto Usagi.
If you are on the hunt for a worthwhile TMNT collectible, do not pass up the original basic figure version from 1989. You will find that Usagi fits right in along the turtles inside a collectible case. If you happen to find this guy still sealed in a box, you will find that his worth is rather incredible.
Owning any of the TMNT collectibles listed above is sure to make your day. Purchase all of the collectibles mentioned above to build yourself quite the extensive and impressive collection of TMNT objects if you can.