Monkey Brains
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012 TV series) episode
Monkey Brains title.png
Season Code: 107
Episode: 7
Original airdate November 3, 2012
Written by Russ Carney & Ron Corcillo
Supervising Producer Ant Ward
Producers: Ciro Nieli
J.R. Ventimilia
Joshua Sternin
MacGregor Middleton
Peter Hastings
Directed by Alan Wan
Voice Direction Andrea Romano
Supervising Director  Ciro Nieli
Episode chronology
← Previous Next →
"Metalhead" "Never Say Xever"

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Season 1
September 29, 2012 - August 8, 2013
List of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles episodes


  1. Rise of the Turtles, Part 1
  2. Rise of the Turtles, Part 2
  3. Turtle Temper
  4. New Friend, Old Enemy
  5. I Think His Name is Baxter Stockman
  6. Metalhead
  7. Monkey Brains
  8. Never Say Xever
  9. The Gauntlet
  10. Panic in the Sewers
  11. Mousers Attack!
  12. It Came From The Depths
  13. I, Monster
  14. New Girl in Town
  15. The Alien Agenda
  16. The Pulverizer
  17. TCRI
  18. Cockroach Terminator
  19. Baxter's Gambit
  20. Enemy of My Enemy
  21. Karai's Vendetta
  22. The Pulverizer Returns!
  23. Parasitica
  24. Operation: Break Out
  25. Showdown, Part 1
  26. Showdown, Part 2

Season 1Season 2 - Season 3 - Season 4 - Season 5

"Monkey Brains" is the seventh episode of the 2012 TV series. It first aired on November 3rd, 2012.


Donatello and April investigate a scientist's disappearance, but they discover a conspiracy regarding a bizarre psychic monkey instead.


Major Characters

Minor Characters


The episode begins with Donnie and Mikey training in the Dojo. When Mikey ends up using a back-flip to defend against one of Donnie's "seoi nage" attacks, Donnie finds it improper and criticizes him for using the 'wrong' type of defense. Donnie then asks Splinter what he would do if he was attacked with "seoi nage", but Splinter unexpectedly says that he doesn't know and tells Donnie that he must learn to fight without thinking.

Later, Leo, Raph and Mikey find Donnie making quite an elaborate flow chart plan to get April to hang out with him. They all find this pretty hilarious. He explains that, in order to maximize his chances for success, he has to prepare for every single, possible response. Suddenly, April then comes in and shows the Turtles a recent news report on her laptop. Dr. Tyler Rockwell, a renowned scientist, has been reported missing. April suspects that The Kraang are behind this doing, and she wants to go investigate. Donnie jumps at this chance to hang out with her and leaves his brothers behind. This actually turns out to be one of the situations that Donnie planned for on his flow chart, much to Leo's surprise.

April and Donnie carefully sneak into Dr. Rockwell's lab and find the place an empty wreck. While sifting through Rockwell's desk, they find a canister of Mutagen hidden in a drawer. A man then tries to sneak up on Donnie with a golf club, but April warns him and Donnie easily pins the man down. April then turns on a nearby light, revealing that the man is none other than Dr. Victor Falco, Rockwell's colleague from the news. Falco tells them that The Kraang bribed Rockwell into experimenting with the Mutagen and that he used it on a monkey he kept captive in a cage. Volunteering to conduct a search for Tyler, April then concludes that the monkey must have broken free and taken the scientist or worse.

Back outside, April wonders how she and Donnie will find Rockwell without any leads. Donnie then shows her a flash drive he took from Rockwell's desk that might have some useful information. Suddenly, that very mutant monkey ambushes them in an alley way. Donnie fights it, but he is no match for its random, mindless attacks and he is seemingly knocked out cold. Then, the monkey advances on a quite scared and defenseless April. It grabs her by the shoulders and roars at her, but it stops short of harming her. April then sees that the monkey looks scared as well and tells it that everything will be alright. The monkey releases her, backs away and takes to the roofs.

April then brings a badly injured Donnie back to the lair and tells his brothers what happened. After Donnie tells them that he'll be fine, they meanly start laughing at him for getting beaten up by a monkey in front of his "girlfriend". After he's had some time to recover, Donnie broods over the fact that he was defeated by such a mindless beast. Splinter comes up to him and tells him about the importance of fighting without thinking. He uses Mikey as an example, and Mikey is able to dodge several of Splinter's attacks while wearing headphones and having his eyes closed.

Later, April is seen going through notes on Rockwell's flash drive, when she discovers something important. She tells the Turtles that Tyler was doing psychic research and was able to modify the mutagen so that it could allow someone to gain psychic abilities. She concludes that the mutant monkey was psychic, and that it must have been reacting to their emotions, since it was hostile only when Donnie was being hostile. Leo advises that they should spread out to find the monkey before it can harm anybody else, and Donnie provides the group with one of his new creations, T-Phones, to stay in contact.

Back on the streets, April and the Turtles quickly spread out. They do locate the monkey, but it moves just too fast for any of them to catch. When they end up loosing it, they regroup and start arguing over where it could've gone, but April finds the frightened monkey hiding inside of a dumpster. Keeping calm, she reaches out to the monkey and it climbs out of the dumpster willingly, only to be tied up by the chain of Mikey's kusarigama. The Turtles then celebrate the monkey's capture, but they still ponder over where Dr. Rockwell is. Then, April says that she thinks the monkey is Dr. Rockwell.

April and the Turtles take Rockwell back to his lab, where Falco sedates him. He says that he may not be able to turn him back to normal, but he promises to look after him. When the group goes back to the lair, Splinter curiously asks April how she knew that the monkey used to be a human. She says that she doesn't know how she knew, but she just had a " strange feeling" about it. Splinter then exits, intrigued by her answer. Donnie, meanwhile, has been going through Rockwell's notes on his computer. He tells the others that, according to the notes, Rockwell only experimented with monkey DNA and that he never actually had a real monkey in his lab. So, if he never had a monkey, what broke out of the cage in the lab? They realize that it must have been a mutated Rockwell whom broke out of the cage, meaning that Falco put him there and he's been lying to them the whole time.

Meanwhile, Falco has the mutant Rockwell strapped to a chair in the lab once again. He uses a needle to extract the psychic neuro-chemical from Rockwell's brain and he injects it into himself, gaining psychic powers. The Turtles arrive just then and announce that they have knowledge about Falco did, but Falco can now read their every thought. Raph attacks him first, but Falco sees all of his attacks coming seconds before and he dodges every blow, before knocking him out cold. Leo tries next, but the same thing happens to him, and Mikey is the very next to fall leaving Donnie the very last one standing. He realizes that, in order to beat Falco, he must be willing to fight without the prospect of thinking, like Master Splinter had said earlier. Once he is able to completely turn off his thoughts, Donnie attacks Falco and wins the battle. The other Turtles soon recover and grab hold of the Mutagen canister, but Falco escapes before they are able to ask him what he knows about The Kraang. They decide to set Rockwell free, leaving the mutant monkey to fend for himself in the large city.

Back in the lair, Splinter discerns that April has a very special sensitivity that Splinter himself has tried to exercise for his entire life and yet, he has not quite been capable of truly mastering it. After she responds, he then offers to train her to be a female warrior (a kunoichi) and she humbly accepts this. He warns her that it will tax her physically, mentally, and spiritually. She understands, saying that it "Can't be any worse than high school!" April walks into the living room and Donnie approaches her, asking if she wants to hang out with him tomorrow night. She says that she cannot because she's going to be training with Splinter, but somehow, Donnie had planned a response for this very circumstance as well, and he suggests that the two should maybe train together some time. She agrees and Donnie is very pleased afterward, while Raph (who is sitting nearby) just rolls his eyes in utter annoyance.


Leonardo: "I bet that wasn't on his flow chart." (Flips board over and examines flow chart) "Whoa it is. That is spooky..."


Dr. Falco: (While pinned to the ground by Donnie) "Ah! What are you?"
Donatello: "Relax, I'm not gonna hurt you."
Dr. Falco: "You already hurt me."
Donatello: (While getting off of him) "I mean any more..."

Dr. Falco: "The Kraang! Well, I wanted no part of that stuff. Who knows what kind of monstrosities could result? No offense."
Donatello: "Some taken."

April: "Careful Donnie, that's a dangerous mutant!"
Donatello: "That makes two of us!"

Leonardo: (After Lying Donnie down) "Donnie, are you gonna be okay?"
Donatello: (In pain) "Yeah, yeah I'll be fine."
Leonardo: "In that case..." (Leo, Raph and Mikey start laughing at him)
Raphael: (While laughing) "Y-Y-You got beat up by a monkey? In front of your girlfriend?!"
Donatello: "She's not my girlfriend! And that monkey was a vicious mutant!"
Leonardo: (While still laughing) "Yeah, I'm sure he went bananas!" (laughs more) "Oh, no, no, no, no, no. He went ape!"
Raphael: (Makes 'cut it off' sign) "No more monkey puns." (Stop laughing because April's coming, Donnie laughs a bit)
April: "Are you laughing at him because he's hurt?"
Michelangelo: "No we're laughing at him, because he was hurt by a... monkey!" (Others start laughing again)


April: "It's more like he was reading our emotions. After all he was only hostile when Donnie was."
Donatello: "Yeah, well next time I'll try to think happy thoughts when I'm beating a little sunshine into him."


Splinter: "If you think too much about what is coming, you will lose sight of what is. You must be fully in the moment so you can fight without thinking."


Splinter: "You must find the spaces between your thoughts and learn to live there."


Donatello: "Ha, see that? I got her number."
Raphael: "Her number's on the fridge, you dork."


Leonardo: "Alright Falco, we've had enough of your-"
Raphael: "-Do not say monkeying around."
Leonardo: "I wasn't going to!"
Dr. Falco: "Yes, you were."


Michelangelo: "Wow, it's like he's psychic."
Donatello: "He is psychic, shellbrain. That's what he just said."
Michelangelo: "Oh, yeah I kinda tuned out when he did his whole 'I'm evil, blah, blah, blah thing'."

Donatello: "It's over, Falco! We know it was you who mutated Rockwell."
Dr. Falco: "I used him as a guinea pig."
Michelangelo: "Well it didn't work, you turned him into a monkey."


Donatello: "How are we gonna defeat him if he can read our minds?"
Michelangelo: "No prob, I'm good at this. I just have to fight without thinking. Wait a minute, how do I fight without thinking?! Oh no, now I'm thinking about not thinking!" (Gets knocked down by Falco)

April: (To the mutant Rockwell) "It's okay. Everything's going to be fine." (April's reflection appears in Rockwell's eyes as the monkey begins to chatter) "What? What is it?"


Donatello: "I'm no psychic, but I think he's trying to thank us."


Dr. Falco: "I really must admire that big brain of yours. You have so many wonderful ideas... too bad for you I can see them all coming. By the way, do you really think you have a chance with April?"

More to be added...



Monkey Brains/Transcript


  • After Donatello's defeat by Tyler Rockwell's mutant ape self, and his questioning how he, a life-long-trained martial artist, could have been bested by an (apparently) mindless mutant animal, Splinter gives him a lecture about one being able to fight "without thinking", using Michelangelo as an example: "You are very intelligent. But in a fight, you cannot be up here. ... You must find the space between your thoughts, and learn to live there. That's what Michelangelo does", (Donatello: "True, but Mikey's got a lot more space between his thoughts than I do".); here, Splinter is talking about the Buddhist concept of Śūnyatā (, in Japanese (see also, Nirvana)).
  • When April and Donatello are out investigating, April is wearing Greg Cipes's line of holster accessories (Wholesters). She is shown wearing them again in "Panic in the Sewers".
  • The T-Phones' ringtone is the 1987 TMNT theme song.
  • Donnie draws his 'master plan' Flowchart on the back of a movie poster for "Space Heroes III: The Resurrection of Mindstrong" (a parody of the film poster for Star Trek III: The Search for Spock).
  • April's phone number is on the Turtles fridge.
  • Splinter called Mikey, Mikey for once.