Raphael is an alligator snapping turtle who was mutated to become part human. He is one of the main protagonists of the Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles TV series. He is the oldest and former leader of the Mad Dogs. His weapons were a pair of tonfā, which help him tap into the power of "Smash-Jutsu", until they were destroyed, and replaced by his sais.
Raphael is large and muscular, with bright green skin, a yellow-orange plastron with a jagged top edge and a spiked dark green carapace. He also has small spikes protruding from his shoulders, black eyes, a small sharp tooth hanging from his upper right jaw, three fingers on each hand, and two toes on each foot. His physical profile is similar to various versions of Slash, most versions of whom are also snapping turtles.
Raph wears a red mask that covers the top of his head (with long jagged mask tails about the same length as Leo's), red elbow pads with a large spike at the joint, off-white bandages around his wrists, hands and ankles, and small bandages on his right side of his plastron and left forearm. He also wears red boxer-briefs and a red belt with a turtle emblem.
Raph is a rowdy and free-spirited character, who is often impulsive when confronted by enemies. He's also extremely sensitive, and unwilling to say potentially hurtful things, such as not liking the inventions Donnie provided to his brothers in "Donnie's Gifts," or apologizing to Frankenfoot after hurting his feelings.
Raph has been shown to have a soft spot for his brothers and animals (such as Mayhem). He does have a mature side and can put his team in line, despite his sometimes-questionable decisions. Acutely aware of his self-appointed status as the leader, he always makes decisions - some not so good - with positive intent and hope for the team. In spite of his frequent moments of foolishness and immaturity, Raph is shown to be clever and responsible in his own ways. He is also very protective of his brothers, but to the extent that may feel overbearing.
Raph has also been shown to snap in certain situations, particularly when he argues with Leo. In some cases, outbursts stem from annoyance or from things not going his way. He also goes insane if left by himself with no idea of his whereabouts.
He also has the biggest and strangest appetite out of all his brothers, such as when he ate the salami that was once a failed paper ninja.
Raph's relationship with his brothers is sometimes strained due to his status as the oldest brother. He tends to view them as little kids he has to take care of, which can cause his attitude towards them to be mothering or unintentionally patronizing. In turn, his brothers tend to expect Raph to handle many responsibilities and fix problems that they can't be bothered to deal with themselves -- much to Raph's frustration. This creates a cycle where Raph wants his brothers to be more responsible and reliable while he also indirectly enables their attitude through his parental behavior. He is shown to put his foot down and tackle this situation in the episode "Pizza Puffs".
Like his brothers, Raphael began his life as a baby turtle in Baron Draxum's laboratory. Wishing to make mutant soldiers, the Baron used Lou Jitsu's DNA to mutate Raphael into an anthropomorphic Turtle. He was taken from the lab by Lou Jitsu, along with his brothers.
As the biggest and oldest brother, Raphael is the self-appointed leader of the group. He thinks he can use his fists to get himself out of any situation. But while Raph's muscles are bigger than his brain, his heart is bigger than his muscles.
- Strength: Raphael is the strongest of the Mad Dogs due to him being a snapping turtle. He uses his strength to outmatch his opponents and it synchronizes with his tonfas' mystic ability. Thanks to his mutation, Raphael possesses strength greater than most humans.
- Speed: Raphael has the speed of a ninja in his arsenal due to his mutation, he can outrun most human speeds.
- Smash-jutsu (Tonfas): Via his mystic tonfas, Raphael can create an overlaying force-field, replicating his form. This increases the power of his punches, and works as a shield. Raph can also simply create a giant field version of himself, change the size of the field's limbs as he wishes, and even give the form more limbs.
- Ninjutsu: Being raised by Splinter, Raphael, like the rest of his brother, is skilled in the ways of ninjutsu.
- Stealth: As a practitioner of ninjutsu, Raphael can slip and out of areas undetected.
- Ninja Mind Meld: Raph can merge his mind with his brothers, sharing plans instantaneously.
- Ninpo: By tapping into the Hamato family energy, Raphael can release his own mystic might.
- Weapon Generation: Using ninpo, Raph can use random objects to form weaponry, namely, a pair of sais.
- Clones: Using his mystic power, Raph can dispense duplicates of himself at an unknown limit. Each clone shows no decrease in strength and speed. However, these clones are frail, and if damaged enough, will disappear-- briefly leaving behind a red shade of where they first disappeared at before completely fading out.
- Tactician: Being a leader, Raph has some leadership tactics that assist them in their missions of saving New York City.
- Donatello: Donnie finds Raph a bit crazy and hard-to-control, but he loves and respects him regardless. In turn, Raph treats Donnie very gently, occasionally protective of him, and has trouble telling him off.
- Leonardo: Raph and Leo typically get along, but sometimes they come into conflict over subjects ranging from wrestling to Raph's leadership skills.
- Michelangelo: Raph is very affectionate towards Mikey, and can be overprotective when his younger brother goes on solitary missions.
- Splinter: Raphael has great respect and affection for his father, and tends to call him "Pop." After discovering that Lou Jitsu was the Mad Dogs' biological father, Raphael was thrilled but assured Splinter that he was still their dad. He was shocked to later learn Splinter was Lou Jitsu.
- Karai: Raph seems to respect Karai a lot after meeting her. Karai is affectionate towards Raph during stressful moments and Raph takes her advice to heart as shown in "Anatawa Hitorijani".
- April O'Neil: Just like with his brothers, He's very protective toward her.
- Frankenfoot: Had created him at some point to have the perfect sparring partner. Refers to him as "Buddy"
- Marcus Moncrief:
- Red Fox:
- Baron Draxum:
- Meat Sweats: He's the one who dubs Rupert as "Meat Sweats"
- Warren Stone:
- Hypno-potamus: Hypno seems to be scared of Raph's punches.
- Foot Clan: Raphael has the most direct confrontations with Foot Brute. They are similar in power specialization and are both protective to their younger allies.
- Ghostbear: Raph use to idolize Ghostbear. However, after the wrestler revealed that he cheated to get his winning streak, Raph started to reconsider. Raph still looks up to him (to some extent), despite the wrestler having threatened him and his family multiple times through the series.
- Mrs. Cuddles: At first, Raph has a common fear of the "kid-friendly" mascot, but it wasn't until the events of her titular episode where Raph faces his fear. Upon discovering her kidnapping of his brothers and April, Raph calls her out as a bully and eventually finds a way to defeat her with Splinter.
- Big Mama:
- Mud Dogs:
- Heinous Green:
- “Go big or go home!”
- "You think you're going to step to our friend? Rookie mistake, hoss."
- "Stop talking about my fear stink!"
- "You're flying too close to the bull, and you're gonna get stung." - To Leo during Shell in The Cell
- "If I've learned anything from Jupiter Jim movies, glowing green usually equals bad." - Watching the Oozequitoes
- "Smash and Bash!"
- "You guys know I can't watch this!" - Mrs. Cuddles
- "HOT SOUP!!!" (Catchphrase)
- "Jumping Jack Flash!!!"
- "I love it when having no plan comes together!"
- "Knuckle sandwich!!"
- In the 2018 series, each one of the Turtles comes from a different turtle species. As a snapping turtle, Raphael is sensibly the largest turtle, with a large mouth to match his species (though unlike Raphael, real snapping turtles lack spikes on their front legs and teeth and they have long tails).
- Additionally, his attack first approach matches the real snapper's defense: a pain attack on the enemy.
- Unlike previous incarnations of the Turtles, this version of Raphael is both the oldest turtle and the leader of the team, instead of Leonardo, until the end of season 2. This version is also seemed to be a nicer version of Raphael unlike other incarnations of him.
- His weapon of choice is the tonfā instead of his usual weapon, the sai. Raph is also seen using a pair of Sai during early events of "Mystic Mayhem", but breaks them before switching to the tonfa.
- If the lyrics to the song Turtle Power is considered, this is the second time Raphael is the leader of the Turtles.
- This version of Raphael is not the first to wield tonfās or to wear a headscarf instead of a headband. The first such appearance of either was in the 1986 Mirage TMNT story The Passing, which takes place when the Mirage Turtles are still preteens in ninja training, all wearing headscarves, and Raphael's primary weapons were tonfās rather than the sais that he would wield later on.
- Raph seems to be the brother that drives the most often aside from Donnie. It is not know how he and Donnie learned how to drive.
- Raph and Leo have a brotherly rivalry, much like other incarnations but it’s not as bad as the other incarnations.
- According to a behind the scenes video, the only reason that Raph is the leader is because he is the oldest.
- Raph is also considered to be a "figure it out as he goes" type of leader.
- When describing his leadership role on a live stream, Raph was described as the "reactionary-type leader".
- In "Mystic Mayhem", it is revealed that Raph chokes under pressure and that he's even more, self-conscious when someone talks about it.
- In addition to choking under pressure, he is seen doing just that in "Sparring Partner".
- In "Donnie's Gifts", he confesses he is terrible at planning, which is another reason he might not be fit to be the leader.
- Donnie reveals in "Mascot Melee", that Raph is allergic to peanuts.
- Raph's usual surprise exclamation, "Jumpin' Jack Flash!", may be a reference to the Rolling Stones' song of the same name or the 1986 movie starring Whoopi Goldberg.
- Raph's signature catch phrase in this series is "Hot soup!".
- It is also the same famous catch phrase used by Lou Jitsu.
- A running gag is whenever Raph is on the phone with his younger brothers, particularly Donatello and Michelangelo, he speaks in a gentle voice.
- As mentioned in "Mind Meld", Raph apparently has a social media account.
- Raph has a soft spot for animals, though they seem to hate or fear him.
- As shown in "Man VS. Sewer", Raph hates being alone.
- He wears a retainer headset with his pajamas, as seen in "Flushed, but Never Forgotten".
- Raph claims he can shove his fist in his mouth.
- Raph gets stuck in the pirate voice whenever he watches Jupiter Jim Sails the Seven Seas.
- Raphael has a bad habit of "pushing big red buttons".