| “The Shredder Strikes Back,|
|Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003) episode|
The Elite Guard arrive.
|Original airdate||June 7, 2003|
|Written by||Eric Luke|
|Supervising Producer||Lloyd Goldfine|
|Frederick U. Fierst|
|Supervising Director||Chuck Patton|
|Story Editor:||Lloyd Goldfine|
- April O'Neil (Veronica Taylor)
- Donatello (Sam Riegel)
- Hun (Greg Carey)
- Leonardo (Michael Sinterniklaas)
- Michelangelo (Wayne Grayson)
- Raphael (Frank Frankson)
- The Shredder (Scottie Ray)
- Splinter (Darren Dunstan)
Leonardo: There are times in your life when you draw on everything you have. Times when you reach down into the deepest part of yourself. When you know you gotta give it your all, because anything less won't get the job done. It's in times like these that you find out who you really are. That is, if you live long enough.
It is early morning, and Leo prepares to leave for his daily training exercises. Master Splinter rises to have a few words with his son, while the rest of the turtles are spread out all over April’s apartment sleeping. Splinter tells Leo to be very careful, due to the foot clan activity, and he cautions his student against doing any investigating in the sewers on his own. Leonardo reluctantly agrees not to take any unnecessary chances, and he disappears through a window that leads outside.
Shortly after Leo leaves, the rest of the turtles and April wake up and start going through their newly established morning ritual---going to the bathroom, making breakfast, picking pillows and blankets up off the floor, etc... As this scene of domestic life is unfolding at April’s place, Leonardo is starting to deal with an entirely different reality - He’s being pursued by a horde of foot soldiers that spotted him from an alley way. To make matters worse, after several tiring skirmishes between the ninjas and Leo, the clouds in the sky part and a violent thunderstorm erupts.
Leo runs across the rooftops, occasionally stopping to fight off a few of his pursuers. But for every group of foot soldiers he defeats, another one appears. Also, as he heads for home, his adversaries become more skilled and fierce. Ordinary foot soldiers soon give way to the Foot Tech Ninja.
Back at April’s place, the rest of the crew has finished eating breakfast and Raph and Don are doing the dishes. The turtles are starting to get a little perturbed about what’s keeping Leo, as his morning training exercises don’t usually last this long. Donnie says that, out of all of the brothers, Leo is the only one they needn't worry about being late. Little does he know what Leo has gotten himself into...
Leonardo’s constant battles are starting to majorly wear him out. Just after he manages to defeat the Foot Tech Ninja (which he actually is able to defeat without looking), he turns a corner and comes face to face with many more more foot soldiers, who make way for the giant Hun. Leo signals for Hun to come and fight, man to turtle. Hun smiles wickedly and instructs his troops to stay back, indicating that he’ll handle the turtle himself. The fight is ferocious, and for a time, it looks like the superior size and strength of Hun will win out. However, just when the giant is able to gain the upper hand and when defeat looks certain, Leo uses his speed, agility and ninja skills to send the big man head-on into a chimney that collapses onto the villain. Seeing their leader down and out, the rest of the foot back up, but end up falling off of the building. With a sigh of relief, the battered mutant once again turns and heads for home.
At April’s place, the guys are watching football, when Mikey illustrates his prowess at power burping. April is disgusted, but Donnie and Raph humorously applaud the effort. Raphael then says he's going stir crazy, and says that he's going to go out to see what’s keeping Leo. Splinter doesn’t want another turtle out getting into trouble, so he orders Raph to stay put.
Meanwhile, Leonardo’s trip home takes yet another turn for the worse...After Leo manages to outmatch Hun and all of the ordinary Foot Soldiers, Hun strangely stops, smiles and mutters an evil laugh as he stepped back, and all of the Foot ninjas proceed to bow... Confused by this, Leo looks behind himself and to his horror, spotted four mysterious ninjas (The Foot Elite) standing on a nearby rooftop staring down at him coldly, branding their weapons, all looking eager to fight. Hun, the Foot Soldiers and Foot Tech Ninja come up behind Leo, blocking any attempt to retreat on his part. Running out of options, Leo takes a deep breath, summons up all of his strength and courageously jumps up to attack The Elite Guard. But just when he reaches the rooftop, the ninjas vanish in a surge of smoke and reappear right where Leo was standing before. Suddenly, the Foot Elite, Hun, and all of the other Foot ninjas turn in a different direction and bow, once again... Once again, confused, Leo looks to where they're bowing towards, and to his astonishment, he sees what appears to be The Shredder silhouetted against the stormy sky in the near distance. But how is this possible? Leo and the others saw The Shredder fall off of a building and get crushed by a water tower!! Suddenly, the Foot Elite vanish again and, in only a matter of seconds, appear right around Leo. The following battle is the fiercest the turtle has been involved in that night. The Elite Guard attack him with their weapons from every angle, passing Leo back and forth, inflicting more and more damage. Just when defeat looks certain, The Elite Guard stop the fight, leaving Leo panting on the ground. After a moment of silence, Leo gathers another boost of energy and starts to fight again, but this time, the Elite defeat him and send him flying off of the building, knocking the katanas from his hands...
Back at April’s apartment, Master Splinter has finally deduced that Leonardo must be in trouble. The worried Sensei instructs Raph, Donnie and Mikey to go look for him. The three gather up their weapons and prepare to leave, when, suddenly, Leo comes crashing through one of the windows. The other turtles, Splinter and April rush to Leonardo’s broken and battered body, not knowing whether he’s dead or alive. Raphael growls that he's going to find who did this to his brother, but before he can exit, Leo calls out for him to stop.
“He’s back. The Shredder”, the injured turtle feebily utters.
Everyone is shocked by this news.
Back on the rooftop, the Foot Elite bow before their master, before one hands him Leonardo's katanas. The Shredder raises the blades over his head and with superhuman strength, breaks them in half. The evil mastermind then laughs maniacally, as the thunderstorm rages on.
Michelangelo: (cooking breakfast when the yolks in the pan broke; he begins to stir up the eggs) Scrambled's okay with everybody, right?
Michelangelo: Oh man, I slept on my hand, and it got numb and hit my face and I thought somebody slapped me. Don't ya hate that?
April: Hey, what's burning?
April: So, one would think that table manners were a part of their training...?
Raphael: (He and Donatello are watching football on TV) Panthers! Rams! Bears! Eh, they even got Dolphins! You'd think they'd have room for something a little more... reptilian!
Leonardo: He's back...The..Shredder. (He then faints)
- This episode is based on the Leonardo #1 comic book.
- First appearance of the Foot Elite. In this series the battle is at night during a bad storm but in the comics it was snowing and it was Christmas time. In the comics Shredder is involved in the battle like the 2003 series and burned the shop down in both versions. In the live action movie Raphael was hurt and the battle was during the day and not in a storm or in a blizzard. In the live action movie Shredder was not in the battle nor did he burn down April O'Neil's shop but he did send Tatsu, into battle but he did not battle the turtles. In the comics the turtles went down stairs just like in the 2003 version to get away from the Foot ninjas but in the live action movie the Foot cut holes in the floor with their axes and when more came the floor gave way and all of them were in the shop below when Tatsu was seen with a bunch of Foot ninjas.
- None of this happened in the 1987 series.