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  • Continued from a discussion that started at Thread:118450#176 and (as of this writing) was most recently mentioned at Thread:118450#196.

    Let's discuss Lita, the newest mutant turtle in the IDW continuity.

    Albino turtle

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    • Wingnut II wrote: Lita. Short, but sweet. Not bad!

      Yes, according to a released snippet of TMNT #104, the albino turtle didn't know her own name, so Jennika named her Lita. Short and sweet, without theme naming or legacy naming, much like Jenny herself. From what I've gleaned, "Lita" can be Latin for "gladly," but can also be a clipped form of any number of possible names that end with "-lita,"

      I wonder... If Lita didn't have a name, then where did she come from? I have some clear memories from when I was as young as one or two years old, but I know not everyone remembers anything from that far back. I do know that unaccompanied children who don't know their own backgrounds have been a feature of literature before, such as Fantine from Les Miserables who was first found in her own youth as an unaccompanied street child. Lita could have been homeless even before she mutated, or her family abandoned her when she mutated or died during the EPF-Triceraton war, or she lost her parents for other reasons altogether. Or, possibly, she may not be a human-born mutant at all, but was an albino turtle who just happened to be at a certain place in the city at a certain time.

      It might seem implausible for an animal-born mutant to develop speech or a sense of self in only six months, but the same thing happened to the Turtles (IDW). Granted, they already inherited from (at least fragmentary) memories from their past life as the Hamato Sons, but that wouldn't have taught them how to speak English, etc., which is relevant given that only Splinter and Michelangelo could remember from their past life how to speak Japanese. Splinter was already sentient with full past life recall even before mutation because of StockGen's psychotropic compound, but Mikey like his brothers never had that, so what he remembers (and what they can't remember) almost seems to be a matter of chance.

      Another possibility is that Lita herself could be an animal-born mutant who is also a reincarnation. From Shredder and the Shredder in Hell miniseries, we already know that afterlives in-story do not strictly exist in linear time, and that the immortal spirits of people can be communed with on the other side even when theoretically a living incarnation of them is "still" alive, which was how Splinter's spirit could keep Saki company in the afterlife as soon as immediately after Saki's most recent death in Vengeance, part 6 even while Splinter himself was still alive. So I can't help but find myself wondering... Could Lita also be a reincarnation? And if so, of whom? It's not out of the realm of possibility that she could be a reincarnation of Tang Shen, or even of Splinter himself. ...Or she could just be a new character with no revealed previously cosmically connected history.

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    • While her being a reincarnation might make for some neat theories, it's a little more fun to consider where her story could go as a brand-new character.

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    • From Lita#comm-243385:

      Darth0Gonzo wrote: If Jen and the other Turtles end up raising her then I wonder if she will be given a Green bandana.

      Gilgameshkun responded: That presumes she'll get a bandana or be trained in ninjutsu at all.

      I don't know what Sophie or IDW have planned for Lita, whether she will begin ninjutsu training like the children of St. Robert's Orphanage did, or whatever. It would seem illogical for Lita to wear a bandanna if she's not a ninja or being trained as one, but then that brings up two other points:

      • Turtle bandannas never had a practical ninja function.
      • Characters never actually had to be ninja to wear one.

      Given that reasoning, it is possible that Lita could start wearing a bandanna simply as a matter of traditional dress for turtles in Clan Hamato. But even if Lita ends up not being raised in Clan Hamato, there's no reason Lita couldn't still wear one.

      Also, a green bandanna, especially if it's darker green rather than lighter green, might actually contrast perfectly with Lita's pasty, vaguely pink-white albinistic skin, the same way the other turtles' also have varying skin tones that contrast well with their bandanna colors—Mikey's orange bandanna against a cooler-toned green, Donnie's purple bandanna against a warmer, browner-toned green, etc. It especially helps the green bandanna argument that, unlike most other turtles in the TMNT mythos who have been either green or another color that can easily flow into green and does not contrast well with it (such as blue, brown, yellow, etc.), Lita appears as decisively not-green as any mutant turtle has ever been. But having skin that is such a bright neutral white color means that not only a green bandanna could suit her, but a bandanna of almost any brightly saturated darker color, including almost any of the colors the other turtles have worn.

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    • Gilgameshkun wrote:

      Wingnut II wrote: Lita. Short, but sweet. Not bad!

      Yes, according to a released snippet of TMNT #104, the albino turtle didn't know her own name, so Jennika named her Lita. Short and sweet, without theme naming or legacy naming, much like Jenny herself. From what I've gleaned, "Lita" can be Latin for "gladly," but can also be a clipped form of any number of possible names that end with "-lita,"

      I wonder... If Lita didn't have a name, then where did she come from? I have some clear memories from when I was as young as one or two years old, but I know not everyone remembers anything from that far back. I do know that unaccompanied children who don't know their own backgrounds have been a feature of literature before, such as Fantine from Les Miserables who was first found in her own youth as an unaccompanied street child. Lita could have been homeless even before she mutated, or her family abandoned her when she mutated or died during the EPF-Triceraton war, or she lost her parents for other reasons altogether. Or, possibly, she may not be a human-born mutant at all, but was an albino turtle who just happened to be at a certain place in the city at a certain time.

      It might seem implausible for an animal-born mutant to develop speech or a sense of self in only six months, but the same thing happened to the Turtles (IDW). Granted, they already inherited from (at least fragmentary) memories from their past life as the Hamato Sons, but that wouldn't have taught them how to speak English, etc., which is relevant given that only Splinter and Michelangelo could remember from their past life how to speak Japanese. Splinter was already sentient with full past life recall even before mutation because of StockGen's psychotropic compound, but Mikey like his brothers never had that, so what he remembers (and what they can't remember) almost seems to be a matter of chance.

      Another possibility is that Lita herself could be an animal-born mutant who is also a reincarnation. From Shredder and the Shredder in Hell miniseries, we already know that afterlives in-story do not strictly exist in linear time, and that the immortal spirits of people can be communed with on the other side even when theoretically a living incarnation of them is "still" alive, which was how Splinter's spirit could keep Saki company in the afterlife as soon as immediately after Saki's most recent death in Vengeance, part 6 even while Splinter himself was still alive. So I can't help but find myself wondering... Could Lita also be a reincarnation? And if so, of whom? It's not out of the realm of possibility that she could be a reincarnation of Tang Shen, or even of Splinter himself. ...Or she could just be a new character with no revealed previously cosmically connected history.

      Maybe she could be a version of Hamato Miwa.

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    • How do you figure?

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    • Well if she is a reincarnation of someone, which I know it would be a retcon but maybe the Hamato's had a baby girl who died, Idk how she died. I just thought it would make sense if she was a reincarnation then it would be some related to the Hatamo Clan in someway like Shredder or a Familiy member.

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    • Well, if Yoshi and Shen had had a baby girl who died, who would remember her now? Splinter's gone. Shen's gone. The Turtles have had a hard enough time recalling their own memories. A reincarnation of a baby who died is a reincarnation of a life that never really had a chance to live.

      Of course, with Hamato Miwa (2012 TV series), what made that idea work was not that Miwa herself remembered her parents, but that her father was still alive to care that she was still out there, and that the man she had thought was her father kept lying to her for his own selfish reasons. Yet after Splinter himself died, the only real family Miwa still had was the Turtles by virtue of their mutual connection to Splinter.

      The closest analogy I can think of to a new little girl coming into the Turtles' lives, is Shadow Jones (Mirage), and the Turtles had an opportunity to help raise her as uncles. Shadow even became closest to Uncle Raph of them all. No prior family link was required for her to become part of her family.

      One could then reason that the same is true of Lita—she doesn't need to have any shared past, real or supernatural, to become a cherished part of their family. And yet it still tickles the imagination to think she could possibly be the reincarnation of someone they once knew and loved, but that's because the IDW Clan Hamato is the reincarnated structure that it is.

      It was the Mirage continuity where no characters were necessarily related to each other. At best the four turtles could have been biological brothers but even this was never firmly established or even strictly necessary. Their family came into being because such a thing does not require people being related to each other in this life or any previous lives. To be clear:

      • Hamato Splinter was raised as Hamato Yoshi's pet, but came to consider himself the continuation of the Hamato family after both Yoshi and his wife Tang Shen died.
      • Splinter, who never had a mate or known biological children of his own, adopted the Turtles after they and Splinter mutated together.
      • April O'Neil entered their lives as an accidental friend, but after they all started living together, their fates became intertwined, and April became like a surrogate sister to the Turtles.
      • Splinter eventually came to consider April too to be his daughter just as much as the Turtles were his sons, as the six of them had been living together for years, and Splinter had repeatedly been the surrogate father figure that April had needed.
      • Longtime friend and housemate Casey Jones was in love with April, but April couldn't reciprocate and she eventually left, unable to keep living a life with so many secrets. Casey then also left, and out in Colorado he fell in love with and married Gabrielle Jones who was already pregnant from a previous relationship.
      • Gabrielle gave birth to Shadow Jones, but Gabrielle herself died during childbirth, making Casey the baby's only guardian.
      • Casey took Shadow with him and came back into the others' lives, and later started a proper relationship with April, as they actually did love each other after all and were finally ready for each other. Casey and April eventually married, and April adopted Shadow. Because April was now also Splinter's daughter, Splinter became Shadow's grandfather and the Turtles became her uncles.
      • When April and Casey repeatedly tried and failed to conceive children of their own, it turned out April could never have Casey's children because April was never human to begin with and couldn't have any human man's children—she was a homunculus, and not genetically related to the parents who raised her or to her sister Robyn.

      Ultimately, it didn't matter how these characters were(n't) born or who was(n't) related to whom—they still formed a family.

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    • Gilgameshkun wrote:
      Well, if Yoshi and Shen had had a baby girl who died, who would remember her now? Splinter's gone. Shen's gone. The Turtles have had a hard enough time recalling their own memories. A reincarnation of a baby who died is a reincarnation of a life that never really had a chance to live.

      Of course, with Hamato Miwa (2012 TV series), what made that idea work was not that Miwa herself remembered her parents, but that her father was still alive to care that she was still out there, and that the man she had thought was her father kept lying to her for his own selfish reasons. Yet after Splinter himself died, the only real family Miwa still had was the Turtles by virtue of their mutual connection to Splinter.

      The closest analogy I can think of to a new little girl coming into the Turtles' lives, is Shadow Jones (Mirage), and the Turtles had an opportunity to help raise her as uncles. Shadow even became closest to Uncle Raph of them all. No prior family link was required for her to become part of her family.

      One could then reason that the same is true of Lita—she doesn't need to have any shared past, real or supernatural, to become a cherished part of their family. And yet it still tickles the imagination to think she could possibly be the reincarnation of someone they once knew and loved, but that's because the IDW Clan Hamato is the reincarnated structure that it is.

      It was the Mirage continuity where no characters were necessarily related to each other. At best the four turtles could have been biological brothers but even this was never firmly established or even strictly necessary. Their family came into being because such a thing does not require people being related to each other in this life or any previous lives. To be clear:

      • Hamato Splinter was raised as Hamato Yoshi's pet, but came to consider himself the continuation of the Hamato family after both Yoshi and his wife Tang Shen died.
      • Splinter, who never had a mate or known biological children of his own, adopted the Turtles after they and Splinter mutated together.
      • April O'Neil entered their lives as an accidental friend, but after they all started living together, their fates became intertwined, and April became like a surrogate sister to the Turtles.
      • Splinter eventually came to consider April too to be his daughter just as much as the Turtles were his sons, as the six of them had been living together for years, and Splinter had repeatedly been the surrogate father figure that April had needed.
      • Longtime friend and housemate Casey Jones was in love with April, but April couldn't reciprocate and she eventually left, unable to keep living a life with so many secrets. Casey then also left, and out in Colorado he fell in love with and married Gabrielle Jones who was already pregnant from a previous relationship.
      • Gabrielle gave birth to Shadow Jones, but Gabrielle herself died during childbirth, making Casey the baby's only guardian.
      • Casey took Shadow with him and came back into the others' lives, and later started a proper relationship with April, as they actually did love each other after all and were finally ready for each other. Casey and April eventually married, and April adopted Shadow. Because April was now also Splinter's daughter, Splinter became Shadow's grandfather and the Turtles became her uncles.
      • When April and Casey repeatedly tried and failed to conceive children of their own, it turned out April could never have Casey's children because April was never human to begin with and couldn't have any human man's children—she was a homunculus, and not genetically related to the parents who raised her or to her sister Robyn.

      Ultimately, it didn't matter how these characters were(n't) born or who was(n't) related to whom—they still formed a family.

      Even if I stopped liking the Mirage series by Volume 4, I'll admit that your statement is incredibly poignant.

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    • So should Lita become a Ninja or not?

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    • The kid can do whatever the heck she wants, or whatever the writers want her to do. Maybe they just want her to live a relatively normal, ninja-free life.

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    • If she ends up living with the Turtles then that's not happening.

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    • Well, I could imagine Lita at least having some defense and fitness training, like April and the orphans. But just as with the orphans, I think whether or not she becomes ninja should be her decision alone, and that's not the kind of decision she's in a position to make right now.

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    • Gilgameshkun wrote:

      Wingnut II wrote: Lita. Short, but sweet. Not bad!

      Yes, according to a released snippet of TMNT #104, the albino turtle didn't know her own name, so Jennika named her Lita. Short and sweet, without theme naming or legacy naming, much like Jenny herself. From what I've gleaned, "Lita" can be Latin for "gladly," but can also be a clipped form of any number of possible names that end with "-lita,"

      I wonder... If Lita didn't have a name, then where did she come from? I have some clear memories from when I was as young as one or two years old, but I know not everyone remembers anything from that far back. I do know that unaccompanied children who don't know their own backgrounds have been a feature of literature before, such as Fantine from Les Miserables who was first found in her own youth as an unaccompanied street child. Lita could have been homeless even before she mutated, or her family abandoned her when she mutated or died during the EPF-Triceraton war, or she lost her parents for other reasons altogether. Or, possibly, she may not be a human-born mutant at all, but was an albino turtle who just happened to be at a certain place in the city at a certain time.

      It might seem implausible for an animal-born mutant to develop speech or a sense of self in only six months, but the same thing happened to the Turtles (IDW). Granted, they already inherited from (at least fragmentary) memories from their past life as the Hamato Sons, but that wouldn't have taught them how to speak English, etc., which is relevant given that only Splinter and Michelangelo could remember from their past life how to speak Japanese. Splinter was already sentient with full past life recall even before mutation because of StockGen's psychotropic compound, but Mikey like his brothers never had that, so what he remembers (and what they can't remember) almost seems to be a matter of chance.

      Another possibility is that Lita herself could be an animal-born mutant who is also a reincarnation. From Shredder and the Shredder in Hell miniseries, we already know that afterlives in-story do not strictly exist in linear time, and that the immortal spirits of people can be communed with on the other side even when theoretically a living incarnation of them is "still" alive, which was how Splinter's spirit could keep Saki company in the afterlife as soon as immediately after Saki's most recent death in Vengeance, part 6 even while Splinter himself was still alive. So I can't help but find myself wondering... Could Lita also be a reincarnation? And if so, of whom? It's not out of the realm of possibility that she could be a reincarnation of Tang Shen, or even of Splinter himself. ...Or she could just be a new character with no revealed previously cosmically connected history.

      It would be interesting if she was an animal born mutant rather than a human as assumed; even though we saw the fallout of the mutagen bomb as affecting humans, it presumably affected animals in its range too.

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    • You're absolutely right. So far, we've been generally assuming newly introduced Mutant Towners are human-born mutants, and that's usually been a safe assumption the more exotic (and non-native) their species are. Puggle is extremely unlikely to be animal-born, as platypuses are only indigenous to Australia. But I can't be certain about Bandit, as raccoons are indigenous to most of North America and have adapted to life in large cities. I also can't be certain about Diamond or the weasels for the same reason, though I've generally had the impression that the weasels are animal-born anyway.

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    • Honestly i'm not a fan of human-born mutants. Almost all OC's in the fandom are human-born mutants. I guess original Mona Lisa started this trend. I prefer animal-born mutants.



      Lita can also mean Joyful. And in Spanish the meaning of the name Lita is: Diminutive of Dolores: Sorrow.

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    • I do find the sociological differences between animal-born mutants and human-born mutants fascinating, such that I earlier proposed to The S that new categories be set up for Category:Voluntary mutants, Category:Involuntary mutants, Category:Deliberate mutants and Category:Accidental mutants. (I don't recall us ever coming to a decision on that.) Before the mutagen bomb, it was generally the case that animal-born mutants had mutated without their consent (because animals lack the sentience to consent), and that human-born mutants generally consented to mutate, which is why animal-born mutants Hob and Ray both felt a certain resentment towards the latter, and also why Category:Human-born mutants and Category:Animal-born mutants came into use.

      Human-born mutant privilege

      But the mutagen bomb changed the calculus—Hob and Ray wanted to inflict terror and sorrow on the humans they feared, but not by killing them, but by mutating them against their will. While it's virtually impossible to find examples of animals that mutated willingly (Spike (2012 TV series) is a borderline example), human-born mutants went from being mostly voluntary to mostly involuntary.

      I know TMNT creators in the past have had strong opinions about this, with mutants in the Mirage continuity not only being virtually exclusively animal-born, but also deliberately very rare and unique, with only Splinter (accidental), the Turtles (accidental) and Leatherhead (deliberate) having any real story longevity. As I can understand why these opinions exist, I can understand to a degree why Sugilita may share them. I don't actually mind how mutants came into being in-story, as long as they are written well. I'm not one to keep score of how many mutant turtles there are or which characters came from what as if my enjoyment of the story depended on it, because it really usually doesn't.

      Characters are people, or at least fictional versions of them, and a character like Lita hasn't been given enough of a chance to establish herself for me to judge whether she's a well-written character or is part of well-written stories. On some level I have to agree with Wingnut II that it honestly would be interesting if Lita is a brand new character with an unknown background that ultimately doesn't matter much. Then it actually wouldn't matter if she's human-born or animal-born.

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    • Something occured to me when I was rereading #103: How did Jennika even know that Lita is a girl?

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    • That's a good question. Conceivably, someone like Diamond was probably gendered by her voice. But young children of Lita's age can't always be easily told apart. Hell, even adult turtles of most species cannot be easily told apart. I suppose that's a question to ask Sophie on social media.

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    • Whoa, plot twist.

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    • Well, we don't know yet, it could just be an oversight, or a plot hole.

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    • Didn't Alopex identify her as female in #101?

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    • Huh, you're right, it was Alopex who gendered Lita. Maybe not so much of a mystery, then.

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    • Statement retracted!

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    • Ah, my mistake. I guess maybe she can smell the difference between male and female turtles.

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    • Since Alopex said she'd been around before, I assumed that there had been some sort of "tell" at some point when she was around - either a direct mention, or something that caused Al to come to that conclusion.

      I guess it's possible, but her smelling sexes feels like kind of creepy idea, especially toward a child...

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    • Yeah, that begs the question: Short of talking to them, how does one gender a mutant turtle? In the past this wasn't needed because all the turtles were presumed male (and the original Hamato Sons were male), but the truth is that any one of them could be female or trans and we wouldn't know because they have no secondary sexual characteristics, or even easily visible primary characteristics considering the turtles have been effectively naked with belts for most of the series until now. Jennika is understood to be a woman, and she identifies as one and she may have other subtle tertiary sexual characteristics (cultural identifiers of femininity), and the fact that she has dressed completely differently from the other turtles until now has helped reinforce this. (Though we don't know other things, like whether her voice still sounds like a woman's voice.) But in promotional art (because this hasn't happened in-story yet), when Jenny is dressed in original naked-with-belts turtle gear just like the guys:

      Tmnt103

      She's impossible to gender superficially.

      So the question is how does Al know Lita is a girl if Lita's usually been too timid to stick around that long? I'd like to think that there are less invasive ways to tell. But smell is one of the senses most immediately linked to the instinctive brain, bypassing conscious thought, which is part of why bad smells can be so hard to ignore, so Al doesn't have to necessarily think about what she smells—she just smells and knows it.

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    • Well the writer said Lita was female so that might be how Alopex knows.

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    • Right, because Alopex in-story can look past the fourth wall and ask Sophie questions. ~

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    • No that's just how she's knows, because she was wrote to know.

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    • So you think it's a plot hole?

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    • Gilgameshkun wrote:
      Right, because Alopex in-story can look past the fourth wall and ask Sophie questions. ~

      This would be funny, Alopex breaking the fourth wall.

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    • Does Lita's eyes look like female eyes?

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    • I'd ask how eyes can look female, but I'm pretty sure I know the answer to that...

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    • "Women's" eyes are tertiary sexual characteristics, and mutant turtles don't even have secondary ones.

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    • Isn't the main difference between Jennika and the boys' eyes just the color (the boys have brown, she has blue)?

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    • Maybe, but eye color still isn't a sexual characteristic.

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    • SGilgameshkun wrote:
      Maybe, but eye color still isn't a sexual characteristic.

      Sorry, that is what I meant, that their eyes are basically identical except for the color (which is only different because Jennika retained her eye color from her human form).

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    • Ahh, all right.

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    • The most common way to determine gender in a turtle is to look at the length of its tail. Female turtles have short and skinny tails while males sport long, thick tails, with their vent (cloaca) positioned closer to the end of the tail when compared to a female.



      But in IDW they don't draw them with tails sadly. It seems the Mirage turtles are the only ones where we can see tails.

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    • Seeing as Lita is living with the Turtles in a Dojo, I think she will learn how to fight.

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    • Basic self-defense, at least. The weasels, too.

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    • OK

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    • A FANDOM user
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