Venus (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
|Venus de Milo|
|First appearance||Ninja Turtles: The Next Mutation episode #1
|Created by||Kevin Eastman
|Alter ego||Mei Pieh Chi|
|Team affiliations||Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles|
|Abilities||Apprentice shinobi and shaman
Venus, Venus de Milo, or Mei Pieh Chi is a fictional character within the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise. Her bandana is Aqua colored and is braided in the back to resemble a ponytail. She appears in the television series Ninja Turtles: The Next Mutation on Fox Kids, as well as a few books. She is the only turtle named after a work of art, and not an artist, although one human going by the name "Mona Lisa" was mutated into a reptilian/ampibian in the 1987 TMNT series, supposedly.
Fictional character biography
Venus was one of the five turtles that were exposed to mutagen in the sewers. When Splinter gathered up all the turtles, he accidentally left Venus behind. Somehow making her way to Chinatown, she was discovered by a shinobi magician called Chung I. Chung I took the turtle with him to China where he raised her as a daughter and named her Mei Pieh Chi. He also trained the turtle in the art of Shinobi.
Apparently, Chung I would on occasion travel to the realm of dreams where he would encounter Splinter. Both of them swapped stories of their turtles but chose to keep this a secret from the turtles themselves until the time was right. Chung I also had in his possession a glass mirror, within which were trapped humanoid Dragons. It was Chung I's purpose to make sure that the Dragons could never escape the mirror. The dragons eventually crossed over into the realm of dreams, attacking Chung I and kidnapping Splinter's spirit. On his deathbed, Chung I revealed to the female turtle her true origin and told her that her place was in New York.
Life in New York
The female turtle traveled to New York, where she encountered the four Ninja Turtles watching over the body of their Master, whose spirit was trapped in the realm of dreams. After helping the turtles put an end to the Shredder and the Foot Clan, she then led them on a dream walk to rescue their Master's spirit. Unbeknownst to her, the Dragons used this opportunity to enter the physical world.
To celebrate their seeming victory, the five turtles and Splinter went for a picnic in the park but were attacked by Dragons. In the struggle, a statue of a woman is damaged with her arms broken off. After the turtles win the battle, the female turtle takes the statue with her to the lair. This earned her the nickname of Venus de Milo after the famous statue, mimicking the other Turtles' artist namesakes.
Venus seemed to have lived a sheltered life in China. During the show, Venus was portrayed as blissfully ignorant of some parts of Western life and culture and at times, equally ignorant of life in general. While proficient in fighting techniques, Venus was not trained in Ninjutsu like her brothers; in battle, she would use mystical orbs to various effects.
It was established early on in the series that while the four turtles were raised as brothers, none of them (including Venus) were biologically related. This was done by the writers so as not to eliminate the possibility of a romantic relationship between Venus and one of the four male turtles (with hints leading primarily to the rebellious, quick-tempered Raphael and/or the stalwart, even-keeled leader Leonardo).
Life from 1997 to 2000
After the cancellation of the show, Venus' adventures with the TMNT continued for several years. On the official website a "second season" of sorts was formed in the letters section. Starting in 1996 the Turtles would keep journal entries about their adventures in a shared universe with characters from Mirage continuity, Archie comics, and the cartoons all together. In October 1997 "Venus' Venerations" were added to the website, coupled with four tremendously excited Ninja Turtles each expressing their feelings on the new member of their team. Although she only wrote a little more than a dozen letters, she co-existed with Mirage, Archie, cartoon, and Next Mutation characters until the year 2000. In 2001, "Venus' Venerations" was discontinued, and the current storyline continued without any explanation or acknowledgment to her prior existence.
During this time Venus shared many adventures with her brothers while it lasted, such as the time they defeated Bonesteel and got him arrested. Then there were two trips to China; the first was to get the rest of Venus' belongings, and the second was to answer the threat of the Dragon Lord. On March 1999 the Turtles had finally ended the Dragon Lord's reign of terror; unfortunately because of Venus' mind trick on the Shredder, he was now a greater threat than ever. Shredder, now reunited with his inner self, attempted to lure Raphael to the dark side, to no avail, and became even more determined to achieve his vengeance. Krang however, offered to help the TMNT put Shredder away for good because he blamed him for all the failings they've had over the years. While the Turtles didn't trust Krang they agreed and secretly planned to end them by trapping them both.
After all the major villains were "defeated forever" for the moment, they decided to help their friends, the Mighty Mutanimals, defeat Murk Mariner. Venus planned to get captured and defeat the pirates from the inside, but Leo and Don especially hated the idea. It reopened just how important she was to them and their species, and caused great tension. However, they were eventually forced to carry the plan out and no one was hurt (with the exception of the pirates). In the last adventure she had with them, Rat King had broken their truce and his minions had eaten or destroyed nearly everything in their lair. After a grueling battle the TMNT were finding it hard to deal with their losses when suddenly the character retroactively ceased to exist; the Rat King had still destroyed their lair, but suddenly there were only four turtles again. No canonical explanation was ever given for her disappearance.
In a 2007 interview director Kevin Munroe elaborated on the instructions Peter Laird gave to him for TMNT. Munroe admitted that among those rules was, "There’s absolutely no mention of Venus de Milo, the female Turtle. You can’t even joke about that with Peter. It’s just one of those things that he hates with a passion." On a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Tent, created in 2013, you can find the name 'Venus' on a bomb, next to a picture of a girl in a turtle-costume. This could be a reference to Venus de Milo.
In the comics published by Image, Gary Carlson received only a few rules on what not to do, one of which was "No female turtles". However the character is parodied in issue 12, when an artificial morphling named Lurch transformed into a female turtle which looked similar to Venus. Some issues were advertised with the slogan "No girl turtle guaranteed".
- "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles On TV". IGN. Retrieved 2010-08-15.
- "Venus' Venerations". ninjaturtles.com. Retrieved 2010-10-27.
- "Director Kevin Munroe on TMNT". Animated-Views.com. April 9, 2007. Retrieved April 17, 2007.
- "TMNT: The Rennaissance [sic] Reptiles Return". Kung Fu Magazine. Retrieved 2010-08-18.
- E-mail interview with Gary Carlson, Retrieved 2010-07-06.
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Volume 3 #12, Retrieved 2010-07-06.