- The “Ninja Rap” scene from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: Secret of the Ooze is a memorable moment in the franchise’s history that continues to resonate with fans.
- The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have had a strong connection to hip hop culture, with rap songs appearing in various adaptations of the franchise.
- Artists from the hip hop world, such as LL Cool J and Kendrick Lamar, have referenced the Ninja Turtles in their music, further solidifying the link between the turtles and hip hop.
A new piece of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles art turns up the nostalgia factor. The long-running franchise about a group of young turtles has spanned numerous mediums, including film and television. They notably led an animated series in 1987 that lasted until 1996 before making the jump to movies in 1990’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. That received a sequel a year later, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze. To this day, the sequel and the show are two of the most beloved adaptations of the turtles who’ve remained relevant to popular culture for decades now.
On Twitter, artist !CHRiS! Jones shared the new art, which recreates the scene from The Secret of the Ooze in which the turtles dance after fighting mutants Tokka and Rahzar in a night club while Vanilla Ice performs the iconic “Ninja Rap” song. The stunning art can be seen below:
Jones’ art provides an interesting twist because the piece is drawn in the style of the 1987 animated series, thus combining two different eras of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise.
The Ninja Turtles Hip Hop Connection
The “Ninja Rap” scene is one of the most memorable moments from the history of the Ninja Turtles franchise. The newest animated film adaptation, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem, which has received near-universal acclaim from critics and audiences, even uses the song in one fight scene as an Easter egg for longtime fans of the turtles. However, “Ninja Rap” is far from the only rap song the turtles have grooved to. Hip hop culture and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have been intertwined in many ways throughout this long-running media franchise.
The first live-action film adaptation from 1990 contained multiple rap songs, most famously Partners In Kryme’s “Turtle Power,” which played over the end credits. In 2012, the animated Turtles series on Nickelodeon reworked the theme song from the 1987 series into a catchy rap track. Alongside “Ninja Rap”, Mutant Mayhem boasts a fantastic hip hop soundtrack including classic rap songs like ODB’s “Shimmy Shimmy Ya” and A Tribe Called Quest’s “Can I Kick It?”.
The connection hasn’t been one-sided either, with many artists from the hip hop world embracing the turtles in their lyrics. On LL Cool J’s classic track “Milky Cereal”, he raps, “I was happy as a kid that just saw Mutant Ninja Turtles”. Boosie once boasted on the legendary Southern rap track “Wipe Me Down” that he was “Famous like the Ninja Turtles.” Kendrick Lamar even named the opening track on good kid, m.A.A.d city “Sherane a.k.a Master Splinter’s Daughter,” a reference to the turtles’ adoptive father and martial arts trainer. With Mutant Mayhem revitalizing interest in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, the connection between the turtles and the hip hop world could deepen even further.
Sources: !CHRiS! Jones/Twitter