Release: Nov 12, 2011 - Author: Buster - Translator: Tony Montana - external link: IMDB - more from this series
When the animated TV series about 4 mutaded Turtles with a ninja combat training was sold to publishers in the UK to be aired on television, the word "ninja" was removed from the title to avoid any problems with the rating. Therefore the word was taken out of the episodes as well. They re-named the series to Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles. Additionally, they had to cut out any scenes that involved Michelangelo using his nunchucks (due to censorship laws back then).
Unfortunately, Germany (and probably also other if not all the other European countries) imported the censored version from the UK and therefore also aired the censored version of the series.
In march 2009, the German Label NewKSM released the first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles DVD box-set including the first 25 episodes. This box-set features both, the uncut US-version with the original english dubbing and the UK Version. In May 2010 they released the second box including the following 25 episodes. The third box was released two months later and includes 30 episodes on 6 DVDs. All Box-sets have the both versions.
There's a special fact that has to be mentioned. Episodes 67 through 79 (episodes 2 trhough 14 of the 4th season) were re-titled in Germany ("Vacation in Europe) and always take place in different European countries. From a chronological point of view they included the episodes in the right order on the DVDs. However, when the episodes first aired in America, these "European" epsiodes were aired 2 years after all the other episodes of season 4.
On October 17th 2011 the fourth box has been released in Germany. Just as for the first 2 box-sets, they again decided to include the shortened versions (along with the German dubbing) as well as the original US version (in English) on the DVDs. It's noticeable that fewer episodes were cut or censored for the UK version. Apart from the usual censoring of words ("Hero" instead of "Ninja") which was now probably maintained due to continuity reasons and the still censored intro, the fourth box contains even fewer censored episodes in the German/UK version than the third box allready did. This is probably because during the production of the later episodes in the USA they considered the conditions of the UK, for example Michelangelo's nunchakus were replaced by some kind of grapplinghook, so nothing had to be adapted.
Differences that only result from changing the word "ninja" to "hero" or from cutting out minor scenes/parts of scenes that were cut out along with a black screen will not be mentioned in this report.
For this comparison, the shortened UK Version was compared with the uncensored Original Version. Both of these versions are included in the German DVD Box 4 released by NewKSM.
1 cut (black screens not included) = 4 sec
For the UK Version of the series, the intro was lavishly re-cut. If you want to have a look at a more detailed report about the intro, have a look at the report for the very first episode of the first season of "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" on our website. Also, you should have a look at the report about episode 3 which has a more detailed description about the 2 changes that were made for the German DVD's version of the intro.
Shot of Michelangelo with his nunchucks while they're fighting the "King of Rats" in the sewer.