Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Chia Pet!

I normally pay attention to Chia Pets only around Christmas, but since I was so busy a few months ago, I didn’t get to keep up the tradition. Maybe this is why I’ve felt so hollow. Thank God for the Ninja Turtles.

Spotted just last night, it’s the official Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Chia Pet, which I think we can take as proof positive that Nickelodeon’s new series is doing pretty well.

I’ve barely paid attention to the new show. Don’t yell at me. I’ve already heard about how great it is, and about how it’s such a perfect balance of nostalgia and new hotness, and about the unlimited extra-vowel Krangs. I’ll get to it, and I’ll love it.

Still, I have to admit that the show’s success took me by surprise. This isn’t the first time TMNT has been brought back, and with all previous attempts, it never seemed to truly click. With the new series, you can’t say the same. I haven’t looked up the ratings or anything, but the fans are obviously there, and they’re not treating it like “just another show.”

How can I put this? The new series just seems so revered.

I have seen all of the toys, of course, and they’re great. You’ll never catch me admitting that the new figures are better than the ones I grew up with, even if my brain knows that they are. In particular, I’m impressed with how creative the new line has been. It’s anything but barebones, and anything but rushed. What could’ve been the simplest doodads were approached with such wacky gusto, and even from afar, from “show” to “stuff” and everything in between, it’s easy to see that the new Turtles are firing on all cylinders.

And yeah, now they have a Chia Pet.

Lacking weapons or color, I’m not sure which Ninja Turtle it’s meant to represent. Smart money is on Mikey, I guess. Perhaps someone who knows more about Nick’s Turtles will point out that the stitching on the elbow pad confirms this as a different character. It’s here where I’ll admit that while I claim to welcome corrections, I really don’t.

No matter which Turtle, he looks great. The terracotta figurine has a good amount of detail, even nailing the weird mouth. We’ve come a long way from the era of bloated testicles with ram heads and peg legs.

I used to fear Chia Pets, but not anymore. I finally have them down to a science.

The trick is easy: Just follow the instructions. Don’t make up your own instructions as you go along, as I so often did. Believe what the Chia people say, because if you’re going to listen to anyone about raising a Chia Pet, it should be a Chia person.

So, soak that planter for an hour. Don’t assume it’s a bullshit step. It isn’t.

And soak the seeds for an hour, too. Make sure you get the measurements right. Two teaspoons of seeds, and a fourth of a cup of water.

When it’s time to apply the seeds, use your fingers. Nothing works better on Chia Pets than fingers. Get those seeds in every groove, but be careful not to put too many. Clumps of Chia seeds never grow right.

You won’t need all of the seeds, or even close to all of them. This means you’re going to have to sacrifice a big pile of gelatinous goo. Deal with it. Chia seeds are cheap. Don’t treat them like diamonds.

The most important thing is the loose plastic bag. I cannot stress this enough. The instructions make it seem sort of optional, but unless you live within the one sunny patch of a tropical rainforest, you need the bag. This will improve humidity and moisture, ensuring fast and even growth.

I know it’s an ugly step, since it means you’ll be staring at a bag-covered Ninja Turtle for several days. Trust me, it’s worth it. You can take the bag off after the seeds sprout, so it’s not like you’ll be suffocating Michelangelo forever.

Part 1 of this story ends here. My Chia Pet will need some time before it stops looking like a Ninja Turtle covered in ticks. When it becomes beautiful, you’ll be the second person to know.


43 Responses to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Chia Pet!

  1. Greatest. Chia Pet. EVER.

  2. I’m guessing this thing is brand spanking new, since I can’t find a link to one on sale online. For those curious, I found it at Toys “R” Us.

  3. I can think of five people off the top of my head who I am going to give this to as a gift. Christmas shopping? Done.

  4. Teenage Mutant Chia Turtles!

  5. I remember why back on X-E when you had a bunch of GI Joes messing about with a Chia pet. I’m glad you’re able to get them going now.

  6. I tried the new series for 5 or 6 episodes and then gave up. Too much anime influence, trying too hard to be cool and hip for the kids, April is a teen, Splinter looks like a japanese butler. And they made a rap song out of the classic theme song. I miss the 4Kids 2003 series.

  7. I’m with Roddy on the 4Kids series, though I can’t comment on the new one, as I haven’t seen any of it–and that is a first for me. I used to watch the 2k3 series on the huge televisions in my dorm on Saturday mornings, like a weirdo. But, hey–no one else competed for it at that hour.

  8. I find myself really enjoying the new series with my son. I wasn’t sure if I would like it, but I think they did a great job. Plus, Samwise is the voice of Raph. I love that.

    This Chia pet looks sweet too!

  9. This is so cool. The last Christmas you did a Chia Pet, I did one too. The Febuary before that, we cleaned out his Mom’s apartment. She had one and I said several times I will save this for when Matt does his annual Christmas Chia Pet. I never did one before. At the time, Harry got so sick we had to do hospital stay for a few days. That damn Chia Pet stuck in my mind. Fortunately it had enough water, was in the sunlight and had a plastic bag over it. I had to put it right by my computer because that was the only convienent sunspot. That of course made me nervous, water being that close to my computer.

    When I came home I ran and was relieved that damn Chia Pet was fine and grew a bit. Unfortunately one side grew more then the other. And never balanced out. I think with this one, it would be easier because you don’t have to turn it.

    This story is a very good evidence against me having a child. I worry too much over the littlest of things. If anybody tried to convince me not to have one this would be exhibit A. I am just saying.

  10. The original indy comics are my favorite version of the turtles. They had just the right balance of grittiness and silliness.

  11. Best Chia Pet ever!

    And yeah, the new series is good. At least, as a fan of the goofy 1987 cartoon, I think so. Fans of the 2003 version might like their TMNT to be treated a little more seriously, but I think it’s a good mix of modern drama and retro silliness.

    Only thing that threw me for a loop is Donnie’s voice. He’s played by Rob Paulsen, who played Raphael in the old cartoon. So now Donatello has Raph’s voice. Took a while to get used to, but overall it works.

  12. I could never have a Chia Pet. Chia seeds give me the jibblies. Brrr.

  13. Regarding the 4Kids series — I was more referring to the pure financials. Critically, I don’t have anything bad to say. The visual style of that series wasn’t for me (it’s an unfair comparison in so many ways, but I got the Beast Machines vibe from it), but it added some neat stuff to the big pot of TMNT lore. (Turtles Forever probably sitting at the top of that pot.)

    The new series is a beast, though. At least, it was at the start, from a promotional standpoint. They sailed that shit all over every Viacom channel with so many immersive promotions. I don’t know how much they’re doing today, but coming into the launch, the effort was there in a big way.

  14. Hey Matt have you ever watched the show Ninja Turtles the Next Mutation? That show is weird. It’s live action and they have a girl turtle. I watched part of it on Youtube once and I was very confused. They air it now on the Hub apparently because I see that commercial all the time.

  15. @Meekrat: I’m almost positive that they changed the rules since then. I think you were supposed to soak the planters for a full day at one point. Glad they only require an hour, now.

    @Bard: That is awesome!

    @Goob: Yes, it’s legendary in its weirdness, especially the character of Venus. I also recall something about a gorilla, or gorillas.

  16. I haven’t seen the new series yet either, which has less to do with an aversion to watching it, and more to do with the fact that I simply don’t watch TV at all anymore. I don’t think I was even fully aware that the series had started.

    Now, 10 years ago, when the first reboot started, I was all over it. Bought a mess of the action figures and vehicles and caught every new episode. Of course, I stopped watching that after the first season. Again, nothing to do with the quality, but I was just watching TV less than doing other things.

    I considered buying a new Raphael figure out of tradition the other day, (my first toys from the 1987 and 2003 series were Raphs) but I think I’ve finally reached a point where I question the need for a new Raphael toy in my life. I’m sort of disgusted with myself for it.

  17. I remember when I came back to the UK from staying with parents working in Africa at age 7 in 1990. My Canadian Uncle, who was about 40 at the time, came to visit, he was a huge comic book fan and read the Ninja Turtles. He was excited at them making new cartoons and a movie, so he had bought me a load of stuff, like a story book, a pot of ooze, a Don figure. I hadn’t even seen the show yet, but the stuff he got me blew my mind. I remember the one thing that burned me was when a friend in my street had the inflatable Blimp toy.

  18. I will confirm that this is indeed Mikey. No shoulder straps means it’s not Don or Leo, and Raph has a crack in his plastron near his left shoulder. Plus Raph would never have that goofy grin. Can you tell that I’m a fan of the new series?

    I think it’s a great balance of the turtle’s personalities and deals a lot more heavily with the family element of their story than the revenge elements in the original comics. Don’t get me wrong, I love the comics; this is just a different but equally awesome take on the story. It’s also geared toward a younger audience but I don’t feel that it’s dumbed down because of that.

    I would suggest watching it for the characters and see how well they play off of each other. Donnie’s always been my favorite but this is the first time in any iteration that I have genuinely loved Michelangelo. And, yeah, it’s weird to hear Rob Paulsen as Donatello at first, but I got over it quickly and I think he does a much better job as Donnie than he ever did as Raph, which is saying a lot.

  19. The new TMNT series kicks all kinds of ass!! I’ve been on board since it started, and it’s great for the new generation and old fans alike. Jason Biggs voices Leo, and Sean Astin voices Raph. The new figures are pretty sweet, and I’ve already reviewed all four of the Turtles and Metalhead. The Turtles themselves have great articultion, but the other figures only have(i believe), 5 points(head, shoulders and hips). They do look pretty sweet.

    Your Chia Turtle would have to be either Mikey or Leo. There’s no gap in the teeth, so it’s not Donnie. And as someone else already mentioned, there’s no crack/chip on his chest, so it’s not Raph.

    Do you still have any of your past Chias? Or, do you grow tired of them, and trash them? I’d love to see how the others are doing after all this time. :)

  20. what i think is funny about the new series is how the principle from American dad is shredder

  21. For anybody like Pirate John That doesn’t have a tv I know at least a handful of episodes of the new series are on Youtube. I see them pop up in my related videos from time to time. And the last time I checked someone made an account on Youtube with all 3 of the movies, and other videos too. A lot of people this last year or so after Youtube made it easy to become a partner, upload full length movies in one video. I watched Flight of the Navigator the other day. Unfortunately unless you see them in the related videos, you really have to type in random movie titles blindly to see if it’s there.

  22. This is perhaps the most badassed Chia Pet ever. Is this the *only* Chia Pet that could be described as “badass”? Either way, I want this thing.

    I had no intention of it, but I did end up catching some of the new series, and I liked it waaay more than I thought I would. I don’t think it’ll become regular viewing for me, but it’s nice to see the franchise being handled well. If nothing else, there’ll be a whole new generation of Turtle fans, and that’s something to be thankful for.

  23. When he’s finished growing you should give him a nice coat of Ninja Turtle paint.

  24. to anyone enamored with the new cartoon, I beg you to check out the new Comic Book series that is being Co-Written by Eastman. It’s everything this fan has wanted out of the Turtles since I was five years old. It’s amazing. Read it.

  25. New series really is a lot of fun. It’s upbeat but the writing is uniformly clever and tight. I liked the ’03 series a lot — it’s the closest of the three to the Mirage comics and really embraced some of the more sci-fi and dramatic arcs even if it went off the rails to a lot of the casual audience. I’m about halfway through season four of the original TMNT (and it’s a beast — something like 44 episodes) and have been enjoying my way working through it. I’d forgotten how often the characters break the “fourth wall” and talk directly to the viewer with a wink and a nod at how preposterous it all is.

  26. I believe Larry P. I believe this is the only Chia Pet that could be considered “badass.” It would be even more badass if they made four different models, one for each turtle, but that’s neither here nor there. I’ve never owned a Chia Pet and I probably never will, but this is the only one I’ve ever been tempted by. Wait, no, I take that back. Wasn’t there a Mr. T Chia Pet? I wanted that. Of course it may not have been real…who knows?

    Anyway, yeah, I think the new show is pretty good. I only watched the 4Kids show sporadically, but I did watch Turtles Forever and that was one of the most awesome things ever. I noticed a lot of references to the earlier series and the movies in the pilot episode, which I thought was awesome, but I haven’t really noticed any since then. Anyone else?

  27. Damn. I hit post before I saw my typo. That first sentence should have said, “I believe Larry P. is right.”

  28. Dude, they really need to make Roadwarriors (WWF) Chia Pets.

  29. That would, in fact, be Leonardo. Mikey has a significantly shorter headband.

  30. Teddy Ray – I forget which episode it was, but Mikey says something about tattooing his face, and it shows his face from the original series. That is the only one that I can really remember. I have all the episodes on the dvr, so I can check for other references. I know there are more, because there are so many times I find myself noticing them(but can’t relay them, ya know?).

  31. I’ve only seen one episode of the new show but I liked it. I enjoyed hearing Greg Cipes as Mikey, since he played my favorite character Beast Boy in the Teen Titans cartoon. I grew up with the 80s Turtle cartoon so I love it best. I respect the 2003 one but I couldn’t really get into it, the turtles’ personalities seemed too same-y. (Though I suspect that that’s just because they were more subtle, and maybe because the lack of eye animation was hard to get used to? Maybe if I gave the show another chance I would like it).

  32. “Dude, they really need to make Roadwarriors (WWF) Chia Pets.” – Ultra Magnus 2005

    Are you thinking that the chia growth is the shoulder pads they came to the ring in? If so, I wholeheartedly agree. If you mean because of hairstyles, I’d go with Powers of Pain, personally.

  33. Watched the first 3 episodes of the new show last night. The voice work is top notch and I like the camaraderie between the turtles. Even thought all I’ve seen him do is give orders form the shadows, Shredder is positively badass. The only 2 things I didn’t like were the kraangs and the theme song.

  34. I’ve only seen one episode at my dad’s house, but I did enjoy it. I also thought it was the right balance of goofiness and action. I haven’t seen the most recent movie or the 2003 cartoon, so I can’t make comparisons there. (I have TV, but not cable. I live alone. One person doesn’t need 500 channels.)

    While I have seen some of the action figures as well, this takes the merchandising cake. Whether it’s Donatello or Michelangelo, I hope it grows well. That figure is too sweet to not have a thick green growth on its back.

  35. I will have nothing to do with the new series. The reason? Just do a search on the tweets Jason Biggs sent out towards the end of last summer. And if you do, remember that the Nickolodeon website linked to the Twitter feeds of the the people involved in the show. That means kids could access his vile tweets.

  36. Maybe I am alone here but I happen to like the new TMNT theme song. It is very catchy and upbeat without being cheesy and my kids respond to it positively as well.

  37. “I have seen all of the toys, of course, and they’re great. You’ll never catch me admitting that the new figures are better than the ones I grew up with, even if my brain knows that they are.”

    I must admit: I’d really love to know what you think of the new Turtle figures that are updated versions of the old cartoon Turtles. “Classic Turtles,” I think they’re called.

  38. We need a Chia Dino-Drac!

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