Tuesday, September 9

Polyvore Tuesday: Shell Shocked/Raphael

Today, another movie Ninja Turtle themed fashion set, this one based on Raphael who's signature color is red and signature weapon is a pair of Sai's.

Like Donatello's set last week, this set features an all leather outfit a girl might wear, if she wanted to theme her style on Raph.
(pronounced "raf" if you don't know.)
Background includes his signature weapons & a cityscape of New York.

Always in conflict with Leo over who ought to be leader, Raphael prides himself on being "the tough guy," but his aggressiveness  is actually a cover for a rather sever Inferiority Complex, which he confessed on film. He doesn't feel he's as good as his brothers. You'll note he's the only one with a carved Japanese symbol on his shoulder that is a raised scar--probably something he did himself, perhaps in a binge of "tough-guyness." In contrast, his 3 brothers all have tatooes on their arms and he doesn't, which might indicate Raph is the artist in the family. He's also muscially talented (has a guitar in his bed on the set) and has been making a hip-hop Christmas album with Mikey and plays drums (there's a drum set on set for him.) Plus he knits, which would be calming for him.
Keep  in mind he's only 15 and still a minor, despite his bulky size, as all the Turtles are.
In the cartoon, the Turtles and April & Karai are all teens of the same age; in the movie, anything between April, who is 24 or 25, and any of the Turtles, who are minors, would be illegal (and she'd know that, plus these were her pets as a kid.) 
Besides, Casey Jones is her canon love interest. 

Raphael's unique signature style is tight and quick, so he doesn't have to spend much time on it, but not sloppy, because he's artistic.

Shell Shocked/Raphael

According to Ninja Turtle lore, these humanoid Turtle Teens grew up in the sewers under Manhatten.
Since I know nothing about the underpinnings of New York, I decided to do a little Googling on the subject.
Here's what I found out: if there were Ninja Turtles living below New York City, they'd find it rather crowded:

1)  Because...utility guys are down in the sewers, checking them routinely. (Not to mention massive new subway construction going on--so loud.)

#2)  Because...there's "Urban Explorers" always wandering around, seeking remote and unique places to photograph and post online, including sewers & abandoned subway tunnels

#3)  Because...there's guided tours visiting certain underground closed & abandoned subway terminals, such as the beautiful old "City Hall" subway.

#4)  And because...there's huge numbers of homeless "Tunnel People" or "Mole People" who've taken up residency throughout the various subway, railroad and sewage tunnels of New York.
A sociologist named, Jennifer Toth, documented them in a fairly recent book. 
According to her facts, the NY Mayor's office in 1989 cited as many as 5000 living down there!

I mean, where's Turtle got to go just to get little privacy around here?

So here we have some actual photos:
First a view inside a real New York Sewer, a photo shot by one of those urban explorers:
Architecturally beautiful and old, such sewers date to the early days of New York. As far as I could tell, having looked over many such pictures, those sewers generally ALL have at least some water in them at all times. Factoid: Sixty percent of New York's sewers are a "Combined Overflow System,"  meaning both storm water AND overflow raw sewage runs through them, all emptying out into the water ways.
(This explorer was down there by permission, by the way.) 
Have you ever been in a cave? Without a head-lamp, these tunnels would be pitch dark! 

Next below, is a photo of part the Ninja Turtle set used on the recent film:

This is Donnie's computer station. 
Perfectly dry. It appears Splinter & the Turtle's figured out how to isolate their living area from general flood of wetness that otherwise occupies the sewers.  For example, at one point in the film, behind Splinter, you can see one tunnel archway has been completely walled up with old fashioned portable stereo boxes, so clearly no water has been around. (beat boxes.)
Other clever set design features include Donnie's desk chair, which is made of skateboards mounted on skateboard wheels and a sofa built out of thick stacks of Pizza Hut boxes set in a frame of pipes. Very dumpster dive chic.

And last, a photo of an actual New York "Tunnel" resident in his underground digs:

If you examine the movie set picture of where the Turtles live, then examine the real photo of a Tunnel person's home, what similarities do you notice in the environment? What differences?
For example: both really make use of  lots of "found" stuff.
Hope you enjoyed this bit of trivia! 
Next Tuesday: Mikey!

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