Back in 2009 Viacom shelled (HA!) out $60 million to the Mirage Group and 4Kids Entertainment for the global rights to Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Come next year, Viacom's Nickelodeon will be cashing in on the investment with the release of a new TMNT animated series and the assured action figures from Playmates to follow.

The Wall Street Journal reports the upcoming CG animated series is set to begin in 2012 and quotes the show's executive producer Ciro Nieli as saying the Green Machines will have "more individual attributes" than in previous incarnations. Judging from Nickelodeon's official promo image, those attributes include the original TMNT toys' varied green hues, plus an assortment of athletic tape. I don't blame them, smashing ninja foes like the Foot Clan surely leads to repetitive stress injuries.

There's not a whole lot of other info about the new series in TWSJ's writeup, but it does give readers a chilling reminder that Transformers pillager maestro Michael Bay has his clutches on the franchise's movie future for the time being. With any luck, those plans won't interfere with what will hopefully be a fun TV show. 4Kids' Turtles Forever was so awesome, fan expectations among the nostalgiacore crowd are already high.Don't let us down Nickelodeon. Remember the true TMNT spirit.