When little-known Playmates Toys was approached about producing a TMNTs action figure line, they were cautious of the risk and requested that a television deal be acquired first. On December 28, 1987, the TMNT's first cartoon series began, starting as a five-part miniseries and becoming a regular Saturday-morning syndicated series on October 1, 1988, with 13 more episodes. The series was produced by Murakami-Wolf-Swenson Film Productions, Inc. (later Fred Wolf Films). Mirage Studios does not own the rights to this cartoon series. The show is more lighthearted than the comics. Here, the Turtles are portrayed as four funny but serious superheroes that fight the forces of evil from their sewer hideout. They love pizza and put weird toppings on it. They make their first appearance in masks color-coded to each turtle, where previously they had all worn red. The turtles were also well known for their use of idiomatic expressions characteristic of the surfer lingo of the time, especially by Michelangelo. Words and phrases included "bummer", "dude", "bogus", "radical", "far-out", "tubuloso", "bodacious", and possibly the most recognized, "cowabunga".