The Titans continue to become a more legitimate team as they get new digs in Manhattan and they do it for a very specific reason. Find out why in this issue, but keep reading to also find out, is it good?
Titans #7 (DC Comics)
So what’s it about? The summary reads:
“Home Sweet Home”! A new threat brings Wally West face to face with the Man of Steel, and the two recognize each other as kindred souls from another world. Plus, the Titans set up their new Tower in New York City!
Why does this book matter?
This series has subtly dropped details in regards to The Watchmen and their growing importance in the post-Rebirth storylines. Outside that, writer Dan Abnett is a maestro of dialogue and has artist Lee Weeks to back him up who is quite good at drawing characters and their emotions.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
With the Titans attempting to set up shop in Manhattan, this issue serves a way to show them getting their bearings in the city. The city makes for an interesting backdrop–it’s fun to see them fight a supervillain and file the paperwork to host a base. That’s right, much of this issue deals with the characters attempting to iron out the paperwork with a lawyer, but Abnett uses this lawyer character to show the average human perspective of superhero things. That includes the technology they use and the insane price of insurance. Generally you get the sense that the characters will have new dynamics to foster in NYC, but also the fact that they’re gelling as a team more since Flash came back.
That starts with a fun opening action sequence with a new hero who likes to use the word “meta.” This sequence solidifies Weeks’ strong fight choreography as it’s easy to follow and entertaining. His style grounds the story as his illustrations look realistic and do quite a lot with backgrounds. This helps keep track of where the characters are, but is also helpful with reminding the reader there are civilians all around. The colors by John Kalisz also help ground things with a more muted tone, making it far less cartoony than other superhero team books. Abnett also appears to be grounding the story more in this issue with Flash taking it up with Arsenal about property damage. It might sound boring, but conversations like this help make the super heroics more realistic and higher stakes.
A large portion of this book will have folks talking in regards to the The Watchmen connection which involves Superman and Flash. Since both of these characters came from the pre-New 52 universe they have a big thing in common and it appears Abnett is laying groundwork for their connection. Another connection, a romantic one, gets pushed along in development and Abnett makes it feel genuine and real. It’s dialogue between the characters like this that will pay off later when sparks really fly.
It can’t be perfect can it?
This is the type of book that, at face value, you might not have the blockbuster pizazz of other books, but the more you think about it the more robust the read is, which increases the value. Overall though, the main villain isn’t quite shown enough. They’re introduced at least, but you could easily read the next issue and have no trouble following along.
While I enjoy most of the art, it’s quite great throughout, there are cases where the faces are jumbled or unfinished. There’s a rougher look that may take you out of the experience. In one example, five characters stand in a panel, three looking at Flash run in who look as you’d expect, the fourth looking up in shock (which pulls your attention to the next panel in a marvelous way), but Flash’s face is too big and his expression serious but hard to read. It’s a subtle thing, but little hiccups like this are throughout the issue. It’s minor, but something of note.
Seriously heroes do a lot of damage.
Is It Good?
Titans succeeds at showing a superhero team pull together in a new city whilst showcasing their dynamics in succinct ways. It also offers a big action scene and some tantalizing new threads to chew on concerning how The Watchmen plays into the future DC books.