A new member of the Titans sprouts from what is most likely an evil plot hatched by a group of villains. What could go wrong? Everything! We review Titans #9, but is it good?
Titans #9 (DC Comics)
So what’s it about? The synopsis reads:
“Made in Manhattan” part two! The Titans come face-to-face with the Fearsome Five and their newest member…Bumblebee?! Meanwhile, Dick and Wally make a stunning discovery about Meta Solutions!
Why does this book matter?
Brett Booth has a kinetic style that’s hard to resist while Dan Abnett is writing an intriguing team book that has aged the Teen Titans well. The last issue opened up the Titans in their new facilities which has made them that much more legit.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Abnett continues to refine the villains introduced last issue as they’re on the straight and narrow. Or are they!? Bumblebee has new powers because of the former villains developing a new technology to give and take powers from people who sign up. Something seems fishy, and Abnett does a good job fleshing the underpinnings of this business down. By the end of the issue you’ll be on board for this team to do what they do best, but also root for Bumblebee to be the hero she so desperately wants to be too.
One of the more effective scenes involves Arsenal, who gives a rousing speech about how hard it was for himself to get off drugs. He makes a good point–these villains couldn’t have cleaned up their act so quickly–and it ties into the hard work one must go through in order to change. This leads to a fun team up between Flash and Nightwing which gives the book a fun mission for them to accomplish.
If we look sad they won’t think we’re bad guys.
The art by Booth continues to be great fun–the diagonal panels that seem to shuffle across the page is a delightful element of his–and there are a few pages with some interesting framing. In one full page spread, Nightwing and Flash must take on a wall of a character and the size comparison certainly ramps up the tension. The electricity flowing off Flash is one of the highlights of his style and the speed is rendered very well.
It can’t be perfect can it?
I’m not a fan of how Bumblebee is portrayed when outside of her costume. Many of her scenes have her shouting or practically fainting into her husband’s arms. She comes off as erratic and way over the top.
My only other gripe is the obviousness of the villains pretending to be good guys. I don’t think any reader is going to buy that for a second, especially given how often this superhero trope is played.
Is It Good?
An interesting element is developed in Titans #9 that makes the villains capable of doing bad things under the visage of corporate protection. Abnett and Booth are doing things that feel fresh on all fronts.