Despite the incredible success of their television series, the Teen Titans haven’t held up as well within their comic series, especially after Lobdell ran the last series into the ground. So now it’s up to Ben Percy and a group of artists to right the ship. So is it good?
The majority of readers would agree that it’s been a few years without a solid Teen Titans series. Rebirth offers a fresh start for DC teams to give us the Teen Titans series we need, nah, deserve and it all starts with Damian Wayne. Between writer Ben Percy and artists Jonboy Meyers, Diogenes Neves and Khoi Pham, the creative team attempts to create a balanced and engaging storyline with the formation of a new team of Titans.
This run immediately feels more like an archetypical Teen Titans series as opposed to the New 52 attempt at a more mature, modern, PC-driven series. These Titans feel like authentic teenagers and there’s a tangible difference between them and their Nightwing-led counterparts. While the volume focuses primarily on Damian’s backstory and internal struggle, this introductory arc gives us a taste of what to expect from every member of the team down the road.
This is a very important story within Damian’s lore as it hinges on Damian’s decision to choose between good and evil, his grandfather’s legacy or his father’s. It also delves into his life within the League of Shadows and some components he was forced to leave behind when he chosen to side with Bruce. In fact, in this revision Damian is the sole reason for the team’s formation as each member has a target on their back by a new threat we’ve never seen before. In their first true test as a team, the team must face the Demon’s Fist, a group of young assassins looking for initiation into the League of Shadows.
This cast of Starfire, Beast Boy, Raven, Kid Flash and Damian’s Robin is a great team dynamic with a balance of super abilities and differing personalities. Because this is the introductory arc, the storyline sometimes appeared a bit cookie cutter, like during fight sequences having each panel flash to each member declaring a corny line, but for the most part the arc was well written and serves as a good foundation for the series going forward. The one thing this series is missing to make it a great Teen Titans series is more humor. While it does have its lighter moments, almost solely provided by Beast Boy, this arc has a more serious tone. I’ll be interested to see how Percy adapts the series to allow each character to share panel time because this arc was obviously a Damian Wayne story that happened to feature the Titans.
Is It Good?
This first volume marks some major character development for Robin and is a must have for any Damian Wayne fans. It isn’t flashy and it won’t blow anyone away, but it’s definitely a solid start for the series and certainly an improvement from what we saw from the previous Teen Titans series.