Teen Titans Go! #6: “But Games Can Never Hurt Me/Sleep Over”
Written by Sholly Fisch, Merrill Hagan
Illustrated by Jorge Corona
Colors by Jeremy Lawson
Letters by Wes Abbott

Since writing the review for the last issue, I’ve gone back and watched every single episode of the Teen Titans Go! television series, just to get a better feel for the atmosphere and energy of the show and this book. I’d seen several episodes and clips before, but decided I needed to dig deep to truly appreciate the subtleties and nuances in the writing and humor presented here.

The most pressing, greatest finding: I’m apparently twelve years old, because I still laugh at the word “butt.”

The show is genuinely funny, though, with lots of energy, non-sequitirs, and goofy plots that perfectly fit its 11-ish minute run-time. This comic series, too, has that same energy and verve that may not amount to anything more than a fun time, but it really is fun and that’s what matters.

The first story, “But Games Can Never Hurt Me,” begins with Beast Boy and Cyborg playing one of their video games when Cyborg accidentally destroys their television. As he does.

Seriously, Beast Boy says it was the sixth one he’s destroyed. Now, I don’t have a plasma cannon for an arm so I don’t know, but you’d think he’d have some sort of safety measures in place for when he’s playing video games or at the very least not in action. Then again, this is a series that has a talking Birdarang that hangs out with a sentient boombox (incidentally, my new favorite DC characters) and an episode where Cyborg’s grandma somehow took over his personality (fourth favorite), so maybe I’m being pedantic.

Anyway, without a TV to play their games on, the duo decide on the most logical platform to continue their session on: the Titans Tower central mainframe computer.

It goes as well as you’d expect.

Long story short: the games (all of them) come to life and start wreaking havoc around Titans Tower. There are some pretty good send-ups of existing franchises, like Mortal Kombat (played it), Angry Birds (played the Star Wars version) and Candy Crush (not so much), the latter of which has Cyborg lamenting that even when candy tries to kill him, he still loves it.

Also, Robin complains about his cape being too starchy, which I found hilarious.

Oh, and he has a fighting move called “Crouching Tax Audit,” which is simultaneously delightful and terrifying.

The plot is pretty thin, but that’s not what matters. It’s a comedy book, plain and simple, and Fisch really captures the irreverent tone and atmosphere of the show and, like issues before, writes a story that could easily be the script of one of the episodes. Corona’s pencils are likewise solid, with lots of bright colors and a frenetic pace combined with little Easter eggs and references sprinkled throughout that make it worth it to flip through again to make sure you caught everything.

Potter
…is that Harry Potter?

The second story, “Sleep Over” from Merrill Hagan and pencils once again by Jorge Corona, involves the female Titans having a sleep over with Bumblebee and Jinx, and the boys’ disappointment that they’ve been kicked out of the Tower.

It’s not quite as manic as the previous story, but there are a lot of great lines and gags thrown in. My favorite line: “Crime never takes a slumber party!”, which is the most Batman ’66iest thing Robin could say with prefacing his statement with “Holy!”

So Robin goes off “on patrol” to find trouble, and Cyborg and Beast Boy go bowling.

Bowling

The Green Lantern Corps having a bowling league? Sounds about right.

The biggest snag in the story comes from a game of MASH where Starfire is supposed to marry Trigon, who then shows up (magic paper used to summon him, as it does) and is a little too eager to marry a teenager. I mean, I’m sure he’s thinking more about conquering dimensions and having an all-powerful queen by his side, but it was just a little too weird, even for a comedy book where an extra-dimensional demon shows up wearing a dapper sweater vest/matching tie combo.

But then he gets banished by the most powerful magic of all, the “no boys allowed” rule (I am not kidding), so happy ending?

This book is just silly, a nice little diversion that’s quick and easy to read that will guarantee at least a few laughs. The fact that the writing is sharp and the art consistently easy on the eyes is a nice bonus for a book that could have easily been a lazy cash-in on a popular franchise.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go, because it’s

Nachos

All the time.

Recommended if:

  • You like a good comedy book.
  • You enjoy the Teen Titans Go! TV series.
  • You want a breezy, fun read of little actual consequence but that provides great entertainment.
  • You’re a fan of Sholly Fisch, and you should be. I just finished his run on The All-New Batman: The Brave and the Bold, another tie-in that was so much better than it had any business being, and it was phenomenal. Some of my favorite Batman stories in recent years, so you should definitely track it down and check it out. Issues 7, 11, and 13-16 in particular are fantastic.

Overall: Goofy, irreverent, and fun, it isn’t deep and doesn’t rise to levels of high art, but you know what? It doesn’t need to. Sometimes you just need a good laugh, and they’re in abundance here.

SCORE: 8/10