As the world waits for the #DCRebirth of the Titans, Tim and team continue to wander aimlessly around the middle of America, taking random days off and fighting every weirdo with a bad attitude. This week, they’re up to more of the same. Read on to find out if it’s worth your three bucks to join them.
What a roadtrip
After bouncing around the country, then the globe, and then the country again, the Titans find themselves in New Orleans, Louisiana. It’s supposed to be a day off, but when the folks around them become mind-controlled drool-posts for the H.I.V.E. Queen, the work clothes go on and the Angsty Ones do what they do.
Teen Titans (at least post-Flashpoint) has been at its best when it doesn’t take itself too seriously. The recent two-issue Mallah/Brain story may have been the high point for me, because it was (finally) a good time without all of the whining and bragging that has otherwise defined this series.
#23 is a step back in the right direction after last month’s disaster at Belle Reve. While the goofiness isn’t there, writer Tony Bedard avoids teen drama and keeps things simple, as the Titans square off against a mild threat, neutralize it, and celebrate the victory. It’s not a great story, but that’s less about what it gets wrong, and more about how little there is to take in.
One of this issue’s (and the series’) most obvious problems at the moment is continuity. With almost every other book in full-Rebirth mode, there are discrepancies—most notably involving Tim. Two weeks ago, we read Stephanie Brown’s humorous thoughts on the New 52 Red Robin costume (in the pages of Detective Comics), but this week, we’re supposed to take it at least somewhat seriously here. Worst of all, Tim’s fighting alongside Bruce in Gotham in Rebirth, but off in Lousiana with the Titans here. I’m not obsessed with continuity personally, but the disconnect could be confusing for new readers, and it surely bothers veterans.
Miguel Mendonca returns to pencil this issue, and that’s fine by me, as I prefer his style to Ian Churchill’s. There are a number of panels that I like, especially any that feature Power Girl or Beast Boy (or both). I’m not crazy about Avina’s colors, particularly when he attempts to create lighting effects, but they are at least serviceable in most cases.
- You have spare time and want to fill it with some light reading.
- You have the complete set, can see the finish line, and are stubbornly committed to crossing it.
If DC insists on publishing more Teen Titans before Ben Percy takes over next month, that’s their right—but I wish they would have made more issues like this than like the one we got last month. #23 fails to make a big splash, but it reads okay at least once, and provides some light entertainment without aspiring to greater significance. My score says it’s average, because it is, but this is an average I’m content with as we say goodbye—even if it floats awkwardly outside of current continuity.