In the finale of “Made In Manhattan,” Abnett teases a nostalgic future, and brings a much needed jolt of energy to the arc!
It took a few months before Titans found its footing, but since that moment, this book has been one of my favorite titles to read. This arc has been a little slow though, so I’m happy to say that this specific issue is high energy, and full of action.
If you’ve been following Titans, then you know that the current story has been divided between the Titans, and Mal and Karen. This story is definitely Mal and Karen’s, long overdue, time to shine. If I’m being honest, I haven’t been overjoyed with the story. The current narrative doesn’t measure up to Wally’s arc, the standalone issues that came before it, the Annual, or even the excitement of the upcoming “Lazarus Contract.” Despite that, the story is still good. Not great, but decent. I feel as though long-form narratives need peaks and valleys to create a fully enjoyable read, so I welcome the slower nature of “Made in Manhattan.” Plus, once the Fearsome Five started playing a more dominant role in the plot, the quality of the story increased.
If there’s one thing that this final issue has going for it, it’s that it is – by far – the most entertaining issue of the story, allowing “Made In Manhattan” to end on a high note. Most of this chapter is action, so it’s a quick read. Don’t mistake this as me complaining though. “Made in Manhattan” desperately needed a little pizazz to keep this arc from reaching a total yawn factor. Abnett also places strategic character moments throughout the story to help round out not only this issue, but the arc itself. Plus, there’s something about seeing the Titans face off against the Fearsome Five that just feels rewarding – even if I feel that the FF didn’t fully reach their potential here. When it comes down to it though, this is simply a strong, classic Titans story.
The Art: Brett Booth does a solid job with the art, as expected. I know that out of all of the artists I cover, Booth’s work receives the largest range of opinions, but I remain a fan. His lines are crisp, as are Dolhouse’s colors, and the clean technique helps add to the energy of the action panels. If there’s one complaint I have about this issue, it’s Bumble Bee’s yellow trail when she flies. There are panels where the Fearsome Five supposedly don’t see Karen after she shrinks in size, but it’s hard to believe when a bright yellow line follows her all across the panel/ page. That’s honestly my only call out with the art though.
Breakdowns for this issue can be found in the spoiler tag.
Karen. It’s nice to see Karen finally step into her own. This has been building since Titans Hunt, and feels as though it’s taken forever to come to fruition. She should add an interesting element to the team in the future, and help keep the roster fresh. I will admit that I felt like she handled the Fearsome Five a little too easily considering this was her first outing as a hero.
Just like old times. While I didn’t find “Made in Manhattan” overly exciting, the future of Titans looks as though it will be a home run. We already know that the Titans will face off against Deathstroke in the upcoming Lazarus Contract story, but the Titans now have H.I.V.E. To worry about, as well as the threat that ties into Rebirth/ Titans Annual #1. It’s all classic Titans, and I can’t wait!
Memory loss. I’m a little irritated that Karen lost her memory. As an individual plot, it’s perfectly fine. It even feels tragic considering how much Mal and Karen love each other. What I have a problem with, is that Titans has been plagued with memory loss since day one. The team faced it in Titans Hunt, then again with Wally’s return, and now Karen… It’s time for a different approach.
- You’re a fan of the classic Titans book.
- You’ve been waiting for Karen’s moment to shine.
- The Titans versus the Fearsome Five sounds like a good time.
Overall: Action, fun, and a few surprises are what you can look forward to in this satisfying conclusion to “Made in Manhattan.” As enjoyable as this issue is though, all I really want is to get my hands on future issues because those stories look epic!