When reviewing the movie Dumb and Dumber, Roger Ebert mentioned a moment in the movie that made him laugh so hard he embarrassed himself (spoilers: it’s the “pretty bird” scene). He lamented that the movie never made him laugh as hard as that moment, and he didn’t laugh many other times besides, but that joke was enough to make him enjoy himself.
There’s a scene like that for me in this new chapter of Teen Titans Go!, one that made me laugh so hard it made me reconsider the rest of the material. Were there other jokes that were just as funny that somehow managed to slip past me?
Alas, no, but that one joke did make me laugh pretty hard.
Pretty funny, right?
That’s a strong joke, and there are a few lines sprinkled throughout that have an air of self-awareness and wit, but by and large this is another pretty by the numbers installment.
That largely stems from the story being incredibly straightforward: the Titans accidentally eat all of Beast Boy’s vegan burritos, he gets sad, and they set off to make the ultimate burrito to make amends. If the circumstances aren’t exactly the same, I’m almost positive this has been used as the plot of at least one episode of the show, so it already feels pretty formulaic.
Like I said, there are a couple of good gags and some solid lines, like the Titans thinking the burritos are gross only after they’re told they were vegan, and there isn’t anything here that’s offensive overly crass. It’s a perfectly acceptable story to read with kids, who will likely find it funnier than their parents. If you’re reading it on your own, though, you might get easily distracted because of the straightforward nature of the story.
And really, none of this is writer Amanda Deibert’s fault: she tells the story well, and sneaks in enough good gags to generate some laughs. It’s attractively illustrated by Erich Owen too, who makes this one of the best looking issues of the series in months. His sense of timing with gags is top notch, and while there aren’t many Easter eggs and background jokes, the whole issue just looks fantastic. The Titans look great under his pen, and even the sillier aspects of the story like the avocado robots (you read that right) fit right in.
In the end, I’ve read worse from this series, and I’ve read better. The positives elevate it just slightly above average, but not by much.
- You feel one great joke can make an otherwise okay story worth reading.
- You have kids who love these characters.
Overall: If only a solitary joke were enough to make a story worth recommending. This installment of Teen Titans Go! has such a gag that is so funny that I almost want to bump the score up a bit more, but the rest of the story never rises to the level of the script at its best. Besides one great joke, there are a few good lines and some of the best line work this series has seen in months, but the story is very boilerplate and straightforward. While it’s good for kids and may generate a laugh or two, it’s ultimately forgettable.