Categories
Television

Titans – Season Three, Ep. 8 “Home” Review

Bree: Episode 8 marks just past the halfway point of the 13 episode season and things are really heating up! New relationships are forming, old ones are rekindling, and others’ are falling apart. Tim Drake gets a proper introduction and is shaping up to be an excellent adaptation of a fan favorite character.

Jon: Crane’s plans have come to a screeching halt since the last episode and we begin to see how that affects his and Jason’s power dynamic. Could our former boy wonder still be lost inside that red helmet? Only time will tell as the rest of this episode plays out.

Bree: This episode does an excellent job at balancing its focus equally for each of the main characters. Everybody has a memorable moment in this episode. While they dig a little more into Crane’s backstory, Starfire is still struggling with unknown elements of her past. Which feels very; “As one door closes, another opens”. The pacing of conflict is very effective this season, I’m on the edge of my seat while not feeling like my attention is divided between too many plot threads.

Jon: Tim finally get his time in the spotlight this episode. He’s truly living up to his comic book counterpart. Showing off his mastery of detective skills will turn him into a great asset for the Titans going forward.  

ON TO SPOILERS AND OUT OF CONTEXT MEMES

Bree: Alright, we gotta start with the elephant in the room. The elephant that broke a bed. I wasn’t initially keen on the idea of Blackfire and Conner but they’re writing the pair exceptionally well. 

Jon: STRAIGHT TO HORNY JAIL THE BOTH OF THEM! For the speed in which this took place and where they both are in their lives (very short for Conner) it feels very natural and is pretty adorable.

Bree: Yep! Conner has elements of the “born sexy yesterday” trope, but the show avoids the creepy aspects by fleshing out what he does have in common with Kom. And it’s important that Conner isn’t isolated, he’s developed other relationships besides Kom. The romance isn’t responsible for his entire world view, as the worst offenders of said trope tend to lean into.

Jon: One of the other highlights of this episode is Tim Drake who finally gets to show off his detective skills. Proving to Dick that he first discovers his secret identity because of his aerial acrobatics, he calls out Dick and the entire roster of Titans with hard facts that could come across as actually believable rather than Tim just knowing who they are because of who his character is supposed to be. Someone get Jay Lycurgo a super-suit YESTERDAY!

Bree: Indeed! I’m honestly iffy on Tim Drake as a whole, sometimes he works for me, and sometimes he just doesn’t. Titans Tim thus far is very charming and earnest, it’s quite possible he’ll be my favorite version yet! Oh! And Crane is actually starting to become scary. I like the stoner act and it was a fun refresh on his character but he’s gotta live up to his name. 

Jon: Yes! At the close of the episode, we see Crane with only a baseball hat and gun which sent shivers down my spine. One can only imagine how frightening he was in his prime while donning the actual scarecrow mask.

Bree: Kory’s visions keep getting weirder and weirder too and I’m loving it. They’re building an excellent foundation for her this season and I just hope they commit to finishing the house. Oh! And lastly, Beast Boy will hopefully now have something to do. I really hope they let him be very important in the forthcoming confrontation with Jason.

CLOSING REMARKS

Jon: An absolute mountain to things to unpack this episode. Jason is struggling with his inner demons, and Crane becomes more desperate and dangerous as time goes on. Will things actually work out with Blackfire and Conner? Most of all, who is Dick Grayson’s tailor ?! 4 episodes left to go until what seems like to be an explosive finale!

Bree: This is perhaps the most “Titans” centric episode this season, and perhaps proves that the writers are learning from past mistakes. Gotham is presenting ever-evolving challenges for the team, and we seem to be nearing the “sink or swim” moment for the team.

Categories
Comics

Is Titans United #1 New Reader Friendly?

Those familiar with HBO’s Titans will recognize the lineup in Titans United. Nightwing, Starfire, Raven, Beast Boy, Red Hood, Superboy, Donna Troy, Hawk, and Dove are together again for a new, 7 issue mini-series from Cavan Scott and Jose Luis. Although the book is using its connection to the show for advertising purposes, it quickly establishes that the mini-series will ultimately not tie itself to the shows’ specific continuity. 

Issue #1 of Titans United is a fairly fast-paced start to a new adventure for the team. Within the blockbuster action, Cavan manages to include a bit of breathing room for showcasing relationships within the Titans. The team dynamics will be familiar for more regular readers, but some new conflicts are simmering as well. Particularly, with the addition of Red Hood as a roster regular. The art is well done and the designs are some of my favorites for these characters yet! 

Overall, the plot is fairly straightforward without being remotely boring, making Titans United #1 a great place to start for anyone that is vaguely familiar with the IP from any type of related media (comics, cartoons, HBO series). There are bits and pieces from almost every iteration of the team sprinkled throughout the book, making it very easy for fans of any version of the team to find something they like. However, the lack of character introduction makes me hesitate to recommend it to those that are completely unfamiliar with the property. 

Titans United #1 is a great start to a story that all fans of various Titans media are likely to enjoy!

Categories
Television

Titans – Season Three, Ep. 7 “51%” Review

GateCrashers’ Titans coverage returns with myself (Bree) and my partner, Jon! We’ll be covering each episode release as they drop. The show has a lot of sentimental value to us on a very personal level, our coverage will be what is essentially written conversations with two sections; a very spoiler-free approach followed by a spoiler centric one (with a few jokes and memes, as Titans S3 is headed towards very meme-able territory). Without further ado, our spoiler-free segment begins here!

Bree: Scarecrow is gearing up for the final act of his schemes, and the Titans are racing to out-think him. They split into two different approaches, with Dick and Barbara utilizing one strategy and Kory and Blackfire trying another. Jason is still struggling with being on Crane’s leash and his allegiance may shift yet again.

Jon: Crane himself knows he is at a very pivotal moment in his plans to distribute his new fear toxin and it is causing him to become a lot more dangerous and shows us why he is one of the big bads of Batman’s rogue gallery.

Bree: Starfire and Blackfire also get the opportunity to reveal more about life on Tamaran and the events that lead up to Blackfire’s departure. They’re relationship continues to add nuance and depth to the individual characters while providing an interesting foil to how the Titans approach the concept of found ‘family’. 

Jon: Barbara is also given more time to shine in this episode as she and Dick try to stay one step ahead of Jason and Crane resulting in a fan favorite cameo that is sure to have Titans, Birds of Prey, and Batgirl fans cheering this episode. So much to nerd out about.

Bree: Some relationships are heating up while others are cooling. The drama is ever changing on Titans!

ON TO SPOILERS AND OUT OF CONTEXT MEMES

Bree: Kom’s magical girl transformation though. I’m always floored by every new bit of Tamaranian lore we get. They’ve done such an excellent job of modernizing the comics while incorporating input from Anna and Damaris. 

Jon: It is definitely a strong point of this season! The attention to detail makes Tamaran feel like an actual place then just another piece of comic lore. Blackfire’s Sailor Scout transformation was by far the best suit-up scene in the show. The suit itself is a perfect rendition of the comic costume and is modernized just enough to feel real. Probably my favorite suit amongst the Titans. Huge shoutout to LJ Super Suits who keep knocking it out of the park with the wardrobe EVERY SEASON.

Bree: Just so freaking cool. Chills. I do wonder if Kom will ever go full baddie, only time shall tell. Oracle was really neat as well!

Jon: To be completely honest… I hope she doesn’t and gets to stick around longer. The inclusion of Oracle was a surprise. The show has stepped away from making Oracle just a program and went full Brainiac. How does the rest of the GCPD not know it’s below them?! Savannah Welch continues to impress more and more as Babs and is finally showing just how powerful her intellect makes her.

Bree: The same way they know Dick kidnapped Crane and didn’t do anything about it after the fact. I do love this Barbara more than I’ve liked most other Barbara’s. I can’t say I’m keen on Dickbabs being a thing in a Titans property but alas. OH…also the bit with Kom and Conner flirting during battle could have been the beginning of a porno and I would have bought it. I like horny TV so I’m not complaining, just one of the quickest pairs to form thus far. 

Jon: (SCREAMS IN HORNY JAIL). We are treated to our first scene of a present-day Dick/Babs Relationship, and while I personally have my reservations about them it was done well and does not feel forced. Savannah and Brenton do have great chemistry in the scenes they share.

Bree: And Gar finally gets to do things! Glad they’ve set him up as the softie of the team, a much better idea than the casual sexual harassment committer that exists in some other Titans media.

CLOSING REMARKS

Bree: Crane, Barbara, and Gotham continue to be a big part of this episode. However, there is a good half dedicated to the Titans themselves. The show is getting better at balancing screen time! The combat continues to be rad as heck and the big group moments are very fun.

Jon: The Titans are finally unified and make their first real strike back against Crane. It feels so good to see our heroes pull together and finally get a win. Let’s hope the momentum carries onto the next episode.

Categories
Television

Titans – Season Three, Ep. 6 “Lady Vic” Review

GateCrashers’ Titans coverage returns with myself (Bree) and my partner, Jon! We’ll be covering each episode release as they drop. The show has a lot of sentimental value to us on a very personal level, our coverage will be what is essentially written conversations with two sections; a very spoiler-free approach followed by a spoiler centric one (with a few jokes and memes, as Titans S3 is headed towards very meme-able territory). Without further ado, our spoiler-free segment begins here; 

Bree: Despite the title of the episode, I would argue that this is the Blackfire episode. She really steals the show here and lightens the tone after last week’s darker episode.

Jon: Anna Diop and Damaris Lewis continue to have great chemistry and really make us believe they’re actually siblings. Great acting from both actresses.

Bree: Blackfire is also introduced to Conner and Dick for the first time, and the clash of ‘cultural’ differences makes for some really comedic dialogue. This episode also introduces a new villain that goes by Lady Vic, whom readers’ of Nightwing’s solo comics may recognize.

Jon: Barbara also gets her time to shine this episode with an all new spin on her origin and her relationship with Dick. The comic nostalgia in the climax of the episode with her is sure to have any comic fan jumping out of their seat and cheering.

Bree: Indeed! The dialogue, the pacing, the acting, the combat direction…everything is firing on all cylinders this episode and it’s my personal favorite of the new season so far.

ON TO SPOILERS AND OUT OF CONTEXT MEMES

Bree: The buddy-cop moments with Dick and Kory are so great, I could easily do an entire episode(s) with them solving scooby-doo esque mysteries. She’s the only one that consistently has a boot on his neck and sometimes he needs it. I appreciate that she patched him up too, I like how strong they’re making her this season but it should be balanced out with some more compassionate moments.

Jon: Starfire is truly the voice of reason for Dick and the rest of the titans. The scenes between Blackfire and Superboy are a nice comedic breath of fresh air. It’s straight to Horny Jail for her.

Bree: We don’t even know if Conner knows what sex is but I guess we’ll be finding out soon enough!

Jon: Whoever is in charge of the choreography for this show is not getting paid enough. Lady Vic is vicious and lives up to her reputation in every action scene she is in. Great sword work from the actress and her stunt double. Barbara also gets to showcase her skills when she busts out Escrima sticks of her own in a scene ripped straight from the Birds of Prey comic that brought a tear of joy to my eye.

Bree: Lady Vic is legitimately so cool it’s hard to hate her.

Jon: Why do we both wanna go out for drinks with Lady Vic right now? 

Bree: Truly! OH, speaking of drinks, Brenton in the backwards baseball cap didn’t feel right. I mean it tracked with the phase of Dick’s life they were tapping into but it was slightly jarring. 

Jon: Dick was not a Kriss Kross fan for a reason and we now know why. 

Bree: Very glad Kory and Barbara are seen mostly getting along. I pray we do not go anywhere near that dreaded Nightwing Annual in later episodes. 

John: GIVE US MORE KORY/BABS SOLIDARITY!

Bree: Just gals bein’ pals !!!!!

CLOSING REMARKS

Bree: Fans that were disappointed with the more Gotham centric episodes are sure to love this one! The cast continues to be incredibly delightful and the light comedy sprinkled throughout episode 6 really allows their natural charisma and chemistry to shine!

Jon: A fantastic continuation to the previous episode and just enough of a departure from the comics we all know and love to keep the story fresh for new eyes. Looking forward to the inevitable descent into darkness for Blackfire and how the chemistry between her and Kory will change due to it.

Categories
Television

Titans: Season Three, Ep. 5 “Lazarus” Review

GateCrashers’ Titans coverage returns with myself (Bree) and my partner, Jon! We’ll be covering each episode release as they drop. The show has a lot of sentimental value to us on a very personal level, our coverage will be what is essentially written conversations with two sections; a very spoiler-free approach followed by a spoiler centric one (with a few jokes and memes, as Titans S3 is headed towards very meme-able territory). Without further ado, our spoiler-free segment begins here; 

Bree: This episode follows Jason in the days leading up to his untimely demise and reveals how he managed to seemingly return from beyond the grave. A few new supporting characters are introduced, including Dr. Leslie Thomkins and a friend of Jason named Molly. Both characters reveal more about the inner workings of Jason Todd. His relationship with Bruce also gets a spotlight.

Jon: The episode also does a wonderful job of breaking down the psychology of Jason’s inner struggles, even with the physical threat of Deathstroke long gone. Showcasing that beyond the capes and the cowls and underneath the masks these are real characters under a tremendous amount of trauma and PTSD.

Bree: Oh, and there’s a crap ton of easter eggs sprinkled throughout this episode. Just a complete buffet of stuff to nerd out over. 

ON TO SPOILERS AND OUT OF CONTEXT MEMES

Jon: I truly have to commend Iain Glen’s “Bruce” in this episode. He does a great job at portraying a better relationship with Jason then just considering him another soldier in his war. Even to go as far as referring to him as his “Son” which i thought was very heartwarming and a nice departure from the usual hardened vigilante we know.

Bree: Bruce was great but I think my personal favorites for this episode were Dr. Thompkins and Molly. The former was a nice nod for those that are comic readers and the latter was an original character, but both fit into the universe incredibly well. I hope to see more of both of them! Oh, and Crane continues to be incredibly entertaining.

Jon: Jonathan Crane continues to be one of the best surprises of this season for sure and I am glad that he has stuck around longer then I earlier anticipated. His ploy to get Jason to spring him from Arkham was done masterfully and executed perfectly. This is the seasoned Jonathan Crane I feel that most fans were hoping for.

Bree: Yeah, I was surprised that there actually was a Lazarus pit. My running theory was that Jason had faked the entire thing and gotten his academy award winning moment as a theatre kid. I do like what they’ve done with the Red Hood origin story, different enough to keep comic readers guessing on the specifics but similar enough that the character remains familiar.

Jon: YES! It is different enough to keep the character feeling fresh after we have been exposed to him for so long. The intensity of Curran Walter’s portrayal continues to shine through every scene that he is in. From cutting off heads to blowing some guy’s head off in a warehouse to helping some poor kid who was picked up by human traffickers. Even though he is a little off his rocker, Jason is still trying to do the right thing. 

Bree: Perhaps! I honestly don’t mind the idea of him remaining an antagonist and never quite getting the anti-hero thing right. We shall see! Oh, and reverse engineering the fear serum was cool as hell. 

Jon: Also shout out to the makeup team working on this show. I never thought we would get to see the Joker’s handy work on Jason with the crowbar but there it is and it is so gnarly it almost made me want to look away.

CLOSING REMARKS

Bree: A fun little episode that seems to be giving the audience a breather before the 2nd half picks up the pace. 

Jon: A very good look into the mind of Jason Todd that just makes me want the next episode that much more! 

Categories
Television

Titans: Season Three, Ep. 4 “Blackfire” Review

GateCrashers’ Titans coverage returns with myself (Bree) and my partner, Jon! We’ll be covering each episode release as they drop. The show has a lot of sentimental value to us on a very personal level, our coverage will be what is essentially written conversations with two sections; a very spoiler-free approach followed by a spoiler centric one (with a few jokes and memes, as Titans S3 is headed towards very meme-able territory). Without further ado, our spoiler-free segment begins here; 

Bree: This episode splits into 2 different sub teams to follow essentially 2 different stories. Dick is off to uncover more information on Crane and Red Hood, while Kory and Garfield work together to try to figure out the source of Kory’s mysterious blackouts. Fans of other pieces of Titans-related media are likely to see right through the hint the episode title gives, and it is exactly as it seems.

Jon: Kory is finally getting some additional backstory and purpose, outside her Season 1 introduction in which she was either amnesic or knew she had been sent to ‘deal’ with Rachel. 

Bree: Crane is beginning to become more fleshed out as his own character, and the bones of a deeper connection between him and Red Hood are emerging.

Jon: This is also clearly a Jonathan Crane who has had extended experience with Batman and Robin and is no longer on the means of trying to figuring out who they are but rather what makes them tick which is a nice departure from the usual source material

ON TO SPOILERS AND OUT OF CONTEXT MEMES

Jon: Watching Conner scrub bits of ash and who knows what else off of him was…a lot. I would press many F’s to pay many respects.

Bree: Seconded. Dawn leaving was incredibly anti-climatic for me personally, perhaps because the only person that said goodbye to her was Dick. They’re also going all in on a Miller Batman, which wouldn’t have been my first choice but I’m surprised by how well it works overall. 

Jon: I’m fine with a Batman that’s at the end of his rope since the show isn’t supposed to be about him at all. As much as I like Iain Glenn as Bruce, I appreciate that he trusts Dick to do things better. Especially after he notices for himself that what he is doing is clearly not working anymore.

Bree: Blackfire is absolutely the star of this episode though, I must say. Kory and Gar’s dynamic was fun and Kom’s flair for the dramatic plays off of them well. A much-needed comedic break from the intensity of Crane and Dick’s interactions. 

Jon: Not to mention the absolutely amazing chemistry between Starfire and Blackfire. While arguing or even trying their hardest to get along, you get a genuine feel that these two have a genuine history and are in every which way, siblings which only adds to the story.

Bree: Titans knows siblings are not afraid to beat the sh** out of each other.

CLOSING REMARKS

Bree: Overall, the show loses no steam after the dramatic conclusion of the 3 episode initial drop. It’s also doing a better job of balancing the edginess of Bat characters and the campiness fans have come to expect a degree of with Titans properties. 

Jon: This is just capitalizing on the amazing conclusion that Season 2 eluded to and is only growing into a better story with every following episode.

Categories
Comics Television

Titans Together: Discussing the Explosive Premiere

Spoilers discussion for Episodes 1-3; “Barbara Gordon,” “Red Hood,” and “Hank and Dove,” is clearly marked.

GCer’s Titans coverage returns with myself (Bree) and my partner, Jon! We’ll be covering each episode release as they drop. The show has a lot of sentimental value to us on a very personal level, our coverage will be what is essentially written conversations with two sections; a very spoiler-free approach followed by a spoiler centric one (with a few jokes and memes, as titans S3 is headed towards very meme-able territory). Without further ado, our spoiler-free segment begins here; 

Bree: Episodes 1-3 of season three kick off an amazing introduction to Gotham and the new players on the board, while giving a little more time to recurring characters that they’d neglected in Season 2.

Jon: The Team finally felt like a team! The suits are really great, especially Nightwing’s. They broke up some of the plating that had originally been a single piece on the prototype reveal. The music feels like an upgrade as well, very fun and dynamic. I find myself humming bits and pieces often. Oh, and they didn’t have to show Brenton clip the escrima sticks into his belt, but they did that for us. Lastly, Red Hood makes for a good antagonist after Deathstroke’s exit. 

Bree: What is it about Curran’s approach to Red Hood that stands out to you?

Jon: The intensity, from the way he speaks to the way he moves. The choices in his fighting style compared to Dick are so interesting to watch. The scenes in which he switches to using a knife are some of my favorites, there’s an intent to inflict as much damage as quickly as possible in those swings. This is a person who tries to make every blow a killing stroke. Dick by comparison feels like there’s more intent to distract and subdue. 

Bree: I gotta talk about Crane too. I have never wanted to smoke with someone so badly. All the choices they’ve made thus far in regards to deviating from the books have been good, but everything about Crane has been gold. Also, a very interesting way to set up Jason’s origin in this universe as opposed to how it was set up in Hush. Any comments on the new additions of Barbara and Tim?

Jon: The casting choice for Babs is perfect! It’s nice to see a Barbara with some experience under her belt, rather than another year one story. The little bits of Tim thus far are promising. 


ON TO SPOILERS AND OUT OF CONTEXT MEMES

Bree: Why did Dick walk into that interrogation room and his back half walked in 5 minutes later.

Jon: Conner needs to register his chest as a lethal weapon. Man of Steel tiddies. Also Jason with the bag of heads. Literal chills.

Bree: Yeah, I’m warming up to the edits they put on Jason’s voice when he dons the helmet. I also very much appreciate that Conner is allowed to be smart, I dislike when he’s treated as just a pile of muscle. And Holy Heck his reaction to Hank’s death really got me.

Jon: Losing Hank made me tear up a little bit, really made me realize how integral he was to each member of the team. He may have been an asshole, but he was their asshole. The bike shorts and porn stache were short-lived but oh so memorable. OH! And Jason’s belt as Red Hood was the same as his Robin belt, they just painted it black. How did no one notice?

Bree: Your brain? Wow.

Jon: Deeply surprised that Bruce actually put the Joker down.

Bree: Yeah, me too. It’s a very Miller Batman. Overall, the approach feels like an almost “Elseworlds” take. If the 80s Titans books are the greatest potential of good the team can achieve, what does a Titans team look like when Dick is paired with a Bruce that never gets a complete handle on his trauma? How does that trickle-down affect the whole team? Lots of interesting potential from that angle, I think. Oh! And the hints at Carrie Kelly, Stephanie Brown, and Duke Thomas? I screamed.

Jon: I didn’t think I’d see a live-action Carrie even hinted at in the year 2021.

Bree: To be honest, I personally have a hard time liking Barbara in most things. She’s just never been a character “for me” – I do appreciate her as very important rep for disabled folks though. Titans’ approach to Babs is perhaps one of my favorites, the actress has a great presence and her keen ability to zero in on exactly what Bruce and Dick are lying to themselves about is great. I also appreciate that there is no cattiness between her and Kory, as certain books have done in the past.

Bree: Lastly, I want to touch on Gar in season 3 thus far. He’s still very much in a supporting role and is often used to play off of other characters. Which, I’m personally perfectly happy with. I can understand the criticisms about him not having his own arc per-se, he’s often used as an “errand buddy”. Ryan Potter is so fun and has such great rapport with everyone that I don’t mind. He and Conner in particular are nearly attached at the hip and get in some great jokes between the two of them. To conclude our coverage of Episodes 1-3, here’s a lil Con/Gar meme I drew. See you guys next week for episode 4!

Follow Bree for more artwork and Titans takes @agreeablepossum on Twitter and Instagram!

Categories
Television

Titans Together: Season 3 Premiere Proves Titans Deserves a Second Chance

GateCrashers Bree and Dan are bringing you our review of the Titans Season 3 Premiere. We discuss our thoughts on the series going in, our feelings on the plot, characters, and if we think its time to give Titans another chance or to get on board for the first time!

Brief summary of where Season 2 left off (major spoilers here);

The Titans are divided. Dick is MIA, Rose has confessed to being part of Deathstroke’s plot all along, Cadmus has brainwashed Conner and left Gar as bait. In the finale, Rachel, Kory and Donna intervene to save Gar and free Conner from his brainwashing. The rest of the team is busy with Deathstroke, whom is ultimately defeated by Rose and Dick – as Nightwing, for the 1st time. Donna meets a tragic end as she sacrifices herself to save civilians caught in the crossfire. At her funeral, Jason and Rose go their separate ways, Rachel goes to Themyscira with Donna’s body, and the remaining characters (Dick, Kory, Gar, Conner, Hank and Dove) form a new Titans team.

End of spoilers.

Our Views on the Series going into Season 3

Bree: I found myself disagreeing with most of the criticisms of Season 1 & 2, or at least, finding the proportion of criticisms to be overblown. Many of the jabs directed at the writing and tone felt more so a reflection of what people wanted the show to be, rather than a rounded analysis of what the show was. Titans shines as a character drama more than an earth-shattering, high stakes super-powered action serial. The combat is well directed and the villains are serious baddies, but they often feel secondary compared to the drama within the team and their own personal journeys.

However, I will concede that season 1 and 2 had issues with pacing and consistency. S1 & 2 had a lot of high points – my favorites being; all of Starfire’s core episodes, as well as Superboy’s, and the Wilson family. They also had a lot of lows – the character motivation for Dick wasn’t as fleshed out as it could be, and the script didn’t allow for very much of his trademark snarkiness. The dynamic and charismatic cast were able to smooth over a lot of the writing blunders to get me through the weaker episodes. However, I was left with the nagging feeling that the cast could be knocking it out of the park every episode, given the right material. 

I’m going into Season 3 hoping for more consistent pacing, a more refined scope of conflict, and more development for Kory and Gar.

Dan: One thing I hate doing is eating my words but I am here to do that. I was a pretty loud detractor against Titans for season 1 and 2. Season 1 was very much a mess for me, but season 2 started to find its footing, albeit with too many story lines at once. But now, I will tell you with my full chest that I am a Titans stan. The 3-part season 3 premiere took me like Bane did to Batman and shattered the spine that was my Titans opinion. At first I was not going to be in this review but after watching 4 hours straight and ignoring all my worldly duties, I had to join Bree. Going from someone who could barely make it through an episode without rolling my eyes, I think season 3 made me see the error of my ways. Titans is outrageous, fun, and actually packs a lot of heart into a very different interpretation of characters so many people know and love. 

The Plot

Dan: The end of Season 2 was essentially everyone fully coming to terms with the fact that they’re all pretty messed up. That each of them brings very real and deep traumas to the table but through each other, they find a feeling of family. I think they were lacking that acknowledgment or presence of the found family theme until the finale dinner scene. Season 3 doesn’t lose that at all. Rather, it leans into it hard. The season opens with a fantastic superhero fight with people who don’t just feel like costumed heroes in the same room as one another but more so as one family of kick-ass heroes laying the smackdown on a villain! More importantly, everyone is suited up. But I am saving all the Starfire talk for Bree.

Bree: To quote Jason Todd; “TITANS ARE BACK, BITCHES!”. Season 3 opens with nothing held back, the team is together and they’re kicking serious ass. The fight sequences continue to take into account how each characters’ abilities can play off of each other; much like Kory and Raven combining powers to heal Conner, the team is now utilizing their combined strengths to command the battlefield. Kory is the star of the show in the costume and effects department though, I must say. With the addition of Conner and the absence of Rachel, Jason and Donna, the group dynamics are shifting slightly and I am very interested in seeing where the new pair ups go. The only criticism I have thus far is that one particular moment that had been built up in promotions ultimately fizzled on the impact. The course was quickly corrected and my enthusiasm returned. I won’t spoil, but you’ll be glad all 3 episodes are dropping at once- they act as a very cohesive introduction to Gotham and the new players on the board.

Dan: There’s a few very similar elements to some very big storylines this season has ripped straight from some of the most iconic comic stories of all time but they don’t feel adapted in a way that’s ever boring. It all feels entirely fresh and fits the world spectacularly. There is going to be some things in episode 1 alone that make people’s heads spin, but I have to say I was chomping at the bit when one episode ended to start the next. As someone who loves the Titans version of Jason Todd, I am very excited to see what comes next.

Characters

Bree: Barbara Gordon as Commissioner of the Gotham Police was the stand-out of the new characters for me, personally. She has an amazing ability to flip characters that are typically on the offensive to defensive, a refreshing new voice to criticize the ones that thought they had everything figured out. Although Tim Drake’s introduction was fairly brief, he offered an interesting “from the ground” view of the city. Crane and Red Hood are gearing up to be fascinating antagonists, both of which are blended with just the right comic elements to fit within the universe but keep the viewer guessing. 

Dan: There is a scene shared with the Bat Family that felt like I was reading an extremely well written comic. Bringing in Babs scared me because of the size of the cast but actress Savannah Welch’s performance is fantastic. Her chemistry with Brenton Thwaites who plays Nightwing is electric of people who were once lovers and now have some demons in their closets. 

As a big fan of Mad Men, I was so excited to hear that Vincent Kartheiser was cast as Dr. Crane, Scarecrow. He serves as more of a Hannibal Lecter-type role but he sells it very well. He is also pretty humorous which is nice with a very heavy show. 

As always Alan Ritchinson and Minka Kelly, Hawk and Dove, are my favorites. While previous seasons were very heavy on their trauma, we get to see them at their best. And Alan serves as a great older brother figure to Conner and Garth. 

Moments where you felt “Oh this is the best possible show”

Dan: We are avoiding all major spoilers but you’ll be damned if I do not talk about Dr. Jonathan Crane aka Scarecrow being a stoner. In any other media, I don’t think it would work truthfully but when it comes up in Titans, I think I started clapping. It’s such a minor weird thing, but for me, it was a moment where I thought about how weird this show is. Those weird elements make these characters ones I am so fully invested in. Their performances are all actually magical and beautifully driven home with skill by the actors.  

Bree: Superboy/Conner continues to be incredibly endearing, he had most of my favourite one liners of episode 1-3. I will wholeheartedly agree with Dan, the moments in which the show doesn’t take itself too seriously are perhaps its best. There’s also a particular puzzle the team must solve in the 3rd episode that still has my jaw on the floor – but I will let everyone discover that for themselves!

Is it time for the naysayers to give Titans another try?

Bree: I think so! It’s a blast if you understand what you’re signing up for. Even then, I would argue that Season 3 seems to be working more or less independently from the previous seasons. If you couldn’t dig the 1st 2, but have a base knowledge of the characters from other media, season 3 should be a perfectly fine reentry point. As my closing remark, I will praise the teams’ dedication to evening the scales of male nudity on TV. Good on you guys!

Dan: As someone who was very against Titans and now has been converted to a full blow stan, I highly suggest jumping back in when season 3 premieres. It’s an absolute blast with lots of heart and fantastic action. It’s absolutely the best time to get back into Titans or start fresh.

Here is a meme for finishing our review!