The Complete First Season
review by Bobby Blakey
Through the years the Teen Titans have had numerous takes on TV including Teen Titans, Young Justice and Teen Titans, Go! that had it’s own feature length film last year. More recently they got the live action treatment with the new DC Universe streaming service series Titans starring Brenton Thwaites, Anna Diop, Teagan Croft, Ryan Potter, Minka Kelly, and Alan Ritchson. Could this latest series deliver something worthy of the Titans or is it not ready to GO?
Titans follows a group of young soon-to-be Super Heroes from across the world of DC as they come of age and find belonging in a gritty take on the classic Teen Titans franchise. Former Gotham City vigilante Dick Grayson and Rachel Roth, a special young girl possessed by a strange darkness, get embroiled in a conspiracy that could unleash Hell on Earth. Joining them in their quest are the mysterious Starfire and loveable Beast Boy. Together they become a surrogate family and team of heroes while battling villains, demonic forces … and encountering familiar faces from across DC’s legendary canon. The trailers to this got a lot of buzz with the mix opinions most notably of Robin dropping the F bomb while referring to Batman. Any one that has read the comics knows there was a time there was a major rift between Batman and Robin and this was clearly that time.
Going in I kept my mind opened to let the show play out before judging it to what I thought it was. Yes it is a darker more adult series, but I loved that element. It makes all the more sense when you think about the characters you are dealing with. The story is changed up from the comics in regard to their coming together and some of the histories, but for me it still worked. Starfire was the one I was most concerned for but was surprised that worked and I dug her arc. This is a character I am not a big fan of and here I actually found myself interested in her story. Raven is another I don’t care much about, but one I also felt should have always been in a darker story element
with her connections to hell. Here her story felt more like something out of a horror film and made so much more sense to me.
The big question is Robin’s arc and this jaded angry depiction just worked for me. His look is spot on and his reasoning works. Sure there is a more brooding vibe to him that he didn’t get until shifting into the Nightwing persona, but honestly he is already there here. They don’t do too much with Beastboy outside of the Tiger this season, but they made it work way better than I thought it would in a show like this. I am a huge fan of all things Hawk and Dove and loved their version here. Sadly they don’t get as much as I had hoped, but they are front and center when they do and bring the pain.
The action is great and the darker tone worked for me, but I know it might not work for everyone. Some of the biggest highlights come in the final episode with a trip back to Gotham as well as the introduction of the Doom Patrol before spinning off into their own series. I really dug this first season and they have set some things up for the next season including a familiar Kryptonians possible appearance so only time will tell.
In addition to all 11 episodes of the first season this release includes numerous featurettes focusing on bringing these characters from page to screen like never before. Join the young heroes when Titans: The Complete First Season hits Blu-ray and DVD on July 16th from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment.