Teen Titans #1


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Teen Titans #1


  • Words: Scott Lobdell
  • Art: Brett Booth
  • Inks: Norm Rapmund
  • Colors: Andrew Dalhouse
  • Story Title: Teen Spirit
  • Publisher: DC Comics
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Sep 28, 2011

Scott Lobdell taps into his inner teen angst for DC’s re-launch of Teen Titans.

The theme of Teen Titans #1 by Scott Lobdell and Brett Booth can be summarized with the term "wasted youth." Taking place in a world and time when superheroes aren’t the most trusted or understood group, Teen Titans #1 is about an active step forward in changing that perception. Of course, there’s also an evil organization called N.O.W.H.E.R.E. that’s out to convert or kill teen superheroes. This isn’t just a mission to unite, but one to also survive.

Tim Drake, former Robin to Bruce Wayne, is off in a mansion doing his brooding thing, watching Kid Flash make a fool of himself and teenagers at large. All of a sudden, he is under attack by a group of clandestine soldiers. He must submit or die, but being the prodigal son of the World’s Greatest Detective usually enables you to come up with that third option. After escaping near death (and an eventual redecoration of his living quarters), Tim deems it necessary to track down other teens like him before they are killed or turned by N.O.W.H.E.R.E. (what it stands for is anyone’s guess at this point). Tim seeks out Cassie Sandsmark, who may or may not be Wonder Girl, and more hilarity ensues. By hilarity, of course I mean more explosions, action, and spectacular displays of power.

Lobdell delivers a solid, if slightly by-the-numbers first issue of Teen Titans. The world they live in is one of intolerance, while realistic in its intention to reflect a current state of society, it’s still a story we’ve seen many times before. Heck, readers see it in almost every re-numbered or newly launched X book. A dislike of the costume redesigns aside, Brett Booth performs his duties to the level of the story, which is to say it’s not his best work, but in no means is it sloppy penciling. A general feeling of underwhelming followed upon completion of the issue. For all the grand ideas that are thrown at the wall in this opening salvo, very few stick with any kind of passion. The story is already treading water and, with any hope, will pick up momentum as it progresses.

Lackluster character re-designs and a seemingly rehashed story are keeping this title from shining as bright as other New 52 starts. Having only read a handful of arcs in the Teen Titans' history, I don’t even possess pre-conceived notions as to whom or what they should be. There is simply something missing from this concoction of heroes and teenage idealism to make it completely work. Here’s hoping they find that formula in subsequent issues.

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