Thanks to universal rebootery, we’re about to witness the first moments of Aqualad’s career for, like, the fourth time since 2006. Comic book magic at it’s finest! Your Major Spoilers review of Teen Titans #8 awaits!
Previously in Teen Titans: Thanks to his father’s big bucks, Damien “Robin” Wayne has reunited the Teen Titans (consisting mostly of the cartoon lineup, minus Cyborg, with the new Kid Flash in his place) to be turned into a precision instrument of superhero team action. But how well is the whole exercise going?
AN ODD ISSUE
This issue opens with a mysterious disappearance from a maximum security prison, where one unseen prisoner Andy Dufresne’s his way out (leaving a huge hole in the wall behind him), leaving the warden and staff baffled. Meanwhile, at Titans Tower, Beast Boy and Robin are needling each other as the team’s token Serious and Class Clown representatives, unaware when a seal is suddenly eaten in the bay. There’s some cute stuff about lunch (Beast Boy made tofu, Kid Flash runs out for pizza) when, suddenly, the security system goes on full alert!
Turns out, a news crew has arrived to interview The Titans about the business of being Teen heroes, and the character interactions and dialogue make it clear that both Starfire and Raven are once again in line with their cartoon countenances. When the interviewer is suddenly snatched away (a scene that reads very confusingly), the team sets out to discover what is going on…
NOT QUITE FEELING THE ART HERE
The moment when “Bonnie Chung” is stolen away isn’t the only unclear artistic moment in these pages, as Pham’s storytelling is repeatedly unclear about what is happening and where. Intercut with the Titans’ shananigans is the story of Jackson Hyde, a young man from New Mexico whose aquakinetic powers are making his life hell, alienating him from his mother, his boyfriend and all the trappings of his life in the desert, sending him to San Francisco to seek out the Titans, a story that I’m actually interested in. Unfortunately, it’s playing second fiddle to a main narrative where nothing much happens, and even the last-page reveal that there is a former Suicide Squad villain hanging out in the bay doesn’t make it feel like a complete story.
THE BOTTOM LINE: PRETTY SCATTERED
In short, Teen Titans #8 feels like an attempt to recapture the ‘Day In The Life’ stories that Wolfman & Perez were so good at back in the day, but instead feels unfocused and fragmental, with some confusing bits of art and an unclear sense of time, earning a disappointing 2 out of 5 stars overall. There are good things to be had in these pages, but nothing that makes me want to come back and read more of these adventures, even with a shark attack on the final page…