Here we go! Buckle up, boys and girls, because the next era of Teen Titans is upon us! New writer Greg Pak takes the reigns, at least for a little while, hoping to right this stagecoach for a few issues, until Rebirth comes along to maybe change everything up again. It’s a little hard to get excited about the new writer when there’s every indication that nothing will stick. But I’ve stuck with Teen Titans this long, and I’m always eager for something new from this series.
So it’s damn exciting that Greg Pak immediately and unequivocally solves one of my biggest complaints about this series. This is close to being the Teen Titans I’ve always wanted.
Comic Rating: 7/10 – Good.
The biggest problem with Teen Titans in the New 52, and even in DCYou, is that the characters are treated as little more than action figures. They are costumed superheroes first, people second. All they do is fight bad guys, bouncing from one random opponent to the next. Famously, Red Robin never once removed his costume when Will Pfeifer was writing the series. There was apparently no interest in addressing the Teen Titans as teenagers or youngsters or human beings. They were action figures, trapped in a strange mess of stories, many of which were likely tugged back and forth by demanding editorial.
I may never understand why Teen Titans was so shackled when things like Batgirl, Ms. Marvel, Young Avengers and Teen Titans Go! were allowed to exist.
Teen Titans #17 doesn’t fix everything. Pak and DC don’t go for the nuclear option. This is still the same team, carrying on the same storyline, and existing in the same New 52 world. But Pak treats them as people for the first time in a long time. There is more characterization in this one issue than in Pfeifer’s entire run. There are character moments that legitimately shocked me for how little we’ve seen that level of depth. And for once, the threat doesn’t come from some outside force, but from within. For once, the Teen Titans are driving their own story.
And you better believe that Tim Drake shows up in this comic! Join me after the jump to see for yourself!