Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Teen Titans #21 Review and **SPOILERS**

Gizmo is the Bomb!

Writer: Adam Glass
Artist: Bernard Chang
Colorist: Marcelo Maiolo
Letterer: Rob Leigh
Cover Price: $3.99
On Sale Date: August 22, 2018

Holy smokes... an issue of Teen Titans, and I'm actually excited to check it out!  Let's just hope Wallace left his smartphone in his other costume!

Something I'm really digging about this new-new-new era of Teen Titans is just how little time we waste getting into the action.  Not that I need my Titans to be "all action, all the time", some of my favorite stories were the soapy Wolfman/Perez joints of ye old 198X.  But to go from a Titans team (if we could even call them a "team") who were just horrible to one another... and spent more time joining-quitting-rejoining the team than actually doing anything as a team, this is a wonderfully refreshing take.

The "Big Bad" here... or, izzit "Small Bad"... either way, our baddie is Gizmo from The Fearsome Five.  A new-look Gizmo, at least he looks different from back in the long ago.  His gimmick here is that he's gone good and now operates a Toy Store. Naturally, this is only a cover for his more nefarious machinations.

The most unbelievable part of this entire issue is how crowded that toy store is!
The Titans topple the tiny-techie in no time flat... but, hat's where the story truly begins.  Due to a bombastic failsafe, the Titans must work together in order to neutralize a threat... while keeping true to their respective moral compasses.

There is a fair amount of the Titans not quite seeing eye-to-eye insofar as to accomplish this goal.  The arguments here are emotionally charged, however, never cross the line into petulance... which is a vast improvement for this team.

One of the things I wish stayed with the previous run is... the social media fixation.  I mean, we've got Wallace West popping out of a portal while holding his cell phone out to record the action so he can upload it to ViewTube.  Not very heroic... hell, not very likable.

Let's think on this for a bit too.  Say you're a member of the Teen Titans... and most of your heroic exploits occur in broad daylight amid crowded streets.  You really think that stuff won't be uploaded to [video aggregation service of your choice] by the skatey-eight hundred civilians watching everything go down?  You gotta imagine, in the DC Universe... videos like this must border on the passe by now. 

Going to enter into heavier spoilers here... so, here's your warning.  

The issue concludes with the apparent noble sacrifice of ViewTube sensation... and Damien Wayne irritant, Roundhouse.  Usually, when a new hero "bites it" right away, I just yawn and wait for the first panel of the next issue where everything is okay.  Here, however... I dunno... I can kinda "buy in".  This might be his end.  He doesn't seem like he's going to ever be a terribly fleshed out character... and, I could see his death as a Rubicon for this group of harder-edged Titans to cross.

Thinking more of Roundhouse, I can't say that I'm a fan of his.  If he's only here to serve as a parody to the nu-Marvel "Yay me! I'm kind of a big deal, you guys" crop of young heroes... then, it's brilliant!  If not, I hope that this truly was his "exit, stage left".  I think he'll mean far more to the Titans if he stays dead.

Bits and Pieces:

Putting aside a little bit of Millennial cringe, this was a pretty great issue.  Excellent Titans teamwork with characterization at the fore.


1 comment:

  1. This is my dc book of the week. It was I nice mix of drama, light-heart fun and little bit of action. And I gotta say I didn't hate roundhouse this issue. Art was cool, and I liked Djinn Design this issue.