The Teen Titans are about to get together. Too bad it's a really bad time in the DC Universe for young metahumans. Scott Lobdell is taking the concept of the team in a new direction.
Kid Flash on page 1. With this week's 'The Flash' #1, we got to see a seemingly younger Barry Allen with no sign of Wally West. As with most of the 'New 52' books, we're going to see some tweaks to the characters we know. Seeing Kid Flash and his entire...presentation makes you want to know right away what his story is. How much of his history has changed? That alone is a reason to check out this series.
The focus on the team will be on Tim Drake. Again, we don't know his full story. We've been told that the events in the Bat-universe are all pretty much in tact. Tim is out on his own, which makes perfect sense with this Red Robin guise. While still a kid, he has grown in some ways. The atmosphere in this world for young metahumans isn't a good one. With Tim looking into the problems young heroes are facing, we get an inkling of who might be coming around the team in future issues. When faced against a threat, Tim immediately springs into action with a precision that shows he's picked up some tips from Batman. Planning for every eventuality will be key when being hunted by a mysterious agency. Red Robin's costume is a big change. It doesn't seem like something Tim would need but seeing him using it is enough to sell you on the idea. Tim's always faced a lot of danger but he's not up against something a little different.
We are also introduced to Cassie Sandsmark. As with Kid Flash, we don't know her full story. It might seem a bit of a change in some ways but that's what makes the issue feel fresh. The more of 'The New 52' I read, the more I'm willing to accept changes to characters with an existing history. Why not try something a little different? If it doesn't work out, there are always ways to change things back. But do we really want more of the same old same old?
With Lobdell writing and Superboy on the cover, you can imagine there is going to be a connection between the two series. There is one and it's pretty big. This helps to give the issue a bigger feel. We've been reading all these new books this month and none have really tied into each other. That's good in a way as each book needs to be able to stand on its own and readers shouldn't be forced to read every single issue if it doesn't suit them. With Teen Titans and Superboy, it's going to be interesting to see how the events relate to each other.
The situation in which Tim faces the (first) threat in this issue didn't sit well with me. His new enemy have have some impressive resources but maybe I just expected a little more from Tim. I'm curious as to how he was found. I'm also not sure if Tim would keep a picture of him and Batman (in costume) in a frame.
I am a fan of Brett Booth. He does an great job here but a few panels felt off a little. Characters go from angsty to sad in a split second.
We've seen tiny mentions of the past Teen Titans (the original team). The team does not exist right now and it appears it's time to make one again. Teenage metahumans are being hunted so it makes for the perfect excuse for teenage heroes to band together. We've seen many Teen Titans stories over the years and while they've been fun and exciting, the idea of the team not necessarily being seen as heroes is interesting. We always want to root for the underdogs and the big mysterious organization they'll be going up against is going to provide quite a challenge. Because DC (thankfully) didn't go with telling/re-telling the origins of the characters, we do have some mystery that entices the reader. What is Kid Flash's story? What has Red Robin been up to lately? Why is Cassie Sandsmark so angry? These are just some of the questions you'll form and will want to come back to find out. Brett Booth does a nice job drawing the excitement in the action scenes. There were times when the characters felt a tiny bit too posed in panels. With Lobdell writing this and Superboy, we're seeing some major crossover material that gives the book a bigger feel in this new DCU. It's a different Teen Titans and I still miss the original team but this one is definitely going to give us something different to enjoy.