Worst of the Week


Teen Titans #62

I’d love to review some good comics today — goodness knows, I got a lot of good, entertaining comics that’d be a lot more fun to review — but this one just made me wanna smack the tar outta someone, and I’m not gonna dilute any good reviews I’ve got by pairing them with this turkey.

Okay, backstory time. A while back, after DC revamped the “Teen Titans” series again, they brought in a couple of hipster kids to serve as general maintenance/techheads for Titans Tower and as low-key comic relief. They named them Wendy and Marvin — yes, just like the comic-relief teens in the old “Super Friends” cartoon back in the ’70s. And yes, I rolled my eyes when they were introduced, because it really is a completely silly idea.

Well, in this issue, Marvin and Wendy find a dog. They name him Wonderdog, because no one can really figure out how he got all the way out to Titans Island. While all this is happening, Miss Martian leaves the team, Robin tells Wonder Girl that his old girlfriend Spoiler is alive again, and the remaining members of the team go off to the gym for training. And while no one’s looking, Wonderdog turns into a monster, kills Marvin and Wendy, and disappears into the night.

Yeahhh, how ’bout that?

DC has this ongoing problem where they can’t decide if they want to embrace the innocence of the Silver Age or if they want to tack the other direction, so they can tell everyone they’re making comics for grownups. Hence, you’ve got DC bringing back Hal Jordan, Barry Allen, and the silly kids from the “Super Friends” because it appeals to their sense of nostalgia. And then, to make ’em feel like they’re hardcore badboys who’d fit in at the nastiest corner of Image Comics, they kill Sue Dibny, they kill Bart Allen, and they turn Mary Marvel into a psychotic bimbo. It’s a constant push-and-pull — Is DC all about innocent, goofy fun? Is DC all about gritty and adult mayhem? Wait five minutes, and the answer will change again…

This is the same thing. They bring in Wendy and Marvin — isn’t it cute? It’s just like the crazy cartoon you loved when you were a kid! Then someone else at the company thinks to himself, “Hey, this is like a kid’s comic! I don’t make no kid’s comics!” And so they make yet another “Teen Titans” comic that looks like it was written by some sadistic lunatic.

It’s not like I really mind death in comics. I mean, I’m a pretty huge fan of horror comics of all types. What I do mind is gratuitous and unnecessary death in comics. And this was a picture-perfect definition of gratuitous and unnecessary.

And lo and behold, who’s that listed down there as one of this comic’s editors? Dan DiDio. Of course. What a complete and utter surprise. The guy who ain’t happy unless his comics are blood-soaked slaughterfests supervises yet another completely pointless and gratuitous blood-soaked slaughterfest.

Verdict: Thumbs down. I’m dropping this comic as of now.

No Comments

  1. Sado Said,

    August 29, 2008 @ 8:26 am

    Ah, gratuitous killing in comics is so endearing…wait, no it isn’t. Even when it’s schlocky, goofy characters being splattered, it’s cheap.

    Can someone just kill Didio’s career instead? I mean, he’s doing pretty well himself, but he’s doing it too slowly.