Comic Book Review: Teen Titans #47

The Revolution has found this much hyped Teen Titans East story arc to be massively disappointing. I am concerned that I am going to enjoy Beechen’s run on this title. Johns is a tough act to follow and Beechen definitely has his work cut out for him. Let’s go ahead and hit this review for Teen Titans #47.

Creative Team
Writer: Adam Beechen
Penciller: Chris Batista
Inker: Jonathon Glapion

Art Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Story Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 7.5 Night Girls out of 10

Synopsis: We begin the Titans (Robin, Jericho, Cyborg, Miss Martian, Kid Devil, Beast Boy, Raven, Ravager, Wonder Girl, Donna Troy and Nightwing) in their ship headed to bury Duela Dent.

Nightwing says that after Duela’s funeral that he and Robin are going to find out who killed Duela. Nightwing asks who else wants to join them. Donna Troy, Wonder Girl and Ravager say that they will go with Nightwing and Robin.

Jericho, who is still inhabiting Match’s body, says that he can’t leave Match’s body and is having a tough time pacifying him. Cyborg says that he will go back to Titans Tower with Jericho and help him deal with Match. Miss Martian and Kid Devil decide to go with Cyborg and Jericho in case they need back up if Match breaks free.

We then shift to later that night after Duela’s funeral. We see Nightwing and Robin questioning Tracey, the actress that Duela tried to kidnap back in Countdown #51. Tracey says that she passed out during the entire event and doesn’t know anything.

We cut to Donna, Wonder Girl and Ravager waiting for the Bat-boys to finish their questioning of Tracey. Donna tells Cassie that she needs to move on. That she needs to let Conner go. Cassie says that it still feels raw. That they were just starting to get so close. Donna tells Cassie that time heals if she will let it. And that healing doesn’t mean forgetting. Cassie breaks down crying.

We cut back to Tracey telling Nightwing and Robin that just before the police showed up that some guy in a red hood arrived onto the scene. Both Dick and Tim are surprised. They then both know that they have no choice but to go confront Jason.

We shift to the Titans on a roof top with Robin and Nightwing holding down Jason and questioning him about Duela. They both accuse Jason of killing Duela. Jason retorts that he tried to save Duela. Jason says that he told Jimmy Olsen that it was an alien who killed Duela.

Jason then breaks free from Dick and Tim. Ravager then puts her sword to Jason’s neck. Donna holds back Dick while Cassie holds back Robin. Donna tells Dick that Jason didn’t have anything to do with Duela’s death. That she saw Jason at the funeral and saw it in his eyes. Robin says that he and Dick can’t trust Jason after all he has done to them. Dick then tells Jason that they will be back to deal with him if he keeps popping up in their investigation.

Jason retorts that if they want to come and brawl with him then he is ready anytime. Robin then kicks Jason in the nuts and tells the Titans that everything is all good now and that they can go.

We hop back to Titans Tower. Beast Boy approached Kid Devil and tells him that he knows what it is like to be the junior member of the team. And that Beast Boy never thought the Titans would take him seriously if he came to them with a problem. But, he always could have. And the same goes for Kid Devil. Beast Boy says that he wants to make sure that it doesn’t take Kid Devil as long to learn that as it did Beast Boy.

Suddenly, Jericho loses control of Match. Match goes berserk and starts kicking ass on all the Titans. Match then yells out “Wonder Girl!”

We cut back to Manhattan where the Titans are investigating the scene of Duela’s murder. Suddenly, bright rays of light shine down on the Titans and a voice tells Nightwing and Dona that he has this situation under control. That they must forget this case or they will find something that wants them dead, too.

Nightwing tells Cassie to fly above the lights and see who it is. Cassie responds that her powers have faded again. The voice then says that if Nightwing and Donna won’t take his advice willingly then he will take another approach. Suddenly, the Titans are then transported back to Titans Tower by the voice who we all know is a Monitor.

There Match is still brawling with the other Titans. Nightwing mentions how that mystery person better not think that he is done with them. That Nightwing doesn’t like being told what he can or can’t investigate.

Nightwing’s team then joins the other Titans in their fight with Match. Cassie can’t join the fight since her powers are still gone. The Titans hold down Match. Cassie begins crying and walks over to Match. Cassie tells Match that it is okay. That she is here. Raven then uses her powers to help Jericho regain control over Match.

Jericho then says that they need a more permanent solution to this. That he can’t live like this forever. Robin then offers to help Cassie with her problems with her powers. Cassie says that she appreciates the offer but that she can’t talk about it. Not here and not now.

We then cut to Cassie at Supergirl’s apartment. Cassie’s powers came back and she flew to see Supergirl. Supergirl then flips on the television and they see a news report that Washington, D.C. is currently under attack by Amazons. End of issue.

Comments
The Good: How about that. Beechen surprised me with Teen Titans #47. This was a really good read. After such an unimpressive Titans East story arc, I wasn’t expecting much from Beechen at all with this issue. Well, Beechen proved me wrong and gave us a quality read.

Teen Titans #47 was well paced and plotted. This was a well balanced story with a good mix of action and drama. I really like that Beechen nicely dovetailed this issue in with the events over on Countdown #48. I dig that DC is making the effort to have the Countdown plotlines surface in various other titles across the DCU. This makes the Countdown events a much larger universe spanning event. Much like The Initiative over at Marvel except Countdown’s storylines have actually been entertaining.

Beechen surprised me by serving up some well crafted dialogue. I was shocked that Beechen displayed such a good feel for the different personalities of the various Titans. However, Beechen really managed to create some good chemistry between the various Titans. My fears that Beechen would write all the Titans to generically and similarly were most definitely unfounded.

I like how Beechen writes Ravager. I have slowly but surely become a big Ravager fan and Beechen handles her character just as well as Johns did. Portraying Rose as a highly sexual character who likes to flirt is spot on for her personality.

Beechen also does well writing Cassie’s character. I love that Wonder Girl is still devastated over Conner’s death. The scene with Donna and Cassie was rather touching. Cassie’s mourning over Conner’s passing has been the best job I have ever seen of how a character’s death impacts their teammates.

Usually, comic book writers have characters get over deaths of teammates and loved ones in just a couple of issues. That is so unrealistic. Normal people grieve for years. Sometimes a life time. I’m glad to see that Cassie is still struggling with her grief even after a little over a year since Conner’s death.

And the scene where Cassie calms down the enraged Match long enough for Jericho to reassert his control over Match was well done. This was an emotional scene and further displayed the sorrow inside of Cassie’s soul.

Beechen also does a good job casting Kid Devil in the old role that Beast Boy carried for such a long time as the youngest member of the Titans. Kid Devil’s situation is very similar and it appears that Kid Devil will make the same mistakes that Beast Boy did. There is no doubt that Kid Devil will not confide in his teammates about his curse until it is too late.

And speaking of Beast Boy, I found it interesting that Garfield avoided having a serious talk with Raven at every possible chance. These two characters still have some unresolved issues. This should certainly provide for some quality drama in the near future.

I love the scene with Jason Todd. I absolutely dig that there is serious tension and animosity between all the different Robins. I like that they aren’t all friends. So often, you see legacy heroes worship the hero that came before them or at least they are close friends. Jason certainly doesn’t worship Dick and Tim doesn’t worship Jason. And there is plenty of resentment in Jason’s heart for the former Robin and the current Robin.

I like that there is a schism in the Bat Family. It provides for some great drama. Plus, all families are dysfunctional to some degree or another. And a family as dark and bizarre as the Bat Family certainly needs some dysfunction to keep things interesting.

Beechen does a solid job with Jason’s character. It isn’t quite as good as what we get over on Countdown, but it is certainly better than how Jason was handled on Nightwing. It was nice to see Donna sticking up for Jason during the argument between the three Bat-boys.

I liked the scene where the Monitor warns Donna and Dick about investigating Duela’s death. This scene continues to build the anticipation for whatever Countdown has in store for Dick and Donna. And Dick’s reaction to being told to back off from investigation the murder was perfect. Dick isn’t going to back down to anyone. Even an all powerful Monitor.

Beechen ends this issue with a good hook ending. We have the Amazons attacking Washington, DC with two characters in Cassie and Supergirl who both have strong ties with the Amazons watching in disbelief. If nothing else, this plotline should deliver some solid action.

Chris Batista’s artwork was well done. It wasn’t spectacular, but I enjoyed it more than Barrionuevo’s artwork on the Titans East story arc.

The Bad: Just one minor quibble. Robin kicking Jason in the nuts was an attempt at humor, but it just didn’t fit into the general flow and mood of the story.

Overall: Teen Titans #47 certainly exceeded my expectations for this issue. After a rather unimpressive and anti-climactic Titans East story arc, I wasn’t sure that Beechen had the chops to write the Titans. Beechen proved me wrong by turning in a solid issue that I found to be pretty entertaining.

2 Comments

  1. Beechen is only on the title for another two issues. DC made a change of plans and assigned him to write an eight-issue “Countdown to Adventure” miniseries beginning in August, which features the space heroes from 52 (Starfire, Animal Man, and Adam Strange); as a result, he had to give up Teen Titans; so he’s doing the “Amazons Attack” crossover issues (48-49); issue 50 is a big anniversary issue with stories by Johns (w/ McKone), Wolfman (w/ Perez), and the new writer, Sean McKeever, who then takes over all writing duties with #51. McKeever (also taking over Birds of Prey) was a Marvel writer (seen as something of a rising star) who recently signed a one-year exclusive deal with DC.

    Very good art this issue; the guest artist even managed to give Wonder Girl and Supergirl distinctive faces, which is no small trick given their similar features.

  2. Ilan the Portlander Rebbe June 4, 2007 at 9:56 pm

    “Just one minor quibble. Robin kicking Jason in the nuts was an attempt at humor, but it just didn’t fit into the general flow and mood of the story”

    Robin is from the Luke Cage school of fighting.

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