Review: Titans #14

The almost mis-adventures of DC’s New York team continues with the team under attack of the lovelorn Trident Three as they love Garth of Atlantis so much, they want to kill him.  Even worse, they desecrate the most honoured of foods in New York, pizza, to do it.  Still, it could be worse, the attack could come just after Garth’s new love interest has been accused of being a mole thus throwing the whole team into disarray.  Wait a minute…….

If you think this opening paragraph has a lot going on, it’s a true reflection of a book that has a story telling style that mirrors its characters perfectly; the mysterious goings on and conspiracies ala Nightwing; the frantic pacing ala Flash; the ongoing issues of the memories of the DC universe reflected in both Karen and Lilith with recent revelations around Donna thrown in for good measure.  All in all, with this issue focusing on Garth, it seems that Roy is the calm within the storm.

Dan Abnett has more than a few plates spinning in this book.  In a style that is reminiscent of the great Titan writers of the past, Abentt answers questions with more questions, which whilst conversationally may be rude, does mean that something has to give at some point.  That may be a problem for the future.  As for now, it does make for a book that reads like an old school team book.  With so much going on, Abnett allows each strand to get a little more play, to deliver just a little bit more of the symphony that he is playing.

Giving the book an old school look is artist Brett Booth.  Now you may look at the art in the book and think, “what do you mean old school”.  Well, rather than read the book, just flip through it.  Now go pick up any other DC team book and flip through that.  You will find that in today’s world of androgynous character structure and features that somehow equate to equality, Booth is a throwback,  where all his characters are strong of features and of body type.  Booth’s clean lines is full of dynamism and muscles and curves.  Yet this style doesn’t detract from the characters in the way that many people would want you to think.  Donna’s curves do not make her any less of hero, any less of strong character as her male teammates.  In fact, with what she is going through, she shows an incredible inner strength.  That could also be said of any of the characters with the possibility of one, no spoilers.  Booth’s clean lines are helped by Norm Rapmund with the pair seemingly having a lot of in their work, if the energy on the page is anything to go by.

The book isn’t perfect; sooner or later there needs to be some answers and there are a couple of poses of the guys running that don’t look quite right, I don’t think you can lean that far forward and have a leading leg near your shoulder.  Also, please don’t get me started as to why there is no Starfire or Raven on the team!  Yet for a book that I only picked up for the connection to the Watchmen (go check out Rebirth #1) I have to say that I have been absolutely blown away by the quality of the book, in both the strong and humorous at times writing and some of the best art panel by panel, page by page that DC produces.  It almost makes me think the DC that puts this quality of book on the rack, cannot really be the same Dc that put out Birds of Prey, can it?

Writing – 4.5 Stars

Art- 4.5 Stars

Colors – 4.5 Stars

Written by; Dan Abnett
Art by; Brett Booth and Norm Rapmund
Colors by; Andrew Dalhouse
Published; by DC Comics

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