Friday, September 19, 2014

The New Titans #130

Where Nightmares End!

Marv Wolfman Writer
William Rosado Penciller
Will Blyberg Inker
Chris Matthys Colorist
Albert DeGuzman Letterer
Dan Thorsland Editor
The New Titans created by Wolfman & Pérez

For this, the final issue of The New Titans, acclaimed Titans artist George Pérez was brought in to draw the cover "for ol' time's sake." Unfortunately, there is no Impulse here. However, just about everybody else, and they look great — even the new-fangled Cyborg, in a completely robotic body of black and red. Changeling's uniform is completely different than the one he wears inside this issue. Minor detail, though. A neat feature on this cover is the bright light behind Starfire, taking the shape of Raven.

This issue is "celebrating the end of sixteen glorious years" for Marv Wolfman. Also note that contentious editor Pat Garrahy is finally gone. Due to these factors, I believe Wolfman was finally able to give the characters he created the conclusion he felt they deserved. However, this means that characters such as Impulse, Damage, Minion and even Arsenal were more or less shoved to the background.

Our story begins with the new Cyborg flying through space with Darkstar, Green Lantern, Minion and the entire Tamaranean army led by Starfire's sister and husband. They're on a mission to take down Raven and her alien allies, and save the captured Starfire and Changeling. Raven begins preparations to revive the children of Trigon by removing the demon seeds from Changeling, which conveniently removes the madness from his brain.

Raven then explains to Starfire that long ago, the Titans thought she had died, but only her flesh perished. Somehow, a Trigon seed found and entered Raven, bringing her back to life. Raven then attacked Starfire on her wedding day and attempted to plant a seed of Trigon in her. But Raven mistakingly placed the good part of her soul in Starfire, and now Raven wants to reclaim her whole soul. But before she can do so, the Titans attack freeing Changeling and Starfire. For the first time in my New Titans run, Changeling doesn't turn into a monster, but an actual animal — an elephant — cracking jokes all the while.

Starfire takes on Raven one-on-one, explaining that since she has a bit of Raven's soul in her, she knows everything. Apparently, back when Trigon's body was destroyed, he sent his genetic pattern into his seeds, murdering Raven's brothers and sisters. The good Raven knew Trigon hadn't been defeated, so she launched an elaborate plan, tricking her evil self into gathering the Titans once again and giving them the ability to destroy Trigon once and for all. The soul of Trigon is then summoned from the evil Raven, and everybody blasts it with all they've got, apparently destroying the ultimate evil forever and finally freeing Raven.

Everyone then meets on New Tamaran, and Raven, now a glowing gold entity, decides to stay with Starfire and help rebuild their society. Raven also reveals that Starfire is pregnant, but Starfire won't let her say the gender of the baby. Changeling decides to explore outer space with Cyborg, and Wolfman got his wish to break up the Darkstar-Green Lantern romance by having Donna also stay behind on New Tamaran. (Of course, this breakup was written very kindly, and could be interpreted as a temporary goodbye, but I seriously doubt we'll ever see Kyle and Donna in a relationship again.) Starfire then gives a rather sappy speech about the rising generation of Titans.

We get a quick glimpse of Bart Allen (before Dead Heat) with a small, blue figure of Max Mercury behind him. We also see Damage wandering around in the desert, and Terra visiting Mirage in the S.T.A.R. Labs hospital. I guess Mirage really did have her baby after all ... ? I don't know, I'm definitely missing something here, but I don't care enough to pick up those other New Titans issues. The story then ends with the one main character Wolfman really wanted to bring back but wasn't allowed to — Nightwing, who stands on a random rooftop in New York. Thinking of his old friends in the Titans, Nightwing says, "Take care, guys. You're the best!"

We also have a final thank you note from Marv Wolfman, as follows:

With sixteen years of gratitude to:
Romeo Tanghal, Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez, Eduardo Barreto, Tom Grummett, Bill Jaaska, William Rosado and all the great artists who have given life to my words!
Also to Nick Cardy & Bob Haney — without whom there wouldn't be a Titans, Teen or otherwise.
Stan Lee & Jack Kirby our X'hal
And especially to George Pérez, unquestionably still the best of the best!
And to all a good night
Marv Wolfman
October 25, 1995

This was a rather emotional ending to Marv Wolfman's legendary Titans run, even if it didn't make a lick of sense. It might have been better had I been reading all 16 years of Wolfman's Titans stories, but from this issue, it seems like there were too many convenient happenstances to get all the characters in the final place Wolfman wanted. And it wasn't made entirely clear why the team had to fall apart as a whole. I mean, Arsenal, Minion, Terra, Green Lantern, Rose and Impulse could still be a pretty good team. Perhaps DC was originally intending to keep those characters together in a different title, but it never happened.

I always liked the idea of Impulse being a member of the Titans, but he never really seemed to fit in well with this Wolfman team. Wolfman had taken his characters on incredible journeys over his 16-year span, having them grow up, get married, have kids, die and come back to life. And there simply wasn't any room for younger, fresh characters like Impulse and Damage. Impulse really needs to be on a team of younger heroes, where everyone's on the same status. And that will happen, just not for a while.

There aren't any letters to the editor, but there are a whole bunch of ads we haven't seen in The Flash or Impulse.

One shattered child is one too many. Batman: The Ultimate Evil. A two-issue encounter with the destroyers of children. By Neal Barrett, Jr., Denys Cowan, and Prentiss Rollins.

The Ultimate Doom. It's Doom in its original entirety along with the all new demented episode four, "Thy Flesh Consumed." It's called Ultimate Doom. It's the kind of killing that makes life worth living.

Saturday Morning Cartoons Greatest Hits and No Doubt Tragic Kingdom Just a Girl from Sam Goody and Musicland.

What good is a Sony Playstation if it isn't Loaded. When I find F.U.B. my balloon will be red, he will go splatt! and I'll carve him up into bite-sized chunks so I can feed him to my fuzzy bear Peroy.

Elric: Song of the Black Sword by Michael Moorcock.

The flying is so realistic, it'll actually create a sonic boom. (In your shorts.) A two-page ad for Warhawk on Playstation.

It bleeds acid. It can read your mind. It is a born killer. It is the least of your worries. Aliens: A Comic Book Adventure.

The Immortal Eyes Chronicles. A trilogy of novels. A series of sourcebooks. The future of Changeling: The Dreaming.

Whose will be done? Kingdom Come. This is one of the best DC Elseworlds stories ever. Written by Mark Waid and painted by Alex Ross, this story presents a distant future of the DC Universe, corrupted by the more violent tendencies that became so popular in comics in the '90s. I debated reviewing this series, since the Flash of this story is kind of an amalgamation of all the other Flashes. I could have talked myself into including Bart in that list, but the story doesn't specifically say it's him, nor does it present anything that could be uniquely Bart. In the fact, the Flash in Kingdom Come is more of the concept of the Flash personified, and less of an actual human character. So I won't review Kingdom Come, but you should definitely read it anyway.

Skybox International presents The Battle of the Century. DC versus Marvel trading cards.

There is no cure. Contagion. An 11-part story in the various Batman titles.

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. In this case, rip out their spine and internal organs. Mortal Kombat 3.

Next time, we continue Dead Heat with The Flash #110.

No comments:

Post a Comment