The War of Jokes and Riddles Begins

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Batman (Volume 3) #25
Written by Tom King
Art by Mikel Janin

This issue begins a flashback story called the War of Jokes and Riddles. It begins with many violent hard to watch/read murders by both the Joker and the Riddler and ends with a great panel of a naked Batman looking pretty great next to Catwoman in bed as he tells this story. We still don’t know if Catwoman said yes to his marriage proposal last issue but who cares – we got to see Mikel Janin draw a great naked Batman! Yay! Jokes aside (no pun intended), this was a great start to what looks like a very cool past-Batman story which if done right looks like it could be on the level of something like the Long Halloween. Tom King is really good at dissecting these characters and his explanation of why the Joker and the Riddler do what-they-do (as told by the Riddler) is fascinating.

Titans 10 and 11

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Titans (Volume 3) #10
Written by Dan Abnett
Art by Brett Booth

Ok Abnett why in the hell are you having the Titans call each other by real names right in front of the Fearsome Five! I can’t stand when writers do this. That being said this was a fun issue as the Titans face off against the Fearsome Five. Bumblebee, of all people, end up saving the day. I am very unclear what her powers are. In the end, she ends up having her memory of Mal Duncan erased which should make some drama in the future. Speaking of Mal, I like his new costume….I think.

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Titans (Volume 3) #11
Written by Dan Abnett, Benjamin Percy, and Priest
Art by Brett Booth

Wow as I suspected the events of the New Teen Titans series are now back in continuity! But they didn’t happen exactly as they did in the original series…I don’t remember Lilith being much in the comic at all and the costumes are different. This is an interesting take on things. In this continuity was Raven not in the New Teen Titans, but it was instead Lilith? I look forward to seeing where this goes.

Teen Titans 7 and 8

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Teen Titans (Volume 6) #7
Written by Benjamin Percy
Art by Khoi Pham and Phil Hester

Jackson Hyde makes it to Titans Tower and is immediately rejected by Robin until he saves Robin from King Shark. Damian then gives him a suit that he had been creating for himself for underwater missions. I wonder if this will be Jackson’s final Aqualad costume – it is unclear because he never puts it on in this comic. I am hoping Jackson is given the name Aqualad by Garth as a passing of the torch in the upcoming crossover.

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Teen Titans (Volume 6) #8
Written by Priest, Benjamin Percy, and Dan Abnett
Art by Khoi Pham and Phil Hester

This is Part 2 of the Lazarus Contract crossover that began here. I want to dislike this crossover because I know that Deathstroke trying to ressurect Grant Wilson has been done SO MANY TIMES in the past. In fact, I think it was done right before Flashpoint. But the writing and characterization is top notch I can’t really hate it. Tempest and the new Aqualad meet for the first time, Donna and Starfire saying how they should really be the ones in charge – the writers clearly know these characters. Kid Flash actually finds out that Wally has the same name as him in this issue which I figured the would have left for the Flash books to resolve.

 

Titans 1 – 9

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Titans (Volume 3) #1
Written by Dan Abnett
Art by Brett Booth

It is so strange when they flashback to the old Teen Titans days and Dick Grayson is shown to be wearing what is essentially the Time Drake Robin costume. I know that is a New 52 thing…but it is just dumb. DC should not be ashamed of their past, they should embrace it. It is strange that Wally skips over essentially everything post-crisis in the opening narraration except for Linda Park. What about Barry’s death and the birth of his kids? Out of all the new Titans costumes, I think I liked Donna Troy’s the best. I think she was do for a refresher. It really speaks to her past as Wonder Girl and her time as Troia. I am not a fan of Tempest or Garth’s (Is he still called Tempest?), I think his Pre-Flashpoint costume was better. It was so great to see this team back together and for their history to be restored. Now I would like to know if they eventually remember the Wolfman/Perez era and the rest of their history. Titans Together! Oh and unlike the other writers, Abnett seems to understand Wally West is Keystone City’s hero. I am glad we are finally getting to see Keystone again.

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Titans (Volume 3) #2
Written by Dan Abnett
Art by Brett Booth

Okay I haven’t exactly enjoyed Abnett’s Aquaman run so I was not expecting much from this book other than hints at the big Rebirth mystery, and there are plenty of that. But I am genuinely enjoying this series in it’s second issue. Even though this whole issue was a big fight with the Titans and Abra Kadabra it still had great characterization and pacing. I was surprised. Abra Kadabra seems to know that Doctor Manhattan or whoever the big bad is that broke history. So that means him, Psycho Pyrate, Superman, Wally, and Lois all seem to know. Linda Park seems closer to meeting Wally again already. I like that. I hope they eventually remember their kids. Also, it looks like Abnett is hinting at bringing back the Donna and Roy romance.

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Titans 34-38

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Titans (Volume 2) #34
Written by Eric Wallace
Art by Fabrizio Fiorentino

Despite hating what happened to Lian Harper and the disgusting way Dan Didio has talked about killing her,  and then what happened to Ryan Choi… this was a good issue and that is due to the creative team telling a strong story. I am actuallu interested in what is to come of Osiris and this creepy guy who takes people’s eyes.

 

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Titans (Volume 2) #35
Written by Eric Wallace
Art by Fabrizio Fiorentino and Phillip Tan

Another good issue of this dark series. I hate how Lian and Ryan have died but Eric Wallace sure knows how to write and Fiorentino knows how to draw beautifully. There was a lot of story in this issue. Wallace isn’t writing for the trade and I like that. The ending where Deathstroke has to fight essentially the creatures from the movie “the Descent” was quite creepy. I wonder if Vixen will ever form her new street team of heroes (Which ironically is how she originally joined the League in the 80’s right because Aquaman wanted to remake the team like that). All of the plots in this book are interesting.

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Titans (Volume 2) #36
Written by Eric Wallace
Art by Fabrizio Fiorentino

This issue wasn’t as good as the last. The art seemed weaker and it ended the arc too easily to me. It was exciting to see the Justice League show up at the end to take Deathstroke to task for the murder of Ryan Choi. Other than that it was only okay. I don’t really care much about Tatooed Man’s arc which is what most of this issue was dedicated to. Deathstroke mentions that Roy and Jericho were once on the same team but…was Jericho and Roy ever on the Titans at the same time? I don’t remember if they were. It seems not but I could be wrong.

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Titans (Volume 2) #37
Written by Eric Wallace
Art by Travis Moore

This was a return to form as Jericho is resurrected by a device Deathstroke helped Sivana create. Then they offer to bring back the dead relatives of the Titans including Lian Harper! I was screaming yes! But the problem is that it might also give Lian eternal life which is hell I guess but Roy should know that in the DC Universe they will figure out how to fix that. Bring back your toddler who didn’t deserve to die at he hands of Prometheus/Dan Didio! Can’t wait to see how this concludes.

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Titans (Volume 2) #38
Written by Eric Wallace
Art by Travis Moore

In the final issue the machine that would have ressurected Lian Harper is destroyed which is too bad but I guess Roy is reformed now and has decided to lead the Titans even though Jericho is now it’s only member. Wallace is a really good writer and I hope he landed somewhere else in DC’s line up after this book. What I like the most is that he included a heartfelt funeral for Ryan Choi which showed he respects the character even though I am sure that editorial forced him to kill Ryan. I am glad Ryan returned in DC Rebirth but I wish it was the same Ryan Choi. I hope in the end it will turn out that everyone’s memories had just been erased and that it is the same Ryan without his memories of being the Atom. Long live the real and original DC Universe!

 

 

Taking Power From Shazam

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Titans (Volume 2) #32
Written by Eric Wallace
Art by Fabrizio Fiorentino and Phillip Tan

 

Now this was an enjoyable issue as we finally as Osiris is officially restored to life by the white light after he takes Freddy Freeman’s powers away which somehow bring Isis back but something bad has happened to her apparently. I am actually excited to see what happens next which is not something I say often about this book. Tatooed Man leaves and Deathstroke gives more hints that this whole team has something to do with Jericho.