Teen Titans #75
Teen Titans was one of the first books I read when I first got into comics around the time of Infinite Crisis. I got the first three trades and loved them.
Then Superboy died and Kid Flash turned into the Flash. Suddenly, the book just stopped being as much fun. The characters all started suffering from severe depression, and the team started to go through lineup changes every two issues. Unlike most of the people here, I enjoyed Sean McKeever's issues, but felt that they were hampered by interference from editorial. McKeever finally bailed to go back to Marvel, but still manages to write the best Titans stuff on the market today, even if it is just a backup. Meanwhile, both Titans books have been going through writers as quickly as they go through team members, and have suffered for it.
As a quick aside, I actually like the current lineup of the team. I love Blue Beetle, Static, and Miss Martian, and both Bombshell and Aquagirl are interesting characters. I would prefer to see at least Superboy and Kid Flash on the team, but this is a pretty solid lineup.
We begin the issue as Raven is attacked by a...something? Platygriffin? Anyway, we then go to Titans Tower, where the team is enjoying a pizza. Cowabunga dude. Beast Boy shows up, promising to effectively replace their emotionally damaged leader...and then falls to pieces when Raven shows up unconscious on their doorstep. Oddly, Wonder Girl congratulates him on keeping his cool, which he immediately loses once more as Raven's treatment begins. Then a random cat spits up a hairball and the platygriffin is in the tower. One would think that after the whole fiasco with "Wonder Dog," the team would be a little more concerned about strange animals in their headquarters.
The plot of the issue is pretty clunky, but the character interactions seem decent enough. The writer is new to comic writing, having come from producing and writing for television (Didio doing favors for old TV contacts, perhaps?), so I'm willing to give her a bit of leeway, but this was not a good issue by any stretch. It's even worse for those who have been reading Titans (or flipping through it in their comic shop
). While Titans readers were aware of Beast Boy coming on board the team, they were also aware of his stalkerish tendencies towards Raven, which was part of the point of him leaving the Titans. After that, seeing Beast Boy rubbing Raven's hand against his face in this issue was creepy as hell.
The art was decent, but not Bennett's best by any stretch. A solid effort, but just unexciting (but I dig Beast Boy's mutton chops!).
The backup from Sean McKeever and Yildiray Cinar was the highlight of the issue, although it is unfortunate that issue #75 had to fall in the middle of the backup's story. This only reinforces why I miss McKeever on the main title, and why I wish he could have been given free reign to write the book he wanted to write.
Story: 5 (main); 8 (backup)
Art: 6 (main); 8 (backup)
Overall: 5.5 (main) + 8 (backup) = 6