Thursday, November 08, 2007

Save Wolfman & Perez’s Titans, Ignore Winick & Churchill’s Teen Titans East Special

A recent interview with Judd Winick in about his upcoming Teen Titans East Special prompted some commentary by the Occasional Superheroine titled “Will The Cast of the New ‘Teen Titans East’ Special Die a Quick and Horrible Death?” which in turn moved us to add our own comments.
Not one to let a good blog posting go to waste, below is our take on the matter from our initial commentary on OC’s page with some addition time to chew on it.

Here’s the Upshot from DC Comics about next week’s Teen Titans East Special: Titans Tower is back up and running on the East Coast as Judd Winick, Ian Churchill and Norm Rapmund assemble an explosive new team of Titans under the leadership of Cyborg! But their first mission may be their last as powerful forces gather to destroy all Titans past and future!

You may recall that we commented on this Special over the summer, lamenting how Winick and Churchill not only got their hands on a great character like Cyborg but how they’ve loaded grabbed up a bunch of Z-list heroes and were calling them “Titans.”

But turns out its much, much worse than we first thought. During his Newsarama interview, Winick revealed how next week’s one-shot will be followed up by a new ongoing Titans series featuring Cyborg and the other original seven characters from the classic New Teen Titans days of Marv Wolfman & George Perez—Nightwing, Donna Troy, Beast Boy, Raven and Wally West/Flash.

“I guess the best way to put it is that the Special is the first chapter. The discussion came out of the idea that we originally wanted to bring back the original Teen Titans from the Marv Wolfman/George Perez days. We like the team, it’s a classic combination that works, and all of us were really, really interested in putting them back together,” Winick told Newsarama.

"So in the back of Dan’s [Didio’s] mind, that was where it started – if we were going to do 'Titans East,' we should do the Wolfman/Perez team. Not some combination of new folks, but the originals. So from there, we came to the idea of making a “Titans East” project a first chapter, something that leads – somehow – to the creation/reunion of the original New Teen Titans characters. And it all gelled. That’s why there was a very brief fake-out where we showed the cover to Titans East, which got us the response of “What the hell is this?” from the fans who were asking for a Titans East team book. We expected that reaction, and we got it. So we had our fun.”

Of course you did Judd. As long as you’re having fun, well then it’s all worth it.

Okay, we have a longstanding sentimental attachment with the Wolfman/Perez original seven all the way back to when we bought DC Comics Presents #26 with the New Teen Titans preview back when we were 10 years old.

After a strong early 80s, the team and the book was never the same after Perez move on and Wolfman alone picked up the slack for a little while but he stayed on or was allowed to stay on (benign neglect by DC editorial?) for many years too long.

Since the Wolfman solo years until Graduation Day and Geoff Johns’ era where the Young Justice generation assumed the mantle, the Titans in all their incarnations have been neither fish nor fowl as far as DC was concerned.

Example: Since the original CRISIS, the Titans have played no significant part in ANY major DC “event”---save for Infinite Crisis where past Titans were dusted off only for the express purpose of being killed.

The thing is, we would LOVE to see the original Wolfman/Perez seven back together again and the kicker is that we support and/or agree many of the concepts of “friends and family” that Judd Winick talks about in his interview.

But quite frankly, based on his record of performance Judd is writing checks that his “talent” (or lack there of) simply can’t cash.

Besides, we’re less than eager for Judd to get yet another shot at f**king up Nightwing like he did during his run on Outsiders. And don’t even get us started on “Cheesecake” Churchill.

Winick in his interview all but confirmed what many had suspected when the Titans East Special roster was revealed—except for Cyborg, the rest of the characters pictured are little more than cannon fodder.

If sales of the one-shot special tanks, it may, just may prompt DC Editorial to rethink the wisdom a follow up ongoing monthly with this creative team. Granted it’s a long shot, but DC management DID just do an 11th hour writer replacement on the new Batman and the Outsiders re-launch so it’s not impossible.

Bottom line: We’re left repeating our initial recommendation from this past summer—but this time with much more urgency. Save the Wolfman/Perez Titans from Winick and Churchill—ignore the Teen Titans East Special. Just don’t buy it!!


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