This Titans review contains spoilers.
Titans Season 2 Episode 7
Well, the Batusi has arrived on Titans. In a quirky episode where most everyone is on edge at Titans Tower, and piling on Jason Todd, Dick once again strikes out on his own – although aided by his inner Bruce. His inner, sarcastic, goofy Bruce.
Let’s begin there. Dick’s self-doubts are personified by his adoptive father, and crime-fighting partner. He appears to harangue and question Dick, but also serve as something as Jiminy Cricket – if Jiminy dressed up like a bat. I like Iain Glen as Bruce, and his accent sounds better than it did when we first met him in the season premiere. But the fantasy Bruce wears thin (even though Glen is clearly having a blast playing him). I would rather have the real Bruce show up, but I am highly skeptical he would have done the Batusi with burlesque dancers.
Also, is Dick losing it? He clearly doesn’t have a hold on what’s real, and what’s in his mind when he starts speaking to Bruce around other people? I get that his guilt over lying, and whatever he really did to Jericho, is bad news, but it’s hard to buy that his grip has slipped this much.
While Dick moves further away from Robin, and closer to Nightwing, the current Robin on Titans is a sad, broken kid traumatized by his near-death experience. As Jason replays his fall over, and over again, he essentially proves Deathstroke’s point that these children have no business playing soldiers. I can’t help but feel for Jason; the kid needs a family, but instead his adopted team just sees him as a screw up, andis suspicious of his every maneuver (yeah, he’s can be an ass but they lay into him heavily, and I don’t think Jason would have pulled off the taunting pranks they accuse him of).
Meanwhile, the killer has been inside the house all along. Deathstroke is trolling the Titans with little mementos of trauma. I suppose he’s succeeding in picking the heroes apart, but it also feels a bit like J.V. villainy. Seriously, can you imagine Deathstroke in Rachel’s room taking a Sharpie to her mirror to make a bunch of crosses? I half expect it to be Rose working for her dad.
Speaking of Rose, she is a problematic character for me. Her moments with Jason feel like a believable interaction between two angsty teens. It makes sense they might be kindred spirits as street kids that have to act tough. And yet, it feels like Rose is simply being moved from one scene to the next without having much to really do, aside from moping, eating cereal, and throwing barbs.
Many of our heroes in this episode act somewhat stupid, falling for obvious traps, or missing basic clues. Deathstroke aside, it’s annoying that we live in the world of Superman – and the larger DC universe is normally handled well on Titans – yet people seem so dense when it comes to Conner. You know, the kid with a Superman shield barcode tattoo? Is Kory hearing Kryptonian really the only way they are going to pick up on Conner’s connection to Big Blue?
That said, I quite enjoyed Kory supercharging the revived Conner, and the combo super-power display of her starfire, and Rachel’s Raven energy. And Eve’s escape from Cadmus with Krypto? Spectacular. Telling the super pup to do the light thing he does with his eyes, followed by a straight up fly-away? It is such a delightfully nerdy moment, and a reminder of how far this show has come from its “F—k Batman” beginnings.
Still, I am concerned about the pacing issues on Titans. We are in the back half of the season, and there is a lot of Deathstroke story yet to tell, with more backstory about Jericho to come. Additionally, now there is the threat of Mercy Graves and Cadmus hunting down Conner, Eve, and Krypto. And lest we forget, there are little threads here and there, such as the mysteries behind Rachel’s power, and the Tamaranian Faddei locked on Kory’s ship. It feels like a lot to wrap up, and I suspect we’ll have another flashback episode before the season it over.
Aaron Sagers is a freelance contributor. Read more of his work here.