The first season of Warner Bros television series Titans has just been released on DVD and Blu-ray, meaning a whole host of new fans get to experience the exciting live action version of the Teen Titans. The series has some great stories, but the characters have been around for decades in the comics, and there are loads more stories that fans can experience. Here are five of the best.
1. Teen Titans: A Kid’s Game
Geoff Johns is a legend in comic books, and one of his stand out series was his 2003 Teen Titans run. The first big relaunch of the book since the Wolfman and Perez run, the book brought back series mainstays such as Starfire, Beast Boy, Raven, and Cyborg in new modernised versions, as well as bringing new additions like Tim Drake’s Robin, Cassie Sandmark’s Wonder Girl, Super Boy, and Bart Allen’s Kid Flash.
The first volume of the Johns run, Teen Titans: A Kid’s Game, tells how the team comes together for the first time, the dissolution of the Young Justice team, and how the older Titans fit in with their new teammates. A brilliant introduction to a run that would last for years, with Johns working on more than 50 issues.
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2. Teen Titans: Titans of Tomorrow
Another great entry from the Johns era Teen Titans: Titans of Tomorrow pits the young heroes against older versions of themselves. After travelling to the distant future to help the Legion of Super Heroes the Titans accidentally end up 10 years in their future, where they encounter more violent versions of themselves. In this timeline Connor has become Super Man, Tim is the new gun-wielding Batman, Cassie is Wonder Woman, and Bart has become Reverse Flash, just to name a few of the changes.
It’s always fun to pit heroes against different versions of themselves, and ‘what if’ futures are great scenarios that let writers explore strange new territory, and Teen Titans: Titans of Tomorrow is a great example of both. The characters get to see where their actions could lead them in the future, and it moves their story forward in important and meaningful ways. Plus, the future versions of our heroes are brilliantly entertaining.
3. Teen Titans: The Judas Contract
Taken from the classic Marv Wolfman and George Perez run on the book Teen Titans: The Judas Contract was a four part story that was extremely significant for a number of reasons. The book revealed the secret origins of the Titans villain Deathstroke, a villain that would go on to become an icon of the DC Universe. The Judas Contract also revealed the shocking revelation that the teams new member, Terra was actually working for Deathstroke to bring down the team from within. It also marked the first appearance of Dick Grayson as Nightwing.
Teen Titans: The Judas Contract was a huge turning point for the series. It was full of content that was considerably more adult in tone than things that had come before, and made big changes to the book going forward. Adapted a number of times over the years in both tv and film animation, and revisited in future comic stories, it remains on of the most important Teen Titans stories of all times.
4. The New Titans: Who Is Donna Troy?
The original Wonder Girl, Donna Troy was a founding member of the original Teen Titans line-up in the 1960’s, and originally Wonder Woman’s younger sister. Over the years, thanks to various revisions and new writers Donna’s origins became less defined. Who Is Donna Troy? sought to shed some answers on her past.
A sci-fi epic that’s full of world building, noir detective stories, and interpersonal conflict all designed to bring Donna to the fore and make her a character with a solid back story. With Donna Troy proving to be on of DC’s more popular recurring characters, and her character’s inclusion in the series, Who Is Donna Troy? may be one of the more important Teen Titans stories around.
5. Teen Titans: Earth One
A standalone graphic novel, Teen Titans: Earth One takes readers to a world where there are no super heroes. No Batman, no Superman, no Wonder Woman, and no Teen Titans. In this world a group of teens suddenly develop strange new powers, and are drawn together to help save a strange alien princess. Featuring brand new versions of Cyborg, Raven, Beast Boy, Terra, Jericho, and Starfire, writer Jeff Lemire creates a Teen Titans that couldn’t exist in the regular DC Universe.
With a second volume that expanded upon this initial concept, and introduced even more re-imagined Titans, Teen Titans: Earth One is a bold new direction for the super hero team. Fans who liked the television series revamp of the team will love this other reinterpretation.