Monday, October 23, 2017

New Titans #100

Surprise! The person behind the Darkening was Raven all along! We were all fooled by her bones on Azarath!

In the caption, I've gone with the colloquial usage of "all" which is known to mean "nobody at all." Let's try to forget how the first seventy issues of this series had the Titans battling family members instead of actually doing heroic things and let's look at the last twenty five issues. Surely somebody at DC realized that the Titans weren't so much a superhero group as a dramatic bunch of youths turning family problems into public battles that caused tons of property damage and thousands of injuries (and probably deaths too!) and thought, "Maybe we should change the direction of this comic book so that it looks like these 'heroes' are actually heroic." At that point, somebody came up with the genius idea of having the villain actually be one of the Titans! So now the Titans weren't just fighting family members and being a nuisance to New York (making Councilwoman Alderman a hero in her fight to get the Titans out of New York rather than the villain Marv Wolfman desperately tried to convince the readers she was); now they were actually fighting each other! It might have made for a great twist ending (that's the colloquial usage of "great." It's basically the same as the colloquial version of "all") but it didn't help the Titans reputation as superheroes who actually helped more than they harmed regular people just trying not to be crushed by falling skyscraper debris. After that, the Titans went back to fighting family members as they fought Donna's baby from the future. But now we're back to the Titans battling themselves as Raven has been going around raping people for fun and, um, maybe profit? At least the Team Titans actually took the time to destroy a nest of faux vampires that were murdering people in New York City while they dealt with their internal drama.

I've said this before about the Teen Titans but it bears repeating over and over and over again, seeing as how this series actually made it past Issue #100: the Teen Titans are not the X-men. Obviously that was the model Wolfman was using to try to replicate the X-men's success at DC Comics. But the X-men would actually work fine if they used the same plots used in this run of Wolfman's Titans because the X-men weren't specifically brought together to create a heroic team out to help the world. They were just kids in a boarding school! Plus Xavier had the foresight to place the school out in upstate New York instead of downtown Manhattan. I think. Anyway, you could make stories work where family members were attacking the school to get even at their kids or siblings or parents from the past in the present because the kids at the school weren't meant to be saving regular people lives. I'm not making a great distinction between Xavier's school and the actual X-men team because I don't think that delineation was all that sharp anyway. Besides, the X-men can't be blamed for bringing together a group of heroes to simply defend themselves and other mutants whereas the Titans portray themselves as a youthful Justice League but then only ever deal with their own shit. The premise of this title was broken from the start.

Not that that hurt the book, of course! I'm complaining about how terrible every issue of this thing was and yet I still bought every issue up through about #120 or so! I was lulled into complacency by this comic book for ten years! I don't think young me was as smart as young me thought he was, the big dumb-dumb!

This final chapter of The Darkening is called "Something old. Something new. Something borrowed. Something . . . DEAD". There's no ending punctuation on the title. I should probably Sharpie in an exclamation point.

Why would you need a blood test to get married? To find out if the woman is pregnant so you can judge the couple? To make sure the husband isn't riddled with STDs? Oh! I should ask Lord Google!

So I guess the blood test was to reveal which member of the loving couple was a total skank whore! I mean, you know, for medical reasons so the STD could be cleared up before the honeymoon and not to totally drive a wedge between the two by making one member of the loving couple bitter and resentful that they didn't also live an awesome previous life riddle with sexually diseased partners!

I guess there's also some commentary about mixed marriages or something on that page. Now it would be commentary on gay marriage. Look how far America has come into the 21st Century! We've partially opened the door to matrimony for a few more select groups! Way to go!

Bruce saw how clean your blood test was and was ashamed.

Dick Grayson: "Hey Alfred! I'm getting married! Did Bruce get the invite?"
Alfred: "I'm sorry, Master Grayson, but he won't be able to make it."
Dick Grayson: "What?! That selfish bastard! He never cares about my feelings! He was the worst father ever!"
Alfred: "He's currently in a coma with a broken back. So, you know, thanks for not answering our calls for help when all the inmates in Arkham escaped and Bane destroyed your dad's dreams of always knowing when he's pooped."
Dick Grayson: "Oh. Yeah, um. Well. I was busy with Titans' business! We've been really busy! Titaning and stuff! Anyway, will you be here? And Jason? Err, I mean Tim?"

Anyway, the wedding winds up being a beautiful, romantic experience.

Oh, except for this part, I guess. I don't think the officiant usually explodes in a ball of flame at the conclusion of the vows.

At the point where the officiant blows up, the wedding sort of goes off the rails. Raven, Deathwing, and the Team Titans Judge and Jury attack. Everybody but Raven is defeated and you'll probably be surprised by what happens next if you haven't been paying attention to one of Marv Wolfman's favorite plot points.

Raven rapes and seemingly impregnates Kory at her wedding while everybody watches in horror. Well, everybody except Tim who watches in both horror and intrigue.

I don't know how much you can blame Raven for all the raping she's been doing lately. She was raised by Trigon who basically spends his time raping his way across the universe. She's just living the only way she knows how!

That's basically the end of the issue. Starfire is hauled off to STAR Labs to be studied. I mean cared for. And Roy Harper is told by his bosses at Checkmate that he needs to become leader of the Titans. I'm not sure if the marriage was legalized or not because the officiant never finished saying "I now pronounce you man and wife." I think that part is just show anyway. Once you sign the licenses and the witnesses sign "Ben Dover" to the certificate, the other shit is just pomp and circus stances.

New Titans #100: One inappropriate pin-up at the end of a comic book where the bride is raped out of one inappropriate pin-up at the end of a comic book where the bride is raped.

Why is Starfire ripping her bathing suit apart?!

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