ABRA KADABRA, PUPPET MASTER! Review of TITANS #2

titans 2 coverThe title may say TITANS, but make no mistake – this first arc is definitely a Wally West title. Who’s complaining? Not this fan – and this arc is the perfect way to continue the re-introduction of the Titans into mainstream DC continuity. Abra Kadabra is back, and he had nothing more than vengeance on his mind…so what’s next? Follow us after the jump to learn more!

SPOILERS AHEAD

The Titans are standing in the middle of the street, frozen in place.  Linda Park, Super News (read the book and you’ll understand why I’m referring to her that way) recognizes everyone…just not as Titans. She even…finally…recognizes the guy in the Kid Flash uniform as Wally West! Wait…Kid Flash uniform? Didn’t Wally ditch that outfit? And…why is Dick Grayson in a Robin uniform? Why are the rest in their old outfits?

Okay, you can guess by now that these are the real Titans…they are exact magical duplicates created by none other than Abra Kadabra! Kadabra believes that Wally took everything from him, and he is determined to do the same in return. The Titans fight their doppelgangers, and the battle is intense in more ways than one. During the battle, Roy confesses his love for Donna…and both versions of Donna (real and duplicate) are stopped in their tracks for a moment.  “Kid Flash” tries to trick Wally into going full speed into the Speed Force, but Wally is too smart to take the bait.  Omen’s duplicate picks up on Wally’s feelings for Linda Park, Super News, which is a BIG surprise to Kadabra (for reasons we’ll discuss below)…

…but before much more can happen the team finds out about Kadabra, and Garth goes to a rooftop after him. That leads to a shocker panel at the end…and we’ll have to get the next issue to see how that plays out.

NOTES: We learn some things in this issue that play into the overall REBIRTH story. For example, Kadabra says that Wally and Linda aren’t supposed to meet for several more years (“I’ve read the chronicles. They’re not supposed to know each other yet”).  Could this be connected to the 10 years that were taken out of continuity when the New52 came to be? Were Wally and Linda meant to meet somewhere during that missing 10 years instead of “now”? And, what happens now that they have meant years “early”? One other interesting note is that Linda Park, Super News remembers Robin, Speedy, Wonder Girl and Aqualad…but not that they were ever a group.  What happens as the Titans come back into the consciousness of the people of DC’s main Earth? I have a feeling we’ll explore both of those issues as TITANS moves through this arc.

We also learn how this Kadabra’s “magic” works in the REBIRTH universe. He didn’t steal a time machine to come back to our century, and he isn’t using true sorcery (as after the Neron storyline). But, he has a “priceless M-Metal” wand, with “properties of trans-temporal warping”. It’s how he got here, and it isn’t fully charged anymore…but obviously it has enough power to create the duplicate Titans…and possibly to do something much worse at issue’s end. No matter what, this Abra Kadabra is no pushover.

ONE LAST NOTE: The main cover is a nod to a classic FLASH story from years ago, when Barry Allen was turned into a puppet by Abra Kadabra in the Silver Age. Nice tribute, updated for the Titans. The alt cover is simply outstanding, with Wally prominently featured over zoomed-in portraits of the other Titans.

SUMMARY: TITANS is one of the best series DC has put together in several years. The combination of THE FLASH and TITANS may well be the best one-two punch DC publishes right now.  If you were an old fan of the original Titans, this is your book. If you were a fan of Wally West’s iconic run as The Flash, this is your book. Even if you are new to DC, you won’t feel lost…and this could very well be your book. Dan Abnett is giving us an outstanding re-introduction to the Titans. The artwork is amazing…outstanding…can we throw in a couple of more words here?…thanks to the fantastic team of Brett Booth (pencils), Norm Rapmund (inks) and Andrew Dalhouse & Carrie Strachan (colors). This is a 10/10 for me.

Of course, that’s my opinion – what’s yours? Leave your comments below!

5 thoughts on “ABRA KADABRA, PUPPET MASTER! Review of TITANS #2

  1. flashfan14

    not a 10/10, maybe a 7 or 7.5 for me but indeed it’s a solid story so far. It’s nice to know that Wally is central to the storyline

    Reply
  2. Married Guy

    Yep. I’m getting book solely for Wally and have been pretty happy with it so far.

    It was good to see Kadabra back and I’m hoping we have Wally & Linda back by this story’s end.

    After a few lean years, it’s shaping up to again be a fan of the Flash.

    Reply
  3. Savitar

    This has been a solid book so far with Wally bringing the band back together so to speak. It’s also been interesting seeing Linda tracking down Wally to find out who he is.

    The fight with the duplicates was fun, Wally’s maneuver to take down his double was simple and cool. I’m also intrigued by Roy’s comments about Donna while under the influence of her double’s lasso of truth.

    Kadabra’s machinations and scheming are old-school fun indeed.

    Reply
  4. AuldWolf

    This is what I’ve been waiting for DC to do, honestly. A very character-focused version of the silver age. The problem with comics, I think, was that they could never wrap their minds around the fact that you could remove one-dimensional characters from the silver age, and that you could detach rounded characters and legacy from the gritty, grimdark stuff.

    And lo, they’ve finally realised! You can have light-hearted, even superheroic slice of life stuff with rounded characters! And you can have continuity and legacy, too! You don’t need grimdark for that. It’s incredible. It took them this long to figure that out. I think they always wanted the rounded characters presented by grimdark stuff, but the grimdark part isn’t what the fans wanted. And you can’t just bring back the silver age as it was because the characters were just far too flat. Look at Barry back then, ol’ Cap’n Whitebread. As dull as they come, he was.

    It’s just… Wow. It’s astounding it took them this long to get here. It’s interesting watching how Marvel’s dealing with it as — in my opinion — they’ve gone straight back to the silver age. Bendis is a very silver age writer. They put on airs about being open-minded, but their characters are very flat and token-y. They’ve somehow managed to make Falcon the token black guy despite making him Captain America. He’s just lost a lot of his identity. And gender-swapped Thor is so thin on the ground when it comes to story that she pretty much is just a gender-swapped Thor.

    They could have just had Lady Sif step into the role. But nooo… That’d make too much sense, right? Have an established, rounded character step into the role when they could just do something that’s so creatively bankrupt it hurts? Nahhh.

    So, DC is doing the right thing, I think. And I think it’s going to bring in a lot of readers. It’s very accessible, now. So long as they remember to put the character at the forefront, they’ll be fine. They don’t have to focus entirely on the character, of course, as that was what was wrong with DC You. But building characters needs to be important, as does building legacy.

    They got the balance right, here. Some old school, light-hearted fun without the flat characters. I hope Titans continues with this sort of feel for as long as it runs. So long as they do, I’ll keep buying. I just hope they don’t do a 180 degree turn back to grimdark nonsense.

    Reply

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