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Nope, Still Not There Yet

March 19, 2010

Static’s back in Dakota City, and in Teen Titans #80, his teammates are hot on his trail, ready to help.  Of course, first they have to find Static, who has been “kidnapped” by Holocaust after their altercation last issue.  Seems he’s gone legit, and Static was attacking one of his businesses.  The Titans beat up a bunch of his goons while he explains to Static that he’s using his money to bring jobs back to Dakota and to help people, and his girlfriend, Nina Collier, says that her home is safe now thanks to him.  Holocaust tries to convince Static to help him, but Static isn’t buying it.  The Teen Titans rush in to help a burning hospital, while Static and Holocaust trade versions of a story that involved a fight between Holocaust and some thugs.  Miss Martian, still seemingy rather ill, directs the Titans to Static’s friend Frieda Goren, while Holocaust shows Static the childrens’ hospital he saved.  After a little bit of awkward humor at a hotel, the Titans find Frieda to try and find out where Static is, and Beast Boy tries to go over Wonder Girl’s head by asking Cyborg for help, which Cyborg doesn’t really like.  Static discovers a note for help from Nina, and when he confronts Holocaust about it, Holocaust gets pissed and defensive.  While on patrol, Wonder Girl, Aquagirl, and Bombshell find the two of them fighting, but Holocaust still has the upper hand.  In Ravager’s backup, she tracks down Will Roades, who is slave trading in Russia.  She ignores another one of her hallucinations, this one in the form of Robin, and attacks Will head on.  However, Will takes hostages, then shoots them to get away.  In anger, Ravager violates her previous promises to not kill and kills all of his thugs there, excusing her actions by saying that it was all Will’s fault.

Well, it seems that my initial joy at seeing a better Teen Titans was sadly misplaced.  Felicia D. Henderson still has no better of a grip on these characters than any previous writer.  Worse yet, she can barely even write a story in a logical manner.  We randomly jump from scene to scene between Static and the Teen Titans, with essentially no rhyme or reason or any sort of logical flow.  It’s very spastic writing that makes enjoying the story as a cohesive whole very difficult.  That also goes into the dialogue, where the flow of conversations is equally awkward, though moreso with the Teen Titans segments.  Additionally, Henderson proves her inability to get any of the non-Milestone Comics characters, with Raven strange comment about cops and being saved by girls, and Miss Martian rather oddly stating that two people whose minds she’s reading find Wonder Girl hot.  Oh yes, we’re getting beaten over the head with a hammer on the idea that Bombshell is a naughty girl.  It’s so not subtle that it’s obnoxious.  Joe Bennett’s art is absolutely great, which makes the sharp contrast between his work and Edwardo Pansica’s in the Titans segments even greater.  His work is technically fine, despite awkward poses, and characters’ faces tending to be a tad too elongated (i.e. Beast Boy).  But Bennett’s work is spotless, so as I said, contrast.  Ravager’s backup is a tad more interesting than usual, what with her killing again.  But then, it eliminates all the character work that’s been done with her recently, her giving up killing and becoming a better person.  Sean McKeever was supposed to like her, but instead, he’s just making her revert while fighting an absolutely pointless villain.  Yildiray Cinar’s art is a bit more dynamic and exciting this issue, though for some reason, on the cover, he decided to give Holocaust a pedophile mustache that he doesn’t actually have.  Not sure why.  Anyway,  Henderson has a good basic plot, with the greyness of Holocaust’s intentions and what’s happening with Dakota City.  Unfortunately, she doesn’t seem to be able to write a good, flowing story or write any of the Teen Titans other than Static.  That’s a problem, since this is an ensemble book (duh).  Alas, this series still doesn’t get the writing talent it deserves.

Plot: 4.9      Art: 7.9      Dialogue: 3.5      Overall: 3.9

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