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Comic Book / Teen Titans (Rebirth)

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Teen Titans is a 2016 comic book series published by DC Comics as part of its DC Rebirth initiative, written by Ben Percy, and was initially drawn by Jonboy Meyer, and later by Khoi Pham. The monthly series sees Damian Wayne forcibly recruiting a team to fight against his grandfather Ra's al Ghul. The book stars Robin, Starfire, Raven, Beast Boy, and the new Kid Flash (Wallace West).

The series crossed over with Titans (Rebirth) and Deathstroke (Rebirth) in The Lazarus Contract, a Bat Family Crossover that featured Deathstroke trying to use the Speed Force to revive his dead son, Grant. It was also intended to clear up the Continuity Snarl regarding the Titans' Post-Flashpoint history, along with Deathstroke's relationship with the team, which was similarly Ret-Gone'd in the New 52.

It also crossed over with Super Sons and Superman (2016) for the Super Sons of Tomorrow crossover, where Jon Kent's new, dangerous power risks the world. The team is split between working with Damian to save his best friend or aiding Saviour, a future version of former Teen Titans leader (and Robin) Tim Drake, in preventing this future from coming to pass.

The team was then broken up and Robin and Kid Flash recruited a new team in issue #20 consisting of Djinn, Crush, Red Arrow II (Emiko Queen) and Roundhouse. This incarnation of the team also participated in a crossover with Deathstroke, The Terminus Agenda, which featured another clash with Slade Wilson.

    List of storylines 
  • Damien Knows Best: Issues #1-5
  • The Rise of Aqualad: Issues #6-7
  • The Lazarus Contract: Issue #8
  • Blood of the Manta: Issues #9-11
  • Gotham Resistance Part 1: Issue #12
  • The Return of Kid Flash: Issues #13-14
  • Tomorrow Is Never Promised: Issue #15
  • Alone Against the World: Issue #16
  • It Ain't Easy Being Green: Issue #17-19
  • Things Done Changed: Teen Titans Special
  • Full Throttle: Issues #20-24
  • Turn It Up: Issues #25-27, Annual #1
  • Daddy Issues: Issues #31-32
  • Djinn Wars: Issues #39-41
  • Loose Ends: Issues #45-7
  • [1]: Endless Winter Special #1

Contains examples of:

  • Age Lift:
    • Damian is 13 years old, as he would've been if Flashpoint hadn't happened. Previously, in the New 52, he was chronologically about six.
    • The series keeps Raven and Beast Boy at the age the New 52 run made them, that is, they're teenagers while the rest of their original generation of Titans are in their twenties.
    • Wallace was introduced in the New 52 as a twelve-year-old. Since Rebirth, he's been stated as 16 years old.
  • The Atoner:
    • Wallace, for his delinquent past.
    • Damian for his part in the League of Assassins.
  • Archnemesis Dad: Grandfather in Damian's case, but Ra's Al Ghul is Damian's primary opponent if he wishes to stay alive another year. In a straighter example, we have Raven's father, Trigon, and Black Manta, Aqualad's father.
  • Avengers Assemble: The first issue shows what each Titan had been up to, where they're one by one all found and forcibly recruited by Damian.
  • Bat Family Crossover: With Deathstroke (Rebirth) and Titans (Rebirth) for The Lazarus Contract.
  • Batman Gambit: Damian abducted his potential teammates and gloated about how easily he beat them just to motivate them to break out of their bindings and team up against him and his pet bat monster Goliath, demonstrating their effectiveness as a team and allowing him to effortlessly segue into a discourse on why he assembled them.
  • Bittersweet Ending: By the end of the final issue, Damian is still on a downward spiral and his former teammates still can't find him, however they caught the last of the enemies they mindwiped and turned them into the proper authorities somewhat fixing their misdeeds. Additionally, Nightwing, fresh from regaining his memories and identity, has come to offer guidance from himself and other former Teen Titans, absorbing the team into a bigger Titans movement and welcoming them to the Titans Tower. To put a cherry on it, Wallace and Emiko become a couple.
  • Blatant Lies: Damian claims the Titans can't go to Batman or Nightwing for help against Ra's because they won't take them seriously, it's pretty clear he just doesn't want their help. This is even confirmed in Issue #5.
  • Conflicting Loyalty: Much of Damian's problems deal with which legacy to follow. He resents Batman for constantly neglecting him as a father figure, but he wants to be great as him, if not better. He refuses to associate himself with his grandfather, Ra's Al Ghul out of fear of becoming a villain, but he feels like he has to out of a sense of duty. This is best represented by his shadow splitting up in Issue 2, both ends resembling Batman and Ra's
  • Dangerous 16th Birthday: 13, rather than 16, but same principle for Damian. His grandfather has determined that he chooses whether he'll return to the League of Assassins and take his place, or remain as Batman's son and be hunted down. Damian, who has trouble with his father and a handful of kidnapped metas in the basement, has his own ideas.
  • Dare to Be Badass: Damian gives this speech to the other members of the Titans while trying to get them on-board.
    Damian: Tim Drake and I had our differences, but I'll admit he was a great man. Despite his best efforts, over the past few years the Teen Titans have been losers, criminals — a joke. They epitomized what's wrong with this younger generation of so-called heroes — they didn't deserve to be called a "super-team". But we could do better. There are five of us. Five fingers make a fist. Join me... I dare you.
  • Dead Animal Warning: In #1, Ra's al Ghul sends Damian Wayne (a.k.a. Robin) a dead robin on his 13th birthday.
  • Disappeared Dad: Mara's father, Dusan al Ghul, who was banished from the League of Assassins, his current whereabouts are unknown.
  • Divided We Fall: Damian explains this as his reasoning for reforming the Teen Titans.
    Damian: Individually, you're weak... but together, you're strong. Unless I'm wrong, you've got the makings of a super-team. And I'm never wrong.
  • The Empath: Raven retains her power to sense emotions from her original comic counterpart here. This naturally makes her a Living Lie Detector.
  • Evil Counterpart: Each Teen Titans member has one of these working for the League of Assassins.
    • Blank is a villainous albino who can shapeshift into different things, just like Beast Boy.
    • Plague has a dark power, the ability to make anything she touches rot and decay, which is similar Raven's ability to wield demonic magic.
    • Mara has all the tactical intelligence and combat skills Damian has, but none of the (anti-)heroic conscience or leadership experience.
    • Nightstorm's weather powers, specifically the ability to manipulate wind, makes him an obstacle for the fast-running Kid Flash.
    • Stone's rocky armor provides defense against Starfire's offensive energy blasts. And his strength matches Starfire's as well.
  • Eye Scream: Mara earned her right-eye scar after trying to kill Damian with a thrown knife for humiliating her in training. Damian caught the knife and threw it at her face. She's blinded in one eye now, as it's cloudier than her left one.
  • Forced Sleep: Raven is capable of doing this, as seen with Goliath.
  • Freudian Excuse: Defied. The Teen Titans, especially Damian, try hard not to be defined by their history or their families.
  • Freudian Slip: Damian has one where when asked who he thinks he is, he declares "I'm Batman." He later corrects it to state he's the "Son of Batman" but Raven can tell its his ambition to become as great or greater as his father.
  • Flirtatious Smack on the Ass: Special #1 has Harley Quinn smacking Wally West's ass and complimenting how he looks wearing spandex.
  • Gender-Equal Ensemble: Damian's new Teen Titans: Damian, Kid Flash, Roundhouse (boys), Red Arrow, Crush, Djinn (girls).
  • Horrible Judge of Character: Granted, he didn't know who the guy was, but Kid Flash deciding to help fix Deathstroke's car and befriending him leads to him getting imprisoned with Wally West.
  • I Just Want to Have Friends: Implied to be part of why Damian forms the Teen Titans.
  • Informed Attribute: An issue has the Teen Titans spout off what they symbolise, and while some of them match-up, one of them is Wallace symbolizing... hope? Because... reasons?
  • Instant Expert: Aqualad's first time using his powers in a fight. Even he's surprised by it.
  • In the Hood: Damian, Raven, and Talia all wear hoods.
  • Ironic Echo: In the first issue, Damian tells the newly-formed Teen Titans that shaping their own futures is more important than letting their history/ancestry define them. Two issues later, after Damian gets into a Heroic BSoD over becoming like his grandfather, the Teen Titans encourage him by repeating what he said back to him.
  • It's All About Me: Mara wants everything Damian has, ignoring her own teammates' wishes for her own goal. This causes her Demon Fist team to betray her and side with the Teen Titans to take her down.
  • It's Personal: Mara pretty much has it out for Damian, her cousin, for throwing away everything she wanted and then scarring her eye.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: The Teen Titans quickly figure out the "heart of gold" part with Damian.
  • Kick the Dog: Damian kicks Kid Flash out for helping Deathstroke try revive his son Grant, and starts focusing on molding Aqualad into a perfect Titan. Even the others can see how cruel that was.
  • Kidnapped by an Ally: Damian essentially kidnaps all the members of the Titans, to save their lives and bring them under his fold.
  • Leap of Faith: Damian's inner monologue speaks of how the bat came to be - instead of choosing to live as it was born, it jumped off a cliff and gained its wings.
  • Lonely Rich Kid: Damian spends his thirteenth birthday with only Alfred and his pets for company. Bruce Wayne couldn't make it because of his duties with the Justice League, but for some unexplained reason, Dick Grayson could make it. And apparently it wasn't even just that incident; later issues show that Damian doesn't think anyone cares about him, so apparently his relationships with Bruce and Dick, and even Alfred, have been re-written.
  • Marilyn Maneuver: A civilian in the background does this when Kid Flash first shows off his speed and runs past her.
  • Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal: The Demon's Fist team up with the Titans to take down Mara and Ra's once the truth comes out that the League kidnapped them as infants, and even before then they clearly hated how Mara treated them.
  • My Greatest Failure: Beast Boy's is not helping Tim Drake in his direst moment, leading to the latter's death. He atones for it by helping the others save Damian.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: Damian confesses to the others that he is Ra's Al Ghul's grandson and afraid this fact has already condemned him to evil. They open up to him by discussing their feelings on their own evil family members — Starfire's sister Blackfire, Raven's father Trigon the Terrible and NuWally's uncle the Reverse Flash, (who's really his father); Beast Boy doesn't have one — and Starfire expresses that he is no more a slave to his blood than they are.
  • Parental Abandonment: Beast Boy mentions losing his family in this continuity, which is a callback to his original, pre-New 52 backstory, where his parents died in a boating accident shortly after he gained shapeshifting powers.
  • Parental Neglect: Batman's a very busy man, leaving Damian to celebrate his thirteenth birthday alone with Alfred. In Damian's words, "My father has many priorities. Unless I get in his way, I've never been one of them." It's also rather telling when Damian commends his own grandfather (who threatens him by sending him a box with a dead robin in it) for remembering his thirteenth birthday, whereas Batman did not.
  • Parental Substitute: Alfred's presence is more prominent in Damian's life than Batman's was.
  • Personality Powers: Kid Flash has the ability to run at high speeds because he wants to run from his past, and everyone who lied to him.
  • Put on a Bus: Kid Flash is kicked off the team for helping Deathstroke in The Lazarus Contract. He would go on to join Slade's Defiance team in Deathstroke (Rebirth).
  • Remember the New Guy?: Mara is introduced in Teen Titans as Damian's cousin (the daughter of Dusan Al-Ghul) with a never before mentioned rivalry reaching back to their early childhood, even though he's never mentioned her and she's never taken part in the League of Assassin's activities before.
  • The Resenter: Mara hates Damian with a burning passion, since he has power, prestige, and most importantly Ra's approval, which is everything she wanted. It didn't help that Damian is Ra's biological grandson. And he threw everything away to become Batman's "son".
  • Retcon:
    • Damian's age. During the New 52, Damian had to have a retcon surrounding his birth to explain how he was physically 12 when he was chronologically little more than half that age. At the start of Rebirth, he's celebrating his thirteenth birthday.
    • NuWally's relationship with Daniel West is one as a result of the return of Wally West. Originally, his father is Rudy West and Daniel West (the Reverse-Flash) is his Cool Uncle. In the Rebirth era, Daniel West is his father (Rudy is once again the father of the older Wally).
  • Ret-Canon: Jackson Hyde was already a Canon Immigrant prior to the New 52, but this version of him resembles his Young Justice (2010) counterpart much more than he used to, namely in his hair.
  • Sad Clown: Beast Boy is very goofy and jokes a lot, but then he admits he does it as a coping mechanism to losing his family.
  • Scars Are Forever: Mara has one from when Damian sent a knife she threw at him back, right over her eye.
  • Screw Destiny: An overarching theme is people overcoming their past, refusing to let it define them, to make something for themselves in the future. Damian in particular struggles with this, with his desire to become like Batman and Ra's expectations to succeed him.
  • Shout-Out: Damian kidnapping and imprisoning the Teen Titans in suspending power inhibitors was taken from The Incredibles.
  • Ship Tease: Kid Flash and Raven are teased quite a bit, starting with their first meeting. Interestingly, pre-Flashpoint, Raven was in a relationship with the original Wally West.
  • Smug Smiler: Damian has two default expressions: cunning seriousness, and smiling arrogance.
  • Stepford Smiler: Beast Boy admits he jokes around a lot so he wouldn't remember the loss of his family.
  • Take That!: Teen Titans #1 has a dig at the heavily panned New 52 runs, with Damian Wayne claiming that under Red Robin's leadership, the Teen Titans became a complete and utter joke.
  • Team Mom: Starfire, who would be close to Nightwing's age (in their early twenties), fulfills this role, as she'd be too old to actually be a teen. She's confirmed to actually be 20 years old in issue 16, which is three years older than Beast Boy and Raven.
  • Team Pet: Goliath, Damian's Dragon-Bat who usually accompanies the Titans in their heroics.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: The Teen Titans are going to be led by the current Robin, Damian Wayne... and they don't like that very much, which is justifiable since he basically kidnapped them into helping him fight his grandfather, Ra's al Ghul. They learned to cooperate, however. This dynamic takes a harsher turn with Damian's second attempt at forming a Teen Titans roster. While Kid Flash, Crush, Roundhouse, Djinn and Emiko Queen all bring their fair share of baggage to the table, it's ultimately Damian's secrets and inability to learn from his mistakes that causes much of the internal strife in their ranks. Once they loose Djinn, the Titans loose what little respect they still had for Damian and promptly abandon him.
  • Tyke-Bomb: Every member of the Demon's Fist was kidnapped from their families when they were infants by the League of Assassins, and raised by Ra's Al Ghul to become nothing more than devoted, ruthless killers. When they learned the truth of their upbringing, they side with the Titans and betray Ra's, before going their own way to find themselves.
  • Undressing the Unconscious: In the introduction issue, all the Titans were in their civvies when Damian knocks out and captures each of them. When they wake up in Damian's lair later, they're all dressed up in their new Teen Titans uniforms. Nobody comments on it.
  • Villainous Lineage: As Ra's Al Ghul's estranged grandson, Damian's trying to defy this. He tries very hard to cast out his heritage by doing good deeds, but he fears that one day it'll catch up to him sooner or later.
  • "Well Done, Son" Guy: A female variation in that Mara wants Ra's approval more than anything, which is fitting given her father Dusan, wanted the same thing his entire life.
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • For all of his talk of wanting his incarnation of the Titans to be superior than their predecessors, Damian's notoriously abrasive and morally dubious behavior has consistently been the source of much of the team's conflicts with one another.
    • Raven gives Robin what-for for kicking Kid Flash off the team and not giving him a chance to explain why he sided with Deathstroke.
    • He then gets raked over the coals again after his second team finds out that he's been unlawfully detaining villains in his own personal gulag secretly set up under their HQ. Even after being convinced to release his captives, Damian goes behind everyone's back again by having Djinn mind-wipe each criminal with entirely new identities as normal civilians.
  • Wild Teen Party: Beast Boy has one, renting out a house in order to draw in a crowd.
  • Worthy Opponent: Each member of the Demon Fist has chosen a member of the Titans to kill as a sort of initiation into the group.