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Comic Book / Teen Titans

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Wonder Girl, Starfire, Robin, Cyborg, Changeling, Raven, Kid Flash

The most famous team of teenage Super Heroes in The DCU (but not the first). Often referred to as a "Justice Little League," though more often as a "Junior Justice League."

The original series began back in The Silver Age of Comic Books, with a one-shot story in The Brave and the Bold #54 (July, 1964), where three Sidekicks, Robin, Aqualad, and Kid Flash, teamed up. The issue sold notably well, and, after a few more tryouts and the addition of Wonder Girl (despite that she was actually intended to be the original Wonder Woman as a girl, and not a contemporary sidekick) and Speedy, became an ongoing series.

The book depended heavily on Totally Radical, with Fad Super villains like the Mad Mod and Ding Dong Daddy and hamfisted attempts to address the issues of the day. Nevertheless, it was lighthearted and fun. Eventually, though, it was cancelled in 1973, brought back in 1976, and re-cancelled in 1978. Altogether 53 issues were published.

In the Bronze Age, the series returned as The New Teen Titans, launched in 1980. Written by Marv Wolfman and drawn by George Perez, this version of the series was the most successful and the most iconic (as well as being the version the 2003 animated series is most based on). It brought back Robin, Wonder Girl, and Kid Flash, and teamed them up with new characters Cyborg, Raven, and Starfire, along with previously-established character Beast Boy, now renamed Changeling.

The series moved into Darker and Edgier territory, and was a trendsetter in that respect; for instance, an early storyline involved them going up against "Deathstroke the Terminator," a paid assassin, and being infiltrated by the not-so-innocent Terra. It was heavily character-based, with lots of conflict, romance, and soul-searching (that occasionally slipped into Wangst).

This version was not only popular, but often considered DC's number one title at the time, a rival to the X-Men (which they eventually crossed over with), and a major definer of the tropes that came to be recognized as comics' Bronze Age. However, writer fatigue (aside from a very brief period in 1989 where he stepped away from the book, Wolfman wrote the comic for 16 years straight) and removal of the book from newsstands to prop up DC Comics' direct market line of books led to it collapsing into boredom and fan apathy. The arrival of a new editor inspired Wolfman to shake up the book, using a subplot involving the mysterious "Wildebeest Society" that went on way too long and didn't have a very good ending.

Fan favorite villain Deathstroke became a good guy and ally to the team, half the roster was slaughtered/turned evil/depowered, time-travellers from the near-distant future of 2001 arrived and were stuck in the past, and popular villain Terra was brought back in a sense as a clone; none of which really helped the book and ultimately led to the Batman editors having their big chance to take back Nightwing from the Titans (Wolfman had the sole rights to him since 1980), to the horror of fans of the book. This coincided with a lot more Executive Meddling with Wolfman having to introduce various characters he didn't have interest in actually using, such as Impulse from The Flash and the early '90s Supergirl.

Around the time after Titans Hunt finished began the Total Chaos storyline which saw the time-travelling teens attempt to kill Donna Troy's son, who in the future would become the villainous Lord Chaos. This spun off into DC's attempt at having teens in their Titans franchise as the aptly named: Team Titans. The first half of the run dealt with stopping their bad future and discovering who they were in the present timeline with the second half of the run developing a story thread that would tie in to Zero Hour. It would be revealed that the man responsible for sending the Titans to the future was, in fact, the future Hank Hall AKA Monarch. Revealing the the team was sent as sleeper agents so that his timeline would succeed, the team fought against Extant and won. As a result, the timeline began to mend itself with the team sacrificing themselves to save the present from it's future, fulfilling their original mission.

Ultimately the book was cancelled, but within a year was relaunched, consisting of an aged-down Atom and a bunch of new characters, but it wasn't very successful (to the point where poor Risk became C-List Fodder to the extreme with the morbid running gag of losing limbs to Superboy-Prime). Editorial meddling with Dan Jurgens' intent didn't help the matter, although he did get to use some lesser-used characters like Captain Marvel Jr. in the process.

At this point, the idea of the Teen Titans split two ways. A late 90s series just called Titans lasted quite a while (and featured most of the original team and the 1980s successful team, plus a few new characters), but was never a big seller, and eventually delved into some truly horrific storytelling by Jay Faerber (the "Jesse Quick sleeps with her mother's fiancee" storyline). The other idea took the original idea of a band of teenage heroes and sidekicks, and became Young Justice. The former tended even more toward the soul-searching of New Teen Titans, while the latter went through mostly lighthearted adventures and character-based comedy.

About this time, the aforementioned Teen Titans animated series premiered. After it became popular, the Powers That Be decided they wanted a Teen Titans comic that resembled the show. Thus, both Titans and Young Justice were cancelled, and the more marketable characters from the latter were brought together with the more nostalgic characters from the former in the dark-natured Judd Winick-written miniseries Graduation Day, which led into a relaunch of Teen Titans written by fan favorite Geoff Johns. This series was reasonably popular, but involved several changes in characterization which annoyed long-time fans. Generally, the ex-Young Justice characters were on the receiving end of this, being made Darker and Edgier as an attempt to invoke the New Teen Titans days and the more modern DC sensibility of dark storytelling. On a side note, the aforementioned animesque cartoon got its own comic book adaptation, Teen Titans Go!.

The series was revamped again multiple times during that third volume, introducing new Legacy Characters (such as Sailor Moon-esque Miss Martian and the cynical Bombshell), and attempting to be both Lighter and Softer and Darker and Edgier, killing off even more characters. Such gore-filled editorial mandates led to writer Sean McKeever to quit the book in protest, and things spiralled further down the drain, to the extent that DC reunited the 80s New Teen Titans into their own book Titans (again) and the Teen Titans went through even more change. After two years, the various team members were "graduated" to the Justice League (Troia), "demoted" back to the Teen Titans book (Beast Boy and Raven) or killed off (Tempest). Titans became a book about a Deathstroke-lead team of villains, while the simultaneous run on "Teen Titans", by comic newcomer Felicia Henderson, had few champions, even amongst the most rabid fans.

Around the start of 2011, J.T. Krul took over writing volume 3, with fan-favorite Nicola Scott on art, and their run was fairly well-received compared to the previous writers. Yet this too would not last. Both Titans books were cancelled in August as part of DC's reboot; these were replaced in September with a single book, written by Scott Lobdell and drawn by Brett Booth, as part of DC's New 52 relaunch. The starting line-up consisted of Red Robin, Kid Flash, Wonder Girl, and Solstice, along with with two new characters, Skitter and Bunker. Superboy eventually joins the team as well, while maintaining a solo series. This led into The Culling, a crossover with Legion Lost, during which both groups face off against N.O.W.H.E.R.E.. The series would later tie into Forever Evil (2013) in a story that explored Kid Flash's origins. After about 30 issues, the book was cancelled. This series was considered a pretty bad era for both the Teen Titans and the individual characters in the team, and much of that was attributed to the unlikeability of the main characters.

The series was relaunched in July 2014 with a new #1, written by Will Pfeifer with Kenneth Rocafort as artist. The starting lineup had the returning Red Robin, Wonder Girl, Bunker and Raven, along with newcomer Beast Boy. Later on, a new Power Girl would join the team. This series was also not well-received for the same reasons as the last.

In late 2014 the first volume of Jeff Lemire and Terry Dodson’s Teen Titans: Earth One was released. The book re-imagining and updating the 80’s team in a contemporary setting, confirmed in The Multiversity to be in continuity with both Superman: Earth One and Batman: Earth One.

In 2015, a 12-issue mini-series titled Titans Hunt, written by Dan Abnett, introduced past Teen Titans history into the post-Flashpoint DC Universe. Principle characters include Dick Grayson, Donna Troy, Garth, Roy Harper, and Lilith. The series Retcons in that the original Teen Titans did indeed exist, and removes the new, negatively received characterisations of Donna Troy and Garth.

In 2016, as part of the DC Rebirth event, two Titans series are being published. Titans began in June and follows up on a major plot point from DC Universe: Rebirth #1 and is also a continuation of Titans Hunt. It features the reunited original Teen Titans, now all adults. Teen Titans was also announced, and features a Damian Wayne-led team of younger heroes. The line-up consists of the aforementioned Robin, Kid Flash, Raven, Beast Boy and Starfire. The two series crossed over with Deathstroke in The Lazarus Contract, which will feature Deathstroke trying to resurrect his son Grant, and also serve to clear up the Continuity Snarl of the Titans' history post-Flashpoint.

Notably, nearly every single run since the 1990s has been an attempt to copy the success of the 1980s version, and every single one has eventually fizzled out thanks to a combination of bad writing and/or Executive Meddling (which one is more prevalent depends on the fan asked).

In 2013, a new animated series about the Teen Titans was released called Teen Titans Go! which featured things from the 2003 series (such as the character's designs and certain powers — not to mention all of the voice actors reprising their roles) and the comics (such as Raven having feelings for Beast Boy and her hair being black, Terra being straight up evil), but made Denser and Wackier.

In 2018, a live-action adaptation titled Titans (2018) was released on DC’s streaming service, with a noticeably Darker and Edgier take on the Titans, with Robin, Raven, Starfire, and Beast Boy, as well as the addition of Hawk and Dove making up the main roster, and additional cameos from Jason Todd and Donna Troy.

This page has a character sheet.

See franchise page for the list of pages realtive to storylines and specific characters.

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     Pre-New 52 
  • '80s Hair: Starfire, oh so much.
  • 90% of Your Brain: Deathstroke/Terminator was said to use all of his, which in his case meant enhanced senses and reflexes, mostly.
  • Aborted Arc
    • Mal Duncan abandoned his Hornblower identity and went back to being the Guardian after the Gabriel Horn was stolen, and the plot was never resolved. Had the book continued, it would have been revealed that Mal had hidden it himself because he subconsciously did not want to be a superhero anymore.
    • There had been some broad hints in Geoff Johns' run prior to Infinite Crisis that the new Aquagirl would be joining the team, with her expressing an interest in the Titans and showing up as Aquawoman in Titans of Tomorrow. Plans changed at some point, so she ended up joining and quitting offscreen during the "One Year Later" Time Skip. She finally joined the Titans for real during Sean McKeever's run, long after Johns had left the book.
    • Likewise, the Son of Vulcan mini-series ended with the title character going to San Francisco and introducing himself to Beast Boy. This was obviously supposed to set up a plot about Vulcan becoming a member of the Teen Titans, but this never happened.
    • The "Origins & Omens" back-up story foreshadowed a number of events which were supposed to affect the team, such as Static joining, Kid Flash returning to life and rejoining the team, Kid Devil dying (in a completely different manner than the way he actually ended up dying), Blue Beetle hooking up with Wonder Girl, and Sun Girl becoming pregnant with Inertia's baby. Aside from Static becoming a Titan, all of these were ignored when writer Sean McKeever was fired.
    • McKeever had notably planned to resurrect Kid Devil and restore his powers. After Blackest Night temporarily established that "dead means dead" in The DCU, this plot was dropped as well.
    • The same thing happened to J.T. Krul during his run. His first issue showed glimpses into the future which revealed that Aqualad from Young Justice (2010) would be joining, and that the Teen Titans would end up involved in a crossover with Deathstroke's team of Anti-Hero Titans. Flashpoint rendered all of this moot.
    • Felicia D. Henderson's final two arcs were basically an extended Backdoor Pilot for a new Static Shock ongoing. The new series was supposed to have been based around the hook of Virgil trying to get his powers back, but the book ended up being delayed and eventually canceled entirely due to the New 52 Continuity Reboot. A new Static Shock book did launch with the New 52, but it had a different creative team and ofwas completely unrelated to Henderson's proposed series.
    • Years prior to this, there was the ill-fated Titans L.A. spin-off that was planned. The group was first hinted at in the Beast Boy mini-series, the seeds were planted in a Titans Annual, and the team finally assembled in the Titans Secret Files one-shot only to... never appear again. Cyborg later confirmed that the team had disbanded with a Hand Wave line of dialogue. Then it's revealed that Terra II was apparently the real Terra all along. Terra II fell into obscurity before this could go anywhere, and ended up being killed off the next time she made a significant appearance. The whole reveal was later retconned itself, as it turned out Terra II was indeed an impostor, albeit one with Identity Amnesia. Although, this explanation in turn is similar to Marv Wolfman's original intent for the character, before the later New Titans editor (Pat Garrahy) had mandated a story to imply the two Terras were the same (which Geoff Johns and Ben Raab intended to expand upon with their reveal).
    • At one point, Deathstroke was shown taking in Poprocket, a homeless teen metahuman. It was stated that he had plans for the girl, but she soon disappeared without explanation. Presumably, they were setting up Poprocket to be part of Deathstroke's Anti-Hero team of Titans, but for whatever reason she ended up not appearing in that book.
    • "The Children of the Sun", were a group of children born from the Titan of Myth Thia who didn't even get to start their intended arc, as the Crisis on Infinite Earth made some radical changes to the mythos, and the Children resurfaced as a cult with no relation to the Titans at all.
  • Accuser of the Brethren: Cassandra has a very antagonistic relationship with Rose Wilson/Ravager. Cassandra was also the one to think the worst of Rose Wilson, believe that she does not belong on the team and at times fight with her. Even when it looks like she is making peace with Rose, she reveals that she still dislikes her and considers her a one-eyed sociopath, stating that she is a murderer who is homicidal and warped beyond words and that she both cannot be helped and does not want to be helped.
  • Advertised Extra: At the height of the popularity of Batman (Grant Morrison), DC Comics announced that Damian Wayne would be joining the cast of Teen Titans. His arrival was heavily promoted and multiple variant covers were created for the issue where he joins, but he was only with the team for a grand total of four issues before being Put on a Bus.
  • Afraid of Doctors: In Geoff Johns' Teen Titans Volume Three, Beast Boy has a phobia of doctors, due to being experimented on as a kid, and in particular he has a special hatred for needles. Raven speculates that Superboy has a fear of doctors for the same reason when he balks at his DNA being tested, as she doesn't know about his anxieties regarding the genetics he inherited from Lex Luthor.
  • Afraid of Needles: Beast Boy has this problem. Thankfully, his powers give him universal immunity, but that doesn't stop the writers from forcing him to take shots anyway.
  • Alien Princess:
    • Starfire and Blackfire are both Princesses of Tamaran. They have humanoid appearances, but orange skin, can fly, and can project star-bolts. They also have superhuman levels of strength (in some stories, Star can go toe to toe with Wonder Woman.)
    • Prysm, aka Audrey Spears, is a Half-Human Hybrid with an alien father and human mother. She becomes a princess by default when her mother is accepted as Empress by the alien race, though, ironically, she was addressed as Princess in the VR simulation where she was initially raised.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: The original five have this kind of thing going on. Donna could choose between the nice and shy Aqualad, funny Kid Flash, dashing Robin, and badboy Speedy. Guess who did wind up with her? Note, back then, Dick Grayson was pretty clean cut. Ironically, in modern stories, one of the biggest reasons Dick is a Chick Magnet of extreme proportions is actually because of his Nice Guy charm.
  • All Men Are Perverts: Kid Flash (Wally West) put some serious effort into seeing his teammates Starfire and Raven naked. Starfire just let him see, and commented that it was the longest she'd ever seen him stand still. Raven managed to retain her dignity.
  • All Myths Are True: The Elseworld Titans: Scissors, Paper & Stone features a character who has this trope as a superpower. Jamadagni Renuka is a magician who is able to cast spells from any system of magic - even systems that explicitly contradict each other, or aren't commonly perceived as magic. She knows this, and she doesn't actually believe in any of it, but everything still works for her. The entire story of the crossover is her attempt to stop a disaster she foresees by invoking a super team origin — specifically, the start of the Wolfman-Perez Titans — because that would mean the good guys would win.
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us: The Second Titans Tower was designed to address this problem with the whole above ground building being a hologram to attract enemies intending mayhem.
  • Alliterative Title: Teen Titans.
  • Alphabet Architecture: The headquarters of the Teen Titans, both in the animated series and eventually carried over into the comics, is shaped like a big capital T.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: The comic has gold/orange Starfire, red Kid Devil, and green Beast Boy and Miss Martian. Of course, both Starfire and Miss Martian are aliens, Beast Boy is a mutant, and Kid Devil was turned into a demon.
  • Ambiguously Jewish: Kid Devil, aka Eddie Bloomberg.
  • Animal-Themed Superbeing: Beast Boy and Robin.
  • Anti-Hero Team: The "Titans Hunt" arc introduced the Teen Titans' sister team, the "Team Titans," who were this to the point that one of them took to calling himself Deathwing.
  • Anyone Can Die: The Titans seem to have a higher rate of mortality than other super teams. Even former Titans are prone to dying. No wonder the Titans memorial hall is so crowded.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Risk loses an arm fighting Superboy-Prime in Infinite Crisis. He then loses the other arm in a later battle vs. Prime. He's absent for a long time after that, then comes back in Nightwing (Infinite Frontier)... only to be killed off.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: After Mia Dearden reveals to the team her Dark and Troubled Past, where she contracted HIV from her days as a teenage prostitute, the others start telling of their own secret worries; Beast Boy is worried his "condition" could infect others and eventually turn him into a monster. Raven can't help but feed on emotions whilst everyone else sleeps. And Cassie is scared that Ares may be turning her into a weapon of war... then Bart comes in with his own secret:
    Kid Flash: I gotta secret, too. I ran out of clean underwear yesterday, so I stole some of Beast Boy's.
    Beast Boy: You what?!
  • Ascended Fanboy:
    • Kid Devil once he became a Titan.
    • Static was also a comic book fanboy prior to becoming a superhero. When Miss Martian first met Static and invited him to Titans Tower, he was awestruck and claimed to be a "big fan" of the team.
  • Arch-Enemy:
    • Trigon and Deathstroke for the entire group. Brother Blood I was a recurring Arc Villain.
    • Blackfire for Starfire.
  • Author on Board:
    • Several of Wolfman's Teen Titans Spotlight comics focus on the Current Events of the late 80s, including South African apartheid and nuclear power. He would occasionally get political in the main comic, such as having Kid Flash carry a thoughtless anti-Communist grudge, which was, go figure, the one thing Wolfman's Kid Flash wasn't indecisive about.
    • The final arc of The Titans (1999 — 2003), "Murder by Consensus", involves a tinfoil-hatted Kory launching a campaign against "The Consensus", an alien empire that initiated its invasions by brainwashing the masses with broadcast media, which appeals to people mostly through their desire to belong to the majority position. Jesse Quick rather gives it away when she declares the world has turned into "bad talk radio".
    • In Teen Titans Volume 3, "When Amazons Attack" features the American government dragging women — and only women — into internment camps for the "crime" of associating with Amazons... and military higher-ups at the camp decide this includes Wonder Girl (Cassie) and Supergirl, which leads both girls to launch an attack on the camp. The other Titans pick a fight with the girls to draw their attention away from the soldiers, which leads to an escalating fight that doesn't end until Cassie throws Tim through a fence and goes to talk to her mom, who tells her that fighting will only make things worse. The Titans offer to help Cassie, only for her to turn her back on them, unimpressed with how they've been "helping" her, and destroy the team's jet on her way out with Supergirl, leaving them to be arrested by the military for the crime of associating with known criminals. Ravager directly compares the internment to the Japanese-American internment in WWII.
  • Aristocrat Team: Zigzagged. The Team, especially during Marv Wolfman's run, is generally thick with the sons and daughters of wealth and royalty, including various Robins, Garfield Logan, Starfire, Donna Troy, etc. Wally West is a notable exception to the trend, being from a blue collar background.
  • Babysitting Episode: Gar and Terra II spent some time in the nineties sitting Baby Wildebeest for Pantha... just in time for Jillian to make an appearance and catch them being all domestic. Terra chases her out of Gar's life and the comic for good.
  • Back from the Dead: Zigzagged with Terra II. She was originally meant to be a normal girl that was surgically operated on to resemble Tara Markov. An editor later told Marv Wolfman to hint at her possibly being Tara resurrected, by showing the original Terra's grave to be empty (and having the Time Trapper suggest she was from this timeline). Geoff Johns seemed to be heading in that direction, but nothing came of it. Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti went back to the idea that she was a separate entity. So, it turned out the real Terra truly was dead and the second Terra was revealed to be a member of an underground race called the Stratans, who decided to send out a liaison to the modern world in a guise people would've been familiar with, using DNA implants to make it look like Tara Markova came back. The Stratans admit this was a poorly thought out move considering what a sociopath Tara turned out to be, but that was nothing compared to when the Time Trapper got his hands on her and warped her memories.
  • Back for the Dead: Wolfman made a big story with Brother Blood that ended with him amnesic and left in a forgotten church to farm. Many years later, the Outsiders visit the Church, and discover the evil hidden base below it. Brother Blood unleashes his master plan... and gets murdered at the end of it, so that his son became the new Brother Blood (something that Blood had done himself, as well as his father, his grandfather and all the way to the time of Crusades).
  • Back for the Finale: The final issue of Teen Titans vol. 3 (fittingly enough, issue #100) has a large number of former Titans showing up for the Grand Finale battle against Superboy-Prime. A number of characters who'd been written out of the book such as Blue Beetle, Miss Martian, Aquagirl, Bombshell and Damian Wayne were among those who showed up for the battle.
  • Bad Future:
    • A storyline that spawned from the "Titans Hunt" arc but didn't take center stage until the "Total Chaos" arc involved a group of Titans going into the past to kill Donna Troy and prevent the birth of Lord Chaos, who created this dystopic world where he controls everything with drugs.
    • Teen Titans Volume Three has the "Titans Tomorrow" arc, in which the future Titans themselves are split into totalitarian rulers and freedom fighters. This same Bad Future is revisited after the events of Infinite Crisis, when it turns out the timeline lacks Ontological Inertia, so all the future Titans (and then some) arrive in the past in order to secure their timeline from wanting any further nails.
  • Badass Normal:
    • Each Robin and Speedy to join the team falls under this.
    • Averted with Eddie Bloomberg (Kid Devil and later Red Devil), who feels anxious and inadequate in the presence of people with superpowers, and actually signed a Deal with the Devil for powers of his own.
  • Bald of Evil: Superboy during the "Insiders" arc (a crossover with The Outsiders), in which a Trigger Phrase activates his Deep Cover Agent programming. The first thing he does is to shave his head completely bald. The second, hammering his new resemblance to Lex Luthor home, is to carve a giant L in his shirt.
  • Band of Brothers: The various Titans teams are just as much a surrogate family as they are a crime-fighting team. This is especially true of the "Original Five": Robin, Wonder Girl, Kid Flash, Speedy, and Aqualad.
  • Battle Cry: "Titans Together!"
  • Beautiful Dreamer: There is one point in a run when Beast Boy resists the urge to wake Raven because of this. She admits that she liked it, but she's still not interested. Yeah, sure.
  • Bed Trick: Nightwing was seduced by the shape-shifting Mirage in the form of his girlfriend Koriand'r/Starfire. This was a large factor in them subsequently breaking up. Mirage even goes so far as to taunt Dick for not noticing the difference.
  • Big Bad: Trigon the biggest and Baddest the Titans have ever faced and to a lesser extent Deathstroke who is Nightwing's Arch-Enemy.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: The H.I.V.E. had no revenge agenda against the Titans, they just attacked them to establish a reputation as an evil group. How did they do that? They hired Deathstroke, who did all the dirty work. The H.I.V.E. never successfully attacked the Titans themselves. Deathstroke finally captured the Titans and sent them prisoners to the H.I.V.E. And with the Titans in their power, they just had an episode of Bond Villain Stupidity.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Virtually every Teen Titan has succumbed to this trope at least once.
  • Brother–Sister Team: The villains Shimmer and Mammoth, of the Fearsome Five.
  • Butt-Monkey: Dr. Light during the Wolfman-Perez era. Even his team betrays him several times, he always has humiliating defeats, and is referenced in-story as such. One of the worst cases was when he was stopped by Wally West and Frances Kane, who had no super hero costumes and fight with hit-and-run tactics while staying out of his sight.
    Dr. Light: I lost with Flash! Hawkman! The JLA! Green Lantern! The Titans! Even the Atom! But this is the final humilliation! I don't even know who has defeated me!
  • Canon Discontinuity:
    • Several beloved Titan stories (Who Is Donna Troy?, The Origin of Lilith) were rendered null and void by Crisis on Infinite Earths.
    • Judd Winick threw out all of Geoff Johns' work to redeem Jericho and bring him back to life.
      • J.T. Krul tried to fix that, only for Eric Wallace to undo it himself just so he could fix Jericho.
    • In a similar case to the Jericho situation, J. Torres attempted to redeem Cassie Sandsmark of her aggressive attitude in the "Wonder Girl" miniseries and have her come to terms with Kon's death— only for Sean McKeever to derail her back only so he could put his OWN fix and explanation for her behavior. And then after Kon was resurrected, writers such as Henderson just simplified her back down to a clingy jealous girl that was condescending to her teammates.
    • Titans comics following Marv Wolfman's run refused to acknowledge the Gainax Ending of The New Titans, and in particular the part where the second evil version of Raven conspired with the Psions and helped annihilate Tamaran.
  • Captain Ersatz: In-universe. In the time between the Doom Patrol and the Teen Titans, Logan worked in the TV series "Space Trek". He used a Red Shirt, and worked for "Captain Tim". The program was sued for plagiarizing Star Trek, and the green guy was unemployed again.
  • Carnival of Killers: Chesire debuted as part of one.
  • Cartwright Curse: Starfire's relationships, and all three of her weddings, have ended disastrously.
  • Catchphrase Interruptus: General Zahl said "Heil... Hit..." and died.
  • Cat Girl: The late Pantha.
  • Cerebus Syndrome: ...and back. The 1980s were the good kind of "Angst-ridden super-heroes", so much that they (along with the X-Men) pretty much defined the trope for comic books, but even that got bad after a point. Various other runs have fallen into this as well.
  • Circus Episode: In The Fifth Titan (December 1966), the Teen Titans go undercover at a circus that they believe is brainwashing its audience.
  • Clever Crows: Raven is a Dark Is Not Evil hero (when not being possessed or mind-controlled by her Eldritch Abomination father) whose magical powers often use a corvid motif.
  • C-List Fodder: It's a comic series made up mostly of teenage characters, many of them forgettable. They may as well have bullseyes on their heads. Their "Hall of the Dead" is now ridiculously huge, featuring Kole, Aquagirl I, the aforementioned trio, Kid Devil and half a dozen others.
    • Pantha, Baby Wildebeest and Bushido were casually murdered by Superboy-Prime in one page of Infinite Crisis.
    • Risk got his arm ripped off (which later became a running gag).
    • Kori's second husband Ph'yzzon and nearly the entire Tamaranean race die in the prologue issue for Final Night (July 1996) when their planet New Tamaran is annihilated. New Tamaran was basically founded in the final issue of The New Titans (February 1996).
  • Comic-Book Time: When Dan Didio took the helm at DC, the Titans franchise got locked into a sort of perpetual youth, with even some of the oldest veterans and regulars (Beast Boy, Raven) presented as being roughly at the same age and maturity level as new up-and-comers (Young Justice transplants, Miss Martian, etc.).
  • Complexity Addiction: Dayton Industries developed a rare element, and the H.I.V.E. wanted it. Toyman prepared a very complex plan, killing members of Dayton's staff with toys, and then attacking the Titans when they begin to investigate (and, of course, they defeat him). Deathstroke had a simpler plan: set the building on fire, wait for everybody to escape, and then get inside and steal the thing. Where Toyman had an epic fail, Deathstroke won, and in just a single page.
  • Continuity Snarl: Donna Troy had so many problems over the years that she got her own page. Notably, it was the initial creation of the Teen Titans comic that started the snarl - the comic was initially conceived as a team-up of all the JLA members' kid sidekicks, and the writers wrongly assumed that "Wonder Girl" was Wonder Woman's teen sidekick instead of Wonder Woman as a teenager in flashback stories.
  • Covers Always Lie: The New Teen Titans #16. Starfire wants to kill someone, and Wonder Girl, Cyborg and Robin try to stop her. Actually, it was just Wonder Girl. In fact, Cyborg wanted to help when Starfire run away seeking vengeance, but Wonder Girl pointed that stopping her was something she has to do herself.
  • Crashing Through the Harem: In the first issue of Teen Titans Volume Two, Cody sneaks into the Cheyenne Mountain base on a dare. Spotted by guards, he runs away and ends up running into a women's locker room, which is full of young women in various states of undress. He stops and stares at them, assuming that he has run onto a holodeck. One of the women then kicks him to the ground.
  • Creator Cameo: Marv Wolfman and co-workers can be seen popping in and out sporadically of the New Teen Titans stories, not infrequently with some Self-Deprecating Humor. Look for a brown-haired man with glasses and a beard.
  • Cruel Mercy: Trigon. Psimon, who betrayed him and secretly aided the Titans to stop Trigon, was sentenced to a Fate Worse than Death. But his servant Goronn, who spreads terror in his name since time immemorial, and was defeated for the first time, does not deserve such punishment. No, a quick and painless death is enough for his failure!
  • Cute Mute: Jericho. He had his throat slashed as a child, and thus was mute for his entire tenure on the team. Artist George Perez created the character solely to flex his artistry chops, and outright forbade writer Marv Wolfman from ever giving the character thought bubbles, meaning everything about Jericho had to be portrayed through his facial expressions and body language. Amazingly, Jericho became a rather successful The Casanova in-universe despite his communication handicap.
    • Makes sense; if you're mute you figure out how to use, and exploit, body language.
    • He didn't just depend on facial expressions and body language, though - he communicates through American Sign Language (every time Jericho is shown using sign language, when drawn by George Perez, you can be completely sure that the sign is accurate). Besides, when he uses his power and gets inside someone else' body, he can talk through that body.
  • Dark Action Girl: Rose Wilson became this when she took on the Ravager name. Later, former traitor Bombshell would fill this spot on the team.
  • Darker and Edgier: The title swings this way pretty frequently.
    • The renewal of the original series was generally much heavier and more dramatic than the original series, and actually had the Titans take a vow to quit being superheroes after they failed to save a certain life, afterwards becoming a team of superpowered special agents for a time.
    • The New Teen Titans as a whole was a successful attempt at integrating Marvel-style drama and personalities into the franchise, which would eventually spread to DC as a whole.
    • New editor Jonathan Peterson kicked off the 90s with a bang by organizing what would eventually be known as Titans Hunt, which brought the series fully into The Dark Age of Comic Books. Titans Hunt was Bloodier and Gorier than anything put in the series so far, killing off countless side-characters and even a few old Titans.
    • Geoff Johns' run on Teen Titans Volume 3 did not react well to Infinite Crisis — the team collapses and goes through over twenty members, and by the time Cyborg comes out of his coma, the "Titans" amount to a darker Tim, Rose Wilson, and Kid Devil.
    • This happened to Kid Devil when he joined the series. He was originally a much goofier sidekick that used high tech devil pajamas and originated from the Blue Devil series, known for its very fun tone. Between then and his time as a Titan, he made a deal with Neron to become a real devil, and a lot of angst came with it when things didn't turn out they way he liked. It is slightly averted in his case, as Eddie's personality didn't change much, just his appearance and situation.
  • Dating Catwoman: Speedy and Cheshire, Changeling and Terra
  • Death by Origin Story
    • Grant Wilson, the "Destroyer". He became a bounty hunter, died, and his father Slade Wilson inherited his contract with H.I.V.E. to destroy the Titans.
    • Cyborg's mother, Elinore, in the same incident that destroyed half of his body and forced his father to turn him into a cyborg. It was the source of the initial tension between Victor and Silas Stone.
    • The first mystery parents of Donna Troy, who died in an apartment on fire when she was just a baby. If those were her parents And if they existed at all. It's... complicated.
  • Death of a Child: The only three living children of the Titans are Jai and Iris West, and Mirage's daughter Julienne. And even then, the West twins were brought back from the dead, and Julienne is the product of rape. And now thanks to the New 52 reboot, all three characters are wiped from existence. Thanks to Convergence, the pre-Flashpoint universe is implied to have been fully restored, meaning the West Twins and Julienne do exist once more. Also, Lian Harper's death is undone during the event when she's pulled out of the timestream by Dreamslayer of the Extremists.
  • Death of the Hypotenuse: Starfire fell in love with Dick Grayson as soon as she came to Earth, but he told her that they were Just Friends. So, she fell in love with some other guy instead. This guy was actually instructed by the H.I.V.E. to seduce her and prey on the Titan's secrets, but he fell In Love with the Mark, and tried to cut ties with H.I.V.E. and have a real romance. The H.I.V.E. agent killed him. Starfire never knew the truth about him, she thought that he was killed just for being her boyfriend.
  • Decoy Protagonist: When we first meet Grant Wilson and Deathstroke, everything pointed that Grant would be the arch villain of the Titans. He has some basic backstory, a reason to hate the titans (even if a petty one), and his costume was cooler. Deathstroke did not seem to have anything of that, and could be seen as a mere random villain used as a template by the H.I.V.E. to give powers to Grant. Then, the issue ends... and Grant lies dead, Deathstroke rises as the new arch enemy of the Titans, and we even discover some hidden info about him that gaves a new light to the re-read of the story (namely, that he was Grant's father).
  • Demoted to Extra:
    • The original Titans West from the '70s vanished when it came time for the New Teen Titans series, due to Marv Wolfman considering all of the characters (except Lilith and Beast Boy/Changeling) to be lame. Bumblebee and Mal Duncan (who were part of the original East Coast team towards the end of the '70s) were also Put on a Bus, and Duela Dent showed up once as a middle-aged, overweight phony who revealed that she had lied about her origin of being Two-Face's daughter. After the Crisis, Wolfman seized the opportunity to retcon Bumblebee and Mal (now called "Herald") as having been part of Titans West, and attempted to erase Duela from continuity completely. Caveman G'narrk (who died in a Bus Crash Pre-Crisis) became a case of Death by Origin Story, while Bat-Girl (retconned to Flamebird) and Golden Eagle became even more shallow "joke" characters stuck in a rut of Can't Catch Up.
    • The earlier Titans all became demoted when it was time for Dan Jurgens' version of the Titans, partly due to Executive Meddling. Jurgens had originally planned to use Nightwing and the JSA member Wildcat as mentors for the team, but had to make do with using the de-aged Ray Palmer instead.
    • Characters like the second Wonder Girl suffered this in the change from Young Justice to the third volume of Teen Titans, as Geoff Johns decided to pay more attention to Robin and Superboy, effectively making the rest of the cast into wallpaper. After OYL, the focus then became Robin and Wonder Girl, which continued somewhat into Sean McKeever's run.
  • A Dick in Name: There's Richard "Nightwing" Grayson, who usually goes by "Dick". Things like this can't be an accident. In one issue of Titans, he insists the team can't reveal their secret identities to the newbies, even when they're just hanging out. Tempest calls him a real... and Arsenal interrupts that they can't use his real name.
  • Disguised Hostage Gambit: An issue of Teen Titans Spotlight has Two-Face kidnapping Cyborg's girlfriend Sarah in order to lure him into a trap. He tapes her mouth shut and dresses her up in a convincing Two-Face costume, hoping that Cyborg will accidently kill her in a fit of rage. Fortunately, Cyborg sees through the ruse at the last second.
  • Distaff Counterpart: Miss Martian (for Martian Manhunter) and Bombshell (for Captain Atom), and Power Boy for Power Girl.
  • Dysfunction Junction: Team members tend to devolve into in-fighting and conflict from time to time, which has caused the Teen Titans to disband more than a few times. Especially when team members start dating each other which actually made fighting during team meetings a normal occurrence.
    Jesse Quick: When you told me the Titans were like a family — I guess I thought you just meant in the nice way — closeness, you know, loyalty. But you're also a family in all the worst ways. You may all be great in your own right — I know, I've studied some of you — but together you're disorganized, reactionary, and incestuous.
  • Emotionless Girl: Raven, though later writers have tried to emulate her animated counterpart's surly Deadpan Snarker personality.
  • Emotions vs. Stoicism: The chief motif of the Wolfman-Perez run, starting with Raven constantly trying to suppress her emotions in accordance with the teachings of Azarath, while characters like Starfire and, more dreadfully, Trigon revel in them; Dick's refusal to talk about his emotions made his emotional problems worse; the lizardlike, scientifically-minded Psions from the crossover with the Omega Men; the Brain laments how emotional his new Brotherhood of Evil are, etc.
  • Energetic and Soft-Spoken Duo: Quiet Raven and spunky Beast Boy started out platonically in the 1980s Teen Titans comics. In the early 2000s, they were given a Relationship Upgrade and have stayed on-and-off love interests ever since.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Despite her dislike of Rose Wilson, when Bombshell accuses Rose of being a traitor, working for Deathstroke, Cassandra defends her, believing after everything her father did to her, Rose would never work for him again.
  • Exposed Extraterrestrials: According to Starfire, Tamaranians don't place much value in clothes (they see nothing inherently unchaste about nudity and they're pretty much Flying Bricks anyway). This is largely her justification for being both an Innocent Fanservice Girl and Ms. Fanservice.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Averted with Terra, who was really bad all along, and acted like it. But other Titans have played this straight, in a trope that's used quite a lot for the series
  • Fad Super: As mentioned above, Mad Mod and Ding Dong Daddy are prime examples.
  • Family of Choice: The Titans support each other in all the good ways of a family, but they're also a family in all the worst ways with all the conflicts you'd usually suspect from living together like one. They do have some disagreements, but it always leads into more character depth.
  • Fanservice: To an insane degree. Though notably, both Wolfman and Perez gave a bit of equal ground — Dick Grayson was Mr. Fanservice personified, and Deathstroke was set up as a "sexy older gentleman" type, and the female fans of the book reciprocated alongside the males drooling over Starfire and Wonder Girl (see Ms. Fanservice).
  • Finger-Licking Poison: In "The Judas Contract", Deathstroke captures Gar 'Changeling' Logan by drugging the glue in the envelopes Gar is using to respond to his fan mail.
  • First-Name Basis: Initially, Raven did not call Robin and Kid Flash as such, and neither as "Dick" or "Wally". She called them "Richard" and "Wallace".
  • Fleeting Demographic Rule: Raven goes evil because of her demonic heritage, the team fights a group of evil Titans...
  • Flying Firepower: Starfire is a Rubber-Forehead Alien that flies and shoots energy blasts from her hands.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: During Rose Wilson's time with the Teen Titans, her relationship with her team mates is strained. Rose has the most antagonistic relationship with Wonder Girl (Cassandra "Cassie" Sandsmark). Sadly, even when it appears that Rose is making peace with Wonder Girl, Cassandra revealed she still dislikes her and does not trust her. Another example is when Rose befriends another team mate like Blue Beetle (Jaime Reyes), only for Jaime to revealed (thankfully not to her) that he is afraid of her. The only friend she has on the team is Kid Devil / Red Devil (Eddie Bloomberg). It gets so bad she quits the team. When Rose considers coming back on the team, they vote on whether to let her back in, while letting Bombshell (Amy Sue Allen), who betrayed and tried to kill them, back on the team. Ironically, Bombshell framed Rose as the one who betrayed the Teen Titans. As Rose points out, it's telling that they let a former traitor back on the team, something even Bombshell acknowledges, pointing out that if they give her a chance, Rose deserves the same chance. After an altercation with Bombshell, staged to ensure her loyalty to the team, Rose leaves to find her own way in life.
    • Danny Chase, an obnoxious telekinetic Insufferable Genius and Child Prodigy, was this during his status on the team. Despite being a hard worker and pulling his weight, he constantly disparaged the team for its emotional foibles and lack of cold professionalism. This reached a high point after he informed the team of the death of Jason Todd and callously disregarded the death. Chase' callous behavior combined with Dick Grayson's fears of another underaged child dying from supeheroics led to Grayson booting Chase from the team with very few objections from the rest of the team.
  • A Glitch in the Matrix: In one issue of Titans, Roy Harper broke the illusion generated by the Gargoyle by relying on his lack of information on his Missing Mom. The Gargoyle tried to recreate a facsimile of Roy's childhood if he had grown up with his birth parents, but because Roy has such an incredible lack of info on his mom, to the fact that he only knows he had to have one in general, the Gargoyle could only go as far as "your mom is."
  • Green-Skinned Space Babe:
    • As stated previously: Starfirenote , in the comics. There is a reason Starfire was called "balloon bod" by Terra I. She basically defines Most Common Superpower, Ms. Fanservice, Stripperific and (due to her Lightning Bruiser status) Boobs of Steel. At the very least, she's as fanservice-intensive as, say, Power Girl (if marginally "smaller"). In the comics. In the cartoon, not so much.
      • Pérez actually stated that her character was meant to exude sexuality.
    • Miss Martian in her Green Martian form, though perhaps a much cuter take.
  • Hand Blast: Starfire, as well as her evil sister Blackfire, has this as her main superpower.
  • Heinousness Retcon: Geoff Johns' run revealed that not only was Deathstroke behind Cassandra Cain's Face–Heel Turn by brainwashing her with a special drug but he had also done this to Tara Markov in order to use her against the Titans. Keep in mind that in the original story, Slade was in a sexual relationship with the teenage Tara yet the story treated him as the more sympathetic of the two.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Cinder of Deathstroke's team dies in order to destroy the Methuselah Device. Subverted in that she was already suicidal but couldn't die because of her power to turn into molten magma, and that she destroyed the device because given the option to bring her dead family back, she'd rather they stayed dead because she believed the world is a horrible place. It's hard to feel that sorry for her, or awed by her, when she'd been portrayed as such an utterly flat character, the circumstances of her powers revealed a month before she died, and the reminder that she burned off a man's reproductive organs using her own.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: General Zahl fired his gun against Robotman, but the bullets ricocheted on his metal body, and returned to him instead.
  • Hotter and Sexier: Under the Wolfman-Perez run, the Teen Titans first started undergoing blatant displays of romantic and sexual adventures, nude females and wells for Eating the Eye Candy, as well as introspection into the sex lives of heroes. In particular, the New Teen Titans run had the first display of a young couple post-coitus in a comic and the first overt display of Dick Grayson's sex life, which later writers would follow suit over the decades. Pérez actually stated that some characters like Starfire were meant specifically to exude sexuality. Pérez himself purposely arranged this, such as the case with the Teen Titan Jericho at the time, to emphasize that an expression of sexual appetite and ReallyGetsAround status doesn't make a superhero less of a superhero.
  • Human Head on the Wall: Deathstroke is possessed by his son Jericho, who murders Slade's loyal butler Wintergreen and mounts his head on a wall.
  • Husky Russkie: Red Star.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: Cyborg had one of the defining aspects of this in the 1980s run (he was an unwilling cyborg). Blue Beetle later on. Solstice has shades of it in the reboot.
  • I Just Want to Be Special: Kid/Red Devil, to such an extreme that he made a deal with Neron to have powers. It is one of his defining character traits and is the motivation for almost every decision he makes.
  • Idiot Ball:
    • Is handled by Cyborg and Dick Grayson in Rise of Arsenal.
      • In Cyborg's case, designing a hideously gaudy removable prosthetic that in fact increases the pain Roy already felt in his arm, and is aware of that flaw. Notwithstanding his engineering capabilities, did giving something like that to a man who had just recently learned his daughter was dead seem like a good idea? Wouldn't it have made more sense to wait, or at least give him a more standard strap-on prosthetic made from wood or plastic? Did a grieving father honestly need the pain in his missing limb amplified at that time? Cyborg even states that Roy is "good as new" once he's outfitted with it, and then quickly apologizes for said statement.
      • And in Dick's case, having Roy admitted to Virgil House, completely alone. From the way Roy had been acting, Dick should've known that being alone was the last thing he needed at the moment.
    • When Raven first came to Earth, she went to the Justice League to ask for help in defending Earth against her father. They did not help her: Zatanna sensed a great evil in her. So, she created a new group, reuniting the disbanded Teen Titans. And, as she explained to them, the evil that Zatanna felt is that Raven is Trigon's daughter; even when she completely refused him and tried as much as possible to prevent his arrival. Sounds fine... but she never told that to the League. After all, she never denied or concealed on purpose her relation with Trigon — if it came as a reveal, it was because she usually says very little.
    • The Judas Contract would've been far more than a Near-Villain Victory if Deathstroke had trapped and kidnapped Nightwing like all the other Titans rather than saving him for last and challenging him to a fist fight like a complete goon. Several characters talk about how unwise this was, but the Idiot Ball is still the Idiot Ball.
  • Innocent Fanservice Girl: Starfire, on top of her having no nudity taboo and stripperific outfit, she learns languages through physical contact. Apparently any type of contact will do, but she deliberately chooses kissing as it's "more fun".
  • Interspecies Romance: Starfire and Robin I/Nightwing had this going on for quite a while. They not only became engaged, but were almost married over the course of "The New Teen Titans" — they broke up when the wedding ceremony was attacked by Raven, currently experiencing Demonic Possession, and she killed the minister before he could officially marry them.
  • Island Base: The Titans Tower is on an island.
  • Jive Turkey:
    • Cyborg talked like a bit of Shaft, and a bit of "normal educated human being". He spoke some words (like "Lissen/Listen") a bit funny for the most part.
    • Before him was Mal Duncan.
  • Kid Hero: At least the original version of this team. By the Marv Wolfman era, most members had reached college age, but there was still room for teenagers (like Beast Boy and Terra).
  • Kudzu Plot: Boy, did the 90s lay it on thick with so many characters and plot threads being thrown in and focused on that it grew increasingly hard to keep track of them all. At any given time, there were more than half a dozen storyline going on at once.
    • The infamous Titans Hunt arc started — started — with the Wildebeest Society kidnapping the superpowered Titans (but also going out of their way to do things like murder a bunch of only tangentially-related characters) and leaving a hodgepodge group of Nightwing and the group's relatives to come chase after them...
      • Because the Wildebeest Society's new leader is one of the Titans who has undergone a Face–Heel Turn, gone mad, and developed new superpowers along with it...
      • And then the Wildebeest society blew up Titans Tower, opening up a new plot about a an anti-superhero politician charging the Titans themselves for repairs...
      • And then they launch the kidnapped Titans into space, resulting in the group being left with a Soulless Shell of Cyborg rebuilt with Soviet tech and thus under Red Star's supervision...
      • And they also recruit Pantha, one of the Society's Mutants, which are being created because the society needs the Ultimate Life Form to serve as a host for the transference, as other, weaker bodies degrade.
      • And THEN Waverider (a time-traveler) drops in hoping to find the real identity of Monarch, a villain from the future, but before we can get to that...
      • OTHER time travelers (the Team Titans) have also come back to the past trying to kill Donna Troy to prevent another villain from the future from ever existing...
      • When that villain, Lord Chaos, follows them back in time in order to ensure he's born... and then kill Donna Troy himself.
      • Except before anyone can do any of that, Donna Troy, just returned from a crossover with Wonder Woman, gets literally abducted for the finale of the War of the Gods miniseries, a Wonder Woman-based Crisis Crossover.
    • The "Titans Hunt" arc centered on the activities of the Wildebeest Society and The Man Behind the Man, but once that was over, Lord Chaos and his mother's assassins took center stage with the "Total Chaos" arc, which bounced around between the New Titans, Deathstroke, and Team Titans books.
      • This featured the aftermath of Slade being chemically tortured...
      • And introduced over half a dozen new characters, including a handful of street urchins, a whorehouse-spy complex run by Sweet Lili, a society of sewer dwelling mutants, and yet another assassin from the future.
    • And once Total Chaos was over, subsequent plots included Roy Harper taking over the Titans at the behest of the government organization Checkmate...
    • The arrival of the second Evil Ravennote  following Raven's death during Titans Hunt, who came to inject the souls of Trigon's hundred murdered children into the bodies of the Titans...
    • And the abduction of Cyborg by the alien species called the Technis.
  • Lawyer-Friendly Cameo: One issue of Teen Titans Spotlight features a nascent Brotherhood of Evil transported to an Alternate Universe where they encounter the post-apocalyptic future selves of Tintin, Captain Haddock, and Professor Calculus, er, that is, "Tin" and his associates.
  • Leader Wannabe: Damian Wayne declared himself leader when he briefly joined, but no one recognized him.
  • Legacy Character: Three Robins, two Kid Flashes, two Wonder Girls, two Speedies, two Aquagirls.
  • Leotard of Power: Every female Titan has worn one at one time or another.
  • Lightning Can Do Anything: Static is the Patron Saint of this Trope.
  • Like Brother and Sister: Dick (Nightwing) and Donna (Troia) are almost patron saints for this trope. When George Perez drew them, they even looked like fraternal twins.
  • Love Hurts: Another hallmark motif of the Wolfman-Perez era: the main cast's perpetually torturous love lives.
    • Robin's emotional constipation made him poorly suited for the openly loving Starfire, as well as his moderate fear of her killing instincts.
    • Kid Flash had a Hell of a time dealing with his... thing with Raven, which started with her tampering with his brain to make him do what she wanted and went From Bad to Worse once she tortured him while she was briefly Brainwashed and Crazy under Trigon's influence during the Omega Men arc, despite the story insisting there was also some mutual romantic attraction in there as well.
    • Cyborg had trouble securing lasting relationships throughout all of Wolfman's run; his first girlfriend, Marcy, was not a fan of his extensive prosthetics; he got along famously with Sarah Simms, but kept shutting her out due to his own shame, and ultimately things dragged on so long that she found someone else; and his third major girlfriend, Dr. Sarah Charles of STAR Labs, hit trouble both when she took a job on the opposite coast of the country and during a Wildebeest incident with a STAR Labs spy, where he refused all contact with STAR Labs personnel, her included.
    • Beast Boy's relationship with Terra went up in flames so massive it was one of the most famous franchise stories of all time.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father
    • Lilith grew up not knowing at all where did she came from, or the source of her powers. Then, one day, Thia (one of the Titans of Myth) shows up and gave her the "We Can Rule Together" speech.
    • Changeling had a less troublesome case with one of the villains of the Doom Patrol, who was actually his former foster parent. But, as he was an Abusive Parent in his own right, this simply gave him the excuse to fight him even harder.
  • Mad Scientist: Doctor Caligan.
  • Magic Is Feminine:
    • The first female Titan was Donna Troy, whose powers are often connected to Greek deities. Before the first DC reboot, Lilith Clay was a clairvoyant who was revealed to be the daughter of a Titan of myth.
    • The New Teen Titans era introduced Raven, a witch whose biological father was a demon. On the villain side, Jinx of the Fearsome Five was one of the only two female characters on the team and was their magic expert.
  • Magnetism Manipulation: This is the power of the tragic villain Magenta.
  • Modesty Bedsheet: In the very first issue of The New Teen Titans Volume 2 (1984), Dick Grayson and Starfire are shown waking in bed. Both are barely covered by bedsheets. This scene became controversial both as the first display of a young couple post-coitus in a comic and as the first overt display of Dick Grayson's sex life. Since then, most writers have just run with it.
  • The Mole: Terra. What's hilarious is that at no point in the comic does she ever seem to at all hide he fact that she is constantly lying to and dislikes nearly everyone on the team.
    • Subverted with the finalized origin of Terra II. She was sent to the surface world to help Mankind by her people, who were oblivious to the fact that Terra was evil.
  • Monster Modesty: Cyborg doesn't wear anything. He used to wear a jump suit hoodie with the hood up, but Beast Boy convinced him he looks better wearing nothing. The orange-skinned alien Starfire also had elements of this (see below).
  • More Diverse Sequel: The original series created in the sixties starred Robin, Wonder Girl, Aqualad, Speedy, and Kid Flash. All of them are white, with Wonder Girl as the only female. After later being retooled as the "New Teen Titans" to combat Marvel's success with X-Men, this team was similarly relaunched with a more diverse roster. Robin was the only returning member and was joined by Beast Boy (who is also a white male), Raven (a half-demon female), Starfire (an alien) and Cyborg (an African-American).
  • Most Common Superpower: Starfire is the best example. They didn't call her "Balloon Bod" for nothing.
  • Motive Decay: The villains of the Fearsome Five. What do they want to do as villains? According to the day, it may be bank robberies, be more powerful, get revenge (either against the Titans or one of their own ranks), or bank robberies again.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Starfire was an obvious example in the old days, what with her Innocent Fanservice Girl ways, but Donna Troy often ran around in bikinis as well. Let's just say George Perez liked drawing sexy ladies.
  • Mythical Motifs: Explored in an arc, which introduces the Indian hero Solstice.
  • Narrating the Obvious: Defied during Starfire's first adventure, when the Titans managed to destroy a Gordanian ship. The other ship saw it in their screen, and a mook told it to his captain... who interrupted him and ordered him to shut up. He has eyes and he's seeing what's happening.
  • Never Recycle a Building: Figures in Marv Wolfman's story "Who Is Donna Troy?" Apparently a burnt-out building sat in that condition for about 16 years, and Donna's childhood doll was still in a room of said burnt-out building and not carried off for nesting material. This is a key clue used by Robin to track down Donna's origins.
  • Next Tier Power-Up: After Beast Boy was briefly Only Mostly Murdered by Deathstroke, the Titans brought him to the Amazons on the chance that their purple ray might be able to heal him. It did, but it briefly made him go berserk and enabled him to accomplish transformations he couldn't before, like dinosaurs. His Bad Future self Animal Man implies he has a whole host of other abilities that he's too afraid to make use of.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero:
    • The Titans give one to the Justice League for their gross mishandling of the Trigon situation.
    • Roy Harper's descent into anti-heroism can be attributed to how out-of-character his family and friends acted during Rise of Arsenal.
      • Black Canary, the closest thing to a mother he ever had and the woman who helped him beat his addiction the first time, washed her hands of him and considered him a lost cause. She should've known that being alone was not helping matters. It was with her support that Roy beat his addiction the first time. And when she had the opportunity to fully give that support again after Roy had been pushing her away, she chose not to and gave up on him entirely.
      • Cyborg designed him a prosthetic arm that wasn't a "proper" prosthetic because Roy's arm is still infected. The arm is removable, but increases the pain in his stump, greatly hinders his ability as an archer, and he can't wear normal clothes over it.
      • Doctor Mid-Nite was completely oblivious to the fact that Roy had been taking pain killers from his supply of medication, never mind how easily Roy was able to take them.
      • Donna Troy, Wally West, and Dick Grayson, supposedly his closest friends for years, did nothing to help. Granted, Roy called Donna a whore and said she was a bad mother, but if Donna truly understood the pain Roy was in as she claimed during his daughter's funeral, she'd know people say things they don't mean when they've lost a loved one (and have suffered a horrible injury). She might have wound up the same way he did after her son died, only she had the support of her friends and family. Dick was the one who came up with the idea of having Roy temporarily committed at Virgil House. And Wally, he did absolutely nothing at all.
  • The Notable Numeral: The Fearsome Five. Also the Fatal Five-Hundred, from a crossover with the Legion of Superheroes.
  • Not What It Looks Like: At the beginning of the new series after the "OYL" gap, Robin (Tim Drake) returns to his room at night and sits on his bed, only to have a naked and extremely drunk Ravager (Rose Wilson) wrap her arms around him and try to seduce him. Robin's completely not interested but, knowing Ravager can be a bit hard to dissuade, pins her down on the bed and starts to handcuff her hands behind her. Then Kid Devil walks in.
    Kid Devil: Hot damn!
    Robin: This isn't what it looks like.
    Ravager: Yes it is.
  • Obviously Evil: The original Brother Blood is Red and Black and Evil All Over, and the few white parts of his costume are skeletal. He has no problem getting on TV and preaching righteousness in full demon getup, which is likely as exaggerated as a Villain with Good Publicity has ever been while being played straight.
  • Omniglot: Classic Starfire learns new languages through kissing. In the X-Men crossover, she kissed Colossus when he spoke Russian, motivating Nightcrawler to ask, "Fräulein, sprechen Sie Deutsche?"
  • One-Steve Limit: With Wonder Woman having such strong relations with the Greek pantheon, it was only a matter of time before the Titans (Oceanus, Hyperion, Coeus, Cronus, Crius and Iapetus and the females Mnemosyne, Tethys, Theia, Phoebe, Rhea, and Themis) were included in DC as well. And where Wonder Woman goes, Wonder Girl will surely eventually follow. But they are not "The" Titans of DC, so this other group was named the "Titans of Myth". And if you think that's confusing, it's even more for Troia, who has been a member of both.
  • Orwellian Retcon: Brother Blood is a special type of Legacy Character: he is immortal, nothing can kill him, nobody can kill him... except his own son, when he gets to 100 years old. His son takes up the identity of Brother Blood, and will reign as an immortal until his age of 100, and then face a similar curse. But what about the people that pray to him? Even if they witness the fight, they will not even think that there was one man being Brother Blood then and another one now: it is always Brother Blood, who has lived 700 years. All hail Brother Blood!
  • Our Mermaids Are Different: Villain named Siren, though she can make her tail into legs.
  • Please Put Some Clothes On:
    • In one issue, Ravager (Rose Wilson) drunkenly comes on to Robin (Tim Drake) by hiding in his bed completely naked. When he refuses her offer to "be friends", he handcuffs her with her hands behind her back... immediately after, an intruder alarm goes off, causing Kid Devil to rush to Robin's room and find a naked handcuffed Ravager with Robin on top of her. After Robin tries to explain that it is Not What It Looks Like, they rush off to confront the intruder whilst Robin tells Ravager to put some clothes on.
    • Tim's predecessor was saying this to Starfire a LOT during the Wolfman-Perez run.
  • Poisonous Person: Plasmus, a walking chemical monster, has the ability to melt people with his touch.
  • Power of Friendship: They are all over this trope. They aren't the equals to the JLA or JSA in sheer power. It's their ability to work as a team and the fact that you mess with one, and expect any and all past and present members to show up looking to kick your butt that makes them frightening.
  • The Power of Legacy: In the original "Judas Contract" arc, the other Titans gave Terra a hero's funeral, a statue in their hall, and told everyone (including her half-brother, Geo-Force) that she died a hero. The truth was that she was The Mole and Evil All Along.
  • Precision F-Strike: A downplayed example occurs during issue 50 of the original Silver/Bronze Age run. During an argument with Speedy, Duela Dent calls him a "pompous ass". It's not emphasised in any way, but the fact that the rest of that particular era of Titans comics was mostly campy fare makes it stand out.
  • Psychosomatic Superpower Outage: During the Wolfman-Perez run, Wally's crippling indecision goes hand in hand with his loss in powers and coronary problems. Trigon himself pins the kid for having a weak heart.
  • Public Exposure: Mirage used her illusion powers to disguise herself as Starfire and pose naked for a men's magazine. Starfire was not amused when she found out.
  • Put on a Bus:
    • Nightwing was put on one towards the end of the New Teen Titans run.
    • The final issue before J.T. Krul's run ended with half of the then-current Teen Titans being written out of the book.
    • With the Flashpoint reboot, all of the Titans save for Cassie, Tim, Connor, Kiran, and Bart are now gone. Furthermore, even the villains are now on a bus, as Scott Lobdell had announced that his run will not feature a single existing Teen Titan villain. Rose Wilson is kind of an exception, but her origin has been changed around note 
  • Red Shirt: Kole was created specifically for this purpose. Wolfman was obligated by his fellow creators to kill one off his characters for the Crisis on Infinite Earths because they all had to kill off people they were using for it. He ended up kind of liking her in the end, but a deal's a deal, and he didn't have to wipe out any major character.
  • Religion of Evil: Brother Blood's Church of Blood.
  • The Resolution Will Not Be Televised: The first Doom Patrol had been cancelled, and The Bad Guy Wins at their last issue. Wolfman, fan of the Doom Patrol, did not leave it at that. He already made Beast Boy a member of the Titans, and he made him reunite with Robotman and Mento for a last adventure of the Doom Patrol, who got their vengeance against Madame Rouge and General Zahl for the deaths of Niles, Negative Man and Elasti-Girl. And, to keep on with the Patrol, he also introduced a new Brotherhood of Evil, led by the Brain and Mallah, who were Not Quite Dead.
  • Ret-Canon: The cartoon proved to have a pretty big impact on the comics:
    • Following the One Year Later Time Skip from Infinite Crisis, Beast Boy donned his costume from the cartoon and Raven donned a similar costume to the one from the cartoon (modified to include a bird symbol and leggings).
    • Beast Boy was given pointy ears and fanged teeth to match his animated counterpart.
    • The future incarnation of Cyborg from the "Titans of Tomorrow" storyline has blue plating similar to his cartoon self.
    • A series of Titans East teams also appeared, but only the third bore any resemblance to the cartoon's version, the first (whose ranks include the aforementioned future Cyborg) being from the future and freedom fighters against their old teammates and the second being Psycho Rangers set up by Deathstroke.
    • The concept of a romantic relationship between Beast Boy and Raven originated in the TV show before being ported back to the comics.
    • Joto was renamed Hotspot like his TV incarnation (though that was partly because the reason his codename was changed for the cartoon in the first place was due to the discovery that "Joto" was a homophobic slur in Latin American Spanish).
  • Revisiting the Roots: There are several arcs the center around reunions of the Fab Five or on their memories.
    • Starfire has got married and stayed in Tamaran. Nightwing does not want to hear about anything. Changeling tries to stop Mento, who got crazy. Cyborg is in the hospital, after Mento almost killed him. Raven has been missing since The Terror of Trigon. Kole is dead, and Jericho is crying for her. The New Titans are no more. So, who will work with Wonder Girl? Wally West, Jason Todd, Speedy, Aqualad and Hawk. The original Teen Titans are back! (but not for very long).
    • Following the end of Teen Titans Volume 2note , apparently somebody felt the franchise had gone too far astray, so Devin Grayson's work on The Titans (launched in 1999) and the JLA/Titans crossover preceding it focused greatly on setting up the Fab Five as True Companions and building a new phase of the team based around the Fab Five and their personal nominees.
  • Roll in the Hay: During Infinite Crisis, Wonder Girl and Superboy consumate their love in the hay loft of the Kents barn before Superboy flies off to confront Superboy-Prime.
  • Sassy Black Woman: Bumblebee, in the old days.
  • Secret Public Identity: Danny Chase, Mal Duncan.
  • Sequel Hook: At the end of the origin of Lilith. She happens to be the daughter of Thia, one of the Titans of Myth, who mentioned in passing that she has several offspring in the world, at strategic positions of modern power (politics, economy, military, etc). And the adventures continues... but that point was not forgotten. At the end of the story, we see the personal assistant of the U.S. President, who takes the phone and calls other people. "Yes. Our mother is dead, but her plans will live on. The sons of Thia, the sons of the Sun, will someday rule the world!". An interesting point for a future story arc... which never took place. Crisis on Infinite Earths took place after it, with its massive cosmic retcon, and the Titans of Myth were completely redefined. The Sons of Thia are not there anymore, and never carried out their plans.
  • Sexy Jester: Joker's Daughter, eventually. She started out being pretty hideous (basically, she took after her supposed dad The Joker, with the same really long nose and chin he was drawn with at the time), and got heavy (and aged up) in the mid-80s, but later artists draw her very hot.
  • Shapeshifting Seducer: Master of Illusion Mirage combines this with Bed Trick, transforming herself into Starfire so she can sleep with Nightwing.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Wolfman loves his shout outs. There are frequent references to the Muppets and Sesame Street in the New Teen Titans, occasionally to comics from Marvel, and there are even two Russian villains named Boris and Tasha.
    • In New Teen Titans #15 Dick sings "The Daring Young Man on the Flying Trapeze" while pulling off a quadruple somersault into a pool.
  • Sidekick Graduations Stick: Nightwing, Arsenal, Troia, Tempest, The Flash. Possibly Red Robin and Red Devil.
  • Slut-Shaming: Word of God confirms that the first Terra was shown in a sexual relationship with villain Slade Wilson specifically to emphasize how evil she was by showing what a slut she was, despite there being no evidence that she ever slept with anyone else. Add to that that she was 16 while Slade is significantly older and it crosses into Questionable Consent territory since technically Slade is the one who's emotionally manipulating a 16 year old girl. Later on, Slade actually gets written as an Anti-Hero while Terra is the one who eventually diesnote .
  • The Smurfette Principle: In the first incarnation of the team, there wasn't even one. They were looking for a token girl and they saw that a character called "Wonder Girl" had already been published, so they decided to use her. Somehow they (not to mention their editors!) missed the fact that "Wonder Girl" was actually just Diana as a teenager for something like four or five years real time. She was finally given the first of way too many origin stories in an attempt to fix this mistake. And thus began a grand and glorious tradition of no one having any idea who she is or where she came from.
  • Stalker with a Crush: That winged man that fell in love with Lilith at first sight.
  • Starter Villain: Trigon, ironically enough, who is fought at the beginning of each The New Teen Titans publication and Tales of the Teen Titans. The Final Boss, by comparison, is Brother Blood.
  • Sudden Name Change: Chimera, a minor character in the "Team Titans" era, originally had her full name given as "Sanjeet Rey". However, a later card set by DC called her "Sanjeet Gupta". Even later in the title's (short) run, Chimera gave her name as "Sanjeet Bhatia".
  • Supernatural Fear Inducer: Phobia, a minor enemy of the Teen Titans and sometime member of the Brotherhood of Evil, has this power as her codename indicates.
  • Take That!: After leaving DC and going to work for Marvel Comics, Sean McKeever publicly talked about the copious amounts of executive meddling he faced while writing the Teen Titans. In response to the attention the quotes drew and the negative reputation Teen Titans has garnered in recent years, Marvel editor Tom Breevort publicly referred to McKeever's new title, Young Allies (which like Teen Titans is a book about teen superheroes) as "...What you wanted Sean's TEEN TITANS run to be!"[1]
  • Terminator Twosome: In an alternate future, Troia gave birth to a child with godly powers, who became an adult instantly, killed his mother and conquered the world. The Team Titans go back in time to kill Donna Troy and prevent the existence of Lord Chaos. And the one who also goes back in time, to stop them and save Lord Chaos is... Lord Chaos himself.
  • That Man Is Dead: District attorney Adrian Chase is dead. Now there's only Vigilante, and the mob leader Scarapelli must die. Robin is sick of hearing that rap, and reminded Chase that If You Kill Him, You Will Be Just Like Him!. And, while he said that, Scarapelli tried to kill Robin, but Vigilante tossed him aside in time and killed Scarapelli anyway.
  • Timey-Wimey Ball: One afflicted the Team Titans, who came back to the past to fix a Bad Future, and Lord Chaos, the villain of that Bad Future, came following after them... only for specific details to start to go wrong (including a rather dramatic Retcon that indicated that Lord Chaos, who was originally indicated to have aged himself to adulthood upon birth, to instead suddenly remember that he became Lord Chaos several years later as a child... and yet still somehow expected drama in connection with his birth specifically); and afterwards the Team Titans discover they've apparently returned to a time where they never existed in the first place. Rather than go back to their own past, it seems they all accidentally wound up in an Alternate Universe past.
  • Titanomachy, Round Two: In issues 12 and 13 of the Wolfman & Pérez run, Hyperion escapes from his prison on Tartarus and enchants Donna Troy, enlisting her help to free his fellow Titans. They lay siege on Mount Olympus, facing the combined forces of the Greek Gods, the female New Titans and the Amazons, though the conflict ultimately reaches a peaceful conclusion: Athena points out that, since the Titans have long been prophesied to lose the war, they have no hope of winning. Starfire then suggests they return to Tartarus and endeavor to transform the place into their personal paradise, with the Titans stoically complying.
  • Token Black
    • The book actually had two black cast members in the 70s, and it was going to be averted with Cyborg and the character who eventually became Starfire in the Wolfman team, but they went with an alien girl instead.
    • Averted in Lobdell's run; three of the seven members are minorities.
  • Tomboy: Wonder Girl II (Cassie) originally started as this in her Young Justice days, then went through a Girliness Update, before being riddled with Wangst. Bombshell now seems to serve this role.
  • Toilet Humour: During Bart Allen's eulogy at the end of Geoff Johns' run, several shortsighted screw-ups of his are brought up. One of them was that he created an international incident by misunderstanding why the pneumatic tubes used to transport to Gorilla City were called "p-tubes".
  • Too Dumb to Live: The Titans once fought against Goth, a demon that posed as a teen idol and convinced all his fans that they would be better in Hell. The Titans rescued them, sure. But there was one fanboy that stuck with Goth, and insisted that he wants to go to Hell because it would be so cool. Goth teleported him to Hell... and something got wrong, so he was teleported back. And insisted. "Try again... and this time, through the front door!
  • Totally Radical: Cropped up in every version from time to time, but especially the original.
    "No teen-ager would use "music" in a hip language message! They'd use jive!"
  • Tsundere:
    • It's a little bit unclear whether Raven is a type B Tsundere, a Sugar-and-Ice Personality, or both.
    • Bombshell also qualifies as a Type A when her father negotiates her return to the Titans for safekeeping. It's just very hard to tell, considering her vulnerable moments are very few and far between.
  • Underwear of Power: Several, though less nowadays. Best example would be the old Robin costume.
    • Even though it was in fact a legless leotard, people (even later writers) seem to think it was just underwear, despite how impractical that is.
  • Values Dissonance: In-Universe. Troia had an "anti-evil touch", and tried to use it against Panzer and his group of Neo-Nazis. It did not work: in their twisted view of things, those guys believed in the alleged virtue of their cause, and did not consider themselves evil.
  • Villain Protagonist: The Terror Titans in their own miniseries, and much later Deathstroke's team in Titans, most of whom kept indecisively straddling the line between anti-hero, anti-villain, and straight-up villain.
  • Wedding Episode: In one issue of The New Teen Titans, Donna marries Terry Long in an example of a fairly mundane wedding which just happens to have a bunch of superheroes in attendance.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Why hasn't Zatanna apologized to Raven? Her advising the Justice League not to trust her is the reason why the New Teen Titans became a team in the first place. To make matters even worse, she turned the whole team against her moments before Trigon's first appearance.
  • Wicked Toymaker: The Puppeteer was a villain who used remote controlled marionettes to murder people.
  • Wolverine Publicity: Damian Wayne was put into the team for an issue, which was around the time Batman (Grant Morrison) was really popular due to Dick Grayson taking up the Batman mantle.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: The gruesome fate of Marvin and Wendy in Teen Titans Volume 3. Wendy urges Marvin that they should quit, feeling useless and underappreciated, but Cyborg and Red Devil encourage them and let them know how important to the team they are. And then Wonder Dog, recently adopted by the Titans, turns out to be a Hellhound owned by Ares' son Lycus, who mauls both Marvin and Wendy to death.
  • Yet Another Christmas Carol: Happen in an issue entitled "A Swinging Christmas Carol" involving a stingy junkyard owner, junk smugglers, and a young boy in need of a motorized wheelchair. The Titans work out what's going on halfway through and, entirely undisturbed, take the opportunity to play the ghosts.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: Raven spent years knowing that Trigon would eventually assimilate her, and that she would eventually become a demon like him. It finally happened in The Terror of Trigon. Her soul was cleansed from Trigon's evil at the end of the story.
    • All the Brothers Blood were cursed with this. They do not age, but at some point, each one's son kill his father and becomes the new Brother Blood, who would be killed by his own son a centur later, and so on.
  • You Have Failed Me: Do not work as a mook for Trigon, ever. You'll have more chances if you tell Darth Vader that the rebels have escaped.

     New 52 


     Infinite Frontier 

Alternative Title(s): The New Teen Titans