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Series / Titans (2018)

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"There are no sidekicks in Titans. We're partners. We have each other's backs." note 
Rose: What the hell is this place, anyway?
Dick: This is a place where people like you can learn how to be the best version of who you are.

Titans is a live-action superhero series, based on the DC Comics team Teen Titans.

Titans followed Dick Grayson (Brenton Thwaites), the former sidekick of Bruce Wayne / Batman (Iain Glen, season two onwards) who was once known as Robin. After leaving Gotham to make a name for himself outside of Bruce's shadow, he encounters a group of fellow super-powered individuals and forms a new lineup of Titans, the team of young heroes he used to be a member of. Among them are Rachel Roth (Teagan Croft), a troubled teenager who harbors a dark, demonic power; Kory Anders (Anna Diop), an alien from the planet Tamaran; and Gar Logan (Ryan Potter), a metahuman who has the ability to transform into animals.

The first season focused on the Titans getting to know each other while facing the Organization, which seeks to bring forth the demon Trigon, Rachel's birth father, to Earth. They're later joined by the surviving members of the old Titans: Hank Hall (Alan Ritchson), Dawn Granger (Minka Kelly), and Donna Troy (Conor Leslie), as well as Jason Todd (Curran Walters), the new Robin, sent by Bruce to assist Dick.

The second season saw Dick and the rebuilt Titans fighting their archnemesis, Slade Wilson (Esai Morales), who returns when his daughter, Rose (Chelsea Zhang), gets tied up with them. The Titans also find themselves pit against Cadmus Laboratories after they provide shelter to Conner (Joshua Orpin), a clone of Superman created by them. While the first season does not have a permanent setting, the Titans set shop at the old Titans Tower in San Francisco for the second season.

The third season, a loose adaptation of A Death in the Family and Under the Red Hood, moved the setting to Gotham. Jason, after having been presumed dead, resurfaces as a terrorist known as the Red Hood, who vows to become Gotham's dictator by consolidating all criminal elements. With the departure of Batman, the Titans must deal with threats posed by Jason and Scarecrow (Vincent Kartheiser), who is in league with him. Along the way, they have to navigate the whims of the Gotham City Police Department, headed by Commissioner Barbara Gordon (Savannah Welch). The Titans also welcome a new member: Blackfire (Damaris Lewis), Kory's uncontrollable younger sister.

Produced by Geoff Johns, Greg Berlanti, Akiva Goldsman, and Sarah Schechter, Titans was created for the DC Universe streaming service after previously being in development at TNT since 2014. The series premiered on DC Universe in the United States on October 12, 2018, with Netflix handling international distribution. After a WarnerMedia restructuring transformed DC Universe into a digital comics reader, the show moved to HBO Max beginning with its third season and started streaming new episodes for the service on August 12, 2021. Ahead of the third season premiere, TNT (its aforementioned original home) also began airing the first season on July 12 of that year. The fourth and final season aired on November 3, 2022, and the series ended on May 11, 2023 after five years and 49 episodes.

As of Crisis on Infinite Earths, Titans is represented in the Arrowverse multiverse as Earth-9. The fourth episode of series introduced the superhero group Doom Patrol, which later got their own series. Despite initial statements and the Doom Patrol cast reprising their roles in the spin-off, and Doom Patrol characters returning in Season 4, the two series are not set in the same universe. note 

Titans contains examples of:

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  • Aborted Arc: The entire " Rachel has to complete the Trials of four hundreds consecutive days of the harshest warrior training to defeat Trigon" mentioned by Kory in 1x10 goes unaddressed in the end, because the producers decided to turn the material filmed for Season's 1 final, into the first episode of Season 2, adding many differences.
    • In the original script, Rachel was supposed to travel in the dimension of Azarath, joined by Kory, in order to train for 300 days and return with full control over her powers and defeat Trigon by absorbing him in her soul-self. Instead, in 2x01, Rachel easily defeats Trigon by disintegrating him without needing the 300 days of training and continues to struggle controlling her powers for the rest of the season.
  • Abusive Parents:
    • Trigon and Slade, probably DC's most infamous examples, though none of them touch the epic-scale manipulations of their comic counterparts.
    • Angela Azarath manipulated her daughter and her friends into freeing Trigon.
    • Lionel Luthor is no slouch in this department, he was shown being physically abusive toward Lex Luthor, in his younger years.
  • Action Girl: Heroes or antagonists, all major female characters were shown having combat skills, often taking matters in their own hands.
  • Action Hero: Most of the main cast prefer to solve their problems with their fists.
  • Actor Allusion: Flashbacks show that Hank was very close to Garth/Aqualad. Hank's actor, Alan Ritchson, previously played Aquaman in Smallville.
  • Actually Pretty Funny: Dr. Light can't help but to laugh at Slade's surprising Crossing the Line Twice kind of humor.
    Slade: I'm glad we see eye-to-eye on this matter.
    Dr. Light: Well, given that you only got one, we fuckin' better, right? (starts to laugh nervously) That was a joke, I was...
    Slade, as deadpan as possible: I see that.
    Dr Light: Ok, I get what you did there. "I see that". Okay.
  • Adaptation Distillation: Much like its animated predecessors, Titans combines several elements of the Wolfman and Perez age of the comics with the modern runs, and even some elements of Teen Titans (2003), changing or simplifying storylines and characters.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job:
    • While Beast Boy keeps his green hair, his skin color is natural instead of being green as well. Played with as he appears to turn green only when using his animal powers.
    • Similarly, Raven has a natural skin tone like in the classic comics, but turns grey as in the cartoon (and the comics it since influenced) when tapping into her demonic powers.
    • Likewise with Starfire, who also has a natural skin tone, but turns orange as in the comics when using her powers. The same can be said for her hair, which is magenta in her "human mode" but turns to the comics' scarlet when using her powers.
    • Amy Rohrbach is blonde here, whereas she's brunette in the comics.
    • Following in the footsteps of Batman (1966), Batman is blond instead of black-haired (though strawberry blond instead of dirty blond).
    • Garth is black haired in the comics, but is portrayed as having dirty blond hair instead.
    • Rose to some extend. Her hair is usually white and straight or wavy in the comics. Here, she has silvery soft curls with blue hints. Ironically, the wig that Minka is wearing for Dawn, is closer to Rose's comic hairstyle.
    • Dick and Jason are both raven haired in the comics, here they have dark brown hair.
  • Adaptational Badass:
    • Doctor Light: In the comics he was a scientist who got his powers from his costume and never really represented a great danger, here, he is a metahuman capable of generating light from his body.
    • While far from the league of Badass Normal superheroes, Beast Boy shows some decent enough combat skills. Still mostly relies on his animal forms, though.
    • Aqualad: In the comics, he was considered useless by the writers, while in the show, he is a water-bending Atlantean.
    • Conner is until now the most powerful character and has some of Superman's power set like X-Ray Vision or Eye Beams; in the comics instead, he has just telekinesis that allows him to mimic the characteristics of a Flying Brick.
  • Adaptational Consent: An important plot point for Season 1. In the comics, Raven is a Child by Rape. Here, her mother is a villain who is in a consensual relationship with Trigon.
  • Adaptational Diversity:
    • Characters like Mercy Graves, Don Hall, and Wintergreen are played by black actors, whereas they were white in the comics, with the latter even receiving an Age Lift.
    • The entire Wilson family is Race Lift-ed, Slade and Adeline go from white to Latino, and respectively Asian-American, Jericho is even played by an actual deaf trans actor, and Rose instead of being half white, is half Latino now.
  • Adaptational Early Appearance:
    • The founding members of the Titans in this adaptation are Robin, Hawk, Dove and Wonder Girl, with Aqualad being the first recruit. In the comics, it was formed by Robin, Speedy, Kid Flash and Aqualad, while Wonder Girl was the first recruit when the team was officially named. The second Titans team is formed by same Robin, but this time with Kory, Raven and Beast Boy. This brings it in line with the second run of the comics titled ''New Teen Titans'' and the famous animated series, though other members are expected to join the core team later.
    • In the comics, Jason Todd made his debut as Robin when Dick is already Nightwing. Here, he debuts only over a year after Dick's split with Batman and is still using the Robin costume.
  • Adaptational Wimp:
  • Adaptation Relationship Overhaul: Koriand'r and Komand'r have their birth order switched.
  • Adapted Out:
    • Most likely due to his status as a Justice League founder in the post-Flashpoint comics (as well as the 2017 Justice League movie), Cyborg is not a part of the team in this series. However, he does exist, given an Adaptation Origin Connection the Doom Patrol in their own series, and is set to make an appearance here afterwards.
    • Founding team members Garth and Wally West are also absent, as is Roy Harper. Wally and Roy's absences can likely be attributed to their presence in the Arrowverse, while Garth has been announced to appear in Season 2.
    • There’s no mention of Slade Wilson’s other son, Grant. Jericho has elements of his brother in his characterization, suggesting he’s a Composite Character.
  • A Day in the Limelight: Many characters get to have their own focus episode usually named after them.
  • Adults Are Useless: Averted with Starfire, who’s both super powered and can control those powers.
  • Aesop Amnesia: Dick Grayson's character development seemed to be going in circles the entire first season. Every few episodes the following pattern repeats: He does something brutally violent, mopes about having such tendencies and his inability move on from under Batman's influence, then does something that seems to indicate putting it behind him. Then an episode or two later he's back to being still brutally violent.
  • Age Lift: All over the place. Likely why the series is called Titans and dropping the Teen out of the name.
    • Dick and Kory are introduced in their late twenties rather than early twenties like the current continuity.
    • Garfield is played by 23-year-old Ryan Potter when introduced.
    • Raven is actually younger than her comics and 2003 cartoon counterparts. Her actress was just 13 during filming of the first season.
      • Rachel is confirmed to be 16 years old in Season 2, bringing her around her usual age in any adaptation she gets.
    • Hawk & Dove are played by actors in their thirties.
    • Donna Troy's actress Conor Leslie was 27 during production of the first season.
    • Jason Todd is already in his late teens when he donned the Robin mantle. In the comics he started in his pre-teens.
  • Aliens Speaking English: Starfire and Faddei know and speak English, but the shocking one is Blackfire who have never been on Earth before, yet speaks as if she was a native earthling.
    • One of Starfire's abilities in the comics is the ability to learn any language through physical contact with a native speaker (usually a kiss). This version of Kory seems to know any language she encounters, including ancient writing. It seems Blackfire does too.
  • Alliterative Name:
    • Angela Azarath, which is quite odd, given that in the comics her actual name is Angela Roth; but this due the show decomposing Angela Roth in two different characters, Angela Azarath and Melissa Roth.
    • Hank Hall aka Hawk.
    • The Luthor family; Lex Luthor, Lionel Luthor and Lena Luthor.
    • Konstantin Kovar.
    • Rachel Roth, but calling her Raven is yet to be seen.
    • Wonder Woman.
    • William Randolph Wintergreen.
  • Alternate Self: Crisis on Infinite Earths (2019) confirms that the Doom Patrol seen here are not the same one seen in their eponymous show.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: Downplayed. Characters like Kory, Raven and Garfield, have normal skin color this time. Unlike their comics counterparts, they only change it when using their powers. A justified take on the fore examples, as it would be quite difficult to keep the actors' skin painted orange, green or grey all the time.
  • Amazon Chaser:
    • Garth was in love with the Amazon Donna Troy since his childhood.
    • Donna accuses Dick of having a thing for dangerous women like Kory.
    • Jason is starstruck for Rose before even meeting her, just because he saw her beating cops on TV Live.
      Rachel: Who the hell is that?
      Jason: A total badass.
  • Amnesiac Hero: Koriand'r doesn't even know she has powers (let alone her name!), discovering them spontaneously when pressed into dangerous situations.
  • And Starring:
  • Apocalypse Maiden: Once again, Rachel is prophesied to bring about the end of the world as we know it.
  • Arch-Enemy:
    • Slade really has it out for Titans but especially for Dick Grayson. He spends years preparing a plan to take them down after what happen five years prior present day.
    • Blackfire and Starfire officially declare their enmity to each other despite being sisters.
      Koriandr: I'm coming for you.
      Blackfire: Good.
  • Artistic License – Biology: Beast Boy shifts forms by “reconfiguring his DNA.” If that was all he was doing, even one transformation could take months and kill him in the process.
  • Artistic License – Chemistry: The Melting Man describes in vivid detail what being burnt with hydrofluoric acids feels like. In reality, HF acid reacts with the nerves in a way that burn victims cannot even tell they are being burned. Moreover, because of how HF acid reacts with calcium and magnesium in the body, it doesn’t take more than a palm-sized burn (like the one Clay receives on his shoulder) to be fatal without medical treatment.
    • Somewhat averted by the writers identifying hydrofluoric acid as the acid used to murder the Haley Circus members. While the reaction is somewhat exaggerated, if you’re going to use any acid as a murder weapon, HF acid is an effective way to go.
  • Ascetic Aesthetic: Slade's mind is represented as a white room with eerie minimalist aesthetics, but clearly full of dark secrets. It goes in the hand with Slade's stoicism and his career as a Professional Killer. It's more horrifying when you're thinking that's the place where he kept Jericho trapped for 5 full years.
  • Avoid the Dreaded G Rating: Granted, this show was always intended to be TV-MA, but the infamous "fuck Batman" line seems specifically chosen to rid unsuspecting parents of any illusion that this show was meant for kids like previous Teen Titans media.
  • Babysitting Episode: Garfield spends most of episode "Atonement" tending a wounded Conner.
  • Backdoor Pilot: The "Doom Patrol" episode is one for their own series of the same name.
  • Back from the Dead:
    • In the aptly-titled "Lazarus", after his death at the hands of the Joker, Jason is brought back from the dead through the Lazarus Pit.
    • In "Souls", Donna and Tim cross the bridge connecting the Next Place and the living world, enabling them to come back to life.
  • Badass Adorable:
    • Garfield is a video game geek capable to turn into other animals.
    • Jericho is a Disabled Snarker with a very friendly disposition capable of Mind Control.
    • Connor Kent is Superman's and Lex Luthor's clone, with the maturity of a young child, the powerset of the first one and the intellect of the second.
  • Badass Family:
    • The Wilsons; the patriarch is world's most badass and dreaded assassin, the son is a Handicapped Badass who can Body Surf anytime and the illegitimate daughter who is a McNinja metahuman with Healing Factor and enhanced physiology (Super-Toughness, Super-Strength, Super-Reflexes).
      • Averted by Slade's wife, Adeline, of all people; in the comics she was a military Action Girl, and the one who trained Slade when he served in the army, before marrying him. In the show, she seems to be just a housewife.
    • The Batfamily: Batman who is world's best detective and finest Badass Normal who can keep up against metahumans with god-like powers, and his adopted sons: Dick Grayson, former Robin, a Circus Brat who is the brave leader of the eponymous Titans; and Jason Todd, formerly a street kid who vandalized the Batmobile, now-the new more than trigger happy Robin.
      • Barbara Gordon, who is an Action Girl and a close friend of Batman.
  • Badass Normal: Dick Grayson, Jason Todd, Bruce Wayne, Hank Hall and Dawn Granger particularly.
  • Bad Future: "Dick Grayson" shows a mixed example, with all the Titans having turned out almost ridiculously well but this trope having hit Gotham hard, with every member of Batman's supportive cast dead, missing or crippled, Batman himself increasingly isolated and unhinged, and crime having risen to a point where there's no longer a bad part of town because that would imply that there's such a thing as a non-bad part of town. This is because Trigon wants Dick to willingly choose darkness over light. If he turns his back on the exaggerated goodness of his own life to wade back into the exaggerated badness of Gotham, he's implicitly admitting that that's where he truly belongs.
  • Bad Guys Do the Dirty Work: Downplayed. Dick Grayson wants the man who killed his parents, Tony Zucco, dead. Instead of killing him personally, though, he allows Maroni thugs to gun him down.
  • Bar Brawl:
    • In 1x03, Kory fights a bunch of assholes in a cafeteria.
    • Jason Todd starts a fight in his own debut episode.
  • Battle Couple:
    • Hawk and Dove; their Establishing Character Moment together, was to show them fighting side by side some mooks.
    • Dick and Kory; they fought together against Deathstroke in order to save Jason's life from the latter.
  • Battle in the Center of the Mind: In the first episode of season 2, each Titan has to confront their darkest inner demons, in hallucinations induced by Trigon to take control of them.
  • Batman Gambit: Slade's plans involving the Titans. Not surprising giving that he is the evil counterpart of the Trope Namer. He uses their weaknesses against them, breaking them apart from inside out.
  • Big Bad: In Season 1, Trigon, who works behind the scenes, as Titans are facing with his acolytes that try to summon him. Notably, the season ends on a cliffhanger and Trigon is only killed in the following season's premiere.
  • Big Bad Duumvirate: Jason Todd and Jonathan Crane work together as the joint villains of season 3.
  • Big Bad Ensemble: Season 2 has three main villains who work independently of each other. The most prominent one is Slade Wilson, whose appearance causes the Titans, both original and new, to team up. Mercy Graves, leader of Cadmus Laboratories, shows up midseason to hunt the group after they begin hosting their creation, Conner. Finally, Kory's sister, Blackfire, appears in the B-plot, attempting to murder her and eliminate any potential challenger to the throne of Tamaran. By the end, Slade is dead and Mercy is defeated, while Blackfire remains at large.
  • Big Eater: Raven watches in shock as Rita Farr piles a massive heap of onion rings, spaghetti, and cooked meat onto her plate, and then drowns the whole thing in gravy.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The Season 2 finale, "Nightwing". The Titans reunite, save Jericho, kill Deathstroke, and free Conner and Gar from Cadmus' control. However, Donna sacrifices herself to save civilians from a falling transmission tower, Rachel takes a leave of absence to find a way to bring her back, Hank and Dawn have not resolved their relationship issues, and Jason remains estranged from the group, although he shows up to see off Donna's coffin being transported to Themiscyra. Plus, at the very end, Kory's sister, Blackfire, comes to Earth to hunt her.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: Titans takes total advantage of its R rating, showing a lot of explicit violent scenes to the point of Nausea Fuel.
  • Body Horror:
    • When not taking a human form, Rita Farr slumbers in her room as a massive, maggot-like fleshy, pulsating mass.
    • Beast Boy's transformations sometimes feature elements of this. Rather than simply be the instantaneous human-to-animal change from the comics and cartoons, it actually takes time, and is more like a werewolf transformation, complete with cracking limbs, and his body contorting into its new shape.
  • Boom, Headshot!: Is one of Deastroke's MO on his job.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy:
    • The Nuclear Family is formed by once innocent people who were kidnapped and brainwashed into becoming Ax-Crazy killing machines.
      Dick: The way they're reacting. I've seen this behavior back in Gotham. They're brainwashed.
    • Season 2 starts with everybody but Gar being brainwashed by Trigon. By the end of season 2, Garfield himself is brainwashed by CADMUS, and the results are really not pretty for his sanity.
  • Breaking the Fellowship: It happens several times in the show.
    • In "Jericho", The OG Titan team falls apart after Jericho's death.
    • In Season 2, the original and new Titans team up to fight Deathstroke. However, thanks to his machinations, the team bitterly split up in the ninth episode, "Atonement", after Dick reveals the truth about Jericho's death. The last four episodes partly deal with the Titans Putting the Band Back Together. By the end of the season, the Titans have reunited again, but not completely, since Donna is dead, Rachel goes to Themiscyra to find a way to resurrect her, and Jason still feels betrayed by the others and decides to keep his distance.
  • Break the Cutie:
    • Garfield cheerfully mentions in Season 1, he never killed. Comes episode 7 where, on animal instinct, he mauls an asylum doctor to death after said doctor attacks Rachel; he winds up traumatized. Then comes Season 2, where he is almost killed by his own Brain Washed friends at Trigon's orders; then he gets brainwashed himself by Cadmus Labs and is forced by Mercy Graves to cold-bloodily murder civilians. He suffers a total emotional breakdown after this.
    • Rachel, her father is a Satanic Archetype, who created her for the sole purpose of bringing him on Earth dimension to install Hell on Earth. But in order to do that, he has to break her heart, which he does, with the help of her mother and an almost dead Garfield.
  • Broad Strokes: While Crisis on Infinite Earths (2019) establishes that Titans and Doom Patrol exist on different universes, Season 4 confirms that some variation of Doom Patrol did occur on Earth-9 with the appearance of Joivan Wade as Cyborg along with Robotman and Negative Man.
  • Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: Dawn is the gentle Blondie to Hank's Jerk Jock brooding boy.
  • Brother–Sister Team:
    • In "Hank and Dawn", it is revealed that the first person who wore the mantle of Dove was Hank's half-brother, Don. After the tragic accident that claimed the lives of Don and Dawn's mother, the persona passed to her.
    • In "Nightwing", Rose manages to bring out Jericho's consciousness out of Slade. Since Jericho's body had died years ago, he has to share Rose's body to continue living from now on.
  • Brought to You by the Letter "S":
    • Both Jason and Dick (used to) wear an "R" over the left side.
    • Superboy is wearing from time to time a black shirt with the classic red "S" on the chest.
    • Donna used to sport a stylized "W" belt before moving on from being Wonder Girl.
  • Cain and Abel: Blackfire is quickly established as Starfire's older, murderous sister. She assassinated her own parents to seize the throne of Tamaran for herself, and by the end of Season 2 she comes to Earth to kill Starfire.
  • Cartridges in Flight: From the slow-motion scene where a thug shoots Starfire, its clear when a bullet is fired, it clones its own casing. This new magic casing stays attached to the bullet throughout its whole travel time. The original casing is ejected from the port.
  • Cast Full of Pretty Boys: The male Titans are either Pretty Boys (Jason, Gar, Jericho), Hunks (Hank, Garth), or both (Dick, Conner).
    • The villains get this as well; Slade Wilson from Season 2 is a notable example, with his ripped muscular body being exposed a few times just for the sake of fanservice.
  • Casting Gag: Some of them in the Japanese dub:
  • Celebrity Paradox: Iain Glen playing Bruce Wayne. He was also in Game of Thrones, which Rachel is seen watching. What's more, she pronounces the word "khaleesi" at one point. Jorah Mormont (Glen's character in Game of Thrones) pronounced it every time he addressed Daenerys Targaryen.
  • Central Theme:
    • Should you repress your darker impulses, or find a productive use for them? The first season shows that neither choice is without its problems.
    • Second season deals with the Family of Choice theme and how easily the lies and consequences of unresolved issues of the past can destroy even the longest and fire-forged friendships. The series goes it's way to show that gathering a group of people with huge personal issues together to form a team can result into into a very dysfunctional environment. On the other hand, being split is hardly better and results in just more problems for everyone, especially when all the problems that destroyed the OG Titans team threatens to affect the young generation too. Is only when everyone finally choses to take responsibility for their mistakes, the old bonds are rebuild, though not without repercussions.
  • Character Focus: The show has a lot of A Day in the Limelight episodes that goes in depth about the characters.
  • Character Title: Many episodes are titled after the focus character of the day.
  • The Chew Toy: Jason Todd and Garfield Logan big times in Season 2. The writers made sure to hit them both from every direction: kidnapping, torture, harsh treatment from their own friends, mental breakdown. Interestingly, this plays into their storyline in season 3: Jason eventually has a breakdown and becomes a villain, while Gar, on account of a shared suffering, is the only one in the team who still believes that he can be redeemed.
  • Christianity is Catholic: Raven's mom's house has several Catholic crucifixes, crosses and icons.
  • Cliffhanger: The show has become notorious for using cliffhangers on the most tense moments.
    • The final of Season 1 ends up with two cliffhangers, with a Dick possessed by Trigon's evil magic and succumbing to his darker demons, while the second introduces a mysterious young man evading a lab. In both cases, the audience has to wait for a full year until next season.
    • Season 2 takes it up to eleven with almost every episode having a cliffhanger.
      • Episode 3 ends up with Jason kidnapped by Deathstroke and Gar finding just a trail of blood. Next episode is a whole flashback episode.
      • Episode 5 continues from where 2x03 was left, but also ends up with a cliffhanger with Jason falling to his death because of Deathstroke.
      • Episode 6 introduces us to Conner Kent, who is the mysterious young man that escaped from a Cadmus lab in Season 1's final. Only by the end of the episode, the show catches on from where the previous episode ended. Jason is saved, but Conner himself gets shot with kryptonite, while his dog, Krypto is taken away.
      • Episode 7 is ending with Jason trying to kill himself until Dick tries to stop him by to starting to confess why there is so much bad blood in the team. Only next episode, we learn the circumstances of what truly happened.
      • Episode 9 ends up with a Dick Grayson arrested for attacking two airport cops.
      • Episode 11 final centers around Garfield being brainwashed by Cadmus, killing a scientist in the process.
  • Cluster F-Bomb:
    • Special mention goes for Jason who cannot talk without dropping the f-bomb every 2 words.
    • The rest of the main cast swears everytime they are angry or upset over something.
  • Combat Parkour: Dick, Jason and Rose.
  • Composite Character:
    • Just like in the animated series, Robin is Dick Grayson, but has Tim Drake's bo staff.
    • Shyleen Lao is the name of a rather obscure Doom Patrol member in the comics with Playing with Fire powers (codename Fever). This version is An Ice Person, suggesting the better known Arani Desai/Celsius, who was both. Early publicity even called the character Arani Desai.
    • Jericho Wilson has elements of his brother, Grant, in his characterization and Grant hasn’t been seen nor mentioned, suggesting this.
    • Rose Wilson borrows some characteristics from Terra's animated version; from being trained and manipulated by Slade to spy on the Titans only to realize he deceived her and take him down like Terra, to her short-lived affair with Jason Todd.
  • Conservation of Ninjutsu: The sleeper agent mooks all have explosives implanted in their heads to keep them from talking. Their handler is implant-free, yet his organization will send a kill squad after him as soon as he’s compromised, and he knows they will do this.
  • Convection, Schmonvection: In one episode Kory Anders uses her solar-powered fire bending powers to torch a bad guy and his cronies so badly they turn to ash sculptures that eventually crumble for dramatic effect. (To put this in perspective, it takes about 90 minutes at 871–982 °C (1,600–1,800 °F) to cremate a corpse.) Cue the mostly intact photo of Rachel right behind him that gives Kory her next clue on who might help her uncover her identity.
  • Conversational Troping: It happens between Rose and Jason when he wants to show her more intimates aspects of his life.
    Rose: Explains why you're so dramatic.
    Jason: And I used to think they were losers, but looks who ended up in a mask and a cape.
    Rose: You're not as shallow as you seem.
    Jason: Compliments really aren't your strong suit, huh?
    Rose: I mean, I assumed you were some rich asshole. Born on third, thinking he hit a triple. But don't get me wrong, it's still totally lame that your big secret is that you're a theater nerd.
    Jason: Thespians, ok? No theater nerds.
    Rose: So, are there anymore Plot Twists or can we go?
  • Cool Mask:
    • Dick, Jason, Hank and Dawn all sport masks to cover up their identities.
    • Slade too; through in Jason's eyes is rather funny looking.
  • Cool Old Guy:
    • Bruce Wayne is going strong as Batman even in his old age and mentored Dick and Jason.
    • Negative Man is possibly older than Bruce, and can turn the art of cooking into the most badass thing ever.
  • Create Your Own Hero: In Season 3, Jason inadvertently leads Tim into a path of heroism when a drug-fueled violence he instigates wounds Tim's father. This causes Tim to start pursuing the Titans so can become the third Robin.
  • Creepy Gym Coach: As a child and teenager, Hank was sexually abused by his wrestling coach.
  • Cross-Referenced Titles:
  • Custom Uniform of Sexy: "Titans"? More like " We are very sexy heroes and we want you to know this by wearing very tight latex costumes".
  • Dark Action Girl:
  • Dark and Troubled Past: The first incarnation of the eponymous Titans has a collective troubled past with Deathstroke that gets entirely explored in Season 2. It starts with Deathstroke killing not just any member of the team, but the younger member and The Heart of the team; Aqualad. As revenge, the Titans decide to use the villain's family against him and approach his son in order to do so. As expected, Slade is not pleased to know his son, Jericho was approached by them. Everything culminates in the end with Jericho doing an Heroic Sacrifice in order to stop Deathstroke from killing Dick. It ends with the team disbanding and Titans Tower abandoned for good 5 years.
    • Inverted by Starfire of all people. This iteration of her was never sold into slavery, experimented on or forced to watch her homeworld being destroyed. While she does mention she has little freedom of choice as royalty, she also had a decent life on Tamaran, as opposite to the comics. She has ran into more troubles living on Earth than on Tamaran: amnesia, torture, experiments, Mind Rape, getting shot and hunted down by her sister.
  • Darker and Edgier: Unlike past versions, this setting is firmly in the R-rated territory with swearing, brutal action (including bone snaps, people getting shot, burned, and mangled), and an overall darker tone taking advantage of being on a streaming service, like what the MCU's Netflix shows are. All while also still being about superheroes unabashedly like the source.
  • Dance Battler:
    • Dawn has very lithe movements, given that she used to be a ballerina before taking the mantle of Dove.
    • Rose is also well-versed in doing dance movement while fighting, best seen in a friendly brawl with Dick.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Several characters.
    • Jason Todd combines his snarkiness with a lot of swearing.
    • Dick seems to be the sarcastic type.
    • Rachel is just as deadpan as her animated counterpart.
    • Rose is rather mocking and trolling.
    • Jericho is the resident Disabled Snarker.
    • Slade has his moments.
    • In season 3, Jonathan Crane often cracks wise.
  • Death is Cheap: The show is not afraid to kill off important characters, because it certainly doesn't keep them dead for too long either, and often without any lasting psychological impact on the plot or on the character.
    • Season 2 has Jericho whose body was dead, but his spirit survived in his father's body and his sister Rose, who got killed several seconds by Raven's evil side only to provide some angst for the later.
    • Season 3 even takes it up to eleven with the revived characters:
      • In the first few minutes we witness the death of Jason Todd at the hand of the Joker, which has no impact on the character. In the comics, his death is what defines the character the most, as well his motivations; in the show his main motivation is feeling betrayed by what happened before being killed.
      • Donna Troy is back in this season ans her death has not lasting impact on her, except for missing in the first few episodes.
      • Tim Drake dies and comes back two episodes later, and even completely healed from his bullet wound, for some reason.
      • And lastly Dick himself gets shot in the back and dies, than gets revived by being thrown in the Lazarus Pit and comes back as if nothing happened to him.
  • Decomposite Character: Raven's mother, Angela Roth, is separated into two characters in the show; her biological mother Angela Azarath and her adoptive mother Melissa Roth.
  • Dirty Cop: After the Titans tried to turn themselves in and with Barbara shooting Fletcher, Crane started to recruit anyone inside Gotham City Police willing to be paid off.
  • Downer Beginning: The first episode begins with a vision to the Flying Grayson's deaths.
  • Downer Ending: Season One ends with Trigon being summoned to Earth by Rachel's real mother, and their corrupting/brainwashing Dick Grayson with a nightmare that ends with him killing a murderous Batman, leading to him accepting the darker impulses he wanted to suppress.
  • The Dreaded: Trigon is an interdimensional satanic God of Evil and Slade is pretty much the most feared and skilled assassin in the world.
  • Drink-Based Characterization: In 1x05, Kory goes to a market to buy an alcohol drink, but she cannot decide which one, so the saleswoman divides the drinks based on the type of people that are buying them.
    Kory: ...Any suggestions?
    Saleswoman: Well, folks who wanna party usually buy beer. Folks who wanna think, they buy whiskey. You kind of gotta line it up with your intended activity.
    • In the end, Kory chooses a tequila, an alcoholic beverage which is often drank in telenovelas (at least) before intimate times...
  • Dumb Muscle: The hitman sent to capture Raven in the first episode. He knows Raven is superpowered. He could have showed up with a group of guys, captured the mom before hand, and used her as leverage to get Raven to cooperate. Instead, he shows up alone, confuses Raven with some plot bombs about her real parents, and before Raven get get past the initial shock, he executes the mom in front of her. Obviously Raven blows up at him, and he fails to capture her.
  • Dysfunction Junction: Just about every main character has a personal trauma that messed them up, NO EXCEPTION.
    • Raven's the hybrid daughter of Trigon. Here, she had an unhappy home and school life due to her magical powers which she doesn't understand, with her mother being the only person who cares about her. Had, because she's orphaned in the first episode by people trying to kidnap her, and she goes on the run to escape them. She also fearfully talks about "the darkness" feeling good. The first trailer also implies she will be put in a religious institution.
    • Dick's parents died when their trapeze performance was sabotaged causing both of them to fall to their deaths, a form of Death by Origin Story. Dick believed someone murdered them, but many people wrote it off as an accident. In addition, he was taken in by Batman himself, but Dick had since parted with him on a very sour note.
    • Beast Boy: His intro-flashback puts him in Congo, with what looks like a nasty case of Ebola.
    • Jason Todd as he puts it in his own words: 'Dad was an asshole who got himself killed, mom was an addict. I did the whole delinquency tour: foster care, juvie, lived on the streets.'
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Donna Troy appears in a photograph and phone contact list during the second episode of Season 1 before making her official introduction in six episodes later.
  • Experienced Protagonist:
    • The OG Titans: they were "heroing around" with at least 5 years before present events, with some of them, like Donna, Aqualad and Dick serving as sidekicks since childhood.
    • Jason Todd too; he was already Robin for a year before the events from Season 1.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: Both Rachel and Kory sports new hairstyles as a visual cue for the 4 months time skip and personal change.
  • Evil Feels Good: In her character teaser, Raven fearfully talks about how feeling "the darkness" (likely referring to her demonic heritage) feels good.

  • Fair Cop:
    • After leaving Gotham, Dick sets up as a police officer in Detroit (instead of the fictional Bludhaven in the comics) while also protecting the city as a Vigilante Man.
    • Lindsey Gort as Dick's partner, Amy Rohrbach.
  • Famed In-Story: At the start of the series, the Justice League have been operating for decades and their members (Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, etc.) are famous throughout the world. Dick also used to lead another group of Titans five years ago which while not as famous as the Justice League still have people who remember their heroics back in the day.
  • Fanservice:
    • Because of course you have to clean your superhero costume gear naked from the waist up after a hard night's vigilante-ing when you have a physique like Dick Grayson.
    • Viewers get treated to some (non-frontal) nudity from both Hank and Dawn in their flashback episode.
    • Also, this goes without saying for Starfire. Anna Diop certainly isn’t hard to watch.
    • Conner breaks out of Cadmus Labs while naked, which is understandable, since he was never meant to go outside anyway. But there's no reason why the Titans decide to strip him buck naked after he is injured by the Kryptonite gun, rather than searching for a hospital gown or something, except for this. As a result, when the team have to neutralize the Kryptonite poisoning, Kory is forced to hug the completely naked Conner.
  • Fantastic Angst:
    • Kory feels like she is belonging nowhere for being an alien princess stranded on Earth; though, in the same time, she came to love Earth for the freedom of choice that humanity has to offer.
    • Superboy, being the clone of Superman and Lex Luthor is more than enough to give him identity issues.
    • When your father is a powerful demonic entity, angsting over it really is a proper reaction.
    • Anyone would wonder why they are alive from incidents that usually would kill a person, as Rose can tell you.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: Despite being Darker and Edgier, the show doesn't try to hide its superhero roots. The main trio is a Badass Normal martial artist, an alien princess, and an empath of demonic origin. Then you have a guy who can shapeshift to any animal, an Amazonian clone, two bird-themed heroes who act as a Battle Couple, and the villains include a master of illusion, a master of blood magic, and a literal demon who's the father of said empath.
  • Food Porn: Dinner with the Doom Patrol, my god. Larry Trainor must be one hell of a cook.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • In "Together", Gar innocently says he never had bitten or attacked a person. It doesn't stick, and when it happens, he suffers a mental breakdown.
    • In Season 2, for some reason, Slade is less likely to engage in direct lethal force than he used to 5 years before present events as he seems to suffer from some locomotor disease; it turns out it was because he kept Jericho trapped in his mind for the last 5 years and his locomotor problems were the result of Jericho trying to gain control over his father's body and release himself.
    • When Rose hears the OG Titans discussing in secret her fate, they mention her brother, she has no reaction to hearing her brother was in the Titan tower; yet several episodes later she reacts angrily upon finding Jericho's old vinyl, discovering that Jericho was in the tower and believes everyone has lied to her. It turns out she knew the whole time Jericho was friend with the OG Titans.
    • In "Dick Grayson" and "Trigon", Trigon brainwashes Dick by showing him a dream where he has a child with Dawn and Batman kills the Joker. Comes Season 3, Bruce really crosses his most sacred rule and kills the Joker for murdering Jason.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: In "Hawk and Dove", there can be seen a photo for a second, of Dick, Dove, Hank and Donna being in Titans' tower. Garth not being there, kind of metaforeshadows his demise.
  • Friends Are Chosen, Family Aren't: Very much the point of the Titans, as is made explicit to an Anvilicious extent in the last episode of Season 2. More or less all of them come from dysfunctional or abusive backgrounds, but (if they can just stop fighting each other) the team is their Family of Choice.
  • Gender-Equal Ensemble:
    • The original main characters are Dick (M), Kory (F), Rachel (F), and Gar (M). Season 2 saw the Promotion to Opening Titles of Dawn (F), Hank (M), Jason (M), and Donna (F), plus the additions of Rose (F) and her father Slade (M).
    • The Titans zigzag this. The original Titans had three men (Dick, Hank, and Garth) versus two women (Donna and Dawn), but Garth was later killed, playing this trope straight. The new Titans initially consist of the above Dick, Kory, Rachel, and Gar. At the season 2 premiere, Jason joins and Kory leaves, leaving Rachel as the sole girl. After a season-worth tribulations that see the Titans breaking up and rejoining, the current lineup now consists of five men (Dick, Gar, Hank, Jericho, and Conner) and three women (Kory, Dawn, and Rose).
  • Girly Bruiser: Kory And Dawn are both very feminine and badass.
  • Greater-Scope Paragon:
    • Batman, Wonder Woman, Superman and Aquaman are acknowledged to exist within the Titanverse, with Batman even making an appearance, but none of them play a direct role in show.
    • Batman, however, does play an important role late in Season 2, when he (apparently) summons the female Titans to convince them to regroup, and then in the season finale when he hijacks Mercy Graves' teleconference with Conner's bidders.
  • Helmets Are Hardly Heroic: Oddly Robin, because with the number of references they make to the Nolanverse Batman, that one would have encouraged more head gear.
  • Heroes Unlimited: Season 2 expands the main cast from 4 main characters to no less than 10.
  • Heroic Sacrifice:
    • In "Deathstroke", Dick tries to turn himself over to Slade in order to save Jason. Slade has none of that and drops Jason anyway.
    • "Jericho" reveals that Garth's death in "Aqualad" was actually this; he had protected Donna's Amazonian benefactor, Jillian, from being shot at by Slade. However, Slade eventually manages to murder her, rendering Garth's sacrifice pointless. From the same episode, Jericho also shields Dick from being stabbed by his father. "In "E.L._O", however, Dick realizes that Jericho actually transferred his spirit to Slade at the last second.
    • In "Nightwing", Donna sacrifices herself to prevent a transmission tower from falling down on civilians and Dawn, causing her to be electrocuted to death.
  • Hollywood Acid: The hydrofluoric acid shown in the episode with the Melting Man is a glowing yellow or sickly green gel that causes whatever it comes into contact with to steam and hiss. While it is highly lethal to humans, it is actually a weak acid that doesn’t react violently with ferrous metals. Overlaps with Artistic License – Chemistry, especially when you ask yourself how run-of-the-mill mobsters are able to shoot this acid out of...(wait for it)...metal assault rifles.
  • Human Alien: Kory, Superboy, and Faddei.
  • Idiot Ball: In season 3's "Hank & Dove", Hank warns his teammates not to take it easy on Jason. In the next few scenes, Hank lets Jason convince him to strip naked and swim through a filthy swimming pool.
  • I Hate Past Me: Implied to be the reason why Dick treats Jason Todd with disdain.
  • Impromptu Tracheotomy: In a rare non-lethal example, Robin's first fight scene has him stab two mooks in the throat with birdarangs.
  • Instant Sedation: To kidnap her, Raven is nearly instantly sedated by Officer Jones at the Detroit Police station before he shoves her in a cruiser.

  • Killed Off for Real: The show mostly adheres to Superhero Movie Villains Die trope. As for the heroes, the trope applies to Garth/Aqualad (who died in the flashback), and Hank (who is killed off in season 3, then decides not to come back to the living world when a chance presents itself).
  • Klingons Love Shakespeare: Tamaraneans like Kory and Faddei seem to be very in fond of human cultures. Kory is enjoying the aesthetics and music of The '70s, and loves eating donuts; while Faddei likes to watch cartoons like Donald Duck and mentions he stopped at food and drinks when he had to study our ways of living.
  • Knight of Cerebus:
    • Trigon: First season builds Trigon up upon being an inter-dimensional entity capable of destroying entire worlds. In the end, this is averted in first episode of season 2. He gets easily defeated by Raven.
    • Deathstroke: Slade may not be a non-human demon, but he managed to scare most of the main characters to the point where they can barely function as human beings. Things are never light around this guy. Never.
  • Legacy Character: Jason Todd succeeds Dick Grayson as Robin, while Dawn Granger succeeds Don as Dove some time after his death.
  • Leitmotif: Played with. While no character is associated with a particular song, the Titans seem to each be associated to a certain genre or mood of music. Starfire in particular is the most blatant example, as many of her scenes are accompanied by 70's music including Boney M.'s cover of Bobby Hebb's "Sunny," and Donna Summer's "I Feel Love". Robin, on the other hand is more associated with rock music. Much of the score used in Raven's scenes also wouldn't be out of place in a supernatural horror film.
  • Live-Action Adaptation: Despite the Adaptation Distillation take, Titans mostly adapts stories from the Wolfman and Perez version of "Titans" that ran between 1980 and 1994, bringing them in trend with the 21 century versions of the Titans (for example, the Robin costumes are inspired by their DC Rebirth; and the romance between Rose and Jason was inspired by the brief affair they had in the New 52), while adding new and original twists to those stories. For example, the first two seasons are roughly live adaptations of The Terror of Trigon (which was also the very first Story Arc of the comics) and respectively, its most famous Story Arc, The Judas Contract.
  • Lonely Together: Dick and Raven share a close father/daughter bond based on their shared feelings of loneliness. She also develops a similar friendship with Gar (although more of a Ship Tease) for much of the same reason.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Inverted; Raven learns that her mother is not her "real" or birth mother just before she's murdered.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • Dick Grayson also knows as 'Richard'; his name is derived from the old Germanic elements " rík, rīc" (ruler, leader) and "hard" (strong, brave). Doubles as a Punny Name since Dick is literally the "brave leader" of the Titans.
    • Kory, the last name of her human alias is the German word for "different", fitting as she's an alien, who is stranded on a strange planet.
    • Subject 13 has no name at first since he was created on a laboratory, but he chooses later the name of "Conner" for himself. This name has Irish origins and is derived from the word "Conchobhar", which means "Lover of canines". Only fitting when your best friend is a dog.
    • Donna Troy. "Donna" means woman or lady in Italian, which is fitting when you are adopted in the free-man warrior society of the Amazons. Also, Troy has fallen, again.
    • Cliff Steele was a former human, now he is a brain caged in a metal body after a tragic accident.
    • Angela Azarath plays the role of a Lilith in the show. Yeah, so a woman named "Angela" showed her middle finger to those angelic beings in the moment she willingly has left herself impregnated by Trigon, basically a Satanic Archetype, gave birth to his daughter and made sure she will release Trigon from his prison to enslave the Universe.
    • Mercy Graves is security specialist at CADMUS Labs. Of course, she is anything but 'merciful' when she decides to torture Gar and make him kill innocent people. Her surname, "Graves" is an occupational name for 'steward', from the Middle English "greyve". She is also Lex Luthor's Number Two and enforcer.
  • The Mentor:
    • Batman and Wonder Woman used to sidekick Dick Grayson, Jason Todd and respectively Donna Troy.
    • Dick tries to mentor the new generation of young Titans.
  • More Deadly Than the Male: Generally speaking, the show presents the ladies as the strong sex and the gentlemen as the weak one. With very few exceptions, most of the women have a wide range of powers, while the males have more Badass Normals.
    • The team, both present and former members, has 5 females, of which only Dawn is a Badass Normal, while the guys are 7 at number, with 3 of them being Badass Normals. On the ladies side, there is Kory, an alien Warrior Princess with Super-Strength and capable of shooting fire blasts; Rose, a One-Woman Army Waif-Fu with enhanced abilities and unbeatable Healing Factor; Donna Troy, an Amazon with Super-Strength; and Rachel, a half demon girl, who, despite lacking any training, unlike the rest, has tremendous dark magical powers hard to control. On the guys side, there is Garth, with hydrokinesis; Conner who has some of Superman's powers; Jericho with body possession powers; and Gar, a shapeshifter. And while the guys' powers are not something to mess with, they are not as wide in range or powerful, to which one can add the fact that all of them are inexperienced fighters, and usually ends up as victims more often than the girls.
      • Subverted with Conner, who is the strongest physically and has the widest power set. Than double subverted by the fact that he still ends up captured and brainwashed by Mercy Graves, a Badass Normal Dark Action Girl who is also the only person in the cast able to critically injury Conner.
      • The girls are also presented to be not only more dangerous, but also more ruthless, having higher body count than their counterparts. For example, the first significant characters that kill, are Kory and Rachel. In the pilot episode, no less. Rose too implied to have killed several people offscreen.
    • While the main villains in the first 2 seasons are males: Trigon, a world conquering Satanic Archetype, and Slade, a metahuman who is also deadliest assassin alive, are taken down by their own daughters with relative ease.
  • Movie Superheroes Wear Black: Averted most of times, both heroes and villains have comicbook accuracy costumes.
    • Everybody who has a hero gear in the Titans, wears same bright colors they had in the comics.
    • Averted by Deathstroke too, who wears his trademark blue and orange color scheme with grey accents.
  • The Multiverse: Crisis on Infinite Earths established that Titans took place on Earth-9 in the Arrowverse multiverse. Season 4 has the show briefly explore the concept, reaffirming it's connection to the Arrowverse through cameo appearances of Barry Allen, Stargirl and Swamp Thing. However it also uses audio of Harley Quinn and the Joker from Harley Quinn (2019) along with audio of Jonathan Kent from Superman: The Movie while the Beast Boy of Teen Titans Go! briefly appears on a television, implying that they exist as separate realities.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: Negative Man apparently listens to AC/DC while cooking in the Doom Patrol's kitchen.
  • Mr. Fanservice: A lot of the male cast members are this. The creators did not miss this, having them show up shirtless aplenty, particularly Dick, Hank, and (from season 2 onwards) Conner. On the villain side, there's Slade Wilson, a certifiable hunk who gets shirtless a lot.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Starfire, even with her less skimpier costumes. Donna Troy is a subdued example; she never gets skimpy, but she is an Aloof Dark-Haired Girl who has an air of traditional feminine beauty in her.
  • Mythology Gag: Has its own page.
  • My Friends... and Zoidberg: When Donna Troy is inciting the OG Titans to fight Trigon:
    Donna Troy: Titans... And new Robin. Let's go!
  • Naked People Are Funny: In Beast Boy's character teaser, he transforms into a tiger and back. It takes Dick asking an innocent question and Starfire snickering for him to realize that he's completely naked.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Deathstroke the Terminator.
  • Never Heard That One Before: Dick's reaction to being called, well, a dick.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Jason announcing on Tv Live that the Titans are back puts everyone on harm.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: All over the place.
    • Jason sadistically beats the shit out of some cops that were just trying to do their jobs.
    • Deathstroke mopped the floor with Dick and Donna at different points of the story.
    • Dick does this several times in season 1, as he has problems controlling his violent side.
    • Hank and Dawn do this to the pedophile coach that abused the former as a child.
  • Old Superhero: The series is set long after the creation of the Justice League, as a result, a lot of established characters are far older than their comics incarnation. Bruce Wayne is in his late 50s and on the verge of retirement, his sidekick Dick Grayson is pushing 30s instead of a teenager, and Alfred Pennyworth has died of old age. Most of Batman's Rogues Gallery have been rotting in prison for years, as well.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome: After the Titans break up again, Jason and Rose go on their way together to Gotham City, where they happen to destroy the business of some drug dealers and beat them. Unfortunately, the series doesn't bother to show how those two amazing fighters would work together as Battle Couple because everything happened off-screen, we only know what happened because they mention it.
  • Omniglot:
    • As with the comics, Kory speaks many, if not all, languages. In addition to Tamaranean, she is fluent in English, German, Kryptonian (a dead language), and probably other Terran and non-Terran languages as well.
    • Donna has knowledge of the Tamaranean language, which proves vital in "Koriand'r".

  • The Password Is Always "Swordfish": Slade's password for his secret heavily weaponized lair is "JOEY".
  • Please Dump Me: After becoming an Official Couple offscreen, Rose starts to severely regret being The Mole for Deathstroke and what he has done to Jason, but she cannot reveal the truth yet, because she would risk his life again, preferring to just call herself "bad news". Rose prefers to act like a jerk in the hope Jason would break up with her and spare him of a broken heart and being hunted down by Deathstroke again. Jason quickly sees right through her, accusing Rose of pushing him away every time he tries to get close to her.
  • Plot-Driving Secret: Jericho's apparent death drives everyone's actions in Season 2. The old generation of Titans tries to keep out of loop the young Titans about the Tower's darkest secrets, until Deathstroke returns hungry for revenge. When the secret about Jericho finally comes out, it looks like the story is over and everybody go in their own way. But just when everything is settled down, Dick discovers that Jericho's spirit is alive inside his father's body and Rose confesses out of quilt to Jason that she is a was a spy sent by Slade to destroy the Titans from inside out.
  • Poor Communication Kills: The Titans are not the best at communication; they have trust issues, keep secrets from others, fight among themselves and bring unfounded accusations against each other ( most notable Jason Todd).
  • Precision F-Strike: In the first trailer, to establish this isn't a kids show.
    Criminal: Where's Batman?!
    Robin: Fuck Batman.
  • Previously on…: Each episode begins with a recap of previous events.
  • Prison Episode: Most of "Fallen" and "E.L._.0" centers around an incarcerated Dick in a Nevada prison after attacking two cops in previous episodes. The two episodes show Dick going through an important emotional and psychological transformation leading to him finally finding his own hero path.
  • Promoted to Love Interest:
    • Dawn was never a love interest for Dick in the comics, not even as a flirt. Here, she partially takes Barbara's place in a confusing love triangle.
    • Neither did Donna and Aqualad ever have any interest in each other more than collegiality.
  • Promotion to Opening Titles: Alan Ritchson (Hank Hall), Minka Kelly (Dawn Granger), Conor Leslie (Donna Troy), and Curran Walters (Jason Todd) all get upgraded to series regulars starting Season 2.
  • Proud Warrior Race: Tamaraneans and the Amazons.
  • Putting the Band Back Together:
    • Early in season 2, Dick invites the remaining original Titans — Donna, Hank, and Dawn — to join the new Titans combating Deathstroke.
    • After the Drama Bomb of "Atonement", the Titans both old and new split up, with Dick and Gar as the only ones remaining in Titans Tower. The rest of season 2 deal with them resolving their differences so they may join forces again.
  • Race Lift:
    • Beast Boy, who is white in the comics, is played by Ryan Potter, who is half Japanese and half white.
    • While the Acolyte usually wears makeup to appear to be a blue demon, he is a white man in the comics. Here he's played by Afro-Swiss actor J Jarreth Mertz.
    • Negative Man is also normally white and is played by black Caribbean-born Canadian actor Dwain Murphy (although this is a downplayed example, as we never get to see his face, and his voice is provided by the white Matt Bomer).
    • Don Hall, white in the comics because he's Hank Hall's brother, is played by black British actor Elliot Knight. The Halls are half-brothers here.
    • Deathstroke, who is white in the comics and all of his previous live-action incarnations (save for the Arrowverse version who is played by Esai Morales, who is Puerto Rican). His son and daughter, Joe Wilson/Jericho and Rose Wilson/Ravager, are also been given race lifts and will be played by Chella Man and Chelsea Zhang, who are both Chinese.
  • Rage Against the Mentor: Dick had a falling-out with Bruce prior to the series, and has been gone from Gotham for over a year when the series begins. They eventually reconciled in Season 2.
    Dick: I guess we had different ideas on how to do the job.
  • Really Royalty Reveal: Kory reveals to Donna she is to-be-next Queen of Tamaran, leaving the latter astonished.
    Donna: Since when do you need a bodyguard?
    Kory: Royal Protection Services.
    Donna: "Royal", as in, like... Fuck. Does Dick know? [Kory nods as "No"]. So you're like...
    Kory: On my planet, I am next in line.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni:
    • The mild-mannered Dawn and Hot-Blooded Hank.
    • While both characters are jaded Blood Knights, Dick is usually calculated and reflective over his actions, while Jason a rebellious teen who tends to act before thinking. This trope also reflects their views on violence: Dick is disgusted with the violence he is capable of, whereas Jason happily inflicts pain, while being even more violent.
    • The evil duo formed by The Stoic and aloof Slade and Large Ham Doctor Light.
    • Kory, a redhead alien woman with a witty tongue and fiery temper, who is also capable of shooting fire blasts; and Dick, who tends to wear blue, whose inner conflicts make him sully and unfriendly at first sight.
    • Kory and Rachel, in other words, a Fiery Red Head and an introverted blue-haired girl.
  • Relationship Revolving Door: The flashbacks reveal that Hank and Dawn broke up after dating for some time, with Dawn then dating Dick during their Titans years. After the tragic case with Jericho, however, Dawn broke up with Dick and went back to Hank. And then in "Atonement", Hank and Dawn break up again, seemingly for good.
  • The Reveal:
    • At the end of “Donna Troy”, we learn that Kory’s mission isn’t to protect Rachel... but to kill her.
    • Rachel is not a Child by Rape. Her biological mother was Evil All Along.
    • Jericho did die, or rather his body; his spirit was alive the whole time inside Slade's body.
  • Rewatch Bonus: Season 2 becomes a little more different with the reveal of Jericho being alive in his father mind, after he apparently died at his father's hands. There is a bit of foreshadowing during the whole season, namely in the episode 9, where Dick visits Slade right in his home and they have a heated discussion about Jericho. Slade looks like he has locomotor problems and needs to concentrate really hard to speak. And for a fraction of second, you can even see him starting to do sign language right before he has to turn around in his chair real fast... That's because Jericho jumped in Slade's body, before accidentally killing him years ago, and the only person who knew, was Slade himself. Other sign is the fact that he used to be more physically active and willing to engage in lethal force in flashbacks, than present day. It's because Jericho was affecting Slade's body motor functions in order to stop him from killing his friends.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: The original Titans are vengeful of Deathstroke for having killed Garth, one of their own. Special mention goes to Donna, who specifically chose to extend her stay on Earth so she can exact vengeance on him.
  • Rogues' Gallery Transplant:
  • R-Rated Opening: The SDCC 2018 footage features a violent beatdown, a dark and moody tone and the "fuck Batman" line, presumably for the benefit of those who assume that "Teen Titans = kid friendly".
  • Ruder and Cruder: As a result of the more darker take on the comics, the show also uses quite a lot of profanity, with every character dropping the f-bomb even several times on the same sentence, which is a big departure from the comics, despite the Truer to the Text adaptation. Is not that in the comics, the characters never used swearwords, but they never used any profanity stronger than PG-13 like "hell" and "damn", and occasionally "son of a bitch". This was mostly done to avoid the show to be seen as a live adaptation of a certain insanely popular cartoon, which led to the infamous "Fuck Batman" in the promotional trailer, said by no other, but Dick Grayson.
    • Starfire is the last character in the Titans comics who would use swearwords, as she is usually the most polite and friendliest of her teammates; here instead, she is less warm and well-mannered than her comic counterpart, using profanities from time to time, this being the biggest deviation from her original incarnation.
  • Running Gag:
    • Cops getting beaten.
      • Jason Todd takes his anger on them at the and of his own debut episode.
      • Rose Wilson is introduced in Season 2 being chased by cops after stealing a car. She mops the floor with them.
      • Conner Kent mistakes the cops for being the bad guys and beats the crap out of them.
      • Dick Grayson randomly attacks 2 cops to get himself imprisoned.
    • Season 2 has Conner showing up naked to others' astonishment, since he is mentally a baby and has no knowledge of modesty whatsoever.
  • Sci-Fi Writers Have No Sense of Scale:
    • During Kory's introduction - which is 'Outside Vienna' - we get to see a typical Austrian/German city sign, showing the end of one city and noting the distance to the next. The issue here is that the 'next' city over is apparently 852 kilometers (about 530 miles) away. Which would put it into a neighboring country, given that Austria has only a length of almost 600 km (372 mi) and a maximum width of 280 km (173 mi).
    • In 2x03, Faddei mentions that he traveled twenty million miles from planet Tamaran. Twenty million miles from Earth is still within the solar system. The Vega system (where Tamaran is in the comics) is twenty five light years, or about 150 trillion miles, away.
  • Second Episode Introduction:
    • Hank and Dawn made their debut on the second episode of Season 1. The same episode also has an Early-Bird Cameo for Donna Troy via photo and cellphone contact list.
    • In Season 2, Rose Wilson made her debut in the second episode.
  • Self-Serving Memory: In Season 3 many of the Titans have a very different recollection of Jason and his actions in Season 2 compared to what actually happened, often downplaying their own mistakes and focusing on his own. For starters, Kory talks about how he went after the Joker unprepared and alone just like with Deathstroke, except he actually went after Dr Light with Gar and actually won the fight until Deathstroke arrived which no one was expecting. Many characters refer to him to having issues, except most of his issues appeared after he was tortured and almost killed by Deathstroke, and they accused him without valid reason which added to his issues alongside Rose's betrayal. Finally, Dick talks about how the Titans were just as much his family as Bruce, except the only one he seemed to have any sort of friendship with was Gar.
  • Sequel Non-Entity: Rose and Jericho are absent in season 3, with no mention of why they are not with the Titans anymore. The only recognition that Jericho still exists is a single mention by Scarecrow, who notes that Dick befriended "that mute boy".
  • Sexy Shirt Switch: Kory wears Dick's grey blue t-shirt in season 1 after sharing the bed with him. Rose too, in 2x11.
  • Sharing a Body: In "Nightwing", Jericho's spirit possesses Rose's body, meaning the Wilson siblings will have to share a body from that point on.
  • Shipper on Deck:
    • Dawn was one for Donna and Garth.
    • Kory makes a lot of comments of Gar liking Rachel.
  • Shirtless Scene: Most male Titans have gone shirtless at some point in the series. Even Garth, who shows up in a single episode, gets a scene. The only exception is Jericho, but keep in mind that he wasn't officially part of the Titans before he permanently transferred his consciousness outside his body.
  • Show, Don't Tell: The show does its best to use clever shots and creative effects to convey emotions, scene motivations, and subtext without the necessity of exposition. For example, if there is a scene with two close characters, the lights will tend to have warm colors to inspire a sense of warmness and safety. Music also plays an important when it comes to communicating something about a character or the action.
    • There is a scene in season 1 where Dick returns to his apartment after beating some thugs. The entire scene is wordless, but it reveals a lot of things about Dick. He puts a song on his vinyl, while cleaning his Robin equipment, making him relatable to the watcher. Dick's angry face, his bruised body, the birdarangs that are covered with blood, are showing that his violent take on crime has consequences.
  • Shout-Out: You can find them here.
  • Something Person: Wonder Girl, Aqualad, Wonder Woman, Batman, Superman, Robotman and the list goes on.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Season 1 was well balanced for focusing only on Dick, Rachel, Kory and Gar. Comes Season 2, where the original Titans become the main focus at times, while the true protagonists (except for Dick) lose a lot of focus.
  • The Stinger: In the episode "Dick Grayson", a scene after the credits has the Project Cadmus facility located somewhere in Metropolis where "Subject 13", a clone of Superman, who escapes the containment in a laboratory and frees Krypto from a Kryptonite cage, whose eyes are glowing red.
  • Super Serum:
    • Slade received few bio-enhancements courtesy to HIVE program for creating super-soldiers.
    • Implied with Garfield Logan. It is possible that in order to save his life, Doctor Caulder injected Logan with a serum that turned him into a metahuman.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome:
    • Training from Hell for a pair of teenage boys doesn't help them become better adjusted adults. Instead, it makes them Child Soldier types that are ready to explode at any moment. It also creates a massive amount of resentment in Dick once he hits adulthood.
    • Just because you beat up the bad guys it doesn't mean you are gonna be welcomed, as the Mayor of Detroit can tell you about Robin. At the end of the day, in the face of law, a masked vigilante is still outside of the law, and chances are you are gonna end up being called a dangerous psychopath.
    • Kory kills several people and attacks cops in the first season, and takes Rachel with her. She is identified by the cameras and ends up being charged with attack, murder, arson and kidnapping a child.
    • After a while, age will have its say even for the vigilantes, especially if they are just Badass Normal. Hank is most visible example, as he already starts to feel it on its one body, after suffering multiple fractures, concoctions and hernia disc that didn't heal too well.
    • Raven is hunted by both the good guys as well as the bad due to her role as The Antichrist and Anti Anti Christ.
    • Even after becoming Nightwing and putting up more of a fight than ever before, Dick still loses against Deathstroke because at the end of the day Deathstroke is still enhanced to superhuman levels of physicality whilst Dick is still a regular human. Only when Rose joins the battle to help does Deathstroke actually go down.
    • In "Nightwing", the Titans' fight with Conner causes a massive collateral damage that ends up felling a transmission tower, which would have killed dozens of people if not for Donna sacrificing herself to temporarily stave it off, causing her to be electrocuted to death. Additionally, just the fact that Donna dies in such a mundane way, showing that superheroism doesn't always mean dying gloriously against some superpowered individuals.
    • Titans, for all of its fantastical elements, doesn't shy away from showing the realistic ends of having PTSD.
      • You either grow up a bitter adult with an unhealthy way of coping imposed by an older vigilante who had his own issues despite the best of intentions, in the case of Dick Grayson.
      • Or you can end up suicidal; after trying to take the matter into your own hands against a Professional Killer who has no qualms about killing teenagers too, and combined with other unresolved psychological issues since childhood, you will wake up daydreaming on and on the scene of your near death experience to the breaking point like Jason Todd.
    • If an entire group of full grown adults with years of experience cannot take on a dangerous assassin like Deathstroke, neither will a teenager who has up to a year training for vigilantism.
    • Is not like your double life as Deathstroke will ever catch you on and your own son will pay the price with a cut open throat, or killing The Heart of a group of superheroes will absolutely never make said heroes hunt you down for revenge just because they are the good guys. Right, Slade?
  • Team Mom:
    • Starfire, she is the first one the young Titans always call. She has a strong mother instinct and acts as such, like commanding respect from the younger Titans and being very protective of them, going to their rescue or arguing in their behalf.
    • Dawn is even more of a mother than Kory, having dealt with her boyfriends, friends, stray people, and basically everyone with TLC. It helps that she is the oldest in the group.
  • Team Power Walk: Season 2 final ends up with the new established team: Superboy, Ravager, Hawk, Dove, Starfire, Beastboy and Krypto, with Nightwing leading them as they walk in the foggy night to fight villains. They slowly walk toward the camera, determined and suited up for battle, to show that this time they are going to stay united.
  • Team Title: The title shortened from Teen Titans, the original name of the group in the comics.
  • Tell Me How You Fight: During a sparring between Dick and Rose, they discuss about fighting, expressing different views on it that can be seen even in their weapons. Rose chooses the deadly, quick katana, reflecting her elegant fighting style, full with dancing movements, but ready to give deadly blows at every turn. Dick instead has just a wooden staff, and his style is less about the killing blow and more about defense and knowing when to spare a life. Rose breaks his wooden stuff at the end, but he still defeats her.
  • Title In: The Show does this every time the plot moves to a new location via Establishing Shot.
  • Thou Shalt Not Kill:
    • Played with. Starfire is the only protagonist who uses lethal force as a first resort; the rest attempt to avoid it. By the end of the seventh episode, however, Rachel and Gar have both killed in self-defense, and Dick orders Kory to blow up a building full of unconscious mooks, presumably killing them.
    • Jason Todd makes no secret to Dick he has no problem with killing people. The only thing that stopped him from ever murdering someone was being Batman's partner.
  • Token Human: In the first season, Dick is the only Badass Normal of the new Titans; Gar is a metahuman, Rachel is half-demon, while Kory is an alien. This changes when Jason joins the group.
  • Token Non-Human: Whether you have demon-human hybrids like Rachel, Atlanteans like Garth, metahumans like Gar and Rose, former-human-turned-Amazon like Donna in the team, they still are technically humans of Terran origins. Kory is the exception because she is an alien woman from the planet of Tamaran.
    • Played With in the case of Conner. He was created in the CADMUS Laboratories by combining human and alien DNA. His genetic parents are Lex Luthor and Superman.
  • Token Romance: The romantic triangle involving Dawn-Dick-Hawk has little next to nothing in common with the main plot.
  • Together in Death: Donna Troy and Garth.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Dick’s police partner. She finds a crying stranger in her house. In Detroit. She leaves her gun out of reach before ever verifying the stranger’s intent, or whether they are armed. This eventually leads to her death.
  • Tracking Device: Batman has a thing for implanting tracking devices into his sidekicks.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: The trailer made for Season 2 final alluded a little too well which Titan is going to die in the final episode. In one of the scenes presented in the trailer, beside the coffin of said dead Titan, you can see a shining lasso. It didn't took too much for the audience to guess which Titan was gonna die. Further indications were seen with the hearse being at an airport where her body would be flown to Themyscira, Dawn kneeling in front of where her costume is stored, and Donna not being present with the other heroes in the funeral shot at the end.
  • Trauma Button: People falling gives Dick flashbacks to his parents' death.
  • Truer to the Text: This is the first Teen Titans series to fully embrace the maturity and grit of the comics, whereas the animated series had to be Lighter and Softer to be acceptable for young audiences, and the gag series caters solely to children.
  • Two First Names: Of course the show follows DC's trend of naming characters: Jason Todd, Rose Wilson, Slade Wilson, Garfield Logan, Donna Troy.
  • Two Lines, No Waiting: Season 2 in spades. Some subplots are more character driven, while others are action driven.

  • Uncomfortable Elevator Moment: Happens between Jason and Dick when they met first time. Feeling invaded by Jason's presence and a bit of jealousy, Dick asks him why he wants to be Robin so much, when he could be someone else. Jason simply goes on ranting about how cool is to be Robin. This scene compares the way both characters see the Dynamic Duo: Dick is disillusioned with Batman and blames him for his anger issues, while Jason is glorifying the Dark Knight.
  • Unseen No More:
    • Bruce Wayne was The Faceless in Dick's flashbacks and hallucinations throughout Season 1 before finally showing up in the flesh in the following season.
    • Likewise, Barbara Gordon was name dropped by Jason in Dick's hallucination in the Season 1 finale before being confirmed to appear in Season 3.
  • Unskilled, but Strong:
    • Superboy, as he is barely several weeks old, has no training, but he has most of Superman's power set.
    • Rachel, her magic is clearly very strong, but she has hard times controlling her powers because of her evil side.
    • Kory, she is alien powerhouse with super strength and fire-blasts, but unaware of this because of her early amnesia. As she regains her memories back, she becomes more of a Strong and Skilled case.
  • Utility Belt: The show has Batman and two Robins, need to say more?
  • Weapon-Based Characterization:
    • Rose has a preference for swords; when she dons the Ravager costume, she also gets her iconic twin katanas.
    • Dick uses R-shaped shurikens; as Nightwing he uses dual electro-shock sticks.
    • Donna Troy has her famous lasso.
  • Wham Line: The Reveal at the end of “Donna Troy”:
    Donna: It says here that [Kory’s] mission is to “secure” the Raven, which could mean “take control of”… or “take care of”.
    Dick: “Take care of”?
    Donna: Unless I’m reading this wrong… your friend Kory is here to kill Rachel.
  • Whole Episode Flashback: Titans has the habit of airing at least an episode full of flashbacks per season.
    • Season 1 has "Hank and Dawn", an Origin Story for the two superheroes predating the founding of the original Titans.
    • Season 2 has two instances of this. "Aqualad" focuses on the original Titans, revealing that there was a fallen Titan, Garth, who was killed by Deathstroke. "Jericho" is set several months after that, following the events that led to the original Titans splitting up.
    • Season 3 has "Lazarus", which takes place between the season 2 finale and season 3 premiere. It shows how Jason became addicted to Scarecrow's drug, and the fact that he actually died when the Joker beat him up, but was resurrected by the Lazarus Pit.
  • Wicked Cultured: William Wintergreen is always seen wearing a tuxedo and is very knowledgeable in Classical Mythology. Slade himself is sharp dressed and seen drinking refined wine several times.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Slade really couldn't care less if his target or opponent is a woman. He almost killed Donna by knifing her, gouged the eyeball of his own daughter and almost beat the crap out of Kory of all people (and aliens).
  • Would Hurt a Child: Several of the villains have no problem trying to hurt children too.
    • Hank's former football couch was a paedophile, and among his victims was a very young Hank too.
    • Trigon, a Satanic Archetype and a God of Evil, is also Rachel's father, and had no problems with literally ripping the heart out of his own daughter.
    • Dr. Light, is a bloody psycho who turned a kid into a living bomb, whom Hank had been helping with drug addiction.
    • The Acolyte, is an Well-Intentioned Extremist who tried to kill Rachel in order to prevent the coming of Trigon.
  • Wretched Hive: Implied, but it would be no wonder when it comes to Gotham City. While we see the city only in Dick's hallucinations as being a dangerous place to live in, a few characters make not very light statements about the city; like Jason's harsh life on the streets, the fact that many of its most dangerous criminals already exist their and Batman's own existence all seem to indicate this. When we finally see it, there's a Running Gag about how awful they can make it with nightly curfews and entire regions of the city that are no-go areas.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Titans


"I'm a Queen"

After Valeska murders her son Michael despite Starfire's assurances that he'd be safe, the angry Tamarinian tricks the mob leader into a handshake that leads to her being excruciatingly burned to nothing.

How well does it match the trope?

4.23 (13 votes)

Example of:

Main / ReducedToDust

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