Sunday, November 25, 2018

On The Air: Titans (2018)

Parents, ya might want to keep your kids away from these Titans.

Four years ago, TNT had ordered a pilot based on the long running DC Comics franchise. The pilot was entrusted to Oscar winner Akiva Goldsman ("A Beautiful Mind"), who wasn't exactly golden with pre-established franchises, having scripted both of Joel Schumacher's "Batman" movies, and had a hand in the feature film reboot of Lost in Space that flopped.

A couple of years later, TNT decided they were no longer interested, and Warner Bros., along with DC, decided to reboot the project for the now-active DC Universe streaming service. Goldsman was still attached, now joined by DC's Geoff Johns, and ultra-busy producer Greg Berlanti (Flash, Arrow, Supergirl, God Friended Me, etc.).

The first season is set for 12 episodes, and unlike Marvel-Netflix's family of series, will stream one at a time, so if you want to binge, you have to wait until after all 12 are available.

Much has been made online, for all the wrong reasons, of the casting of Anna Diop as Starfire. In the storyline, Princess Koriand'r, aka Kory Anders, aka Starfire, has lost her memory, but not her powers. Diop has acquitted herself in the role so far. Australian Brendan Thwaites plays Dick Grayson (Robin I/Nightwing), who has relocated from Gotham City to Detroit. Seems the posting is a call back to the disastrous decision made by DC to plant the Justice League in Motown in the mid-80's.

The plot centers on one Rachel Roth, aka Raven. Comics fans know that Raven, an empath, is the daughter of a demon from another dimension and a human mother, and that the Rachel Roth alias is a more recent creation, after Raven had been de-aged somewhat. Don't ask. Rachel's adoptive mom is played by Sherilyn Fenn (ex-Twin Peaks), and through the first couple of episodes is the only familiar name in the cast. That changes with the introduction of the Doom Patrol, who will be spun off into their own series. Brendan Fraser, who has seemingly dropped off Hollywood's radar, will voice Robotman.

Time now to take a look at the trailer. Parental discretion is strongly advised.

The Nuclear Family, a menace beginning in episode 2, were originally created as foes for The Outsiders in the mid-80's. It's part of the Berlanti philosophy to use villains from other books to fill out the rogues' gallery, a trend that started with Arrow cribbing from Batman's rogues gallery.

Rating: A.

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