Reviewer: Paul Sebert
Story Title: Beast Boys And Girls Part 3: Changelings
Written by: Geoff Johns
Penciled by: Tom Grummett
Inked by: Lary Stucker
Colored by: Jeromy Cox
Lettered by: Comicraft
Editors: Tom Palmer Jr., Eddie Berganza
Publisher: DC Comics
Geoff Johns “Beast Boys and Girls” arc has been a remarkably fun little ride, and a much needed breather for fans reeling from the two much more
serious arcs “A Kid’s Game” and “Raven Rising.” To make the long story short, Beast Boy’s lost his powers just as a an outbreak of the Sakutia
virus that made Garfield Logan all green and beastie strikes the city’s youth. Worse yet, a figure from Logan’s childhood, a malevolent scientist known as the Zookeeper has appeared with somewhat amoral aims towards our hero. Meanwhile Superboy travels to Gotham City to investigate the current editorial malpractice that’s happened to Robin.
Fans of Peter David’s Young Justice, and the lighter-hearted animated incarnation of the Titans should feel right at home in this story line, which while not totally comical certainly provides a refreshing break from the ultra-serious storylines that have dominated this summer. In fact my one complaint lies with the fact Johns named his villain Zookeeper, as I can’t read that name without being reminded of the “Less Than Hero” episode of Futurama.
“His crew includes a badger with a troubled past and nothing left to lose, an elephant who never forgets – to kill! And a seldom used crab named Lucky AKA Citizen Snips.”
Anyway this issue opens up with a brief cameo by Aquaman and the new Aqualass and then cuts back to where the last ended with our hero powerless
before his inhuman captor. Meanwhile the other Titans are still trying to control the chaos from the Sakutia virus outbreak, and Wondergirl finds herself confronted by Aries. Yes there’s a heck of a lot of stuff going on in this issue. And that’s all before a climatic battle which involves green and purple tyrannosaurs fighting it out in the streets of San Francisco.
The raucously fast-paced story is complemented by Tom Grummett’s pencils. To be quite honest, having been brought up on Todd Nauck’s Young Justice run, I kind of long for a more animated style look to these characters, but I can’t
find any fault with Grummett’s art. He gives the Zookeeper a very distinct menacing look when a lesser artist could have easily made the character look ridiculous.
In short, Teen Titans remains a consistently entertaining book and it’s nice to see that Geoff can do some stories in which our heroes aren’t facing imminent death or the end of the world.