Retro Trade Review: New Teen Titans Vol. 9 By Wolfman, Pérez, García-López & Others For DC Comics

Contains The New Teen Titans Vol. 2 #1-9 (August 1984 to June 1985)

Written by Marv Wolfman 

Co-plotted by George Pérez (#6)

Pencilled by George Pérez (#1-5), Dan Jurgens (#6), José Luis García-Lopéz (#7-9)

Inked by George Pérez (#1-2), Romeo Tanghal (#3-9)

Coloured by Adrienne Roy

Spoilers from thirty-five to thirty-six years ago

This marks the end of the stack of trades that I picked up about a year ago, for $5 each.  The Titans have, due to the timing of when I started to read this stack, been a constant of my Covid experiences.  I wish I could say that I was reaching the end of the pile as things are getting better, but instead it looks like we might be headed into darker times ahead (for which, I have a smaller stack of George Pérez’s Wonder Woman trades).

Anyway, I was skeptical of how much I would enjoy these books, because I’ve often found Marv Wolfman to be a dull character, and I’ve always disliked so many of the Titans (especially Raven).  Reading them all in order and in this comprehensive way, though, I grew to really like this book, and some of the characters I didn’t like before (although not Raven).  This ninth trade features the first nine issues of the relaunched New Teen Titans book, which got the deluxe format treatment, and was sold only in the direct market.  When that happened with the Legion of Super-Heroes, there was a noticeable jump in the overall quality of the writing and art, as well as the paper.  I’m curious to see if that happens here as well.

So, let’s see what there is to see…

This book features the following characters:

New Teen Titans

  • Jericho (Joseph Wilson; #1-9)
  • Cyborg (Vic Stone; #1-9)
  • Wonder Girl (Donna Troy; #1-9)
  • Changeling (Gar Logan; #1-9)
  • Starfire (Koriand’r/Kory Anders; #1-9)
  • Nightwing (Dick Grayson; #1-9)
  • Raven (#1-2, 5)
  • Lilith (#2-9)
  • Kid Flash (Wally West; #2-6)

Villains:

  • Trigon (#1-5)
  • Raven (#2-4)
  • Thia (Titan; #7-9)
  • Typhon (#9)

Guest Stars

  • Ed Koch (Mayor of New York; #6)
  • Superman (Clark Kent; #6)
  • Wonder Woman (Diana; #6)
  • Azrael (#6-9)
  • Aquaman (Arthur Curry; #6)
  • Aqualad (Garth; #6)
  • Aquagirl (Tula; #6)
  • Zeus (Greek god; #8-9)
  • Destiny (#8-9)
  • Hyperion (Titan; #8-9)
  • Cronus (Titan; #8-9)
  • Coeus (Titan; #8)
  • Phoebe (Titan; #8)
  • Oceanus (Titan; #8)
  • Mnemosyne (#9)
  • Themis (#9)
  • Kole (#9)
  • Hippolyta (Queen of the Amazons; #9)

Supporting Characters:

  • Myand’r (Kory’s father; #1)
  • L’uand’r (Kory’s mother; #1)
  • Ryand’r (Kory’s brother; #1)
  • Arella (Raven’s mother; #1-6)
  • Francis Kane (#2, 6)
  • Rudolph West (Wally’s dad; #6)
  • Mary West (Wally’s mom; #6)
  • Adeline Kane Wilson (Searchers, Inc.; #6)
  • Jillian (Gar’s girlfriend; #6)
  • Terry Long (Donna’s husband; #6)

Let’s see what happened in the comics, with some commentary as I go:

  • This volume opens with almost the whole team (Nightwing, Cyborg, Wonder Girl, Starfire, and Changeling) hunting Jericho in a training exercise.  Jericho uses his powers to take over Gar, then Kory.  When he tries to take over Vic, he’s forced back to his solid form, and Dick grabs him from behind, while Donna wraps them in her lasso.  Raven appears, asking for her friends’ help, but Jericho doesn’t notice she’s upset, and when their eyes lock, tries to enter her mind.  That freaks her out, and she teleports away, leaving Joseph behind, feeling the shock of having touched her soul.  He explains to the others the amount of evil he felt in Raven.  The team decides that they need to get Raven to open up to them all, and send Joseph to talk to her.  Vic mentions that he thought Raven looked different from before.  Joseph goes to see his friend, who explains she feels like no one can help her (despite having shown up asking for help a couple pages before). He leaves, and she tries praying to Azar, but doesn’t receive a reply.  She goes to the Titans, and tells them she has to leave the team. They offer their help, but she refuses it, telling them she is leaving the next day.  In the Vega system, Kory’s parents address the people of Tamaran, letting them know that the Citadel has been crushed (in the Omega Men series).  This means that their daughter can come home; they announce that they’ve sent a ship to Earth to get Kory.  Gar finds Vic looking at video footage of Raven; it’s obvious now that since they met her, her face and hair line has changed a lot.  Vic worries that she can’t be helped.  Joseph decides to go see Raven, who is sleeping.  He makes eye contact with her and enters her mind again.  He finds it a dark place full of structures made of twisted corpses.  In Raven’s shape, he finds her mother, who yells about the sacrifice she made.  Trigon, who appears gigantic on this plane, notices Joseph’s presence and starts burning him until Raven tries to push back.  Lightning strikes all around Titans’ Tower, waking Dick and Kory.  The team rushes to Raven’s room, where they find only Joseph.  He’s terrified, and keeps signing “father”.  As he calms down and explains what happened, the team worries about Raven, and can hear Trigon’s laughter coming from all around them.
  • The opening pages of issue two are done in a strange yellow and red scheme with pencil art that looks very burnished.  Arella is in the wasteland that is now Trigon’s realm, and she thinks she sees Raven, but finds that she now belongs to Trigon.  On Earth, black clouds cover the planet.  Donna returns to Titans’ Tower, where she finds the team still in Raven’s room.  Dick finds Raven’s rings, and tries to figure out what their next move should be.  Just then, Lilith turns up, her precognitive abilities having told her she’s needed.  When she looks at the rings, things go wild, with lightning hitting the Tower, and items flying around Raven’s room, like they are trying to attack the teens.  It’s hard to get out, with the door being stronger than Donna, but somehow all these effects just shut off and things return to normal.  Lilith wants to use the rings to contact Raven, but figures that they need Wally West’s help.  Dick and Donna take the jet to get him, although they aren’t sure he’ll come.  At Central City University, Wally finishes class and meets up with Frances Kane, who takes him to the gym where Dick and Donna are waiting.  At first, Wally doesn’t want to come, but after they explain that they need someone with an emotional connection to Raven, he realizes he has no choice, even though it makes Frances angry.  Back at the Tower, the team gathers in Raven’s room, forming a circle around a candle.  A maelstrom of energy forms above them, and while the energy tries to break apart their clasped hands, it’s unsuccessful.  Raven speaks to them, telling them to stay away and that she is now stuck working for Trigon.  After Raven leaves, her rings start to manifest the same yellow and red we saw before, and they hear Arella calling them to Azareth.  They end up going into a portal that the rings create, and find themselves in the yellow and red-coloured landscape of Azareth, as Trigon’s forces attack it.  The team joins in the fight, except for Wally, whose powers are killing him, remember.  He finally decides he has to act.  The priests of Azareth resist the Titans’ help, believing they have to meet their destiny here.  Lilith, who appears to be in a trance, tries to go to a temple that is also attracting Trigon’s creatures.  Wally can’t reach her in time, but can’t run any more.  In the temple, the remaining priests gather around the tomb of Azar, and are killed by Trigon’s dragon things.  We return to the regularly coloured world, where a TV broadcaster tells viewers of how Raven appears amidst more of the dragon things, and removing her hood, reveals that she now has two sets of eyes, and looks terrible.  She announces the coming of Trigon, who appears on top of Titans’ Tower, which has now been turned magically to stone.
  • Red-skinned, four-eyed Raven announces the coming of Trigon, and insists that governments pledge loyalty to him.  Trigon addresses the world, and then blasts the newsmen broadcasting his words.  On Azarath, the Titans try to figure out what happened.  Lilith tells them that everyone else is dead, and that Trigon is on Earth.  Arella points out that the skies are white now, and says she wants to go save Earth and rescue Raven.  Lilith uses Raven’s rings to take them to the much-transformed Manhattan, where there are a lot of random structures made of writhing bodies.  Kory finds Trigon sitting on Titans’ Tower, which he’s made into rock.  He appears to be asleep.  Wally hears a voice and is surprised by something we don’t see.  Dick learns that Trigon’s demons are everywhere around the world, and Donna is unable to reach the Justice League.  They hear Wally scream, and find Raven standing over him.  She blasts the team, and Arella realizes that she is not Raven anymore.  Kory tries to blast her, but is sent flying into a rocky water tower.  Joseph tries to possess Raven, but she is able to resist his power.  She tells the team that their souls are going to be split between light and dark.  Dick finds himself in a lab, where he sees Batman, dead, and Robin (Jason Todd) crying.  Dick’s black and white evil self stands over them, blaming Dick for this scene, until Dick punches him.  Cyborg finds Sarah Simms, but she is afraid of him, and turns to Vic’s black and white evil self, who is fully human for protection.  Donna finds her evil self choking Terry, her husband, to death, and telling Donna to renounce her heritage.  Donna knocks her through a wall.  Gar finds his evil self to be a rocky creature that has killed the Doom Patrol and other people that Gar loves.  Evil Gar encourages Good Gar to kill Jillian.  Starfire finds herself on Tamaran, where her family are prisoners of the Citadel, and her evil self blames her for this.  She tells Kory that if she becomes a slave again, her world can go free.  Wally returns home, to find his evil self in bed with Raven.  When Evil Wally turns to face him, we see that he also has four eyes.  Jericho is in shock, and only Lilith and Arella are left free.  Arella wants to try to reach Raven, but Lilith is more focused on the Titans, who we see writing in pain as part of a rock structure.
  • Raven tells Lilith and Arella that the Titans are hers now, and tells them she’ll kill them if they try to interfere with her while she is manipulating their minds.  Dick keeps fighting Evil Dick, and decides he has to kill him.  Vic fights Evil Vic, and declares he’s going to kill him to prove he’s a real man.  Lilith can feel the team’s pain.  Raven confronts her, but Lilith insists she is impervious to Raven’s powers.  Arella tries to get through to her daughter, but Raven blasts her, although Lilith insists she can’t hurt her either.  When Raven tries to blast Lilith, red energy protects her; Lilith claims it’s the Titans protecting her.  Donna fights Evil Donna, laying claim to her own future.  She sends her flying through the construction scaffolding around the Statue of Liberty.  Gar’s fight with Evil Gar continues, with Gar deciding to kill Evil Gar after he kills the rest of his friends.  Kory wants to kill Evil Kory too, and these scenes are starting to drag.  Raven is happy to see that the good sides of the team are all giving in to their anger, as the goal is for all of the team to become Trigon’s slaves.  Wally’s evil self runs off with Raven, and Wally tries to chase him, but because of his problems with his powers, isn’t able to keep up.  Wally finds the strength to start beating on Evil Wally, and ends up killing him.  Lilith realizes that her side is losing this fight, as we see each of the others kill their evil selves.  The column they were part of in the real world starts to fall apart, and the Titans, now all coloured black and red, stand together.  Lilith still claims to have control over them, despite Raven’s claims to the contrary.  Raven orders the Titans to kill Lilith, but instead they all turn on Raven.  Arella worries that they are going to kill Raven, but Lilith claims there is no other choice.  Kory says that because they are all filled with Trigon’s powers, Raven can’t hurt them.  The team all hit her at once, and while Arella protests, she hears a voice telling her to listen to Lilith.  Raven yells for Trigon’s help, but he doesn’t move, and the Titans kill her.  Suddenly, they are all back to normal.  Lilith explains that it was their evil selves that killed her.  Dick is angry, but Lilith insists that killing Raven is the only way to stop Trigon.  Trigon wakes, and is angry to see that Raven is dead.  He is bigger than before, and declares that humanity will suffer.
  • Everyone watches Trigon bellow, and worries how they’re going to manage to stop him, especially given his new size.  Lilith tries to explain things, but Wally is angry and goes running at Trigon.  His heart starts to give out, and the rest of the team decide to go join the fight.  Lilith tries to hold Dick back, claiming it’s not the right time, but he ignores her.  Trigon picks up the Tower and drops it on the team, although Dick hasn’t reached them yet.  Instead, Trigon hits him with his staff, leaving him for dead.  Trigon talks a lot about how Azar tried to prepare Raven to stop him, and then he responds to Arella’s questions about why he had to take Raven from her.  Lilith is able to sense that the Titans under the ruined Tower are still alive.  Just then, they bust out, and tend to one another’s injuries.  By this point, Trigon is standing on top of the World Trade Center (one foot on each tower).  Starfire finds Dick, who is still alive, and she and Gar dig him out of the rubble.  Lilith contacts them psychically, and tells them to do what she says.  The team, aside from Wally, want to take the fight to Trigon again, and fly towards him.  Lilith returns to Arella, to tell her that they both have a destiny they need to fulfill.  Arella is surprised to hear Azar’s voice coming from Lilith.  Trigon starts to do some kind of ritual to open a gate to his home dimension, which burns off all of his clothes.  Trigon recognizes Azar’s energy.  Lilith and Arella each wear one of Azar’s rings, and sit over Raven’s body.  As Trigon is distracted, Dick orders the Titans to attack, although they aren’t barely able to get Trigon’s attention, let alone hurt him.  Raven’s body starts to glow white and float above them.  There is a huge release of energy, and Azar speaks through Raven.  Her energies encircle Trigon, and wear him down to bone before he explodes.  Instantly, things return to normal, and Lilith and Arella watch as Raven, a look of peace on her face, disappears.  Minutes later, the team starts to pull together, and Donna weirdly mentions that Joseph is already in the hospital.  Arella takes comfort that Raven looked peaceful, but Lilith says she doesn’t know if she’s alive or dead.  Wally thinks Raven smiled at him before she disappeared.  Dick notices that Titans’ Tower is still destroyed.
  • New York City is holding a ticker tape parade for the Titans, with Mayor Ed Koch riding on the float next to Gar.  The team is not very comfortable with this high profile event, but the crowd is happy.  A newscast runs interviews about the Titans with Superman, Wonder Woman, and Aquaman.  Wally watches this at home with his parents and Fran, who takes him out for a walk to discuss the fact that he hasn’t told his parents about his problems with his powers, or the fact that he’s maybe dying.  The unnamed angel-like alien (who the internet tells me is called Azrael) flies by a TV in a window in Oregon, and sees Lilith.  This reminds him that he’s in love with her, and he decides to go looking for her.  Joseph is in the hospital, and Adeline and a woman named Sarah have to chase the media away from his room.  The Titans are given the key to the city by Koch, but later, return to the island where their ruined headquarters once stood.  Aqualad and Aquagirl help recover their belongings from the river, and a man whose face we don’t see, representing the city, tells the team that rebuilding would cost over three million dollars (easily the most dated thing in this comic), and leaves, saying the city can’t afford to help them.  Donna decides to go home, and blows off Kory when she tries to get her to talk.  Donna is worried about the fact that her nightmare vision of herself killed her husband.  When Vic tries to go home, there are reporters waiting for him.  Gar’s agent calls, offering him a part, and Gar hangs up on him for a change.  Dick and Kory are in Lilith’s apartment in Greenwich Village (I thought she’d left town before), reading fan mail.  Lilith feels like danger is approaching.  Arella is there too, and she’s angry that no one is out looking for Raven.  Arella decides she has to look on her own, and leaves.  Vic goes to visit Joseph, and chases away more media types.  Donna hangs out with Terry, and he realizes that something is bothering her, and has an idea.  Donna calls Dick and tells him that she needs to talk about what happened.  Terry suggested they go camping in the Grand Canyon again, so that’s what everyone does (except Joseph, who is still in the hospital).  They begin to talk about what happened in the visions they had, with Gar going on at length about his guilt.  Vic tells them that he’s been seeing a therapist, and has been working through things; he admits that he is afraid of losing touch with his human side.  Kory talks about how she can juggle a couple of identities (being a superhero and a model), and gives a decent pep talk.  There is more discussion, with Lilith admitting she feels like she’s just Raven’s replacement (maybe if we ever really knew what her power set was, things would be different).  Dick finally speaks up, talking about how much he’s buried his life in his Robin identity, and now as Nightwing, and how he doesn’t want to turn into Batman.  Terry points out that the team is so strong together, and suggests that Trigon didn’t show their fears so much as what he knew would hurt them.  Vic has the final say, suggesting they all spend more time together, and then opens a can of Coke.  Everyones’ spirits are lifted.
  • Art legend José Luis García-Lopéz takes over with this issue!  Lilith wakes up from a nightmare.  The unnamed alien that looks like an angel, that the internet tells me is named Azrael, flies through New York looking for Lilith, who he is madly in love with despite the fact that they’ve never really even talked to one another.  He flies into her apartment (I’m not sure how he knows where it is), but she’s not there.  Instead, she’s in Greenwich Village attending an outdoor art fair with Kory, where they find Joseph selling his paintings.  The alien guy comes and grabs Lilith, who is very happy to see him (I’m pretty sure he couldn’t speak English before, right?).  Kory thinks he’s taking her against her will, so she flies up and sees that Lilith is glowing again.  She tries to blast him out of the sky, causing him to drop Lilith.  Kory catches her, while Joseph approaches the downed alien, but being Joseph, is nice to him.  They leave the park.  Uptown, a woman named Thia, who runs Sun Publishing, uses powers to burn an employee who tipped off a potential business partner about a negotiation to death, and then, when another employee interrupts her monologue, she kills him too.  She melts the window and flies towards the sun, where she continues monologuing, and we learn she is Thia, goddess of the sun, and she can sense a presence she’s been looking for.  At Lilith’s apartment, Lilith explains that she knows nothing of her past, or why she starts glowing sometimes.  Thia appears, and proclaims herself Lilith’s mother.  She wants to take Lilith away, so the Titans and the alien fight her, but aren’t able to stop her from teleporting away.  Vic and Gar sit on a bridge, looking at the construction taking place on their Tower.  They get an emergency signal, and meet up with the rest of the team at STAR Labs, where they’ve been staying.  Dick is able to use a computer to make a composite sketch of Thia, which Donna recognizes from her brief time with the Titans back in volume two or so.  The team piles into their jet, and fly for Paradise Island.  Upon arriving, they can tell something is wrong.  Donna flies around, and realizes that everyone is missing.  Donna, furious, wants to head straight to Tartarus to get the Amazons and Lilith back.
  • Thia is rejoicing in having defeated the Gods of Olympus.  She monologues to Lilith about what she’s accomplished.  Zeus tries to fight her but Thia defeats him and claims Olympus as her’s.  She has the winds carry the various unconscious gods away.  Thia explains how she escaped the imprisonment of the other Titans of myth, and made her way to “man’s world” in the early 20th century.  She took many lovers and got involved in a variety of businesses.  Along the way, she gave birth to Lilith and killed her father.  She left Lilith with a nurse who took off with her, but now Thia is feeling very powerful.  A voice from off-screen reminds her she needs to deal with her siblings.  The Teen Titans are in their jet, still flying or hovering over Themyscira, and Donna, overwhelmingly concerned for her people, decides to try something desperate.  She and Kory fly to the statue of Athena, and Donna reveals that she knows that standing in the statue’s upraised hands, and staring Athena in the eye, would unlock something special.  She disappears into a portal, and Kory follows.  They are in the Oraculum, where Donna asks to see what’s happening in Tartarus. She sees that the Titans are fighting giants, and she gets worried when she sees Hyperion get hurt.  She admits to Kory that despite the fact that he took over her mind before, she does kind of love him still.  The Oraculum shows them Thia sitting on Zeus’s throne, with a sad-looking Lilith in front of her.  Thia can sense the women watching them, and fires energy at them.  Kory returns to the Titans’ jet to get the rest of the team.  She takes them to the Oraculum, while a purple-robed figure with a book chained to him talks to himself about their destiny.  Once everyone has joined Donna, the Oraculum transports them to Tartarus, where they join Hyperion, Cronus, and some others in their fight with the giants.  Hyperion passes out from his injuries, having learned that Donna is married.  Joseph takes him over and gets him back in the fight.  Kory kills one giant in order to save Vic.  Some darkness fills the caves they are fighting in, the work of Coeus and Phoebe, which drives off or kills the giants.  Some of the Titans enumerate which of them have died, and Donna reveals to the rejuvenated Hyperion that the being behind all of this is his wife, Thia.  He’s unhappy, but everyone vows to kill her.  It’s then that Destiny (who later on became retconned to be one of the Endless by Neil Gaiman) appears, and tells them that if they stop Thia, the world will die.
  • After Destiny delivers his warning, he disappears.  Cronus pushes Mnemosyne to use her powers of memory to show them Destiny’s story, which involves her taking off her clothes as images play across her body.  They can’t figure Destiny out still, and Themis insists on justice against Thia.  Hyperion is having trouble believing that his wife is responsible for so much death, but Donna convinces everyone to ignore Destiny’s warning and to go after Thia.  Meanwhile, Thia explains to Lilith why she’s chained up all the Olympians, which is basically because she wants to rule the Earth or something, and blames Zeus for being weak.  She then senses that Kole’s crystal fortress is being attacked.  We see that the (Teen) Titans are with the other Titans, and fighting their way towards the fortress, which is defended by all variety of monsters.  Donna, Kory, Azrael (who still hasn’t been named) fly up to the top of the mountain the fortress is on, because Donna wants to free the Themyscirans.  Azrael knows that Lilith isn’t there, and needs to be reassured to keep helping.  Kole comes out of the crystal that surrounds the fortress, and turns Donna into crystal.  Hyperion catches her while Kory attacks Kole, who makes it clear that she has to obey Thia.  They realize that Donna is still alive, and Kole tries to cover Kory in crystal as well, but one of her blasts stops her.  Vic uses his sound cannon to knock the crystal off of Donna, who grabs Kole, and then, when she learns that she can’t free the Amazons, instead just smashes the crystal around the fortress (yes, I’m getting lost too).  Hippolyta and the other Amazons are free, and we learn that Themyscira actually got trashed in an issue of Wonder Woman, not by Thia.  Kole asks for forgiveness, and Thia learns what happened.  She summons the beast Typhon, a huge monster, to fight everyone for her.  All the various Titans (both sets) and Amazons start to fight the massive, many-headed creature.  Hyperion approaches Thia (who I guess came to lead the battle, I’ve kind of stopped paying attention) and when he embraces her, they both appear to burn up, leaving Lilith looking distraught.  She kind of swoons, but Azrael comes to catch her.  The others manage to defeat Typhon, and Kole finishes it off by turning it into crystal.  Azrael tells Lilith they can always be together, while Cronus reminds everyone that they still have to rescue the Olympians.  Donna is upset that Hyperion is gone.  Later, everyone, including the Olympians, stand around Olympus.  Zeus tells Cronus that the fight between their people is over, and welcomes them to stay in Olympus.  He also says that one of the Teen Titans must also stay behind.  Gar freaks out that he means Lilith (although, like, who else would it be?), and it’s Azrael’s turn to be all distraught.  Lilith leaves him on his knees crying and joins Zeus.  We see Destiny again, as he speaks to the reader about how the world’s destiny has changed.  This volume ends with some guy named Carl at the White House making a phone call talking about how The Children of the Sun, Thia’s children, must now take over the world.

This volume was very disappointing.  It felt like it was making an attempt to be epic with each story, but I felt instead like it lost its heart and focus.  The Trigon story was definitely a blockbuster, with incredibly cool art, but after that, things fell apart in a hurry.  It would be easy to blame that on George Pérez leaving the book to work on Crisis on Infinite Earths, but the problems ran a lot deeper.  Perhaps Marv Wolfman was just a lot more focused on that major project and decided to phone this one in, but it was disappointing.

The biggest problem is that, even though I’ve now read a few years’ worth of Titans comics in pretty quick succession, I never actually figured out who Lilith was.  She showed up in time for Donna’s wedding, and then more or less took over Raven’s role in the book, but without all the endless exposition.  

Probably the most egregious omission in this book is the winged alien who has fallen in love with her.  When we first met him, the team was suspicious and afraid of him, but when he returns here, they are all comfortable around him in a hurry.  The fact that he fell in love with Lilith at first sight, and never tells anyone his name or story, feels like things that should have been discussed in some depth.  I can tell from the internet that eventually he gets named, but it just doesn’t fit that the team that stayed wary about Joseph for ages is just good with having him on the team.

I found that with this volume, there wasn’t a single character that I cared about.  Even the attempts to have the teens face their darkest fears in the battle with Trigon left me a little cold.  Way too much of this volume felt like Wolfman was just wrapping up old plotlines and arranging things before he could rearrange the entire DC Universe in Crisis.  For stories that were trying to be epic in scope, they seemed very limited in terms of their emotional reach.

And also, who is this Kole character supposed to be?  It seems like she was set to take the Raven/Lilith spot, after Lilith was inexplicably ordered to hang out on Olympus.  Doing a quick internet check, it seems she doesn’t make it out of the Crisis, so I have to wonder what her purpose was.

It was nice to see some José Luis García-López art.  For an artist with so much renown, it often feels like he never had that many influential runs (aside from being the guy who did DC’s style guy).  I did love the weird colour effect on the Trigon issues, and am sure it must have looked amazing on the new Baxter paper when it came out.

This looks like it brings me to the end of my dive into the New Teen Titans.  I know there are two more volumes in this series, but I don’t own them yet.  Reading these comics for the first time, I did come to gain an appreciation for the legendary Wolfman/Pérez run, and can see why they still get talked about with the kind of reverence that the Claremont/Byrne X-Men run also gets.  

Being able to pick all of these up for only $5 a volume (other than the first one) at a show about a year ago was such a stroke of luck.  When I bought these, I didn’t expect that I’d have months of quarantine and more time at home to read (which has not been the case since returning to work in the fall, which is why this column is coming out so long after the last one).  It was a great purchase, and who knows when I’ll be at a con again?

I did stock up on some more cheap trades that collect older series, so I’m set for a winter’s worth of these columns still, even if the bookstores don’t reopen (we’re currently in lockdown where I live).  Up next, a title that spun out of the Wolfman/Pérez run that I’ve always seen as a Marvel knockoff, but never actually read.

You can check out my Retro Review archives here.

If you’d like to read this trade, follow this link:

New Teen Titans Vol. 9

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