No matter which version is your preference, Teen Titans Go! vs. Teen Titans is a must-watch for any Titans fan and easily one of the funniest films I’ve seen all year.
The kiddish designs of the Teen Titans Go! show threw me off, but the writing has always been ideally tongue in cheek with a slant that both spoofs and honors various comic book tropes.
Despite its lighter animation style, the 2003 Teen Titans show ultimately won over a lot of fans eager for a worthy successor to Justice League Unlimited.
When Trigons (Kevin Michael Richardson) of two different realms team up to take Raven’s (Tara Strong) power, it forces two very different Titans squads to reluctantly team up to save their worlds and the rest of the Multiverse.
Naturally, the two Robins (Scott Menville) have some issues working together making for some hilarious moments. The Starfires (Hynden Walch) quickly become fast friends while the Beast Boys (Greg Cipes) and Cyborgs (Khary Payton) aren’t sure what to make of their counterparts.
Screenwriters Marly Halpern-Graser (Batman vs Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) and Jeremy Adams (Justice League Action) clearly have a lot of love not just for the cartoon series of Teen Titans, but the characters in general. The script is crammed with all kinds of funny inside jokes relating to the Titans and the larger DC universe in general.
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In keeping with the Teen Titans Go! theme, there’s a number of musical numbers that got stuck in my head way too easily. There’s a good joke about padding the run time, but at 77 minutes the film is paced just right.
One of the highlights is the group’s trip through the Multiverse where they encounter other versions of the Titans. Some are just played for quick sight gags while others will likely have longtime Titans fans thrilled with their inclusion.
While there’s a lot of characters and constantly shifting action, director Jeff Mednikow keeps everything from coming off too chaotic and hard to follow. That’s definitely important in the final act.
The big finale involving all the Titans is a terrific homage to generations of Teen Titans stories. Due to the timing of the release, it’s hard to miss some of the likely unavoidable similarities to Into the Spider-Verse, but this manages to exaggerate the goofiness to feel different enough.
Teen Titans Go! vs Teen Titans might not sway fans to one side or the other, but it’s a fun team-up that captures the flavor of both series without losing the charm of the original source material.