Titans: Nightwing review S2 E13

Given how strong Season 2 of Titans had been it was hard not to view the season finale as anything but a disappointment. Even with the official debut of Nightwing.

At least the showrunners learned their lesson from last year. There wasn’t a big buildup for a fight that wouldn’t be paid off until Season 3.

After the buildup over the season Slade was clearly the bigger and more personal threat. That made the decision to have the team face off against him in the first half of the episode puzzling. Mercy and Cadmus have been slowly generating some momentum as threats, but hardly on Slade’s level.

The fight against Deathstroke felt like the one time this season the writers truly seemed overwhelmed by the amount of characters. I was ok with Rachel healing Kori, but it made no sense for Donna to stay in the car while Dick and Rose fought Slade.

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Presumably she’d be the one who’d want him dead more since her would-be boyfriend got fridged by Slade. That said, the Dick/Rose and Slade fight was well executed even if it was a notch below the Dick/Kori vs. Slade fight.

It’s already been established that Slade has super healing abilities so it was very unclear why the team is so confident he’s dead this time. And maybe Jericho should have hopped into a Cadmus clone instead of his sister…

But the Nightwing suit? Good stuff and another major win for the costuming department.


Mercy had her audience all set to bid on acquiring custom metas like Conner. I really didn’t understand why Mercy had Conner kill her right hand man. It’s not like we needed some new example that she’s a awful person.

Beast Boy The green tiger ran wild at the carnival giving Mercy a perfect showcase for Conner. This fight wasn’t much of one since a tiger is no match for Superboy.

I liked Donna getting to throw down with Superboy and I wondered if she would get killed fighting him to make good on the threat of one Titan falling this episode. That would also line up somewhat with the Titans/Young Justice crossover where a controlled Superboy battles the teams and Braniac-8 kill Troia.

Instead, the assembled Titans get tossed around before Nightwing, Donna and Raven restrain Conner and bring him back to the light.

It’s not until the post fight wrap up when a Titan falls in the lamest way possible. At first it seemed like Dawn was going to die saving a child from a collapsing beam, but it’s Donna who holds the beam up and gets electrocuted for her trouble. If only Donna had a magic lasso that could whisk people out of the way…

I HATED this death scene. It was ridiculously convenient that only one beam was loose and the girl couldn’t just run away. That Dawn couldn’t shove her out the way or Rachel using her powers to move the girl/hold the beam or Donna just restraining it with her lasso.

After watching the team train and improve their competence all season this was the dumbest way to kill off a character. Heck, having Slade show up and kill Donna would have been infinitely more compelling.

Besides the post-fight conversation with Dick none of the Bruce Wayne scenes worked. The big thing when Dick became Nightwing was he was fully cutting the safety net of Batman and flying on his own. Having Bruce play Oracle on tech support felt cheap especially since Dick could have whipped up a small range EMP to just as easily disrupt Mercy’s broadcast.

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Bruce sitting down for dinner with the Titans was just weird. The main purpose seemed to be so Kori could thank him for getting the team on the same page, but that could have just as easily been accomplished as he was leaving.

It felt so off for Rachel not to tell Gar or Kori she was leaving. Of the three, Rachel was arguably the least close with Dick so having a farewell moment with him lacked the same emotional response as that would have been with Kori.

At least the writers almost immediately start walking back Donna’s death as Rachel thinks she can help her. You know what would have been helpful? Holding the beam up.

As much as I like the characters it’s clear there’s too many Titans running around. Jason got written out in a good way, Donna did not, but the show could stand ditching a few more.

I’m torn as I really like Hawk and Dove, but of anyone they’re best suited for a spin-off series. Gar should probably go too since the showrunners apparently think he can only turn into a tiger. As we’ve seen over two seasons now that’s hardly the most effective power.

titans - nightwing review - superboy, ravager, hawk, nightwing, dove, krypto and kori

That would still leave us with Dick, Kori, Rose and Conner. Trade Gar for Vic on Doom Patrol and there’s the fifth member.

The “stinger” sequence features Blackheart arriving on Earth presumably to set off the big major arc for Season 3.

While this season finale dropped the ball overall I still really enjoyed this season. The writers still have some things they need to tighten up, but Titans showed more than enough improvement that I’m looking forward to Season 3.

Rating: 6 out of 10

Photo Credit: DC Universe