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Titans - "Deathstroke" - Review

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Titans - "Deathstroke" - Episode 16 Review

It's time to get back to the future. Flashbacks are over and the Titans are now going to have to deal with Deathstroke. The group has been coasting along in its dealings with the big D so far and I have a feeling we are going to see a lot more chaos in this one.

Jason Todd has been captured and is being transported in the trunk of a vehicle. He awakens to find he's been hung like a slab of beef by Rocky. Dr. Light is in the distance setting up lamps and powering up off their juice. Jason begins to talk to him and we see him use his superpower of annoyance. Dr. Light can't control himself and gets sucked into the new Robin's trap. He gets too close to the kid and gets put to sleep with a leg lock around his neck. I mean the Dr. is wearing his armor but OK whatever, it's Robin. Jason escapes his bonds and smirks as he bails, thinking he is home free. Deathstroke appears and says not so fast boy wonder.

Kory steers her Mercedes towards the Chicago airport and decides to call her little buddy Rachel in San Fransisco. Rachel is sleeping and her darkness is flying free in the air above her. Beast Boy walks in and tries to wake the young girl. The swirling evil lashes out and attacks him! Rachel wakes up and the black goo disappears. She sees that she's hurt him and her first response is "don't tell Dick". OOhhh it's not good to keep secrets from your family. Gar brushes over the attack and tells her that Jason is gone. Dick overhears and wants to know what happened. They head to the computer room where Gar tells them about their completely stupid plan from last episode to just "go look" at Dr. Light in the train tunnels. Dick reprimands him for heading out alone with no weapons or back up. Well Gar is a walking weapon and so is Jason kinda, but whatever that's besides the point. Dick runs a tracking program for Jason's implanted tracker.

Gar and Rachel sit in the kitchen and talk. Gar is suspicious of why the other Titans are so closed off and Rachel seems to be fine with just letting things play out. Gar asks her to use her powers to find out the truth but we learn she can't do that anymore ever since Daddy Trigon shoved her broken heart in her forehead. In the end they don't know what to do so they decide to see if the older members can figure out how to bring him back. In the computer room the elder Titans lament on the little shit stirrer Jason causing so much trouble. Sure he was feeling left out but boy did he have a stupid plan. Dick has a map pulled up and shows the gang all the miles of tunnels they are going to go check out. Later in the tunnels the Titans split up and look for Jason, WITHOUT THEIR WEAPONS OR UNIFORMS!? WTF? I forgive this show a lot, it is a comic book series after all, but heading down into tunnels to face Dr. Light without their gear is just dumb. Sorry not sorry. Dick literally just chastised Gar for doing the exact same thing!! They bicker amongst themselves until Dick finds Jason's dragged blood trail and brings them all together. They argue some more and then we see that there are cameras all throughout the tunnels and that they are being watched by Dr. Light and Deathstroke. The two learn Jason has a tracker inside him as they watch Dick find one of their cameras and neutralize it. Dr. Light is pissed! He wants to know why Slade is suited up and just sitting there? He wants his revenge and he heads out to get it, roughly pushing by Deathstroke as he goes. I am really enjoying the slow burn Esai Morales is bringing to his portrayal of Deathstoke, his line to Dr. Light about " giving you a result" was great. Pure menace but without histrionics or over the topness. Just cold venom. Deathstroke uses a Star Trek device to find Jason's tracker and then cuts it out of him using a small sharp knife. Dr. Light charges up using his lamps and heads out to his truck, starts it up and blasts some heavy metal. Suddenly he is shot in the head! WHAT. A. WASTE. They totally miscast and miswrote the Dr. Light character and then they simply have Deathstroke blow his brains out. He could have been around for years but no, instead he'll be bait.

In Titans kitchen Gar tries to make some coffee but Rose harshes his vibe. He can't believe she is so callous and she can't believe he's so stupid. Rose is completely right when she tells the shapeshifter that Jason did this to himself and that he shouldn't project. So far she's the realest one there. Gar frustratedly enters the computer room and Rachel is bummed he's not carrying a coffee pot. He tells her Rose is bugging him and she tells him he's stupid for going off on his own. She would have helped he and Jason look for the Doc but he didn't come for her. Tough love there but accurate. Gar fires back "yeah but you can't even control you goo so there"! Rachel comes back with a "what did you do? Growl at him?" Nice one girl. He returns volley with the classic "Screw you!" Kory arrives and buzzes the front door throwing cold water on the brother and sister spat the two were having. Gar is about to head out when Jason's tracker signal pops up on the computer.

The elder Titans follow Dick as he too picks up the signal. So Kory showed up and its a long flight from Chicago so that means the squad has been walking around in those tunnels for about six hours. Sure. Whatever. They find the dead Doctor and Jason's tracker and a burner cell phone that starts to ring. Deathstroke is on the other end and beats on Jason to let them know he's still alive. Hawk talks a tough game but the sidekick takes a whooping. Slade sets up an exchange, Jason for Rose.

At Titans Tower Kory and Rachel discuss the situation. Rachel tells her they are using the satellites and that her powers are going a little wonky and that she wishes she was a real girl. Kory tells her about her experience on her planet and that all infants wear bands to keep them from transfiguring into little Starfire monsters. Interesting bit there from Kory, fun to learn more about her homeworld, as I suspect we will be seeing more about it in the future. Kory tells her that they are special, and maybe this is happening for a reason. Maybe so she can help people and that really its all about choosing. She simply needs to choose to be good. Sound advice for all of us Kory. The Titans come back home without Jason and see that Kory is back. They bring her up to date in the training room, away from the youngsters eyes. They all argue about what to do about the Rose situation. Hank is ready to throw her out on her butt, which seems a little against character as he was the one who was taking care of youngsters and really trying to help them. And now also he's Jason's best friend? Make up your mind Hawk. The kids watch from the computer room and Gar shows Rose what they are saying and doing. Oh and he reveals to Rose that Bruce Wayne is Batman? Really bro? Do you even superhero? You just met this one-eyed chick and you're already telling her one of the biggest secrets in the DC Universe? The squad continues to bicker with Kory being the only one who has the right idea. She tells them they are idiots for considering handing Rose over and that they should band together and figure out how to fight this guy as a group. Yes. I agree. Rose tries to leave, before they give her up no doubt, but Dick locks her in. She fights with Hank and then fights Rachel. The demoness' training really helps out and she kinda holds her own for a sec against the master assassins daughter. Rose gets a kick in and Rachel unleashes the beast. Her darkness and her red eyes come out and she Summer Slams her onto the floor! She slides Rose forcefully into a column and kills her! Bones crunch and she's a twisted, broken rag doll. Rachel runs off and misses a sweet moment. Dawn goes to check on Rose and the one eyed girl pulls a Wolverine and heals herself! Leg flips around, arms twist back, and her skull reconnects with her spine. BAM! Hank carries her off as Kory asks Dick which problem he wants to solve first.

In Deathstroke's HQ he plays a little mental torture with Jason as he slowly and methodically begins to sharpen his sword. Jason tries his mental and vocal shenanigans on him but fails miserably. Slade is the real deal and delivers some great lines of his own, chilling Jason into silence. Donna and Kory start boozing it up and sharing stories with some girl time. Donna tells her Deathstroke is a pain in the butt from the past and Kory tells her she had a thing with her royal guard because she's an interstellar princess. Hawk and Dove talk and Hank dishes on how he can relate to Jason waiting for them to come and help him because he was that kid when he was getting molested. There's some nice acting here but how can Hank want to take care of Jason but not Rose? She's all alone too. And she has a psychotic assassin for a Dad, kind of a bummer. Dawn's against turning Rose over to her Dad, as she doesn't want them to become monsters themselves. Valid and rational point there Dawn. Way to go. Dawn tracks down Dick in the hallway and tells him that he needs to close the Tower and disband the Titans after they kill Deathstroke. She thinks that after what they did in the past, there's no way a Titans squad can move forward. She tells Dick to disband the group or she'll burn the place down herself. Hmmmmm. Drama.

Dick tells all the people in the Titans Tower that his plan is to psych out Deathstroke and not really hand over his daughter, even though he says he will. Tricky Dick. Beast Boy in tiger form, about time, and Rachel will guard Rose and the Tower. The rest of the scooby gang will lay in wait and when the times right, Boom. Bye bye Deathstroke. Dick and Kory talk and he tries to convince her to stay. He tells her his plan to start a new Titans blew up in his face but he thinks the group needs her and that she's a natural leader. Later on the group, once again without their costumes and weapons, get into position to fight Deathstroke. Without their uniforms. Not a smart idea in the first place. But it turns out Dick has other plans and heads out on his own. Sporting a nice bullet proof vest as well. Too bad we know Slade likes headshots but OK.

Dick walks solo into a construction site, calling out to Deathstroke as he goes. He offers himself up to Slade in exchange for Rose and Jason but Deathstroke will have none of it. In a fun, creepy, little moment Slade tells Dick that he's not a hero, but a con man, and that he's going to get whats coming to him. Slade pushes a button and reveals Jason, tied up outside the window on a window cleaning rig. An explosive charge sits on the wire holding up the cleaning rig. As Slade goes to push the detonator, Kory comes in blasting some Starfire! Oh yeah baby its on! In the best scene of the episode, Dick and Kory battle to survive against Deathstroke as he pulls his gun and starts blasting away. Kory defends herself and Dick picks up his dropped bulletproof vest and uses it as a shield. In some nice battle choreography Kory and Dick take it to Deathstroke but he holds them off with shots and kicks. Awesome to see Kory stop the bullets by putting her hand over the barrel and blocking their exit. Jason struggles to get free as they fight. Dick gets taken down and almost shot but Kory saves his ass and slams Slade through a wall! She kicks his ass all over and to save his butt Deathstroke throws some glowing explosives at her and blasts her back. Uh oh. He moves in for the kill with his super sharp sword but then all of a sudden Dick is there! He uses a metal pole as a bo staff and saves Kory's life. They fight! Oh snap Deathstroke grabs the pole from his hand and is about to slice him in two when Kory blasts him with some Starfire! Slade drops another glowing bomb and it super flashbangs them both, giving the villain enough time to pick up his detonator. With the two watching he pushes the button and drops Jason! The kid manages to hang onto the side of the building but his grip slips in Dicks hand and he starts to plummet to his death! AHHHHHHHH! An actual cliffhanger!

This episode had a lot of stupidity in it but that was made up for by all the Deathstroke goodness. He is an amazing villain and Esai is doing a fantastic job with it. The squad is still struggling with its identity which of course makes for good drama. This season is better than the first and how awesome would it be if Starfire flew out the window and rescued Jason. So awesome.

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