The current run of Titans has some interesting recurring themes, when you think about it. The name itself, usually used for heroes, now for this band of murderers and mercenaries. Then you have Roy Harper, a former hero fallen very much to the dark side. Osiris was a hero, too, and is now obsessed with restoring his lost family to the point he’s killing people to do it. Isis seems to be back, and either her power has gone wrong, or she’s the way she was just before the Wizard Shazam de-powered her and turned her to stone– a killer. Deathstroke himself has wavered over the years from villain to pretty much outright hero during Titans Hunt to anti-hero in his own book, and is now back to bad guy. So the running thread seems to be corruption in many forms. Add in Ink, who was nearly a hero during Infinite Crisis, and then lost it, and Cinder, who seems to be a child abuse victim, and I think I may be on to something here.
In Broken Promises part 2, Divided We Fall, Eric Wallace furthers this theme. The issue mostly jumps around between the fortress/mansion of Drago, last issue’s bad guy, and Philadelphia. In Drago’s mansion, most of the team has been captured, and are awaiting surgery to make them like he is, blind but prophetic. Slade’s already lost his one remaining eye to this insanity. Slade and Roy are locked in adjoining cells, and Slade relates Drago’s history- he and Slade were soldiers together back early in both of their careers. Roy also learns that whatever he’s taking, it’s not heroin, it’s worse, and Slade’s been doctoring his stash. Cheshire gets her own surprise, when Drago announces he wants an heir, so he needs a wife. Well, she’s had two kids already that we know of, so I guess she’s not a horrid choice.
In Philadelphia, Isis rages, her powers destroying much of the city, as Osiris tries, and fails, to calm her. It seems he brought her back corrupt since he powered her resurrection with murder and death. Isis finally gets some degree of control back over herself, and asks Osiris to kill her. When he refuses, she flies high and prays to Anubis (the god, not another brother as far as I know) to save the people with her death. Her prayer is answered with a Shazam-style lightning bolt, which Osiris races to intercept, and they both recover, Isis saying the dark presence she felt was gone. What she thinks, but doesn’t say, is that she can still sense darkness in Osiris, and he scares her. There’s also a brief interlude with Ray Palmer bringing his investigation to Batman Dick Grayson, who regrets abandoning Roy now, claiming they are family (oddly, his flashback image of the original Teen Titans is missing Aqualad- he’s not part of the family?).
What I liked and what I didn’t:
Isis being cured or cleansed or whatever was good. It’s about time SOMETHING good happened to any of the Marvel family. It’s also kind of nice to finally have Roy’s drug addressed. Not his habit, the drug itself- I’ve been saying for months that he couldn’t function like this on heroin.
I continue to not like this art, it’s muddy, unclear, and very odd choices on the borders (there’s one panel of Osiris flying along, and for no real reason, the edge of the panel runs down his face. It doesn’t look like an artistic choice, although it may be, it looks like a flat out mistake). Anubis apparently answering Isis’ prayer is all well and good, but why is the ancient Egpytian god using magic lightning like Shazam? It seems a strange choice. Ray bringing in some allies finally makes sense, and is long overdue, but why is he going to Dick? Ray and Bruce were team mates for years, and aside from big crowd scenes, I’m not sure the two have ever really met. I also think the pace on this subplot is really dragging. Also, what happened to Cinder? She was captured with the others, and neither seen nor mentioned in this issue. And Drago is yet another person Slade screwed over. I’m surprised anyone has anything whatever to do with the man.
I’m guessing what’s going to happen here is that the fragments of the team are going to be forced to work together to beat Drago, at least the Slade/Roy/Jade bit. I also rather wonder if the “darkness” Isis is talking about is the evil opposite number of Shazam from the JSA arc a while back. In that story, we saw the Rock of Finality (mirroring Shazam’s Rock of Eternity), and a powerful figure behind the scenes who really seemed like a bad guy. She’s purged of it now, but it seems to be in Amon/Osiris, and I bet we’ll see it in Black Adam if he’s ever de-petrified or whatever the word is.
A COMIC BOOK BLOG RATING
|Isis’ purging||where’s Cinder, the magic lightning, the art|