The Teen Titans have been around for some time. Due to the nature of DC having larger-than-life heroes taking center stage, they decided it was high time to give the next generation of heroes their own chance at being in the spotlight. Young heroes like Robin, Speedy, and Aqualad were all put on this new team that was labeled the “Teen Titans”. Since their creation, the team has brought an interesting dynamic to the comic book world. Having a younger audience means that the writers were more capable of exploring unique themes about growing up, dealing with hormones, and learning acceptance, all while fighting supervillains.
While not all of these stories landed, arcs like “Judas Contract” and “Teen Titans: Rebirth” are more than worth the risk that was taken when creating this team. Like most teams, the driving force behind them is the cast of characters. If they’re not interesting or memorable, then your entire story fails. Thankfully, DC has incorporated a lot of unique heroes for us to get behind and study. That being said, for every great hero on the Teen Titans, there is another who isn’t quite as fascinating. Everything exists in balance, and that’s true in the comic world as well.
15. BEST: CYBORG
Vic Stone was the subject of an unfortunate accident with a Motherbox that resulted in him becoming a literal cyborg. Struggling for the attention and love of his father, Vic eventually became a superhero known for being on both the Teen Titans and the Justice League.
Despite this duality, it was on the Teen Titans where Cyborg got the most character development. In some way, a lot of the other members were outcasts, so Vic felt welcomed by them. He continuously dealt with being a cyborg (an arc that was shown in the original Teen Titans TV show) but learned to accept himself for who he was. It also helped that he was a great fighter due to all of the mechanical powers he had at his disposal.
14. WORST: ROY HARPER
Roy Harper is a bit of a tragic character, and we certainly feel for him, but as a member of the Titans, he doesn’t serve many purposes. For example, he wasn’t originally a founding member of the Titans, but DC chose to retcon him as one of them in Teen Titans #53. That already raises a red flag in terms of what they’re doing with the character.
Roy Harper did have some involvement with another member of the Titans, but their relationship soon ended and Roy went down the route of drug addiction. This all works for his character, but only when he flies solo. As a team player, Roy gets less interesting and doesn’t get quite the same level of care that he normally would. He’s not a bad character; he’s just not that great of a Teen Titan.
13. BEST: ROSE WILSON
Like any good superhero team, the Teen Titans needed a deadly antagonist. Not only did they get a cool antagonist, they got one of the most dangerous people in the DC Universe: Deathstroke. This expert assassin fought them on numerous occasions, tried to destroy them from the inside, and so much more along the way.
How brilliant would it be, then, to have the daughter of Deathstroke join the Teen Titans? To be clear though, Deathstroke was the one who left her in the care of the Titans because he feared he would hurt her. That being said, she remained a useful member of their team who also had interesting developments along the way. In Teen Titans Vol 3 #88, she exhausted a lot of their resources to find her long lost mother while juggling a flirtatious connection with Kid Flash.
12. WORST: STARFIRE
We might get a bit of flack for this one, but just hear us out. We appreciate what was done with Starfire in the Teen Titans cartoon, but aren’t crazy about how she was handled in the comics. While her origin as an alien for Tamaran remains intact and gives her reason enough to join the Titans, that alone doesn’t hold her character over.
First off, Starfire’s design is a bit ridiculous. Being dressed in a purple bikini while she takes out bad guys is a little off, to say the least. Then there’s the fact that she mostly functions as a love interest for Dick Grayson. She’s not a horrible character, but when compared to other fantastic members of the Teen Titans, she is lacking in a few areas.
11. BEST: DAMIAN WAYNE
Damian Wayne was a bit of a frustrating character when he was first introduced. He was hot-headed, rude, and didn’t play well with others. Batman sent him to the Teen Titans to learn teamwork, but it wasn’t long before he left. However, things got a bit different with “Teen Titans: Rebirth” hitting the shelves.
Damian Wayne was one of a few targets selected by a young team organized by the League of Assassins. So he gathered all of the other targets together and formed the New Teen Titans. He has since then become a fearless leader and a master tactician, thanks to his heritage from the Dark Knight. While Damian Wayne was fairly unlikable at first, he has since come into his own and found his own spot in the DC Universe.
10. WORST: THE ATOM
There was a smaller Teen Titans story where Ray Palmer led a team of 16-year-olds. However, Ray Palmer himself was changed into a teenager after getting hit by a strange laser in Zero Hour #1. Due to his experience as a Justice League member, he was elected to lead the team.
Needless to say, not only was this version of the Atom fairly disliked, but so was the entire run involving this version of the Teen Titans. Ignoring the fact that Palmer got randomly changed into a teenager, his personality also shifted to go along with this, and that’s almost never a good thing. The team was also comprised of heroes that nobody had really heard of at that point, so the run didn’t last very long.
9. BEST: BEAST BOY
Whether he’s Changeling or Beast Boy, Garfield Logan has earned a permanent spot on the Teen Titans. Despite turning into any kind of animal, he remains the grounded tether of the group. He’s got a lot of heart and emotion, which he expresses to help the team and further his relationship with them.
Many times, Beast Boy has shown the tendency to crack a lot of jokes, but those are all just a cover to prevent him from showing his true fears. Beast Boy dreads losing the people he cares about and does everything he can to keep the Titans together as a result. For example, after the Titans had disbanded, he rejoined a new team in Titans Vol 2 #17 to help keep the group going under the leadership of Wonder Girl.
8. WORST: CAPTAIN MARVEL JR.
Captain Marvel Jr. is a character that many people know by name, and there’s a good reason for that. He’s not a fascinating person — he simply functions as a sidekick to Captain Marvel. While he was a lighthearted member of the Captain Marvel Family, he ended up having a falling out with his mentor in Power of Shazam! #13. It was then that he joined the Teen Titans.
Jr. didn’t remain on the team very long, considering the fact that he wasn’t fun to watch. He started a romance with Argent, but instead of having it develop as the team progressed, we only got to see it unfold as the two of them went on a crappy date and Jr. wasn’t able to pay the bill. He also started calling himself “CM3” so that people wouldn’t confuse him with the other Marvel Family members.
7. BEST: RAVEN
If you think Legends of Tomorrow had the “outcasts form a team” dynamic had it down pat, Raven would have a few things to say about that. She was the daughter of an interdimensional demon known as Trigon. Because of this, she had access to all kinds of unspeakable power. Instead of going the route of her father, she decided to come to Earth and fight alongside the Teen Titans.
Raven brings an interesting dynamic to the team, as she tends to suppress her emotions and be much more brooding in the process. It took her a while to open up, but she came out of her shell at times, especially to the prodding of Beast Boy. She even helped her new friends fight her father when he tried to destroy the world.
6. WORST: WONDER GIRL
Wonder Girl was a fairly decent character in the comics, having both a connection to Donna Troy (one of the original Teen Titans members) as well as Connor Kent. However, a lot of the draw in her character was done away with in the Young Justice TV show.
In it, she wasn’t brought into the fold until the second season of the show, and that’s probably a good thing. Wonder Girl was portrayed as a giddy and annoying teenager who idolized Wonder Woman (as there was no time to introduce Donna Troy to the show). However, she expressed her love for Wonder Woman and combat above anything else — to the point where she was like some crazy fan girl who would fail in an actual battle.
5. BEST: CONNER KENT
Conner Kent, otherwise known as Superboy, was originally created by Lex Luthor as an attempt to replace Superman. He cloned him using Superman’s DNA as well as his own. However, Superboy slowly became autonomous and learned to think for himself. After struggling with his own problems and identity, he ended up joining the Teen Titans.
Since then, Conner has been in and out of the team, both working with the Man of Steel and his younger friends. However, his internal struggle being a clone developed by one of the greatest DC villains weighs on him and gives him a lot to add to the Teen Titans group. It also allows the other members to play off of him and help him to forge his own path. Young Justice explored this aspect of Conner Kent best.
4. WORST: JOKER’S DAUGHTER
The idea of Joker’s Daughter on paper sounds fairly interesting, but in execution, the premise alone is fairly lacking. She seemed to be enamored with the Joker and, being the insane person she was, decided to label herself as the Joker’s daughter. However, she later said her name was Duela Dent and she was the daughter of Two-Face, which Nightwing disproved.
The problem with Joker’s Daughter is that it’s reflective of something the writers wanted to do because it was edgy. She was a Teen Titans member, but she wasn’t cool by any stretch of the imagination. The comic wanted to have some kind of faux Harley Quinn to be a Teen Titan, but the execution wasn’t nearly to the level where it could’ve been.
3. BEST: WALLY WEST
Wally West is not only one of the greatest Teen Titans members of all time, he is one of the greatest characters of all time. After getting training from Barry Allen on how to use his speed to be a hero, Wally West became a powerful character in his own right. He was so excellent that he even took over the mantle of the Flash after Barry was lost in Crisis on Infinite Earths.
Since then, Wally has done a lot for the DC Universe. As a matter of fact, he was one of the founding members of the Teen Titans in The Brave and the Bold #54. He has added a big personality to the team while still bringing a lot of heart to his role. He ended up disappearing in the New 52, which would have a big impact on the remaining Titans members.
2. WORST: TERRA
Terra began one of the best story arcs involving the Teen Titans, but it wasn’t due to how she handled herself personally. Her importance was mostly due to how other people responded to and were affected by her actions. She first appeared in New Teen Titans #26 and wanted to join the team. However, it was later revealed that she was actually working with Deathstroke (something the show was going to explore before being canceled).
Terra did form a relationship with Beast Boy, but that was primarily so he would be more brokenhearted over her eventual brutal betrayal of the team. Her powers of geokinesis are cool for sure, but what she adds to the team is very minimal, and most people have forgotten about her besides the knife she left in the team’s back.
1. BEST: NIGHTWING
Arguably the best Titans member is the original Robin, Dick Grayson. Being one of the founding members, he brought raw combat and great strategic skills to the fray, as he was faithfully trained by the legendary Batman himself. As his role as a superhero increased, Dick ended up leaving the Titans to do his own thing and passed on the leadership role to other members.
However, as Nightwing, Dick is still committed to helping out the Titans. He has often come from Bludhaven to train some new members or lead the team when it’s necessary. Nightwing is a staple of what it means to be a Teen Titan, and he would go on to become one of the most respected heroes in all of the DC Universe.
Disagree with our choices for best and worst Titans? Let us know in the comments section!
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