On Titans, Jason Todd (Curran Walters) is brash, unpredictable and arrogant. He's a firecracker who makes decisions without thinking about them and who he is putting in the line of fire. Jason loves to get his hands messy, and the theatrics that come with it. However, his love of putting on a show as Robin has its roots in a pretty shocking secret: Jason Todd is a really big theater nerd.
In "E.L._.O.," the 11th episode of Titans Season 2, Jason wants to open up to Rose Wilson (Chelsea Zhang) about his dark past and decides to bring her to his old high school. He tells her the story of his hardened upbringing -- his dad was a bad man who got himself killed, his mom an addict. Jason bounced around between foster care, juvenile detention and living on the streets before he started sleeping in the rafters of his high school auditorium.
In a surprising personality twist, Jason reveals he lost himself watching theater kids live their best lives. He admits to thinking they were losers until he put on a mask and cape himself. A surprised Rose tells Jason she thought he was a rich kid "born on third base," which seems like a pretty fair assumption. She jokes it's lame his biggest secret is that he's a theater nerd. Jason is quick to point out he is a "thespian," not a theater nerd.
After Rose tells him she's bad news, Jason then starts reciting lines from West Side Story's "Somewhere," saying, "There's a place for us. Somewhere, a place for us. Hold my hand and we're halfway there. Hold my hand and I'll take you there." Rose recites the final lyrics with him, "Somehow, someday, somewhere." She tells him he's not the only nerd on the Titans.
The moment is simultaneously sweet and corny. Jason does a lot to keep up his tough-guy image, so being vulnerable with Rose and revealing he's a big theater nerd couldn't have been easy for him. It's a side of himself he probably doesn't show to anyone. Jason is more than a cocky showoff. He's a kid who had it rough growing up and escaped with theater. The moment adds depth to his character.
With all that said, the execution of the moment is a bit silly silly. While the backstory makes sense with the personality of the character, having him recite the lyrics to "Somewhere" is incredibly cheesy and a bit tonally weird for Titans. Still, the interaction reveals a lot about Jason Todd and fleshes out his character in an interesting way that reveals some of the reasons he's so boisterous and performative.
Streaming now on DC Universe, Titans Season 2 stars Brenton Thwaites as Dick Grayson, Anna Diop as Kory Anders, Teagan Croft as Rachel Roth, Ryan Potter as Garfield Logan, Curran Walters as Jason Todd and Conor Leslie as Donna Troy, with Minka Kelly as Dawn Granger, Alan Ritchson as Hank Hall, Joshua Orpin as Superboy, Chelsea Zhang as Rose Wilson, Chella Man as Jericho, Drew Van Acker as Aqualad, Esai Morales as Deathstroke and Iain Glen as Bruce Wayne.