The Teen Titans debuted not too long after the Justice League, first appearing in The Brave and the Bold #54 (1964). Initially founded by Robin, Kid Flash, and Aqualad, the Teen Titans went on to continuously expand and shrink with its rotating members. Like any other superhero team, the Teen Titans have undergone a fair share of ups and downs with regards to popularity. Marv Wolfman’s and George Pérez’ New Teen Titans series in the 80s truly launched the team and the title into the stratosphere. In fact, it’s worth noting that Deathstroke makes his debut in The New Teen Titans’ second issue. However, Cartoon Network’s Teen Titans animated series, which ran from 2003 to 2006, arguably transformed the team and many of its heroes into household names.
Several subsequent cross-media ventures have also cemented the group’s place in popular culture. Interestingly, like in the comics, the team itself perpetually evolves. Characters come and go, either growing out of the team or never being included at all. Thus, every Teen Titans incarnation can’t possibly feature each hero that’s passed through Titans Tower. This will most notably be evident in the DC Universe’s Titans. The show’s being in live-action strains certain possibilities. Some characters simply won’t appear. Others will show up, but may be relegated to the background due to their powers and budgetary constraints. Regardless, there are numerous heroes we hope join the live-action team. Still, a few others are best left off of this incarnation. Here are 10 Teen Titans we want to see on Titans and 10 we don’t.
20 WANT: IMPULSE
Surely, Titans has a Flash character in the pipeline. Since the Arrowverse’s Wally West is presently taking a time out, Kid Flash seems the perfect fit. Perhaps it's time for another speedster to step into the limelight, though: Bart Allen’s Impulse. The character has a few appearances in Smallville, but the full breadth of his powers never makes it to screen.
Of course, there does exist one glaring and difficult issue to avoid. Speedsters, as The CW has proven, are rather costly in live-action. Thus, if Impulse, or any other speedster, were to appear on Titans, it’s unlikely to be in any significant capacity. Still, even just an episode or two where Impulse visits from the future would make for quite the treat.
19 DON'T WANT: SUPERGIRL
Supergirl would make a great addition to a Titans-centric television series. However, there are two reasons Kara Zor-El should sit this one out. Firstly, barring the character’s solo comic series and live-action show, Supergirl has spent much of her existence acting as a supporting character. This is primarily due to her residing in Superman’s shadow. After three plus seasons of television with her being the titular hero, are we ready to see her devolve into a secondary or tertiary role once more?
Secondly, and this somewhat ties into the first point, Supergirl is an expensive character to get right in live-action. Therefore, this would automatically position her in a supporting role, where her powers are scarcely used.
18 WANT: BLUE BEETLE
Jaime Reyes’ Blue Beetle does not join the Teen Titans until the 2000s. He easily fits onto the team, though, as if he’s been central to the organization of young heroes since the start. It’s rare, really, for a character to so effortlessly flow with an established status quo. Yet, recent incarnations of the Teen Titans in comics, such as DC Rebirth, don’t feature Blue Beetle on the roster.
Hopefully, the DC Universe’s Titans series brings him back into the fold. Since his brief appearance in Smallville’s tenth season serves as Blue Beetle’s sole live-action adventure, the character seems past due for another chance to shine. Would Titans offer such an opportunity? We won’t know unless an honest effort is given.
17 WANT: AQUALAD
As a founding member of the original Teen Titans, Aqualad deserves his due. Based on what’s known about Titans, thus far, he certainly won’t be a founding member of this particular incarnation. However, that does not mean his contribution would become any less significant were he to arrive at a later period.
Typically, Aqualad holds a leadership role. His tactical prowess and discipline make him perfect for such a position. Plus, he never fails to rise to the occasion, regardless of whether he’s asked to do so. Of course, Aqualad’s hyrdrokinesis powers would make him difficult to translate into live-action, especially on a television budget. Should the logistics work in DC Universe’s favor, he’d be a welcome addition to the cast of characters.
16 DON'T WANT: LAGOON BOY
There is absolutely nothing wrong with Lagoon Boy. He’s a fine character, compelling in his own right. However, rarely does a story put him in the position to stand out amongst other heroes. This holds true for both his appearance in the comics and his ventures in DC’s animated projects.
In the Young Justice animated series, Lagoon Boy plays little more than a supporting role. Unfortunately, much of that role finds him being depicted primarily as a love interest to Miss Martian. Could Lagoon Boy possibly take on a more integral part in a live-action series, one with an already hefty ensemble cast? It seems unlikely.
15 WANT: TERRA
There exists three versions of Terra. Arguably, the better known iteration is that which debuted in New Teen Titans comics. Though she’s sister to the hero Geo-Force, Terra harbors a dark side that eventually gets out of hand. After becoming a mercenary for hire, she takes work from Deathstroke. They have a bizarre relationship, but what’s fascinating is that she infiltrates the Teen Titans, pretending to be an ally on Deathstroke’s orders.
This story receives translation to screen in the Teen Titans: Judas Contract animated film. It would probably make for good live-action television, too. Of course, the story doesn’t need a one-to-one recreation. Nevertheless, Terra’s more haunting backstory certainly befits the tone of Titans.
14 DON'T WANT: MISS MARTIAN
If Supergirl does anything for Martians, other than remind us of how incredible they are, it’s prove that they’re difficult to adapt in live-action. The little shown of Miss Martian on Supergirl does indeed impress, with both her characterization and backstory. However, her and Martian Manhunter are often sidelined because their Martian forms require an abundance of work and money.
Does anyone want the same fate to befall Miss Martian in yet another live-action series, where she’ll serve as a supporting cast member? It would be fun to see her explored on a show in which she’s a bit younger. For now, though, practicality may not match with what fans would want from her introduction on Titans.
13 WANT: TIM DRAKE
Does Titans as it currently stands have enough Robins? Sure, but that may not be the case for much longer. Reportedly, Dick Grayson will adopt the Nightwing mantle. This, of course, leaves Jason Todd as the sole Robin. The question then segues into when (or if) Jason will perish, once again leaving the door open for another iteration of the Boy Wonder.
More importantly, would this particular show explore such a narrative? It’s possible. If so, Tim Drake seems a good fit. Furthermore, his introduction on the series wouldn’t necessitate him immediately joining the team. Akin to how their relationship is often depicted in the comics, Nightwing could mentor Tim, give him a brotherly figure to admire.
12 DON'T WANT: GUARDIAN
Since the character’s Star-Spangled Comics debut in 1942, many men have donned the Guardian mantle. The two iterations most familiar to modern audiences, especially with regards to other media, are Mal Duncan (Young Justice) and James Olsen (Supergirl). Unfortunately, neither of these two have been captivating by any means, primarily due to their holding secondary or tertiary roles.
Could DC Universe’s Titans potentially offer the hero a far more compelling character arc? Indeed. Considering the show’s pilot season, thus far, seems to emphasize character, there’s reason to believe he’d finally get his due. But of all the young C-list heroes that could benefit from such a move, is Guardian the one fans want to see elevated right now?
11 WANT: STATIC
Since the Milestone Universe’s recent return to DC, Static fans have waited with bated breath for the hero’s next adventure. He has a solo comic series slated to launch sometime in the near future and consequently, fingers are crossed it won’t take long for him to make a triumphant return to other media.
Many hope he appears on The CW’s Black Lightning series. Sadly, it doesn’t seem likely at present, but maybe he’d be at home on Titans. An exploration of his origin in a fashion similar to some of the characters in the show’s first season certainly sounds intriguing. Besides, who isn’t ready for Virgil’s live-action debut?
10 DON'T WANT: KID FLASH
Make no mistake, Wally West’s Kid Flash is always a welcomed addition to a DC project, regardless of whether it necessitates a speedster. The character’s run on The CW’s Flash and Legends of Tomorrow proves this in spades. He’s fun, lighthearted, and usually a breath of fresh air. So why should he miss out on all the Titans-related fun? It’s time for other speedsters to shine, too.
Barry gets all of the live-action love, but Wally sits at the center of attention in many of DC’s animated ventures. Perhaps they should both step aside and let another speedster take the reins for a time.
9 WANT: SUPERBOY
Rumors have previously swirled that Superboy will make an appearance on Titans. As of now, these claims have yet to receive official corroboration. Therefore, this list entry operates under the assumption that Conner Kent is not a part of the DC Universe show. He would certainly be a good addition, however.
Just as Titans is exploring the divide between Batman and Dick Grayson’s Robin, the same could be done for Conner’s relationship, or lack thereof, with Superman. Furthermore, dissimilar to a character like Supergirl, Conner wouldn’t require extensive special effects, per se. As far as budget-related issues are concerned, his inability to fly is a plus.
8 DON'T WANT: ROY HARPER
In many respects, Titans’ Dick Grayson/Robin is reminiscent of Roy Harper, particularly the version of depicted in Young Justice and Arrow. This Robin has parted ways with his mentor and seems to despise him. There’s an overtly angry quality to Robin, too, one not typical of the original Boy Wonder. Thus, we’re left pondering one thing: Does Titans need yet another character of that nature with Roy Harper?
Of course, the show could just as easily alter Roy’s characterization. Additionally, his inclusion on the show doesn’t necessitate his being one of the titular Titans. But given his prominence on Arrow, especially as Season 7 is getting under way, maybe the world doesn’t need another Roy Harper at present.
7 WANT: POWER GIRL
An Earth-2 version of Supergirl, Power Girl brings a different flair to DC’s more heroic Kryptonians. She believes wholeheartedly in truth and justice, similar to her more famous counterpart and the Man of Steel. However, Power Girl has a forcefulness to her that neither of the two aforementioned heroes possess.
Typically, she’s depicted as a bit more mature than Supergirl. In combat, Power Girl willingly uses brute force when necessary, another character trait separating her from the Girl of Steel. To this end, Power Girl seems the perfect fit for DC Universe’s Titan series. Sure, she’d be costly, but seeing another side of a Supergirl-like character would make for fascinating television.
6 DON'T WANT: JOKER'S DAUGHTER
Though she’s used the Joker’s Daughter sobriquet since her Batman Family debut in 1976, Duela Dent’s family history is far more complex. In fact, in most iterations, her true lineage remains rather mysterious. That hasn’t stopped her from claiming relation to other notable Gotham criminals, such as The Riddler and Penguin. During the pre-Crisis continuity, she joins the Teen Titans in an effort to make amends for her so-called father’s acts.
Honestly, such a telling of her story meshes well with what’s been shown of Titans to date. Yet, another Joker-inspired project may not be too appealing to some, given his and Harley Quinn’s dominating presence across multiple forms of media.
5 WANT: ZACHARY ZATARA
Presently, it’s not clear how Titans will approach Raven’s backstory. As a consequence, the show’s supernatural core remains nebulous. However, should a full-on magician join the live-action team, Zachary Zatara would be a superb addition. Naturally, the most intriguing aspect about the character is his being a Zatara -- he and Zatanna are cousins.
Regardless of Zachary’s bloodline, he’s very much an incredible magician in his own right. The character debuted in Teen Titans books in 2006; yet, another young Zatara appears in Kingdom Come as a part of Batman’s Silent Calvary. Interestingly, this Zatara’s parents are Zatanna and John Constantine. If broken families are to be a theme in Titans, this would constitute an incredible way to explore another.
4 DON'T WANT: PANTHA
As with a few other characters on this list, Rosabelle Mendez first appears in Teen Titans comics. Without question, the story fueling what leads to her transformation into Pantha is outright compelling. The character herself doesn’t know much about her life before the transformation. However, it’s known that she was captured and sold to the Wildebeest Society, where she was experimented on and mutated. To this end, Pantha’s story absolutely merits a live-action retelling?
Yet, her time with the Teen Titans isn’t favorable, since she has a contentious relationship with much of her fellow heroes. The hostility primarily comes from Pantha. To her detriment, then, she’s not a good team player by any means.
3 WANT: BUMBLEBEE
Karen Beecher’s Bumblebee is one of the lesser known Teen Titans who has recently entered into mainstream consciousness. Obviously, she owes her popularity, minimum though it is, to the Young Justice animated series. Her bubbly attitude and hopeful disposition make her fun to watch, as does her admirable determination. Every so often, she even gets an incredible hero moment or two. Unfortunately, she doesn’t get much of a chance to shine as some of the show’s other young heroes.
Maybe Titans wouldn’t be able to do much in increasing her productivity on the team, given the cast’s already large size. But her personality could serve the Titans mightily, specifically because of the series’ darker tone.
2 DON'T WANT: RAVAGER
Since the character’s New Teen Titans introduction in 1980, several characters, most of whom are connected to Deathstroke, have adopted the Ravager mantle. Deathstroke’s son, Grant Wilson, held the title first. Other notable characters to deem themselves Ravager include Deathstroke’s adversary Bill Walsh, Rose Wilson, and Isabel Rochev on Arrow. It’s Rose who’s held membership in the Titans, though.
Interestingly, Rose has been friend and foe to the team of young heroes. Her having an arc that allows her to explore both relationships in live-action would be intriguing, indeed. However, with plans reportedly in place to bring Joseph Wilson, another of Slade’s offspring, to Titans, Ravager should probably keep to the sidelines for now.
1 WANT: DAMIAN WAYNE
With Dick Grayson as a series lead and Jason Todd set to make an appearance, Titans may appear to overflow with Bat-Family members. Is another addition in the form of a Batman sidekick going to hurt? It’s debatable. However, should the show explore such a plot thread any further, Damian Wayne seems best left out of the loop.
For one, Jason Todd’s apparent youth in the series suggests Batman is only on Robin number two. Damian’s hypothetical introduction would certainly convolute things, to say the least. But who knows what the future holds? The show could last long enough for his debut to avoid complication. As the narrative currently stands, this Robin shouldn’t spread his wings just yet.