The latest image from DC Universe's live-action Titans TV series offers the first look at Robin (Brenton Thwaites), Starfire (Anna Diop), Beast Boy (Ryan Potter) and Raven (Teagan Croft) together. DC's live-action adaptation of the New Teen Titans comic books was originally conceived and developed as a TV show for TNT in 2014. The network ultimately decided to pass on the Titans pilot two years later, before it was announced that Titans would be one of the first original series available on DC's streaming service, DC Universe, when it launches in October.
DC's Titans marketing machine is currently running at full speed, though it has yet to top Robin's now-infamous "F**k Batman" one-liner from the official Titans trailer released for San Diego Comic-Con back in July. Nevertheless, the show's pre-release promotional campaign is carrying on and has already included character banners that shine the spotlight on Raven, Starfire and Beast Boy individually, along with Thwaites' Boy Wonder.
For those not familiar, the Titans include Dick Grayson aka. Robin, an acrobatic crime-fighter and Batman's former sidekick (hence the chip on his shoulder towards the Caped Crusader); Koriand'r aka. Starfire, an extraterrestrial being who can use ultraviolet radiation for a variety of purposes; Garfield Logan aka. Beast Boy, a green-ish lad who can transform into just about any animal; and Rachel Roth aka. Raven, a half-human, half-demon with dark magical powers. Take a look at the four together in the image below (courtesy of EW):
According to EW, the plot of Titans is set in motion when Drake - who parted ways with Batman before the show begins and is now trying to make a living as a detective in Detroit - meets and decides to help the troubled teenager Rachel to better understand her abilities. Croft described the pair's dynamic as being akin to a "father-daughter relationship" to EW, adding that they bond over their shared feelings of abandonment. Along the way, the duo wind up crossing paths and, subsequently, joining forces with Starfire and Beast Boy, who are likewise dealing with feelings of being lost souls.
Titans is being executive produced by Fringe and Star Trek: Discovery veteran Akiva Goldsman, along with DC mainstay Geoff Johns and Greg Berlanti, who also oversees DC's Arrowverse TV shows on The CW. The series will serve as the beginning of a shared television universe itself by introducing characters like Hawk (Alan Ritchson) and Dove (Minka Kelly), both of whom could get their own spinoff show on DC Universe down the line. Similarly, the Titans will eventually meet up with the Doom Patrol, an eccentric team of superheroes whose own DC universe series is already well into development.
Between criticisms that the Titans trailer comes off as being unintentionally campy rather than dark and edgy and complaints about the team's costumes looking cheap, the fan buzz around Titans is decidedly mixed (at best) right now. That could have a significant impact on the number of people who decide to check out the series when it launches, even among those who sign up for the general DC Universe package. Of course, if the first reviews for Titans end up being positive, that will certainly help to convince more viewers to not only take a chance on the series, but also stick with the DC streaming service it calls home (which, from a business perspective, is more important to the company).
Titans premieres Friday, October 12 on DC Universe.