Titans: How "The Family" Sets Up The Doom Patrol Spinoff

Titans Nuclear Family Doom Patrol

WARNING: The Following Article Contains SPOILERS For the "Origins" Episode of Titans.

The latest episode of Titans suggests some strange things about The Family that could have a bearing on the upcoming Doom Patrol series that is scheduled to spin out of Titans in 2019. The four assassins, who have been tracking Rachel Roth since Titans' second episode have proven themselves to be inhuman, but just what exactly they are is just now being made apparent.

When we first see the fearsome foursome in "Hawk and Dove", they seem far from threatening except in how forcibly normal they are, with the two children playing Monopoly while Dad reads his morning paper as Mom busies herself about the kitchen. A visit from a mysterious stranger informing Dad that The Family has been "activated" leads to the retrieval of four syringes labeled "Dad", "Mom", "Biff" and "Sis." What is in these syringes is never explained but it makes them more than a match for the likes of Hawk, Dove and Robin. The episode concludes with Rachel in the custody of The Family and the rest of our heroes beaten nine ways from Sunday.

Related: DC's Titans: 11 Biggest Questions From Episode 3

The names of the four assassins offered a clue as to the identity of The Family in Titans. Dad, Mom, Biff and Sis are the names of four members of The Nuclear Family - a super-villain group which first appeared in Outsiders #1 in September 1985. The creations of a mad scientist named Dr. Eric Shanner, The Nuclear Family were robots that Dr. Shanner created to replace the family that he accidentally killed due to his experiments with nuclear power. The Outsiders stepped in to thwart Shanner's plans to directly educate the public on the dangers of nuclear power by having The Nuclear Family meltdown in the middle of Los Angeles.

The Nuclear Family From Outsiders #1 DC Comics

While it was clear that The Family of Titans is based on The Nuclear Family of Outsiders, this didn't mean that The Family were a quartet of robots. Indeed, the fact that they had to inject themselves with something suggested that whatever The Family was, they were biological in nature. While it was possible that The Family were organic automatons akin to the Simulants of Fallout or the Replicants of Blade Runner, this seemed unlikely given that humanoid villains injecting themselves with a drug to gain super-powers (much like Bane and his Venom) seemed more in keeping with the spirit of Titans.

It was not until "Origins" - the third episode of Titans - that it became clear that The Nuclear Family were most likely some form of highly-advanced robot. After "Dad" is killed, the rest of The Family travel to Chicago to meet with their handler. After being told that "we built you better than this" the handler brandishes a remote before relenting and asking if The Family would like a new dad. All of this hints at The Nuclear Family being robots, albeit organically-based ones that require some kind of injection to function at peak efficiency.

The introduction of robots of some kind into the lore of Titans may tie into the introduction of the Doom Patrol in Titans' fifth episode. With Cyborg and Robotman poised to be part of that team, we know that less humanoid robot bodies and robotic body-parts exist in this universe, begging the question of why such technology isn't used to give Victor Stone and Cliff Steele robotic bodies that can pass for human. Presumably the upcoming episodes will explain this oddity or clarify that The Nuclear Family are something secret that is far more advanced that what is available to STAR Labs or Niles Caulder.

More: How To Watch DC's Titans (And When New Episodes Release)

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