Who could possibly trap members of the Titans and the Justice League together? And cause the heroes to bicker instead of working together to escape?

Titans annual Key

Titans Annual
Written by Dan Abnett 
Art by Minkyu Jung and Adriano Lucus

Titans AnnualYes, the Key, the version reimagined by Grant Morrison during his time writing JLA back in the late 1990s, has trapped four members of the Titans team and their mentors on the Justice League: Nightwing and Batman; Flashes Wally and Barry; Donna Troy and Wonder Woman; and Tempest and Aquaman. You’d think that a the close-knit heroes would be able to work together to get out of the odd prison that holds them. But it would be a boring comic if that happened, and we need some filler.

But the heroes don’t actually fight each other here. They bicker. While Barry and Wally are on the same page, and Tempest defers to his King, Aquaman, Batman just acts like a jackass, sowing some seeds of doubt and casting aspersions about not trusting these people he’s fought beside for years. And we’re given no reason why he wouldn’t trust them. Donna and Diana, on the other hand, just act passive-aggressively toward each other until Batman’s jerkishness forces Diana to defend Donna.

The annual sets up a future confrontation for the Titans, as The Key was talking to someone off-camera that we never see, the mystery to be revealed in the main series. I wish I could be more excited than  I am for that prospect, but I fear a retread of the 1997 JLA story, only with the Titans instead of the big guns.

And I really did want to like this issue, especially when I saw that The Key was the main villain, but everything about it just fell flat, because the bickering just seemed so out of character (well, maybe not for Batman… he’s frequently an ass). I just hope it’s not indicative of a drop in quality for the Titans book.