Titans Actress Lisa Ambalavanar Shared How She Pulled From Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. While Crafting Her Version Of Jinx

Brenton Thwaites and Lisa Ambalavanar in Titans Season 4
(Image credit: HBO Max)

Back in January, we learned that Jinx, one of the Teen Titans’ most well-known enemies in the pages of DC Comics, would be played by Lisa Ambalavanar in Titans Season 4. However, with the premiere of Ambalavanar’s first episode to HBO Max subscribers, it turns out that Jinx is not an adversary, but rather an ally recruited by Dick Grayson. That being said, Jinx does bring a sort of chaotic energy to the show, and in that regard, Ambalavanar shared with CinemaBlend that she was influenced by Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the Marvel TV show that ran on ABC from 2013 to 2020.

In addition to Lisa Ambalavanar explaining how the steps she took to make sure her version of Jinx didn’t emulate Doctor Strange on Titans, the actress also talked with me about what it was like for her to come into a team filled with people who have an established rapport with one another and shake things up. In her words:

That is something I liked about the character, coming in fresh. I had remembered actually, this is something I’ve never told anyone, I remembered when I used to watch Agents of SHIELD, and there was the character who came in called Hunter. [Played by] a British actor, and I remembered how he’d come in with his own cheeky British accent and just bring that fresh bit of energy into the show, or something different, to a genre that can be a lot brooding, and nothing wrong with that at all, but I felt that it was nice to try and inject that same kind of ‘Here’s something different.’ People will either love that or they’ll hate it, and that’s absolutely fine, but it was kind of a conscious thing to not just come in and do the same as everyone else.

Lisa Ambalavanar is referring to Nick Blood’s Lance Hunter, who was introduced at the beginning of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 2 as one of the people Phil Coulson and the other starring agents recruited to help them out following that mess with HYDRA in Season 1. As a fellow British person, Ambalavanar gravitated to how Hunter infused Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. with humor and a unique energy to spice things up, so she wanted for Jinx to lighten up Titans in a similar way. So far we’ve only seen Jinx interact with Dick and Kory, but viewers will get to see how she is with the other Titans starting in the next episode.

Hunter, along with his ex-wife, Adrianne Palicki’s Bobbi Morse, ended up being key characters during Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s sophomore season and the following one, but towards the end of Season 3, they were forced to leave the spy organization, and Nick Blood only reprised Hunter once more in Season 5. As for Jinx, Lisa Ambalavanar acknowledged that her character’s shtick might not please everyone, but she was nonetheless glad to be thrown into the mix in this way, as well as form friendships with her costars. As she explained:

And I know the fans are going to be very, very loyal to the characters that they love and probably not like someone who’s taking the mick out of them, but I’m not necessarily supposed to be a likable character. But yeah, it was something that I was excited about coming in and getting stuck in with the team in a very, very different way. And luckily in real life, I got along with all very well. So it just felt quite natural and felt comfortable with them and developed some really nice friendships where we hung out outside work, so it did feel nice to be part of a team.

Titans Season 4 has already seen Franka Potente’s Mother Mayhem and her followers causing quite a bit of trouble, and Joesph Morgan’s Sebastian Sanger is expected to wreak havoc later in the season as Brother Blood, so the Titans can use all the magical help they can get, particularly since Raven’s powers have been drained. So while Jinx isn’t exactly a team player and she has a tumultuous past with Dick Grayson, she may hold they key to thwarting this latest threat. Unfortunately, we won’t get to see how she is with Titus Welliver’s Lex Luthor, as the season premiere ended with him being taken out of commission rather gruesomely.

With Titans Season 4 consisting of 12 episodes, the remaining three from this first half will drop in the following weeks on Thursdays, and the six in the season’s latter half will air on HBO Max (opens in new tab) sometime in 2023. If you’re interested in seeing more of Lisa Ambalavanar’s work, watch her play Mia in The A-List, which can be streamed with a Netflix subscription.

Adam Holmes
Senior Content Producer

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.