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The arrival of Titans on DC Universe means the long-awaited debut of Dick Grayson, Starfire, Raven, Beast Boy and more as a team in live-action. These are heroes with long histories on the pages of DC Comics and a couple of animated adaptations, but the live-action series is a big deal for fans. Fortunately, the stars bringing these heroes to life recently chatted with CinemaBlend on the Titans premiere red carpet and dropped some details about what to expect from their characters. Let's start with Brenton Thwaites as Robin:
Everybody knows Robin as Batman's first sidekick who fought by the Dark Knight's side, with the first Robin being none other than Dick Grayson. In Titans, Robin will be a violent, skilled, F-bomb dropping vigilante who has left Batman behind to pursue his own path. The early footage indicates that Robin and Batman didn't part well, and Brenton Thwaites talked how Dick and Bruce's relationship is teased throughout the first season:
What we see throughout the season are the reasons as to why he left. There's a little bit of backstory into what happened, which kind of informs the audience as to why Dick is feeling those ways, and that's why he's passionate about not going back to work for Batman. We see a character come into the show called Jason Todd who acts as Batman's current employee who's basically Robin's replacement. There we learn that Jason is currently doing things taught to him by Batman that Dick doesn't agree with, and are the direct reasons why he left Batman. We see a little bit of a 'this is who I was, this is what I am now.'
Batman won't be without a Robin just because Dick left Gotham behind, and Dick will be replaced by none other than Jason Todd. We've already seen that the two won't get along right away. While Titans may not open with all the information about why Dick left Batman, Brenton Thwaites states that more info will be revealed throughout the season. Since the show has already been renewed for another season, perhaps we can count on the backstory extending into Season 2 as well!
Brenton Thwaites also commented on the infamous "Fuck Batman" line from the first trailer and its significance to Dick in Titans:
When I first saw that line on screen, I thought 'what a success in telling the audience what the tone of our show would be.' It was smart of the producers and writers to do that. In two words, we tell people what our show is going to be, we own that were not telling the story of Batman, we're telling the story of Titans. From the very first episode, we see Robin/Dick Grayson trying to break away from fighting in the methods and ways that Batman has taught him, and trying to create a new identify where he's comfortable in fighting crime. As controversial as it is, because I know people want to see Batman, we all love Batman, this series is coming from a place where it's told a little bit later down the line where Batman is getting out of hand. He's doing things that we're kind of asking questions about. Just because it's Batman, does it mean it's right? Robin starts to ask those questions in the first episode.
The Titans creative team already talked about the tone of the show and how it relates to the violence, and it seems that Dick's story will be a significant part of that. Now, let's move on to what Anna Diop had to say about Starfire!
Starfire is a hero who has appeared in a lot of DC Comics over the years, but she hasn't been adapted for TV nearly as much as Dick Grayson. In fact, to TV fans who don't read comics, Starfire is probably best known from Teen Titans Go! Actress Anna Diop is bringing Starfire to live-action, and she weighed in on how her version of Starfire will differ from what viewers might already know of the character from past versions:
It depends on which Starfire you're talking about, because there are some comic book versions of Starfire that are really badass and unapologetic, so it's definitely that. I think it strays a little bit, well a lot a bit, from the bubbly Starfire that people love. I did try to bring that to it a little bit, because I think it's adorable and so sweet. She's badass, she's unapologetic, she's taking no shit.
Concerns about Starfire's costume in Titans compared to her comic book costume were raised by comic fans early on, and it sounds like Titans' Starfire will differ from her comics counterpart in more ways than just the outfit. She definitely sounds like a force to be reckoned with, and with the powers that she's already showed off in the early footage, she'll be a valuable member of the new team.
Fans shouldn't expect to learn everything there is to learn about Starfire right off the bat, however. Anna Diop could tease this regarding learning about Starfire's history:
It's a slow build, and I love it, and when it hits it's great. But it takes its time, and you find out who she is, and she finds out who she is.
That's the lowdown on Starfire and when to expect to learn more about her courtesy of Anna Diop. Read on to learn what Teagan Croft had to say about playing Raven!
Titans will delve into horror thanks to Rachel Roth, a.k.a. Raven. When Teagan Croft was announced as the young actress bringing Raven to live-action, we learned that she would be the daughter of a demon, and will operate as a powerful empath, which proved that she was definitely going to be a different kind of hero than the non-superpowered Robin. According to Croft, her powers will need some honing and she needs to learn about herself. Here's what she said:
Raven, Rachel, doesn't really know who she is at first. She just knows that she has this power she gets when she's angry or upset or emotional. She knows that bad things happen and she can feel it getting stronger and getting worse, but she doesn't know how to control it. With the help of Dick Grayson, who helps her find a place in the world, and with the help of Kori [Starfire] helping her control her power and Gar [Beast Boy] helping her control her emotions, she gradually learns how to come into her own, and control her powers, and she's always discovering new aspects to her powers.
Raven may have incredible powers, but she'll be dangerous until she gets a handle on her emotions, and she apparently won't have much of an emotional support system until she meets Dick Grayson and Co. Hers will be an ongoing journey with each of her new friends helping her in different ways. It's fitting that Dick helps her find her place in the world, as he's probably the Titan who can most easily hide in plain sight.
Teagan Croft also shared her thoughts on what fans will enjoy the most about Raven in the new series:
I think what fans will enjoy most, is being able to relate to her more. It's easier to relate to a real life character than a cartoon character, and to see her go through the same things that many people do as teenagers, except her inner demons are less metaphorical, and, well, real. But all people struggle with an inner demon at some point, so seeing that happen in live-action will be really fun to see and relate to.
Surprisingly, the young girl with the demon parent may be one of the easiest characters to relate to. We'll have to wait and see. For now, check out what's in store with Beast Boy, according to star Ryan Potter!
Beast Boy/Garfield Logan
Beast Boy definitely won't be able to hide in plain sight if he starts using his powers of transformaton. Having the ability to turn himself into any animal he thinks of can make him quite the asset to the team, but he won't fit right in with any crowds if he starts turning into a lion, a tiger, and/or a bear. Ryan Potter, who plays Beast Boy, shared this about how Beast Boy fits into Titans:
We start with Beast Boy in this state of comfort, he's living his best life with his family at the Doom Patrol mansion. I can't really say any more, because as soon as Beast Boy's pulled into the horror world of Raven, the sci-fi world of Starfire and the superhero detective story of Robin, he gets to fan boy and ride along with each of those stories. Every day on set it's a new set location, or it's new costumes, or new props...
Unlike his fellow Titans, Beast Boy will come from a privileged life based out of a bad place. Sure, Dick Grayson grew up in a mansion of his own unless Titans changes Batman's backstory significantly, but he definitely wasn't hanging out with members of the Doom Patrol. It should be interesting to see how Garfield goes from his comfortable life with his family to hanging with the Titans.
Ryan Potter addressed how his character will be impacted by past versions of Beast Boy:
In this iteration, I tried to bring a mix of all three of those, but also keeping the lightheartedness. While beast boy can be jokey, it comes from how big of a heart he has. He's got the quote of, "If I didn't tell jokes, I'd probably be depressed all the time." So, it comes from a truthful place. There's a lot of people that deal with depression and sadness, adn they use laughter as a coping mechanism. I think Beast Boy rides the line sometimes, because he goes through a lot of traumatic events, and I think the humor has just become part of his personality, because he used it as a defense mechanism for so long that it's not even a defense mechanism anymore. It's not reactive, it's instinctive.
Although Beast Boy will deliver some humor, his life won't be nothing but laughs. Like the others, he'll have trauma to deal with, and he'll apparently find his own unique way of doing so. For what superheroes Hawk and Dove will be like on Titans, check out what Alan Ritchson and Minka Kelly have to say on the next page!
Hawk And Dove/Hank Hall And Dawn Granger
The next heroes of Titans come as a pair: Hank Hall and Dawn Granger are a romantic couple who are also the good guys Hawk and Dove. Their approaches the crime-fighting are quite different, and actress Minka Kelly revealed that their costumes are quite different as well, with her getting the short end of the stick. That said, she had positive things to say about her character's relationship with Hawk:
I love the relationship between Hawk and Dove, just because it's a very codependent relationship, and I know that relationship very well. I've been there in my own life, so I have a deep compassion and empathy for these two. I think it's such a great thing for a show like [Titans] in particular to really go into why these characters are who they are. I love learning about their origin stories, which we get to do later on in the series, and I just love that we get to be a show like this. It's a bit more grown up, and a bit deeper and darker and grittier, like none of the others you've ever seen. It's fun.
A codependent relationship may not be the healthiest dynamic, but it can certainly be entertaining on TV! Hawk and Dove will evidently have their origin stories told as well as the four main Titans, and it won't be a dynamic just for kids. Minka Kelly sounds like she's able to relate to her character from a relationship standpoint, if not because of superpowers.
Co-star Alan Ritchson commented on how the show's Hawk and Dove will compare to the Hawk and Dove from the pages of DC Comics:
It's hard to please everybody, but the best I think I can do is is just get behind the character as best as possible, consume as much of the canon of Hawk and Dove, and then just do my best to bring to life what's on the page. I think we've done that, but I think what's most important is Geoff Johns and Akiva Goldsman, brilliant guys who understand these characters have really guided this ship towards something that's very real. I don't think we've glossed over any subject matter, so it's fun to be honest, even as a superhero.
Comics fans can be difficult to win over when it comes to adapting their favorite characters for television, but Titans has some big names on board to help adapt characters like Hawk and Dove. If anybody can be trusted with DC character adaptations, it's Geoff Johns!