Review: The New Teen Titans #5

The New Teen Titans #5 cover
Cover by George Pérez

The New Teen Titans #5
Published and © by DC, March 1981

Title: “Trigon Lives!”
Synopsis: The Titans thwart the monstrous Goronn, but prove no match for the invader’s master – Trigon the Terrible!

Writer: Marv Wolfman
Penciler: Curt Swan
Inker: Romeo Tanghal

Review: This early fill-in issue from Superman stalwart Curt Swan underscores George Pérez’s importance to the success of The New Teen Titans. Swan’s storytelling simply lacks the visual gravitas required for a story of this scale. Marv Wolfman’s characterization work is subpar here, as well; while his Titans are on their way to becoming “real,” they still feel more like a collection of character traits than fully formed people. New Teen Titans #5 feels a bit like a B-list summer movie: subpar special effects, wooden characters and a sneaking suspicion that this one could – and should – have been better.

Grade: C+

Goronn and Raven, as drawn by Curt Swan and Romeo Tanghal in The New Teen Titans #5.

Cool factor: Goronn looks pretty menacing on that George Pérez cover …
Not-so-cool factor: Inside this issue? Yeah, not so much.

Collector’s note: According to MyComicShop.com, there is a Mark Jewelers variant of this issue.

Character quotable: “To one who has decimated worlds, one who has ravaged galaxies – and brought  an entire universe to its knees – the puny powers you display only serve to whet my appetite for destruction!” – Trigon, the long winded

Editor’s note: This review was originally published by Sequential Reaction (Vol. 1) on Feb. 2, 2016.

1 Comment

  1. This issue was the most awful thing in comics history. I was 10 when it came out and already a huge fan of the series and had been waiting with baited breath for this one. But when it came out I was absolutely disgusted with the utterly terrible art and, decades later, I would have the chance to meet George Perez himself on at least two occasions and urge him to finally draw his version of this issue, as well as the final “Airworld” issue of the Atari Swordquest mini-comic, but he just laughed at that and said it would never happen.

    And now he’s dead, so he was ultimately right about my remaining disappointed forever.

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