Episode Title: “Sidekicks Assemble!”
Original Air Date: January 22, 2010
I Like the Teen Titans a lot, as do many comic book readers. Among the Teen Titans, perhaps the member most beloved by fans is Night Wing, and this episode is an indulgent adventuring catering to the many Night Wing faithful in the world. The question is, is this episode simply pandering to an easily satisfied audience, or is there a satisfying adventure to accompany it? read on to find out!
The teaser has a very young Robin, Aqualad and Speedy sitting around being bored while Batman, Aquaman and Green Arrow are training diligently. In order to keep the boys occupied, Bats fires up a villains simulator for the lads to train. The ambitious three decide that the one who defeats the most bad guys will get to be the leader, and to no one’s surprise Robin comes out on top.
In the story proper we see a much older version of the sidekick triumvirate fighting some Gotham n’er do-wells, we there respective mentors show up and get involved. The younger heroes get perturbed by the interference of the elders, and complain that they need a bit of independence. Batman appeases them by offering the lads a choice of two missions, one appears very dangerous with exceedingly high stakes, and the other seems like a routine surveillance job. Robin suspects Batman is using some reverse psychology, and chooses the “boring” mission. After the teens depart, Bats reveals that he was using reverse-reverse tactics, and the boring mission is believed to actually be boring. Well as our two teams arrive at their destinations, we find out that Batman was wrong. It turns out that mega bad guy Ra’s Al-Ghul is hiding out with his daughter Talia on a small, quite island to avoid suspicion. The aspiring teen heroes are captured by Ra’s, and Robin is offered the chance to become the heir to the demon. This is an offer that Robin refuses, so the three teens are sent to a death trap. A bitter Talia helps the three escape, but warns Robin if she sees him again he is as good dead.
The requisite exposition reveals that Ra’s has a plan to attack Coast city with a cannon that creates monstrous plants. This really seems like a plot more suited to Poison Ivy that Ra’s, but I’m going with it. Ra’s island turns into a large flying machine and he is off to attack Coast City. I’m kind of surprised that Green Lantern doesn’t show up to help defend his home town, but I guess six heroes are more than enough for this episode. Batman ends up in a sword fight with Al-Ghul in classic fashion, while the teens are left to disable the flying island. Using their knowledge of video games and gadgets, the teen trio disable the doomsday weapon, but Ra’s manages to escape.
In the final scene Aquaman expresses pride in Aqualad, as Green Arrow apologizes for being a jerk to Speedy. Batman asks where Robin is, when we hear a voice say, “Robin has left the building”. Next I let out a clearly audible “YES!” as Night Wing is revealed in his classic costume and Batman dubs him with his new name. This episode was well worth the twenty minutes of my time that it took to watch it. Yes, it was indulgent, it really was simply pandering to fans like me, but what can I say? I’m a sucker for Night Wing.