Back in September, TNT announced they were nearing a deal to create a live-action series centering around the Teen Titans. After that? Radio silence…until now.
When a fan on Twitter questioned DC Entertainment’s Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns on how things were progressing, he was just as shocked as everyone else when he got this response.
@kyler416 We shoot the pilot next year!
— Geoff Johns (@geoffjohns) December 8, 2014
A pilot coming “next year” featuring Nightwing isn’t a lot to go on, but it does open the door to some interesting possibilities.
The “Teen Titans” soared to popularity in 2003 when Cartoon Network began airing a series by the same name. The show featured Robin — not yet Nightwing — as leader of a oddball gang of heroes. Starfire, Cyborg, Raven, and Beast Boy rounded out the roster. Influenced heavily by anime and taking on the self-deprecating humor that plays so well with Millennial audiences, “Teen Titans” quickly became extremely popular with kids who are now legal adults.
However, despite a built-in fan base, when DC Entertainment relaunched the “Teen Titans” in the New 52, half the original cast was scrapped. Beast Boy and Raven were the only ones to escape the chopping block. Starfire has been controversially recast as an adult sexpot for “Red Hood and the Outlaws,” causing no small amount of blowback.
Meanwhile Cyborg was re-homed with the Justice League and Dick Grayson’s Robin became adult Nightwing, complete with his own comic.
So what does that mean for TNT’s live-action “Teen Titans?” Nightwing has always been the adult version of Robin, a metaphorical and literal stepping out from Batman’s shadow to become his own man. Does this mean they plan to fast-forward through that arc of Robin’s self-discovery and growth as a leader? Maybe. Maybe not. Either way, Nightwing is definitely “grittier” than Robin, leading to my educated speculation that once more the goofy fun intermixed with teen angst that we love about the Teen Titans might be left on the cutting room floor.
Hopefully they don’t leave Starfire’s clothes there, too.