TEEN TITANS: BEAST BOY, available now from DC Comics, continues DC’s latest run of young adult series. Once again, we’re diving back into the world of Teen Titans, this time to focus on arguably the most charismatic character of the bunch. Beast Boy.
Origin stories can be exhausting, I know. That being said, this latest run of origin stories has been memorable for a variety of reasons. The younger take on the characters, for one. Secondly, this series has been more accommodating for a varied (and younger) audience. It changes things, making the world feel refreshing and new.
That goes doubly so for Teen Titans: Beast Boy. The book is already looking to be the best origin of the bunch, leaving fans (and a certain reviewer) eager to see what is going to happen next in this story. It should probably go without saying that this whole adventure is perfect for fans of this unique character.
Teen Titans: Beast Boy is not the origin story you might expect. It’s better. Think of all the fun that Beast Boy (aka Garfield Logan) has regularly. Now spin that fun into the story of how he became a hero. Suddenly it’s sound a bit more exciting.
Written by Kami Garcia, there’s no room for doubt about who Garfield is. Even without his iconic green hue, he’s still the Beast Boy we all know and love. Just at a point before he knew of or gained his powers.
This series also did something truly remarkable; it highlights Beast Boy’s insecurities. Garfield is a teenager who was extremely uncomfortable in the way he looked, and it showed. That’s going to forge such a strong connection for many readers, providing a potent reminder that Beast Boy is a person first and a hero second.
More than that, this series shows him working through those insecurities and trying to push onward. It’s empowering to see, even if he sometimes makes mistakes or the wrong choices in the process.
The secondary characters are another vital element in this origin. They bring in more diversity, backgrounds, and reasons to love everything about Garfield and the world he lives in. It’s all of these details that flesh out that world and make it such an enjoyable (and approachable) read.
The artwork inside Teen Titans: Beast Boy is phenomenal. Look at the cover, and you’re going to have a firm idea of what is in store. Every little detail and element in this series screams Beast Boy, from the design down to the colors, and everything in between.
Gabriel Picolo and Rob Haynes were the lead artists, bringing the plot to life. That means they were responsible for portraying all of Garfield’s shenanigans, of which there were many. These felt fun and light, yet even visually they were tinged with the threat of what could go wrong.
The artwork also brought out all of those nuances in Beast Boy’s behavior. The way he looked at himself in the mirror, the way he’d try to stand taller around the cool kids, and even the way he interacted with friends, family, and animals. All of these details went towards establishing his character and showing us his potential.
David Calderon is the one responsible for the colors, and they are divine. The steady infusion of green throughout the pages brought the whole tone home while providing a thematic feel to it all. Couple with little details, like the green eyes and hair, and there’s no avoiding who this kid is. The colors also brought about some of the best backgrounds I’ve seen in a while. Even the credit pages are worth an extra look, thanks to the watercolor effects they portray.
Last, but certainly not least, there’s Gabriela Downie, who was in charge of lettering. The lettering was the perfect embodiment of Beast Boy and in more than one way. It felt playful and full of hope, even while dealing with the worst that the plot arc had to offer.
Teen Titans: Beast Boy is the origin story that fans, old and new, deserve. It took a charming character and provided insight into his backstory, all while making the tale feel fresh and new. All while giving younger readers a chance to identify with his struggles. In short, this tale is peak Beast Boy.