‘Titans’ 2×04 Review: ‘Aqualad’

This episode was a complete blast from the past. There have been plenty of teases throughout the series about what dismantled the original team. This week, we finally learned what happened five years earlier. It turns out that I was right about one thing in my last review. Donna did lose someone she loved. But it wasn’t Jericho and she didn’t blame Dick. Let’s dive right into the tragedy that struck Donna and the rest of the team.

The Atlantean and the Amazonian

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In this flashback episode, we meet Garth AKA Aqualad. It turns out that he was an original member of the team and that he was also a childhood friend of Donna Troy and Dick Grayson. Garth is exactly what you pictured. He was the type to go wherever the current took him. It was endearing. Have you noticed yet that I am speaking in past tense?

That’s because Garth died five years earlier. He was murdered by Deathstroke after he and Donna finally confessed their feelings for one another.

Wonder Girl had an apparent thing for the Atlantean out of water.

It’s so tragic that Garth is dead because they were really easy to root for. But honestly, now it all makes complete sense. I understand why Donna didn’t want to go back to Titans Tower. She still blames herself for Garth’s death, even if logically, it couldn’t have been her fault.

The end of the episode shows us a team seeking to avenge their fallen friend, which leads me to believe that this might be a two-parter flashback episode.

Villains and their motivations

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Arthur Light becomes Doctor Light because of a failed science experiment. I’m thinking that it messed with his brain. Because how does a guy go from scientist to murderer so quick? There’s not a whole lot happening with Light in this episode. The team is able to take care of him early on and that explains why Light was in prison for five years before Deathstroke broke him out.

Speaking of Deathstroke, we’ve always known that he was an assassin for hire. It was just never clear when things became personal between him and the Titans. Now, it makes much more sense. Slade receives his marching orders to kill someone within the team. On the surface, it looks like it was Garth. But what if it wasn’t? What if Donna Troy was his target?

The reason I ask that question is because it seemed like Garth may have gotten in the way of the bullet to protect her. That would explain all her lingering guilt. It would also explain why Slade Wilson looked for her again after he’d already shot Garth. I’m thinking it was Donna that he was after. I also think she found out and that is why she blames herself. She believes if she hadn’t left the Tower that night, then Garth wouldn’t have gone after her and he wouldn’t have been at the private airstrip the night Deathstroke killed him. Maybe she’s right, maybe she isn’t. Either way, she’s been living with this guilt for five years and that breaks my heart.

What will Joey’s role be in the team’s vendetta against Slade?

Source: https://captainpoe.tumblr.com

We know that Joey is Slade Wilson’s son. It’s pretty obvious that he and his mom are hiding from Slade. However, he’s practically hiding in plain sight because Slade finds him relatively easy but so does someone else. After Garth’s death, Dick tracks down Deathstroke’s son.

The team is hellbent on revenge right now, which is understandable. The thing is, Dawn told Dick to be Batman and I’m not sure that was a good idea. Since he’s out for revenge, there’s really no telling what went down with Joey. We know that in the present, Rose believes her father killed her brother. We also know that the pass code to Slade’s hideout is J-O-E-Y.

Do you want my theory?

Dick tried to use Joey to get to Slade but things obviously went wrong. Joey got killed because he was stuck in the middle of both sides. And even though Rose truly believes her dad killed her brother, maybe the person to blame for that tragedy is actually Dick for involving the kid in the first place.


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  • “I’ve been waiting for Donna Troy since I was twelve.” Garth is the sweetest and most romantic. He loves Donna so much. I’m so sad that those two couldn’t get a happy ending.
  • I think this time period is the beginning of “dark” Dick that goes to far. I’m talking about the guy we were first introduced back in the Pilot. Funny how we used to think that he became that dark after he found the guy that murdered his parents and let him get killed in cold blood.
  • Donna and Garth were super sweet with their awkwardness while Dawn and Dick were super ick with their relationship. I’m way too invested in Dawn and Hank at this point and watching Dick with Dawn just proves why those two are not meant to be together.
  • Speaking of Dawn, the scene where she literally drags Donna out of bed to cut Garth’s birthday cake was so freaking cute!
  • Joey is the purest. I had no idea he was hard of hearing. I think it’s awesome that the show is showing heroes with disabilities. I also want to protect him from Slade, Dick and literally anyone who is trying to hurt him.
  • Doctor Light didn’t get a whole lot of room to shine in this episode (get it? ha!) but it’s still good that we got to see a little of his origin story. I do hope they elaborate of the experiment that gave him his powers though.
  • The pieces are starting to fall into place as to why Slade and Dick have such a vendetta toward one another. I’m having a blast peeling back the layers of both these characters.

A brand new episode of Titans will be available for streaming this Friday on the DC Universe app.


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