DC Universe’s Titans season 2 finale recap: Nightwing

Titans -- Ep. 213 -- "Nightwing" -- Photo Credit: Brooke Palmer / 2019 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Titans -- Ep. 213 -- "Nightwing" -- Photo Credit: Brooke Palmer / 2019 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved. /

Nightwing is finally here, but it isn’t all sunshine and roses for the Titans. One team member is going to fall, but who will it be?

Dick Grayson knows Jericho is alive, and now he’s promised Jericho’s mother to bring her son back. How will he do that? First up, he needs a new suit. In the season two finale of Titans, Dick embraces his destiny to become Nightwing.

Phase 2

Cadmus has reprogrammed Superboy and Gar to do Mercy Graves’ bidding. In the finale, we see her pitching the era of supersoldiers to unknown buyers. As all evil people are wont to do, Mercy’s pitch is all about protecting and saving people. But when the cameras are off, Mercy’s first order for Superboy is to kill her colleague, Walter. ‘This is Phase 2’, she says.

In a fairground in San Francisco, the other half of Phase 2 has already been unleashed. Gar is on a rampage. Mercy’s plan is a simple one – she creates meta-human chaos in the form of Gar losing control and killing people, and then she sends Cadmus-branded Superboy to save the day. Since Superboy is a trial run, his success is directly tied to how much money the buyers will bid on him. Don’t you just hate villains?

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While Kory, Rachel, Donna and Dawn plan on infiltrating Cadmus, they receive an alert about a wild animal attack. Recognizing that it’s Gar, the four leave to save him… or stop him.

Their mission is interrupted by Deathstroke, who starts firing on them. When Kory, who was once practically invulnerable, attempts to shield the team, she gets hit. As the team try to get out of the way, help lands on top of their car.


Titans: Nightwing
Titans — Ep. 213 — “Nightwing” — Photo Credit: Brooke Palmer / 2019 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved. /

The Nightwing reveal would have been so much more dramatic had the press images and final trailer not been released a week in advance. But that’s how entertainment promotions work nowadays, even though I still love the old-school feeling of being surprised.

Nightwing orders the Titans to take care of injured Kory – Deathstroke’s beef has always been with Dick, so now Dick is willing to face him head-on. As Dick fights his nemesis, he calls to Jericho who has been trapped inside his father’s head for five years.

Getting out isn’t easy, and Jericho remains trapped as Rachel heals Kory. I know superhero shows aren’t the pinnacle of emotional resonance, but the affectionate way Kory caresses Rachel after being healed is extremely touching. The bond between these two characters is much stronger with that little gesture than any piece of dialogue.

Nightwing continues to fight Deathstroke, and honestly, we know the whole point of this scene is for the showrunners to flaunt their gorgeous new character, his comic book accurate suit and the escrima sticks. We get it, and we still love it! Brenton Thwaites and his stunt double are really bringing Nightwing to life here – the acrobatics, the battle stances, the never-say-die attitude, they’re all so on point with the character we’ve loved reading.

Just as Nightwing seems to be losing the fight, Rose appears in her Ravager suit. Deathstroke believes she’s come to help him, but Rose has chosen her family and she sides with Dick and the Titans.

Nightwing and Ravager are great fighters individually, but it takes both of them to take Deathstroke down. Rose distracts Slade, Nightwing electrocutes him with his escrima stick and Rose finishes the job by stabbing her father. In a panic, Nightwing believes he’s lost Jericho for good, but Rose tells her brother to transfer his mind to her body.

Jericho is now free, in a manner of speaking. Rose seems willing to share her mind with him, and Jericho is back to being his chipper self. He forgives Dick and even accepts a place on the Titans team. I really hope the showrunners can figure out a way for Jericho to be played by Chella Man again in season three. Rose deserves to be a character unto herself, and we need more of Man’s effervescent performance.

Showdown with Superboy

Titans: Nightwing
Titans — Ep. 213 — “NIGHTWING” — Photo Credit: Steve Wilkie / 2019 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved. /

Donna, Dawn and Kory (the former two dressed in their superhero costumes, though I’m unsure when they had the time to change) confront Superboy in the fairground while Rachel tries to heal Gar. There is a wonderful moment of levity between the three characters as they prepare to fight Superboy, not least because they’re badass women who are just being themselves. It’s strange, but there’s something so refreshing about seeing this kind of bravado from these characters. It’s no wonder then that one of them is about to die.

Donna is no match for Superboy (I don’t know why), and Kory’s powers are still kaput. Hank joins them only to get caught in a chokehold. Guess who has any brains? Dawn, of course, as she deflects Superboy’s heat rays right back at him with a shield. As they get ready to fight him again, Dick blows Superboy out of the way so that the team has a moment to regroup.

While all this is going on, in the safety of a van, Mercy watches as the bids are skyrocketing. But then the feed cuts out. Mercy has no clue what’s going on, but Bruce Wayne has jammed the signal and closed the bids. Looks like he’s a de facto member of the Titans as well.

Rachel finally gets through to Gar, who snaps out of Cadmus’ control. Dick needs Rachel’s powers to save Superboy. She blasts Conner with her powers and then envelopes Dick in it as well. Rachel’s powers change according to the show’s needs, so now Dick is in Conner’s head and with his help Conner breaks Cadmus’ control.

A Titan Falls

Titans: Nightwing
Titans — Ep. 213 — “Nightwing” — Photo Credit: Brooke Palmer / 2019 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved. /

As the team celebrate, an electric pylon collapses, threatening to kill innocent people and Dawn. To save everyone, Donna grabs the pylon and gets electrocuted. As the Titans send another of their teammates home in a casket, Rachel decides to follow Donna and the rest of the Amazons. She believes her changing powers can help Donna. Well, here’s hoping because Donna was a really fabulous character and she deserves better than to die from a falling pylon. Are you kidding me? Hank could have died, why did they kill one of the ladies? Rachel boards the flight and Dick sees that Jason arrived to bid farewell, but he leaves before speaking to the team.

As Dick grieves for his friend, Bruce arrives at the Tower to give his condolences, but also to advise Dick to keep the team alive and to lean on them in this time of sorrow. There’s an easy camaraderie between the two characters – like two brothers who’ve always had a strained relationship. Iain Glen’s Bruce is quite funny, despite being worldly-wise.

Dick heeds Bruce’s advice and puts together a dinner. He takes the blame for what happened to Gar, who is struggling with all the deaths he caused. Meanwhile, Hank apologizes to Dawn for breaking up with her, and asks for another chance. She’s too heartbroken over Donna dying in an attempt to save her, but when Hank offers to rebuild Hawk and Dove instead of Hank and Dawn, she seems to reconsider.

At dinner, Kory learns that Bruce wasn’t at Elko pleading with the team to get together. That was most likely Rachel. Her powers seem to have grown immensely if she can control people’s thoughts in that way. As Dick finishes off a toast about his friend, thanking Donna for giving him a second chance at family, Gar sees an alert for a major incident.

Each individual member wonders what to do when Dawn gets up and orders them to follow her. Looks like they’re the Titans once again. If they only knew that Blackfire (Damaris Lewis) has landed on Earth and looks like she’s out to kill.

The cheesy goodness of this episode cannot be understated. It’s comic book-y in the best way possible, with plenty of action and so much heart. Sometimes you need entertainment, and if it comes in the form of one of your favourite characters finally getting a live-action version, then so be it! Kudos to Carol Banker for directing another heart-pumping episode. She really knows how to capture the feel of the DC Comics universe.

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Though I still wish Donna hadn’t been killed, if she’s resurrected in the first episode of season three, then I’m fine with it. Everyone loves the character, so we don’t care how, there has to be more Donna. Season three will seemingly be about Starfire and her fight with her sister, so that should mean Kory finally gets adequate screen time. Enough brooding showrunners, let’s just embrace comics as a source of entertainment and run with it!