When Damian Wayne formed his new Teen Titans, one member was instantly recognizable…kind of. While Robin’s new roster included known heroes like Kid Flash and Red Arrow (Wallace West and Emiko Queen), there was a new girl with them: Crush. She looked strikingly similar to the intergalactic bounty hunter Lobo. After spending the last 24 issues with her origin up in the air, we finally got the answers we were looking for in issue 25. Well, we got most of the answers.
The story starts with Crush and Djinn (another one of Damian’s new Titans) deciding to ditch the rest of the team during a training exercise. When Djinn questions why they would leave, all Crush tells her is that she needs to take back something that was stolen from her. While the two journey, Crush retells exactly how she came to be. Crush’s story starts when she, as a baby, crashed down near the Burning Man festival. At that point, two people at the party found Crush wrapped in a chain similar to Lobo’s. The only difference was that this chain was self-aware with the mission of protecting Crush. The young couple took her in and treated her like the daughter they would never have. As Crush grew up, she and her parents were constantly on the move. It turned out that the reason for this was her parents were drug addicts that couldn’t pay their dealer. One day while she was older, Crush saw Lobo fighting Superman on tv and immediately confronted her adopted parents about the similarities between her and Lobo. After being told that her father was a superhero as a child, finding out the truth about her lineage drove Crush to run away. Unfortunately, after running away, her parents were found by their dealer and killed, while her sentient chain was stolen as compensation. Fast forward to the present day, Crush plans to find the man that killed her parents, get back her chain and kill the man responsible.
Once Crush and Djinn track down the man that killed Crush’s parents, things don’t go as the two Titans planned. After having the chain for so long, this man was able to corrupt it and turn it against Crush. After a brief exchange, Crush is able to regain control of her weapon and turn it against the person that drove her down this path. When presented with the opportunity to kill her target, Djinn steps in to stop Crush. She tells her that if she does down this path, she’ll be no better than her birth father. This resonates with Crush to the point where she merely incapacitates her target rather than kill him. The two heroes then leave, giving the story a feel-good ending and tying a bow on the one-shot issue.
I enjoyed this issue, although I wish we would have gotten a bit more about Crush’s birth parents. We know Lobo is the father, but I was hoping for more information about her mother. However, as the story was told entirely from Crush’s point of view, I understand why there was not more information. At this point, we know as much as Crush about her true nature. My hope is that sometime after the Teen Titans journey to the Batcave in the next story arc, we’ll get a fully fleshed out explanation of Crush’s origin.
The writing was good for a standalone issue, even if it was a little formulaic. I enjoyed seeing Crush and Djinn share an almost sisterly bond as the two traveled together. Perhaps that will be what makes DJinn reveal the secret she has been hiding since the new team formed. As with the rest of Teen Titans so far, the art was good as well. Overall, while the issue didn’t make me jump out of my seat with excitement, it didn’t feel like a chore to read.