Looking Back (and Forward) at TEEN TITANS With MARV WOLFMAN

Teen Titans
Credit: George Perez (DC Comics)
Credit: George Perez/Dick Giordano/Tatjana Wood (DC Comics)

Over the years the Teen Titans has created a legacy for itself with decades of comic book storytelling, and this legacy continues to grow with recent cast announcements for the new Titans TV show on the upcoming DC Digital Service.

Newsarama had the chance to talk about this very legacy with the man who created the building blocks for the Teen Titans - writer, Marv Wolfman. His Teen Titans run has inspired stories for comic books, animated films, cartoons, and now a live action television show. He has even contributed to recent Teen Titans related stories for DC Comics including a Raven miniseries.  

Newsarama: DC Comics is creating a live action Titans television show for their new digital service. What was your first reaction when hearing about this series?  

Marv Wolfman: My first reaction was “Way cool.” Next was just keeping my fingers crossed that the characters, even with changes, would reflect the same attitudes and beliefs that we gave them. But then with Geoff Johns on it we knew it would be excellent. His run of Titans was excellent.

Credit: Alex Garner (DC Comics)

Nrama: Do you have any involvement in the show? (And do you want to?)

Wolfman: I have no involvement with the show, but yes, I would love to. Love to be consulting or something, if not get a chance to pitch a story down the line. But a consulting gig would be more than great.

Nrama: It’s been announced that Nightwing, Starfire, Raven, and Beast Boy will be part of the series. What would you like to see from these characters on the show, and are there any other characters you think the show should add?

Wolfman: I don’t care if they look the exact same as they do in the comics; after all I don’t think too many six foot seven inch girls with natural gold skin and solid green eyes showed up at the casting call. What I care about is their character and personality, and that even with all the problems they face that they pull together and do what’s right. The Titans to me are, when push comes to shove, optimists.

Nrama: It’s been three decades since the beginning of your Teen Titans run - a run that has had such an importance to the comic book medium and DC Comics. What’s it like looking back at it all these years later?

Credit: George Perez (DC Comics)

Wolfman: I’m extremely proud of the book and the work George Pérez and I did. We wrote and drew a story for us, the way we thought stories should be told, and it worked. Nowadays when fans come up at conventions and tell us how important the Titans were to them growing up, it’s just wonderful.

Nrama: In creating those seminal Teen Titans stories over the years, and revisiting them in several ways since, what resonates most for you?

Wolfman: The Titans were created to reflect every kind of story I wanted to write. I had a detective, a tech expert, an alien, a demon, a mythological warrior, and more, and that covers almost every kind of story we wanted to do. And even after all these years, and even with the two different cartoon shows, no matter how much things changed, the characters are, deep down, the characters we created.

Nrama: Marv, you recently did another solo Raven series for DC. Would you be open to doing more work on the Titans characters you made popular - individually, or perhaps even with George Perez?

Wolfman: I would love to do more mini-series with the individual Titans, a chance to explore them on a one to one basis. I absolutely loved writing that Raven mini and to experiment by changing my style to fit the new story.

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