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For Better or Worse
on November 2, 2007
I'm going to admit right away that I'm a big fan of Donna Troy. She's one of my favorite comic book characters, and I was extremely glad to have her back. Even so, I don't love everything that this TPB contains.
The first half of this TPB is the Titans/Young Justice "Graduation Day" crossover, where Donna dies. This is not subtle storytelling. Despite the fact that it is a team crossover, the entire story centers on Donna and is used as a just a storytelling device rather than a story itself. That does not mean that it is devoid of good parts. The scenes between Troia and Nightwing were well-written, and the funeral scene was extremely emotional. Although the art left something to be desired, particularly compared to the second half of the TPB, the overall package gets the job done and creates a nice set up for the upcoming Teen Titans and Outsiders.
The "Return" part, while not as tight in storytelling, is a fantastic tribute to the character. It is obvious that Jimenez cares for Donna, as he treats her character lovingly. Such superior treatment has not been seen since the early days of Wolfman/Perez. The first issue does nothing but set up mostly unnecessary exposition. Honestly, if you went to the second issue, the only thing you'd be missing out on is the gorgeous artwork by Garcia-Lopez and George Perez, the man himself.
The second issue, however, starts a fantastic build up of why Donna Troy is important. It concentrates on what she means to some of the important members of both the Titans and the Outsiders, from Wonder Girl to Arsenal. It even manages to remark on how his best friend's death affected Nightwing in the ongoing Outsiders without getting too far into depth and angst. And it isn't only Donna Troy who Jimenez respects with the writing--all of the characters are well-done, and it ties in well enough to the ongoing series that it would have worked just as well if it had been a crossover extra between them. The man has done his homework and he knows the Titans better than many writers have in the past.
It is not the best story to have been written, but as a character piece that highlights what makes Donna Troy "wonderful" and pays homage to the rest of the Titans, this is a true triumph.