REVIEW: Titans, S2E10 – Fallen

Titans 210 Fallen Review

As the episodes left before Titans‘ finale dwindle, so does the hope that there will be a consistent narrative arc for the season. “Fallen” doesn’t help matters, diving its time as it does between the cultural appropriation route to Dick’s (Brenton Thwaites) Nightwing moniker and checking in on the rest of the team sans Kory, Jason, Dawn and Hank. No mention of either Deathstroke or his children, either, even though they’re the reason Dick placed himself – or was placed by Jericho’s possession? – in jail to begin with.

Titans 210 Fallen Dick

Did someone say Salmon Ladder?

To get his story out of the way, there’s an undercurrent throughout “Fallen” on police corruption and racism, which Titans could have expanded on easily. After all, Dick himself was a cop once and must have encountered both. But aside from rejecting special treatment from the prison guard who delights in deporting Latino prisoners, and then eventually helping them escape said deportation, it’s not really delved into. It’s not clear whether they’re in jail or in a detention center, but that’s not the only inconsistency this week. Dick is alternately said to be sentenced to 7 years and awaiting trial, which makes the timeline confusing.

The bare bones of “Fallen” are that Dick is placed in a cell with members of a gang called Corto Maltese, who are tasked with killing him because they abandoned “the family” by trying to live a better life. They don’t want to comply because they’re not killers, but the alternative is certain death in Mexico. The youngest member of the crew confides in Dick that in his village there is a legend of the Ala Azul, a bird-like hero who rescues people in the dead of night. Is that right? A winged creature who saves those in need under the cover of night?

Dick may scoff at this notion of comfort, but when push comes to shove, he plays his part and faces off against the guards so that his new frienemies can make it out. Nightwing is almost born, and only one nice Mexican criminal had to die to make it happen. Not sure why Titans chose to introduce the name this way, considering that the comic book origin of him being a Kryptonian hero could easily have been relayed by Kory in a touching scene. I can only imagine this is the show’s way of being grounded, in which case it would’ve been nice to get to know his fellow prisoners better.

In other parts of “Fallen,” Rachel (Teagan Croft) runs into a teenage girl at a soup kitchen and immediately takes a liking to her. Upon rescuing her from her abuser, she unleashes powers which make her an object of greater interest to the girl rather than one of horror. But what she doesn’t know is that while her new friend is introducing her to the homeless kids of the town as their newest savior, the shadow of her powers is busy murdering the man she previously attacked.

Titans 210 Fallen Gar

Gar’s high kick was a highlight.

The death doesn’t escape Donna (Conor Leslie), who finally decides to visit the Titans Tower after she sees the corpse instead of just being sent to Dick’s voicemail. Instead of finding Gar (Ryan Potter) and Conner (Joshua Orpin), though, she merely finds the bloody remains of their time there. And that’s because, despite the boys reuniting post-police officer scramble, Mercy Graves and Cadmus tracked them down to the tower and dragged them in by force. On the bright side, Gar got to transform into his tiger form before being tranquilized.

Mercy uses Eve’s name to fool Conner into further experiments, but Gar is steadfast about his desire to remain a Titan rather than give into whatever plans Cadmus may have. In the end, it seems Mercy plans to use that loyalty against him and the Titans, but “Fallen” doesn’t specify exactly how she’ll do that. It did, however, give the audience a peek into her personal life. It appears that her wife and two daughters are far more invested in their screens than they are in their family, so perhaps my dream ship of Mercy and Eve still has some small hope? Yes, I ship it. Sue me.

“Fallen” leaves its characters scattered to the four winds, but it doesn’t feel like any of them are closer to a final showdown with Deathstroke. Instead, the episode plants the seeds for Dick’s transformation, Rachel’s uncontrollable powers, and Cadmus’ manipulation of Gar and Conner. All promise to be interesting excursions in the future, but they leave the present dangling for now.

New episodes of Titans drop every Friday on the DC Streaming service.