Titans: S01E09 “Hank and Dawn”

Right up top: if you’re triggered by shows that talk about child abuse or molestation, I’m just gonna recommend you skip this one. And really, it’s a bit of an aside anyway, so I don’t anticipate you’ll be in any way lost if you just give this one a pass and move on to episode ten.

This week’s Titans sets aside last week’s cliffhanger for the time being to catch up with Hawk and Dove. Hank waits in the hospital sadly sipping Jim Beam while hoping for Dawn to come out of her coma after she was thrown from a roof by the Nuclear Family lo so many episodes ago. Most of the episode is flashbacks, showing why Hank and Dawn fight crime together. In the end, a vision of Raven in her comatose dreams awakens Dawn and she urgently tells Hanks, “We need to find Jason Todd.”

Stray observations:

  • It’s hard to give this episode a chance because after last week what I really want is to find out what happens next with Raven and Kori. So once it was apparent we were taking a bit of a side trip into the Hawk and Dove origins I was disappointed. Still, taking it on it’s own merit it’s a good hero origin story, though darker than even anything we’ve seen before on Titans, which could be a big demerit for some viewers.
  • Yeah, speaking of darkness, this episode makes it very clear that Hank’s impetus for fighting bad guys in the streets is his childhood sexual abuse from his pee wee football coach. The horrible tension in the air when we see the coach coercing and manipulating Hank to come “into the weight room” with him is hard to sit through.
  • Also more intense than I expected was the violence in this episode. After Dick burned the old Robin suit, I thought we were heading for a Titans that was less hardcore with the violence, but in this flashback the show finds a way to return to bone-crunching beatings.
  • Did Hank and Dawn beat his pee wee football coach to death? When the scene finally cuts away from that severe beating, the characters are showing no signs of stopping.
  • Hey, that’s Marina Sirtis from TV’s Star Trek: The Next Generation playing Dawn’s mom in flashback. Much like Sherilyn Fenn in episode one, she’s in the show just long enough for you to say, “Hey, that’s-” and is then quickly killed.
  • I wanted to be fair and say something nice up above about how though this wasn’t what I came here for it was still a good origin story. Having said that, man, this really wasn’t my cup of tea overall. I really want to get back to the main cast and see if my friend Rae-Rae is okay.

Next week: We’re finally getting to the fireworks factory!!! Resolution of the cliffhanger from episode 8, and more about Kori. I’m excited. I like this version of Kori. Let’s get the whole gang together!