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‘Titans’ S02E09: ‘Atonement’ (review)

S2:E9 — In the aftermath of his confession, Dick’s fear that his secret would break up the Titans comes true. Abandoning Titans Tower, the heroes all go their separate ways.


Before five minutes have even passed, Dick confesses his sins, Hank punches him in the grill, and the entire team, except for Gar, is all…

Why this bothers me so friggin’ much…aren’t these people friends? Like, seriously, you’re gonna just bail on your boy because of a lie of omission? Even Donna, who has known Dick the longest is all…


It should be noted that Kory (which I’ve apparently been spelling wrong for two damn seasons) probably would have stayed, but Faddei got free from her ship and is on the way. And Connor, who is still recovering and really isn’t involved in any of the drama.

And this is all before the title sequence, which should be changed to:


So, as we get passed the credits, let’s stop for one second. Let’s assume that everything we’ve seen up to this point in the episode is just melodrama for melodrama’s sake. Like, the break up of the Titans is just over the top drama. Almost silly, when you think about it. What follows, however…

There’s a lot to unpack. Let’s start small and build up.

Rose/Jason – We see them get in a car and that’s it.

Donna/Rachel – Rachel leaves their Uber to go to…who the eff knows?

Kory/Faddei – Faddei gets some kind of Wrath of Khan worm thing in his ear from Blackfire (hell yes!) and ends up being killed by Kory (a mercy killing really).

Blackfire sends a message to her sister and it’s pretty much a given that these two are going to war. Speaking of war…

Gar/Conner – This was, in all reality, Gar’s episode. He gets left behind to look after Conner and is given specific instructions to call Bruce Wayne when Conner wakes up (ostensibly to contact Superman). Gar is trying his best to move on in a world without the Titans, and the Groundhog Day-style morning routine (set to Elvis Costello’s “Pump It Up”) starts to become, well, a routine. That is until Conner wakes up.

After the two of them bond over video games, Gar decides to make Conner a Titan and show him the ropes.

Which goes horribly horribly wrong (but that depends on who you ask, as you’ll see). Conner sees someone getting harassed by the police, the perp yells, “He’s hurting me!” and Conner, who only sees things in black and white, goes apeshit on the cops.

When back-up arrives, he goes from 0-90 in a heartbeat.

When all is said and done, Conner has made a huge mess, and Gar calls Dick, asking for help. We’ll get back to this.

Dawn/Hank – The quick answer is they break up. Spoiler alert. It’s the how, though, that makes the story.

See, they go back to Wyoming and realize how boring it is. Dawn takes Hank to a karaoke bar, and after a rousing performance of “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough,” they are confronted by Ellis’ sister, who blames them for his death. This is almost too much for the couple, so the next morning, Hank is in the truck, ready to run.

Dawn tries to talk him out of it, but then Hank breaks up with her, saying that they are connected by pain and anguish (see Season One) and that they might need to…

…oh shit, another Friends reference…

Hank leaves and heads to a bar somewhere along the way. After ordering a Diet Coke, he turns to another patron and asks about something “stronger.”

Dick – Here is where we get to the true “atonement” of the episode. Dick, who apparently has balls the size of horses (not their balls; the horses) decides to visit Jericho’s mother.

I mean, my man…that is the last place I would have went. I would have gone to Slade himse—

Oh, Slade’s in the den!

After a contentious (to put it mildly; Esai Morales is in-fucking-tense) conversation, Slade warns him that if he tries to reassemble the Titans, they will all be murdered.

Dick heads to the airport, and buys a ticket for Greenland, looking to put as much space between himself and his friends (who, let’s not forget, LEFT HIM HIGH AND DRY WITHIN THE FIRST FIVE MINUTES OF THE SHOW), but then he changes his mind.

Here’s where Gar’s phone call comes in and you think that maybe, just maybe, Dick will answer it or see the caller ID, but no.

He drops his bag and in one of the most amazing character turns, he assaults a security guard. Dick decides that it’s better to go to jail or prison (since that assault would be a federal crime, I’m thinking the latter) than it is to go to Greenland. I’m not sure why, but I suspect we will find out in a few days.



  • For the first time in recent memory, Dick wears a blue shirt. This is kind of important as, most of the time, he’s wearing red. I could be wrong, but this seems significant to me.




Vito Delsante is a comic book writer, graphic novelist, editor, letterer, and the co-creator/writer of STRAY with Sean Izaakse, and THE PURPLE HEART with Dean Haspiel and artist, Ricardo Venâncio. He’s written for DC Comics, Marvel Comics, Image Comics, AdHouse Books, and Simon & Schuster, among others, and his stories have been reprinted in other countries. He lives in Pittsburgh, PA with his wife, Michelle, his daughter, Sadie, his son, James, and his pitbull, Kirby.  You can find him online at and you can follow him on Twitter @incogvito



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