When Barbara Gordon first turns up in Titans season 3, she’ll have a decidedly anti-superhero stance. The live-action Teen Titans series is finally approaching the end of its longer-than-expected hiatus, season 2 having come to an end in November 2019. Titans was expected to return last year, but the coronavirus pandemic delayed production. Now, season 3 will arrive on HBO Max (instead of original service DC Universe) on August 12, and it’ll bring the titular team, led by newly named Nightwing (Brenton Thwaites), to a brand new location: Gotham City.
Titans season 3 is poised to introduce numerous new characters, starting with Barbara Gordon. Savannah Welch was cast as Barbara in January, and a few details about her role were revealed at the time. For one thing, this version of Barbara has already been Batgirl, though her tenure ended when she was paralyzed by the Joker. Now she’s the Gotham City Police Commissioner, and she has a history with Dick Grayson. Fans got their first look at Barbara on Thursday morning, and with that came fresh teases about Titans’ iteration of the character.
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Titans showrunner Greg Walker spoke to EW about highly-anticipated newcomers Barbara and Jonathan Crane (Vincent Kartheiser), previewing both of their debuts. When it comes to Barbara, Walker revealed she has a very interesting take on superheroes, which stems from Bruce Wayne (Iain Glen) and her father Jim Gordon. As Walker said:
“Barbara is going to be conflicted by Dick’s arrival. Barbara’s feeling is that the legacy of Bruce and Jim has been this idea that she thinks is antiquated and inefficient: the God syndrome, meaning that superheroes create the situation where they’re the heroes. They drop in on a situation, solve it, and then they leave. And she feels that basically disempowers people from solving their own problems and that the people of Gotham need to figure out how to solve their own problems and not be passive victims waiting for a superhero to save the day.”
Barbara and Dick are set to team up in Titans season 3, though their partnership (and rekindled romantic relationship) is bound to be complicated by Dick’s newfound role as Nightwing. He’s very much a superhero, while she disapproves of the idea. Seeing as this Barbara was once Batgirl, it’ll be interesting to see what made her opinion change. Based on Walker’s comments, it could be that Barbara grew frustrated with always needing to save people when they could’ve perhaps aided themselves.
The idea that superheroes actually disempower regular people isn’t a new one, having been raised by more than a few critics over the years. That a comic book show like Titans plans to tackle this head on can give season 3 a unique perspective. As heroic as they are, do superheroes actually help people? Barbara and Dick’s differing opinions could make for quite the lively debate, and fans will likely have their own opinions too. As for whether Barbara might change her mind on superheroes by the end of the season, fans will just have to wait and see. Maybe working alongside the Titans will give her a fresh perspective.
Titans season 3 premieres Thursday, August 12 on HBO Max.
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Rachel LaBonte is a news, feature, and movie review writer for Screen Rant with a deep passion for film and television. A graduate of Emerson College, she majored in Media Arts Production while specializing in screenwriting. She’s been a writer ever since high school when she realized she was rather good at it and joined as many entertainment news clubs as she could while in school. Most notably, she wrote for Emerson’s website Emertainment Monthly, and one of her film reviews won an Evvy (Emerson’s student awards) for Best Review. Her deep love of movies led to her working at a movie theater for five years, which she loved despite the angry customers. An avid reader who constantly buys books before reading the ones she already owns, Rachel is a huge fan of superheroes (especially of the Marvel variety) and wizards and will likely never be able to catch up on all the movies/TV shows she longs to watch.