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Biggest unanswered questions from Titans season 2

The second season of DC Universe's Titans has come to a close. While the finale episode, "Nightwing," doesn't end on the cliffhanger the first season did, it also doesn't fail to raise more questions than it answers. 

What are we talking about? Well, with a note that beyond this point the SPOILERS flow thick and freely, any Titans fans has to be asking themselves a handful of questions right now. In spite of the long-awaited emergence of Nightwing and the conclusion to both the Deathstroke and Cadmus Laboratories storylines, we've got almost nothing but questions for the future of the DC Universe streaming service's first original series. "Nightwing" sees some characters die, others brought back to life, and at least one predictable farewell, and we have questions and doubts about them all. 

The status quo has shifted dramatically among several relationships, and at the same time a couple of mysteries that have dogged the series since the very beginning remain unresolved at the close of the season. Here are the biggest questions we have after Titans season 2.

Where did Kori's powers go in Titans season 2?

Kori's powers prove less reliable over the season's last couple of episodes, and by "Nightwing" they disappear completely. She's shocked to learn she's lost any immunity to bullets when Deathstroke shoots her early in the episode. She hasn't been able to use her energy weapons since the previous episode, and her brief and embarrassingly futile attempt to put a dent in Superboy with her fists proves that her abilities have completely left her. So far, though, we have no idea what the cause of her power loss is. 

Whatever has drained Kori's powers from her, Blackfire certainly seems like the most likely culprit. It isn't clear how Kori's sister could've made it happen, but evil alien queens aren't known for their lack of resources. The final scene of "Nightwing" — in which we see Blackfire arrive on Earth — suggests she has big plans for her sister. 

Another possibility — which doesn't seem all that crazy an idea considering the emotional roller coaster Kori goes on after she's forced to kill Faddei in "Atonement" — is that her power loss is psychosomatic, like the fluctuation of Spider-Man's powers in 2004's Spider-Man 2. Since the beginning of Titans' second season Kori has learned her sister has stolen her throne, her family has been murdered, and finally Kori is forced to kill a former lover. Honestly, she probably has way more stress than Peter did back when Toby Maguire was at the reins

How's the merging of Jericho and Rose going to work in the future of Titans?

As soon as it was confirmed at the end of the second season's eleventh episode that Jericho was alive, we've wondered exactly how Dick Grayson planned on saving his old friend. Killing Deathstroke would presumably kill Jericho as well, unless he had another body to jump into. Rose solves the problem in "Nightwing" by offering her body up to Jericho to inhabit before finally killing their murderous father. 

Now that we know how Jericho is saved, we're left asking exactly how this brother/sister pair is going to live with their shared body. From what little we see of Jericho's time in his father's body, it seems clear Deathstroke never willingly gave up control to his son, whereas Rose lets her brother emerge right away so he can talk to Dick. This drastic shift for both characters isn't going to be easy. For now, Jericho is likely grateful to have any time in the world at all, but soon tensions are bound to rise between him and Rose. What if one wants to leave the Titans and the other wants to stay? Or if one wants to pursue a romance with another Titan, and the other can't stand the idea? Hell, once Rose wants to listen to modern pop and Jericho wants to put on a '70s David Bowie album we're going to see how these two will clash. 

Is Slade really dead?

One moment in "Nightwing" that likely raised a lot of questions for fans is the supposed death of Slade Wilson, a.k.a. Deathstroke. Rose runs her father through with her sword, and Dick confirms the assassin's death. What's an absolute mystery is how something as relatively minor as a sword strike could kill Slade, and why Dick and Rose don't doubt its permanence. 

In season 2's penultimate episode we see the extent of Rose's healing powers. She puts the muzzle of a gun to her hand and blows a hole through it, only to have the flesh heal moments later. Rose inherited these healing powers from her father, so you would think it would take more than a sword to the chest to take him out for good. 

Perhaps it's as simple as Slade's healing powers not being quite as powerful as they are in the comics, but we're just not convinced that we've seen the last of him. Maybe the Titans version doesn't have a healing factor as beefy as Wolverine's or Deadpool's, but a sword through the heart still seems far too easy a way to die for a man who single-handedly killed a handful of Themysciran warriors before beating the tar out of Donna Troy earlier in season 2.

Is Gar free of his mental conditioning?

Some of the most tragic circumstances to befall any of the Titans are forced upon Gar in season 2. For the past few episodes, Gar's been suffering from a mental reconditioning courtesy of Mercy Graves and Cadmus Laboratories. When the right piece of classical music is played, Gar shifts into his tiger form and murders anyone unlucky enough to be nearby. In "Nightwing," Rachel is able to cut through Cadmus' conditioning with her powers and bring Gar back to sanity. But will it stick?

Gar's brainwashing wasn't the sort of demonic possession that many of the other Titans had suffered at the hands of Trigon in the season premiere — we see him undergoing brain surgery in the beginning of "E.L._.O." It could be that Rachel's powers healed the damage that was done to Gar completely, but it could also be that she was only able to break him out of that particular violent episode. It seems likely that no one will know for sure if Gar is free and clear from Cadmus' conditioning until the next time he hears that same classical music. Unfortunately, if Gar does still prove susceptible to the trigger, with Rachel in Themyscira the Titans may find themselves unable to stop their friend from going on a rampage.

Is Jason Todd gone for good?

In season 2's penultimate episode "Faux-Hawk," Jason Todd does not react well to the revelation that Rose was originally meant to be Deathstroke's mole among the Titans. In spite of Rose assuring Jason her feelings for him changed her loyalties, it's too much for the already troubled young Robin to bear. He leaves Rose and is completely absent from the two climactic fights in "Nightwing." We don't see him until he appears on a motorcycle when the Titans transfer Donna Troy's body to the Themyscirans — presumably both as a final show of respect to his former teammate, as well as a way to let Dick know not to expect to see him any time soon.

But is he gone for good? Jason Todd has a rocky history in the comics. The second boy to wear Robin's costume eventually dies at the hands of the Joker and returns years later as the Red Hood. We have no way of knowing if Jason will go down similar roads in Titans, but while Dick and Bruce might show the minimum of respect for his decisions, it seems unlikely they won't at least keep tabs on him, if not outright try to bring him back to the fold.    

Is Donna Troy really dead?

Donna Troy's death after the battle with the brainwashed Superboy in "Nightwing" comes as a shock (no pun intended) for a number of reasons, not the least of which being that what we've seen from Donna would suggest she should be able to survive the injury that kills her. Moments before, Donna proves to be the only member of the Titans able to actually trade blows with Conner. Though she clearly doesn't win the fight, a person surviving even a couple of unrestrained blows from someone with the power of Superman would suggest they don't die easy. 

It could be that Donna's death is a set up for the character's return sometime in season 3 or beyond. Rachel leaves for Themyscira specifically with the goal of finding a way to bring Donna back, and it wouldn't be the first time the character was rescued from the land of the dead. The Donna Troy of the comics was believed killed in the 2003 miniseries Titans/Young Justice: Graduation Day, only to be revealed to be alive. She came back to the Titans in a 2005 series whose title might very well be the name of a season 3 Titans episode — The Return of Donna Troy.

What's going on with Rachel's powers?

Throughout Titans' second season, we see Rachel's powers manifest in lots of unpredictable ways. We see her unintentionally hurt both herself and Gar in her sleep with. Perhaps most shockingly, in "Fallen" Rachel's abilities — without her knowledge or intent — bring a stone gargoyle to life that murders a new friend's abusive father. By the end of "Nightwing," we learn the summons that Rachel, Kori, Donna, and Dawn received to meet Bruce Wayne at a diner in Nevada didn't come from the real Bruce Wayne, and everything Kori has seen leads her to believe Rachel somehow unconsciously made it all happen. 

At the same time, the season 2 finale sees Rachel's powers evolve to the point where she can use them to heal. She wakes Gar from his mental conditioning, and with the touch of her hand heals Kori's gunshot wound. She seems to think she may actually be able to bring Donna Troy back from the dead, and boards the plane to Themyscira in hopes of doing just that.

So, what's going on with Rachel's powers? Your guesses are as good as ours. All we know for sure is that Rachel's father is defeated long before she has a chance to learn the true limits of her abilities. With its roots more steeped in magic than what the Themyscirans often call "Man's World," the island might be the perfect place for Rachel to learn more.

If Bruce Wayne didn't meet the Titans in Nevada, who did?

One of the biggest questions we're left with at the end of "Nightwing" is who it was that summoned half the team to a diner in Nevada. Initially it appears to be Bruce Wayne, but when Kori references the meeting in "Nightwing," Wayne tells her he has no idea what she's talking about. 

Kori's hot take is that Rachel somehow unconsciously used her powers to summon the Titans women to Elko, Nevada, and the Bruce Wayne who spoke to them was an illusion of Rachel's making. Considering what we've seen from Rachel this season, this is certainly a possibility, but since this is the DC Universe we're talking about here, it's hardly the only possibility. With all the magical practitioners, shape-shifters, and psychic manipulators in the DC Comics mythos, there are any number of heroes and villains who could be manipulating the Titans with these illusions. Of course, if it wasn't Rachel who created the faux Bruce Wayne, it does leave us not only the question of who, but the questions of why and how. 

It also makes us wonder about the phantom Bruce Wayne that Dick's encountered throughout the second season. The Bruce in Dick's head seems simply to symbolize the young man's own mind struggling with itself. But if someone or something has been messing with the other Titans with hallucinations of Bruce Wayne, could Dick's visions have been more than simple inner dialogue?

We have a couple of questions about Krypto

Titans' second season ends with a particularly enduring mystery: we still don't know the origins of Conner's four-legged pal Krypto. The assumption has been that Krypto, like Conner, is the creation of Cadmus, but we've never gotten confirmation. The super dog has had different origins over the years in the source material. In some versions he's an altered Earth dog, and in others he was the El family's beloved pet when Krypton was destroyed (though that would make you wonder why the name Krypto was chosen — it's sort of like naming an Earth dog "Eartho"). Considering his conflicting origins, we don't want to assume anything, though the possibility he's the result of a lab experiment does seem the most likely. 

We also never learn exactly how Krypto escapes from Cadmus. Mercy Graves' strike team captures Conner, Gar, and Krypto in "Fallen." We see how Conner and Gar are freed from Cadmus' conditioning in "Nightwing," but don't see Krypto again until close to the very end of the episode. When the Titans respond to an emergency, they stride very photogenically toward danger. Gar, in tiger form, races through their ranks toward their destination, with Krypto following him.

Apparently, we're supposed to simply assume Conner returned to Cadmus Labs to free the dog, but we never see it happen. The dog is absent from the dinner in Titans HQ. Maybe that's because he's under the table waiting for scraps?

Who wanted Jillian dead?

In the flashback episode "Aqualad," the OG Titan Aqualad dies at Deathstroke's hands. In "Jericho," we learn that Aqualad wasn't Slade Wilson's real target. It's revealed that Jillian — the older Themysciran museum curator who seems to be part benefactor and part mentor to Donna Troy — was Slade's quarry. Before his fateful battle with Dick Grayson that ends with Jericho's presumed death, Deathstroke makes good on his contract and murders Jillian.

What we never learn is exactly why Jillian's head was on the chopping block. It isn't difficult to imagine that a Themysciran like Jillian has made enemies over the years, but we don't get any specifics. What's even more curious is that when Wintergreen first gives Slade the details of the contract in "Aqualad," he describes it as "easy." The idea of targeting any Themysciran for death and describing the job as "easy" — particularly one who proves skillful enough to be able to knock bullets out of the air with hand-thrown projectiles — is insane. Maybe it's simply that the Wintergreen of Titans is a woman-hating moron?  

Will Lex Luthor be showing up on Titans soon?

Lex Luthor has yet to make an appearance in Titans (beyond pictures of him as a child), but Superman's arch-nemesis still has a powerful presence in the show's second season. In "Conner" Superboy learns his DNA is a combination of Luthor's and Superman's, and the young hero visits Luthor's elderly father in Smallville. It doesn't take long before we learn Luthor is behind the experiments that created Conner, and toward the end of "Nightwing," Mercy Graves is more than a little concerned to learn Luthor is on the phone waiting to hear about her failure.

It seems like Lex Luthor has been groomed to be for season 3 what Bruce Wayne was to season 2 — a character who is never physically seen in the previous season despite being mentioned often, thereby making his entry to the series that much more meaningful when he finally shows up. There's been no confirmation as of yet that Luthor will appear in season 3, but it doesn't seem likely the billionaire would allow his creation, Superboy, to remain in the company of his greatest enemy's allies without making more tries to lasso him.

Where's the rest of the Justice League already?

Obviously, Titans is about the Titans and the integrity of the show would suffer if suddenly Aquaman and the Flash and Superman started regularly showing up on the series. Still, considering the events of season 2, the question has to be asked — exactly where is the Justice League and why aren't they getting more involved? 

By the end of "Nightwing," the history of the Titans has seen the deaths of two sidekicks — Aqualad and Donna Troy. Another sidekick, Jason Todd, is off the grid. Wonder Woman must be well aware that the same Deathstroke the Titans struggled with this season is the one who murdered her Themysciran sisters for money years earlier. And then there's Superman, who by now must know that a young man who is a merging of his DNA and Lex Luthor's exists and has gone on a number of rampages in San Francisco.

So where are they? At the very least how could Wonder Woman, Aquaman, and Superman not get more involved in the lives of the Titans? It's likely Bruce Wayne acts as a buffer between the League and the Titans, and that off-screen he might be urging his fellow Leaguers to not interfere. But particularly with what we know of Wonder Woman's warrior sense of honor, the notion she would allow so many fellow Themyscirans to fall without getting involved more directly seems strange.