Teen Titans Go! vs. Teen Titans
Coming off of 2018's successful "Teen Titans Go! To The Movies" theatrical release, "Teen Titans Go! vs Teen Titans" revolves around a crossover between the teams from both animated series: "Teen Titans Go!" and "Teen Titans" (2003) as part of Go's Trigon's plan to take over the multiverse with a resurrected Trigon. Ultimately, it falls on Raven to come to terms with her inner demon to stop her father.
A simple bank heist in the Go universe conducted by The Gentleman Ghost goes terribly sideways and Raven's gem is damaged, leading to her inner demon breaking free from his mental prison. Trigon tries to take advantage of the situation and offer to take remove it all but she declines even though continuing to use her powers will allow the demon to consume her. Suddenly there's an interdimensional breach and the Titans are kidnapped and forced to fight in a "Tournament of Titans" to prove which version if the best. It turns out they fight the Titans from the 2003 animated series but fail to work with them to figure out what's really going on. After the Go Raven tries to forfeit, it is revealed the tournament was a sham devised by Trigon to steal her demon and use its power to resurrect the Trigon from the '03 universe. The Trigons flee with the Ravens leaving everyone else to stew in the Go universe.
The Titans start to get a feel for each other through song while the '03 Robin tries to come up with a plan and the Go Robin deals with feelings of inferiority. They head to the North Pole to steal the Go universe's Worlogog so they can travel the multiverse and find the others. Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus give chase and there's a romp through several universes until the final battle. The Go Trigon gets fed up, consumes the other Trigon and declares himself Hexagon. The Titans arrive with Titans from other universes but it's not enough and Go Raven consumes several Ravens to level up for the climactic final battle.
The comedic beats that come between the two Titans sizing each other up and pointing out the differences were amusing and got a the occasional chuckle out of me but that only went so far. There's definitely a lot of nods and callbacks to both series, including the Go Titans' rivalry with Santa Claus but there was even some gasps like when the '03 Beast Boy mentioning his universe's Terra is dead. Another funny continuity beat is if you've watched "Teen Titans Go!" is a certain sea animal hanging out near the Titans Tower. In this case it's one of the former animals, the crab and not the current sea turtle. The handsomer Robin and even handsomer serious Robin gags were amusing as what Go Robin tries to do at the end. The parallel universe Titans that appear vary from pastiches from episodes of "Teen Titans Go!" that are now inexplicably in their own universes, some new teams, and even a guest spot from some of the Titans and Cyborg from the DC Universe in-continuity direct to video movies. The new Go! characters, Mrs. Claus - voiced by Grey Griffin - and Gentleman Ghost - voiced by Weird Al - were entertaining and hopefully they will resurface in the television series.
Jeff Mednikow, the movie's director, is one of the newer directors on "Teen Titans Go!" and appears to be the sole member of the crew from the television series proper. Compared to the series or even "Teen Titans Go! To The Movies," the absence of the main crew is felt and as a result the movie comes off lacking a consistent tone and feels like carbon copies of both series despite the voice cast operating at their A-game. The movie's two songs don't even have the same vigor with simply the absence of Peter Michail. The '03 designs do not lend themselves well to Go's Flash animation and look off-model for the majority of the movie. All the little things started to add up and took me out of the movie. If only the series took a break for the main crew to work on this movie with a higher budget, this movie might have been better executed. I mean, for goodness sake the Blu-Ray/DVD combo set is a one clip Blu-ray case instead of a two so one disc will always be floating around inside!
The special features for "Teen Titans Go! vs. Teen Titans" are modest at best. There are sing-a-longs for both of the movie's new songs, "Worlogog" and "We are Teen Titans," six episodes of "Teen Titans Go!" - "Legendary Sandwich," "Mr. Butt," "Cat's Fancy," "Shrimps and Prime Rib," "The Scoop" and "Chicken in the Cradle" - three episodes of "Teen Titans" Final Exam," "How Long is Forever," and "Deception," and three Top of the Titans countdowns for the 12 best songs, 13 best moments and 15 top villains in "Teen Titans Go!", and trailers for "LEGO Batman: Family Matters" and "Nancy Drew and The Hidden Staircase".
"Teen Titans Go! vs. Teen Titans" should appeal to fans of "Teen Titans Go!" and some fans of the "Teen Titans" 2003 animated series. The movie fails to put a new spin on the multiversal crossover trope or provide any real substance to either series but as far as the story itself, it is a decent character arc for both Ravens - one taking a mentor role and the other learning to embrace her inner demon - though it is suspect if the latter will ever come up on "Teen Titans Go!" ever again. It does also have something of a love letter to the impact of Teen Titans in comics and animation through the team up of all the different versions of Titans in the multiverse for the finale. "Teen Titans Go! vs. Teen Titans" is a recommended Black Friday purchase or maybe if you need to make $25 to get free shipping on Amazon.
Main Feature: 2 out of 5
Special Features: 2 out of 5
Overall Rating: 2 out of 5