Titans season two finally revealed what happened to Slade Wilson’s son, Jericho. Here’s all you need to know.
There has been a dark cloud hovering over the Titans all of Titans season two, and we finally learn why that is in episode eight, ‘Jericho’.
We know Jericho (Chella Man), son of Slade Wilson/ Deathstroke (Esai Morales) died, apparently at the hands of his father. But in the previous episode of Titans, ‘Bruce Wayne’, Dick Grayson (Brenton Thwaites) proclaimed that he had killed Jericho.
So, which version is right? And who was Jericho beyond being the son of a villain? We find out in Titans: Jericho. Spoilers ahead!
Turns out Jericho was just a regular young man living his life, when he was ‘found’ by the Titans. And like his superhero friends, Jericho had a tragic backstory.
His father was Slade Wilson, as the Titans knew, but Jericho believed his father to be a war hero—at least that’s what his mother, Adeline (Mayko Nguyen), told him.
But then Slade fell in with Wintergreen (Demore Barnes), an old army buddy, and they started a business together. A risky venture that led to the Wilsons’ house being broken into and Jericho’s throat cut. Slade disappeared, and Jericho and Adeline were left to pick up the pieces.
It’s amazing that Jericho still manages to keep a smile on his face and is happy to have new friends in the Titans!
Unfortunately for him, the Titans’ intentions aren’t noble—they’re using Jericho to draw out Slade.
A plan that doesn’t work out because, like all good superheroes who try to toe the line towards the dark side, they become enamoured of their new young friend and want to scupper their own plan.
If only they had done so sooner.
Jericho and the Titans
Dick was meant to cut ties with Jericho, but instead he learned that Jericho actually had a gift—the ability to take over someone’s body. Jericho was no longer just a means to an end—he was an asset to the Titans.
And so, Dick brought him into the fold, came clean about the Titans’ motivations, and offered Jericho a spot on the team. Dick even told Jericho what Slade really did for a living.
At this point one would be forgiven for thinking the story was heading towards a happy ending. But alas, this is Titans, and it gets dark, pretty fast—the previous episode was all about PTSD and a hero wanting to kill himself so that isn’t surprising.
Jericho gets a summons from his father and Dick encourages the boy to go and see him. But Dick/ Robin then follows Jericho to the meeting—after a detour to look in on Donna Troy (Conor Leslie) who had just fought off Deathstroke.
What was Robin’s plan when he followed Jericho? It seemed like he wanted to change Jericho’s mind about Slade—to show the boy how awful his father really was and the blood that was on Slade’s hands.
It didn’t work out, and we aren’t surprised. Throughout the episode, no matter what Slade did or was accused of doing, one thing was clear—Jericho loved his father and just wanted him back in his life.
Robin, in typical Batman style, went into the battle with all his brawn and none of his brains. He fought Deathstroke—who was evenly matched with Robin, plus had no qualms about killing—on Batman’s terms. In other words, Robin was always going to lose.
And lose he does.
Robin gets an absolutely brutal beating—Titans never holds back on its depiction of violence–that leaves him unconscious and unable to defend himself. He was at the mercy of Deathstroke’s sword, with no hope of surviving.
We can finally understand why Dick feels such guilt about Jericho, and honestly, it’s believable. But it’s not nearly as bad as we were led to believe. Phew!
The reason why Dick blames himself is because the Titans gave him an out with the Jericho situation but instead, Dick found himself lying in a pool of blood in an abandoned church, waiting for Deathstroke to kill him.
The only reason why Dick is still here is because, as Deathstroke turned to stab Dick, Jericho got in the way.
On the one hand, I’m glad that Dick didn’t physically kill Jericho—the last few episodes had made it sound like Dick was personally involved in Jericho’s murder.
That would be a bit much—Titans is dark but turning Dick Grayson into a killer is something the show couldn’t possibly come back from.
Having said that, had Dick not involved Jericho in the first place, the boy wouldn’t have been there to save Dick and not have died in the process.
But Dick having to take the blame for this whole affair is a bit harsh. The Titans should all be beating themselves up about it.
Dawn encouraged Dick to become Batman, and Donna was pushing for more and more dangerous tactics to take down Deathstroke as revenge for Aqualad’s death. Hank went along with the plan.
The Titans likely believe that because Dick was there at Jericho’s death, he was in the best position to stop him dying. But Dick really was in no position to save anyone, least of all himself.
And it’s been five years—how come the Titans haven’t forgiven Dick yet? Hopefully we will find out in the next episode.
Jericho and Slade
Jericho’s love for his father comes through so beautifully in this episode. Morales and Man have fantastic chemistry that belies the little screen time they actually get to share.
There are so many moments between the two of them that prove how close they are—the way they hold each other, the quick kiss Slade gives Jericho before heading off on a mission. Jericho’s palpable excitement about averting a road rage incident that saved his father.
We come to watch superhero shows for the action but we stay for these purer, human moments.
A father and his son bonding over the little things they enjoy and the fact that that bond is now destroyed forever because of a critical error and the meddling of the Titans.
That’s what makes a superhero story live with viewers long after the credits roll.
We’ve waited all of Titans season two to see Chella Man in full sway as Jericho and this episode gives us everything we could ever want.
After a rather dismal episode seven, Titans: Jericho is back in excellent form. The plot is well-developed, the characters’ motivations are obvious and poignant, and Deathstroke is human yet terrifying.
But more than anything else, what will blow audiences away is Chella Man’s performance. Man plays Jericho as a warm, kind, and fully-fleshed out character.
Even though he had only the one episode to portray the character, Man’s Jericho feels like a character who has lived a complete life beyond our screens.
Man is so immensely emotive in every scene and shares such unbelievable chemistry with the entire cast that it is a shame we won’t see any more of him.
Of all the guest stars we have seen on Titans season two, Man is by far the standout. He has a bright future ahead of him and it is going to be exciting to see him take over our screens.
Titans: Jericho may have been predictable at times, but it was still excellently plotted, exciting, tragic, and beautiful.
The episode has answered many of our burning questions succinctly, while paving the path for the Titans to finally face their inner demons and the very real demon—Deathstroke—who is now wandering their walls.
We can’t wait to tune in next week for another thrilling instalment at the same Bat-time, same Bat-channel.