September 15th, 2006
The Lost Episode
(Opening shot: a Jump City street jam, packed with speeding, honking cars during rush hour. The camera, set at ground level and pointing back the way they came, is buffeted this way and that by the wake of their passage. A couple of cars slip briefly out of their lanes and ride the white line to get ahead, just barely avoiding collisions with other drivers. After they have gone, a big rig tries the same maneuver, but stops short when its radiator grille fills the screen. Tilt up to its irate driver, who addresses himself to something o.c. ahead of him; his voice is slightly muffled through the windshield.)
Trucker: What are you, crazy?
(Pull back. We can now see that he has slammed on the brakes to avoid hitting a figure standing smack in the middle of the pavement, its back to the camera. Cars flash by on either side without so much as a flicker of headlights. The figure is clad in a two-tone outfit whose colors are split down the middle. Electric blue glove and boot on the left side, shocking pink on the right, and the head, upper back, and belt are covered in armor dyed in the same manner. The rest of the figure is covered in a skintight bodysuit that shows off darker hues of these two colors. We have just met Saico-Tek, whose right hand comes out from behind the back on the next line.)
Trucker: Get out of the way!
(Close-up of the rising hand, which grips a bright, pink sphere from which four blades extend radially to create a shuriken. This is flung at the windshield, sticks in the glass, and begins to spin its blades like a buzzsaw. Realizing that he may very well end up as hamburger, the trucker bails out an instant before the weapon breaks through and embeds itself in his seat. The shuriken's hub beeps and flashes briefly before the whole thing detonates in a cloud of pink smoke.)
(As the view clears and the man tries to get his wits back about him, Saico-Tek strides past; brief close-up of the bi-colored feet as they break into a run, then pull back to frame the attacker fully from the front. Male, same color scheme on the upper chest as on the back, including the mask that covers every square inch of the face. The sternum is marked by a large pink/blue circle or lens, the forehead sporting a smaller one.)
(Saico-Tek charges through the traffic, readying an appropriately hued shuriken in each hand, and lets fly. The resulting explosions, with their lurid smoke clouds, rip into the vehicles and send onlookers into an instant panic. Next, he targets a bus, which screeches to a stop just shy of his position. The passengers make a mad dash for the door, but something o.c. draws his attention skyward and stays his hand; it proves to be a birdarang, which curves neatly past the bus and back to strike the shuriken away. Robin clearly thinks rather little of these afternoon pyrotechnics.)
(A second later, Beast Boy, as a falcon, swoops down from roof level and buzzes past Saico-Tek, who ducks away with no time spare. Right behind that charge comes a three-way barrage of sonic cannon, starbolt, and black shots, marking the other three Titans' part in the counter-offensive. The two-tone foe flips and leaps nimbly out of range, perching atop a lamppost; close-up of the birdarang as it returns to the thrower's hand.)
Robin: (from o.c.) Since you're new in town...
(Pull back to frame all but Beast Boy atop the bus; he quickly lands and resumes human form.)
Robin: ...we're going to make this very simple.
Starfire: Stop now!
Cyborg: Yeah, man. (Close-up.) The locals don't like it when you blow up their stuff. (Pan to Robin.)
Robin: Put your hands in the air and--
(Back to Saico-Tek during this line. He follows orders, but immediately leaps clear of the lamppost and takes off with the help of jet thrusters hidden beneath the armor on his back. Streams of blue and pink exhaust propel him at ludicrous speed.)
Beast Boy: (as Raven flies up) Hands in the air, dude, not your whole body!
Raven: (disgustedly) Tourists. (She charges.)
Robin: Titans! Go!
(The words are barely out of his mouth before Starfire goes airborne as well; just as quickly, he leaps clear of the bus, pulls on his motorcycle helmet, and lands squarely on the conveniently parked R-Cycle. A scream of tires, a belch of burning rubber fumes, and off he goes, while Beast Boy comes down as a very angry cheetah to back him up. Last out of the gate is Cyborg in the T-Car, but all five soon gather into a tighter formation as Saico-Tek zooms over the urban landscape.)
Raven: Anybody got a clue what this genius is after?
Cyborg: Who cares what he wants? What he's getting is a helping of Grade-A butt-whoop!
Robin: All right, team. Let's see what he's made of!
(Two missile launchers pop out, one on either side of the front wheel, and launch their payloads. In midair, Saico-Tek slows a bit, drops in behind the projectiles, and blows them apart with a pair of shuriken. His next move is to back up between Raven and Starfire and whip out of sight between two buildings; Beast Boy counters by giving chase on foot or paws, in this case. Several hundred yards down this street, though, two whirling shuriken hiss down toward him and he skids to a stop just as they reach ground level and explode. When the smoke clears, the shape-shifter is seen as a turtle, with head and legs pulled in to shield himself from the blasts. He puts them out again for a woozy look around and is rewarded with the sight of the neon-colored hooligan sailing back out to the main road.)
(As soon as Saico-Tek is in the clear, he gets two handfuls of the girls' shots thrown at him and has to bug out as they get on his tail. The barrage continues at full force high above Jump City; he bobs, weaves, and swats most of their throws away with a pair of nunchaku. A few quick dodges take him lower toward the buildings for an easy escape, but Raven and Starfire waste no time in rejoining the chase. The former rides on a black energy platform she has conjured up.)
(Down below, Robin and Cyborg get a high-explosive hello and have no choice but to stop in order to stay in one piece. They can only watch as Saico-Tek hurtles on toward Jump City Bay and Titans Tower; Beast Boy, again a falcon, gets back into the act only to have a shuriken blow up in his face. Reverting back to human form, he drops like a rock and snatches the edge of Raven's platform as she flies by.)
Beast Boy: (climbs aboard) Okay. Am I the only one who's sick of these explodey things? (Starfire pulls even.)
Raven: (annoyed, as he sits down) Does this look like a taxi to you?
Beast Boy: N-n-no. It's way too flat and circley.
(Wrong choice of words; she briefly creates a hole in the platform and he drops out with a yell. Surprised by the reverse-ejector-seat move, he nearly reaches ground level before transforming into a pterodactyl. Wheels beat wings down the road this time; Cyborg barrels ahead, the reflection of Saico-Tek appearing in his windshield, and the city-wrecker swoops down and readies two shuriken. The big man leans out the window.)
Cyborg: (readying his left-arm cannon) I know you're not throwing that in my car!
(One monster shot annihilates most of the blue-clad left arm, but Saico-Tek only regards the remaining stump incuriously and regenerates the limb with alarming speed. The colors layer themselves on one at a time-blue, magenta, yellow, finally normal, and the sight is enough to make Cyborg's eyes pop wide open.)
Cyborg: How did he do that?!?
(A better question: what to do about the shuriken that slices down through the T-Car's roof and wedges in the upholstery next to him? The beeps and flashes broadcast all too clearly what is coming next.)
Cyborg: Aw, man...
(He gets his seat belt undone and the door open, finds Beast Boy keeping pace, and grabs the legs for an emergency airlift. One big bang and billow of blue smoke mark the end of this incarnation of Cyborg's prize wheels. Now Saico-Tek blazes past them, Starfire in hot pursuit, and the camera cuts to just behind him as he keeps closing in on the Tower. The Tamaranean's hand reaches down into view to tap his shoulder; pull back to frame both on the start of the next line.)
Starfire: Uh, excuse me, but I did not wish to do this when you were not looking.
("This" being a killer left hook aimed at the side of his head, but she hits nothing but air and gets flung backward along with two shuriken. She has time for one short, bug-eyed stare of pure terror before getting blasted screaming out of the sky. Cut briefly to her perspective of a stretch of overpass that is approaching far too rapidly for her taste, then dissolve to a close-up of her hand as it is caught by one of Robin's. Cut to him and pull back to frame both; he has made the save from the R-Cycle, with perhaps three feet between Starfire and a very bad case of road rash. One good heave plants her behind him on the seat.)
Robin: You okay?
Starfire: I am now.
Robin: Then hang on!
(She does so, wrapping her arms around his waist, as he guns the engine toward a bend in the road over which Saico-Tek's distant figure is disappearing. Two jet thrusters kick in to lift the bike off the asphalt; he pops a wheelie in midair and holds it for a moment after slamming down on the main thoroughfare. Once both tires are touching the road again, he deploys the forward lasers he used against the mutated Beast Boy in "The Beast Within" and opens fire. None of his shots even grazes the incredibly agile flyer, who grabs the corner of a building to change direction away from Robin and Starfire.)
Starfire: But he went...
Robin: ...Down a dead end.
(Close-up of a dashboard screen that shows his own progress down the street; it pans slightly to include a parallel road along which a red dot Saico-Tek-is keeping pace. This path does indeed lead nowhere, but the two riders get a nasty surprise when part of the architecture disappears in a mighty blast and the twin rocket trails flash back into open air. Not to be so easily foxed, Robin uncorks a laser salvo; he again hits a whole lot of nothing and Saico-Tek gets a break when the afternoon express train rumbles past just after he gets across the tracks. Robin and Starfire skid to a stop and can only watch through the openings between the cars as their adversary flies off, but they peel out as soon as the tracks are clear.)
(They have set off following the train, and a huge jump puts them on the last car's roof to keep rolling. The tracks curve to follow the shore of Jump City Bay; Saico-Tek gets out over the water, still making tracks for the Tower.)
Robin: (as train rounds curve) Starfire! Fly!
(The R-Cycle tumbles off the roof and into space, but Starfire lifts Robin clear and is soon joined by Beast Boy, Cyborg, and Raven.)
Raven: Think we scared him off?
Robin: No. He's headed straight for...
Cyborg: ...Titans Tower!
(And he has reached it, too. Blue and pink bursts trace a long arc up the facade, forming a gigantic, terrible lei for all five Titans to see as they close in. Cut to inside a hallway, then the operations center; both are swiftly dispatched, and outside we see Saico-Tek bomb out one window after another during a screaming nose dive. Overhead view of the front windows, the camera pointing down toward the Tower's base, as Beast Boy carries Cyborg up.)
Cyborg: (leveling his right-arm cannon) You're gonna lose a lot more than an arm this time!
(Back to the fugitive on the end of this; he just barely dodges the big man's shots and counters with two shuriken that drop the boys like a ton of bricks. Beast Boy has been stunned back into human form; he and Cyborg are both towed away by Starfire, and the camera shifts back to the poised Saico-Tek. On the next line, pull back to frame Raven hovering on her platform a floor or so above him.)
Raven: Azarath Metrion Zinthos!
(Two large slabs of rock float into view under her control, one on either side of him, and slam together hard enough to spread cracks across both surfaces. When she pulls them apart, she finds that the foe has not only failed to become a pancake, he is in just as good a shape as ever, and he proves it with a flying somersault kick that sends her reeling. She is propelled gracelessly through a very new and very large hole in the Tower, from which the camera tilts up to frame the extensive damage Saico-Tek has done to the rest of the structure.)
(Stop on a long view of the roof, seen from below, as Robin hurls himself off the edge. He makes as if to grapple with the home-wrecker, but slips aside at the last instant and tears off the two-tone jet thrusters. Both are left free-falling past Starfire, who hefts Beast Boy and Cyborg up a bit, and Saico-Tek brings out two shuriken for a little slice-and-dice action. The Boy Wonder disarms him in short order, fires off a grappling hook, and snags an exposed bit of ironwork.)
(When this line snaps taut, he throws down a second hook attached to his utility belt. Cut to the base of the Tower; one of the two projectiles whistles down and sticks in the concrete, after which the enemy drops into view headfirst and stops just short of getting his skull cracked. Robin's other line has wrapped him up neatly, as the other four Titans can clearly see when they touch down safely, and Robin himself drops in last to stare him dead in the face. Behind the team, smoke gushes from every floor of the Tower.)
Cyborg: (with his mind blown) Our house! (Beast Boy straightens up, rubbing his head; Starfire crosses.) Look what he did to our house!
Beast Boy: Dude, I need a vacation.
(Saico-Tek is let down; all gather.)
Robin: (to Saico-Tek) Who are you? (leaning close) What do you want?
(Now the masked man speaks for the first time-in rather angry Japanese.)
Saico-Tek: Aa. Dame da. Kore...tsukamanai koto ni natterun da. ["Ah! This is bad! This...I wasn't supposed to have been caught!"]
Beast Boy: Um, either that wasn't English, or I think I have a concussion.
(An o.c. beeping draws everyone's attention; pull back to frame the shuriken embedded in the ground, now primed to blow just like all the others. It surprises everyone by powering down, retracting its blades, and lying there as an inert pink globe, and Robin walks over to pick it up and give it a hard, searching stare.)
(Dissolve to a long shot of the Jump City urban center, seen from the bay, and pan to frame the trashed Tower's upper portion. Inside the operations center, the five heroes stare in disbelief at the shattered remains of the place; cut to a broken patch of ceiling and tilt down to Raven beneath it.)
Raven: What a mess.
(Cut to Beast Boy and Cyborg.)
Beast Boy: (sighs) I really need a vacation.
Cyborg: (near tears, ticking off items on his fingers) I can rebuild my car, I can repair my Tower... (Overhead view.) ...but my sofa? (kneeling and sobbing; close-up) I can't even look.
(He turns away from what used to be the couch, but Starfire flies over to console him.)
Starfire: Here, here, Cyborg.
(That cheers him up a bit; pull back to frame a push broom, mop, and bucket floating nearby under Raven's influence.)
Cyborg and Starfire: Huh?
(Tilt up to show that she is now floating near the exposed pipes and beams above the ceiling.)
Raven: Well, this place isn't gonna clean itself.
(So she gets down to it, repairing a broken ventilation duct and levitating the bits of tile to patch up the hole. Cyborg plies the broom, Starfire the mop; Beast Boy just sits dejectedly off to one side, but is promptly presented with a hand broom and dustpan courtesy of Raven's powers. Finding himself on the receiving end of a slightly impatient look, he picks up the implements while she shifts some of the fallen masonry, but he is not a bit happy about having to sweep the floor.)
Beast Boy: Dudes, seriously! When was the last time we took a vacation?
Robin: (from o.c.) Never.
(Beast Boy looks in his direction; cut to floor level, framing the dustpan in the fore and the Titans' leader at a computer console in the background. A close-up on the start of the next line reveals that he is piecing the system back together.)
Robin: We're heroes, Beast Boy. We don't take vacations.
(Now he slips the monitor's glass cover into place, tightens one last screw, and tries the keyboard. The computer instantly comes to life with a screenful of scrolling text.)
Robin: Basic systems are back online. (heads for the side door) If anybody needs me, you know where to look.
(Exit stage left, not taking any notice of the four worried, confused pairs of eyes that glance after him and toward each other. Cut to just behind Robin, framed from shoulders to knees and standing before a table in a dimly lit room; he tosses down Saico-Tek's disarmed shuriken, which lands next to the confiscated jet pack. During the next line, the camera pans to frame Saico-Tek at a second table, seated under a single light with his wrists clamped down on the surface. His nunchaku have been taken away as well.)
Saico-Tek: Hanase. Hanasettara. Tanomu yo. Chigaun da. Tanomu kara Nihon niga shite kure. ["Let me go! LET ME GO! I'm begging you! This is a mistake! I beg that you send me back to Japan!"]
(Cut to Robin, standing by a bank of computers, arms crossed, contempt written across every square inch of his face. This is a bit of the Tower never seen before, an interrogation room perhaps, and the Boy Wonder looks ready to get fully into the act.)
Saico-Tek: (from o.c.) Kore ga tsukurareta no wa. Aa. Okurareru. Niga shite kure. ["It's the place where I was created! Ah! I was sent here! Set me free!"]
(A key is pressed.)
Computer: Translation computer on.
(The Japanese gives way to recognizable English faster than you can say "Babel fish.")
Saico-Tek: You must let me go! I am Saico-Tek!
(Camera shift: now we see that the two are actually in adjoining rooms connected by an open door. A large mirror reflects Saico-Tek's image as Robin walks in, the door closing behind him.)
Saico-Tek: You are not to stop me! Only he may stop me! I belong in Tokyo!
(Cut to just behind him and tilt up to frame his so-far-silent inquisitor, who plants both palms on the tabletop.)
Robin: Then why are you here? You attacked my home, endangered my friends, (leans into his face) and if you want to see tomorrow, you're going to tell me why!
Saico-Tek: I was sent. My mission, he made me do it. (Robin circles to him.) This Tower, no choice!
Robin: Who sent you?
Saico-Tek: (thrashing about) No! No! I am not supposed to speak! You are not supposed to catch me! (standing up) He is worse than any criminal! (pulling at bonds) Angry! Cruel! He will erase me!
Robin: (shoving him back down) Who sent you to attack our Tower?
Saico-Tek: (softly) Brushogun.
(Pronounced as a portmanteau of "brush" and "shogun." Robin extends one cautious hand toward the now-tranquil captive, but whips it back suddenly when he flips into a handstand on the table. His chair goes flying, an overhead fire sprinkler head nozzle is kicked loose, and in a heartbeat water is pouring into the room. Robin, soaked to the skin, turns his head away and throws up an arm to protect himself against the deluge; when it begins to let up, he finds no bodily trace of Saico-Tek. Only the overturned chair and still-fastened wrist clamps suggest that someone had been on that side of the table. Pull back slowly overhead to frame the entire tableau-table, chair, puddles, showers, and one very wet and very frustrated Titan standing amid it all.)
(Cut to the exterior of the Tower, holes and all, and zoom in slowly. The next shot is a closer view of the smashed operations center window, at which Robin is now standing. Zoom in again.)
Robin: This doesn't make any sense. (Close-up; he has dried off.) People don't just disappear.
(He eyes the shuriken that failed to go off as the camera pans slightly to frame Cyborg at a bank of computers on one side.)
Cyborg: I don't know what to tell you, man. (close-up; taps his keys) The crime scanner's one of the only things we got working in this place, and it can't find him anywhere. (Pull back to frame Raven, floating cross-legged nearby.)
Raven: I can't make psychic contact either. (Starfire approaches Robin.)
Starfire: Perhaps this Saico-Tek possesses the power of teleportation? (The other two cross the floor.)
Robin: If he could teleport, he would have done it the moment he was caught. (Beast Boy pops up.)
Beast Boy: (excitedly, waving his hand) Oh! Oh! (Close-up.) Maybe he just wasn't waterproof.
(Pull back as Cyborg and Raven give him a red-eyed glare and threatening snarl; he deflates in short order and lowers his hand.)
Beast Boy: I know. Not helping.
(Cyborg turns to Robin and Starfire.)
Cyborg: So if the dude vanished into thin air, how are we supposed to find him?
(Zoom in on Robin as he finishes.)
Robin: By tracking down his boss. (He gazes out over the bay.) This Brushogun ordered an attack on our headquarters. He nearly destroyed our home. (socks his fist into his palm) He will be brought to justice. (turns to face the others) Pack your things. We're heading for Tokyo.
Beast Boy: SWEET! (Sight gag: background dissolves to a spinning pink starburst as others slide away.) We're going on vacation!
(Gag ends as the main titles begin. There is no dialogue throughout the following.)
WARNER BROS. ANIMATION PRESENTS
(Cut to his perpetually untidy room; he rushes in, grabs a snow shovel, and uses it to dump a pile of clothes and boxes into an open suitcase on the floor. Dashing o.c., he comes back bulldozing a couple of chests of drawers with the implement and bucks them onto the stack. Within seconds he has shoveled up every last one of his personal possessions save the bunk beds and a couple of posters; he finishes by throwing the shovel itself into the mix.)
TEEN TITANS: TROUBLE IN TOKYO (The first two words are side by side in the show's normal opening font; the last three are rendered in Japanese brush strokes.)
(Now he pulls down the posters, jumps on top of the pile, which reaches almost to the ceiling-and becomes a woolly mammoth to squash it all into the hopelessly undersized suitcase. This does the trick, posters and all; resuming human form, he slams it shut and drags it out. The room is left completely bare except for the beds and a small light fixture high on one wall.)
(Close-up of Silkie snoozing on Robin's knapsack, which rests on the floor of his room. The closet is open in the background as the Boy Wonder steps up; pull back as he yanks the bag away and slings it onto his back.)
(Silkie ends up flipped onto its back and clearly ill at ease, so Robin takes down a spare outfit and folds it up to serve as a bed. As soon as he slips this under the oversized larva and turns it over, it calms down again; he pets it a bit and leaves it to sleep again as he heads for the door.)
(Cut to Cyborg's room, where he is busy packing some spare limbs into a suitcase.)
(An arm goes in, then a leg, then he grabs an extra head without immediately realizing it. Both faces notice each other at the same time and register equal degrees of surprise; the big man drops the head, hastily slams the lid shut, and bugs out.)
(Cut to inside a bathroom, whose door opens to admit Raven.)
(She crosses to the sink, where a toothbrush rests in a water glass. The former item is picked up and given a bit of scrutiny, after which she exits with it.)
(Cut to Starfire's room; she opens the closet door to expose racks of spare tops, skirts, and boots. In one corner is a large cage.)
(Opening the cage, she brings out a pink-furred creature with several eyes and blue feet that strongly resembles a woolly mammoth. It is small enough to fit under her arm, and it proceeds to vacuum up every article of clothing in no time flat. She lets the blue/pink striped trunk and tail knot together to form a handle and strolls off with the fully loaded pachyderm handbag slung from one shoulder.)
(Cut to the T-Ship, floating at anchor just above the surface of Jump City Bay, and pan from bow to stern. The craft is parked by the island's shore; Cyborg is trying to stuff a mountain of luggage into the cargo hold while the other four watch.)
(Stomp, strain, shove, but he ultimately loses the battle and is flung backward when the suitcases burst out of the hold. Cut to a long shot of the bay.)
(The T-Ship lifts off into view, the camera tilting up to follow, and rotates to point its bow toward the ocean. This movement exposes the luggage, which has been lashed to the stern section. Once the vessel has reached cruising altitude, the thrusters flip up to point backward and the gang is off to the races.)
(Cut to a world-map view of the Pacific coast, with the Tower's location appropriately marked and a compass needle indicating north. The T-Ship begins to cruise over open water, a dotted line marking its progress, and we see a close-up of Robin in his cockpit at the bow.)
(Pan toward the stern to frame the others. Raven reading at the starboard, Starfire staring wonderingly out at the port with her palms pressed to her canopy, Cyborg at the center with a portable GameStation in his hand, Beast Boy reclining and drinking a soda at the stern. A close-up reveals that he has procured a Mongo Gulp, which serves to divert his attention away from the fact that he can see virtually nothing due to all the luggage strapped up around his cockpit.)
(He wipes his mouth and worriedly leans over to get a good look through one of the few clear spots he has. The T-Ship pulls away from the camera to expose the source of his concern: a buoy displaying a sign that reads. Next, Rest Area 2500 Miles, with an arrow to point the way. Needless to say, this is the last thing he wanted to see after downing a beverage this huge.)
(The world-map view again; now the vessel veers all over the place near a group of islands for a moment and then stops, turning this way and that. Close-up, panning slowly from bow to stern; all five canopies are open, and four of the five Titans are either standing up in the cockpits or atop the fuselage. Robin and Cyborg are having a heated argument over which way to go, Starfire consults a map, and Beast Boy is hunched over in a desperate attempt to keep his bladder in check. Raven, the only one still in her seat, rolls her eyes wearily at the entire scene.)
(A yell from Beast Boy ends the disagreement in a hurry; cut to a small island on which four porta-potties are set up in a row, one rather larger than the others, next to a palm tree.)
(The T-Ship drops into a hover just offshore, and all five jump/fly out of their seats and head for the facilities, Cyborg taking the biggest stall. However, Beast Boy finds himself the odd man out; he runs behind the tree, turning into a dog as he goes, to relieve himself.)
(The world-map view again; the ship pulls away from the island and heads west into darker waters as Aqualad pops up to wave at it. Close-up of Beast Boy's suitcase, the lid plastered with stickers to remind him of past adventures. Back in human form, he reaches into view to open it, exposing a disposable camera tucked in with the clothes, and throws a wicked smile to the camera as he picks this up.)
(The view now flashes from one snapshot to the next, each resting atop the pile formed by all the others before it. Beast Boy taking a picture of himself in his cockpit, Cyborg eating a burger and looking a bit surprised, Starfire pointing at some leaping dolphins, Robin studying the map, with a couple of Japan guidebooks, a picture of Saico-Tek, and the unused shuriken spread across the dashboard, Raven sleeping, Beast Boy is in the picture with her, he reaches toward her nose, closer still, gets a fingertip into her nostril and laughs as she wakes with a start. The next four pictures show the black wash of her powers. A totally blank shot, her snarling face, extreme close-up of something being broken, a web of cracks spreading across the camera lens, and normal light resumes for the final picture: a close-up of the jokester's badly mangled face, seen through the ruined camera lens.)
(Dissolve to the world-map view, the T-Ship maintaining its course, and pan to follow it on the final leg of the journey to Japan. The camera zooms in on the island nation, rotating slightly to frame it right side up.)
(Dissolve to Mount Fuji at night and tilt down to frame a path leading toward the lower slopes as a few cherry blossom petals blow by in a chance breeze; it is framed by a red torii gate similar to those that marked Robin's road in "The Quest." Pan to a long shot of the brilliantly lit expanse that is Tokyo city proper. The T-Ship has landed on the slopes and its passengers have dismounted; zoom in on them from behind.)
Cyborg: Tokyo! (Close-up of all but Beast Boy.) We made it! (close-up; to the nonplussed Robin) Told you it was a left at Hawaii. (Pan to Starfire.)
Starfire: Oh... (Behind the four.) ...the city lights are like a million tiny flanorgla flies!
Robin: It may look nice, but there's something rotten down there.
(On the end of this, a shadowy head rises partway into view near the camera, it's back to us. Back to the ship.)
Robin: And we're going to--
(The head's owner leaps down into view, it is Beast Boy, who has changed into a garish Hawaiian shirt, shorts, and flip-flops and perched a pair of sunglasses on his head.)
Beast Boy: Whoo-yeah! Hello, Japan! So, when do we get to go see the Great Wall? (Raven steps out behind him.)
Raven: Never. It's in China.
Beast Boy: Ooooh...but you know what is in Tokyo?
(Rummaging around for a moment, he comes up with a volume of Japanese manga and holds it proudly aloft.)
Beast Boy: (hugging it to himself) The world-famous, number-one greatest, most awesome Japanese comic book company, Wakamono Shuppan!
(As he says the name, pan away from him to frame a large skyscraper near the edge of the city. Sight gag: several Japanese kanji characters spring up from the roof to spell out the name.)
[Note: The name translates as "Young Person Publishing", apropos for a manga company.]
Beast Boy: (drags Cyborg and Raven along) Oh, oh, we gotta take the tour! Now! Please? Oh, we can't come here on vacation and not-- (He backs up into Robin.)
Robin: We are not on vacation! (Beast Boy backs off.) We're heroes, not tourists. (Cut to him; zoom in slowly.) Our mission is to locate Brushogun and bring him to justice. And since we're guests in this country, we need to be on our best behavior. So let's just do our job, (walks away down the slope) and try to stay out of trouble.
Beast Boy: (dismissively, as others follow) Come on. How much trouble could we possibly get in?
(He finally realizes that he has been left behind and hurries to catch up. Cut to behind the quartet and the straggler and pull back as a new, deep male voice begins to speak. This view is playing on a monitor in a darkened room and being watched by a black silhouette who can only be seen from behind one shoulder for now. Soft, grating respirations are heard from o.c.)
Male voice 1: So, the Teen Titans have come to Tokyo.
(Head-on view; the form leans intently over the monitor, showing only two glowing white eyes.)
Silhouette: Saico-Tek must have talked. (Zoom in slowly.) Most unfortunate. Don't you agree, my friend? (Extreme close-up of the eyes, panning slowly.) But you needn't worry. I will soon give these "heroes" a good reason to leave.
(On the end of this, pan/tilt down slightly to one hand as it comes up with index finger extended. The tap of buttons on a control panel brings a large printing press to life, and the camera zooms in on the paper-laden rollers.)
(Cut to a high-speed train rocketing around a bend, its noise seamlessly replacing that of the press. The camera tilts down from the tracks, which sit high above the city streets, to rest amid the multicolored profusion of neon signs and billboards that decorate every inch of Tokyo. Cars and motor scooters zip about, ads and buildings wink their messages into the night, and the camera cuts to a close-up of one sign showing a girl chasing a boy and pulls back. People go about their business, being thoroughly accustomed to this and all the other high-wattage product pitching that goes on all around them. Next, the camera roves across one city block; a pedestrian signal changes from green to red, and the crowds at the corners begin to cross the intersection. One last high-level view of the skyline and tilt down, and the Titans come into view, watching the goings, on from an elevated sidewalk. Zoom in and cut to a close-up; all five goggle at the activity crammed into every square inch of pavement and building. Beast Boy has put on his usual outfit and thrown the Hawaiian shirt over it, but done away with his shades.)
Beast Boy: Toky-whoa!
Raven: So, where to now?
Robin: (checks the guidebook) The roughest part of town is in the Shinjuku district. We'll start our search there.
Cyborg: Okay. Which way is that?
Robin: I don't know. I can't read the signs.
(His perspective on the end of this, panning across a jumble of signage that is absolute Greek to him, then back to the group.)
Beast Boy: No problem. (strolls away; the camera follows) We'll just ask for directions.
(Reaching a bystander, he taps him on the shoulder; the man folds up the newspaper he has been reading.)
Beast Boy: Um, hi. How do I get to Shinjuku?
Man 1: Ee. Sumimasen. Eigo ga wakaranain desu, tasukete wo rigari naru na. ["Hm? I'm sorry. I don't speak English, so I can't help you."]
Beast Boy: (nods during the previous line) Uh-huh...mmm-hmm...okay, thanks.
(He nips back to the others, gives them a big grin, then lets it deflate into dejection.)
Beast Boy: I have no idea what he said.
Starfire: Perhaps I may be of assistance.
(After a quick look around, she takes one step off to the side opposite Beast Boy, grabs the first teenage boy within easy reach, and proceeds to plant a marathon-length kiss on his lips. The would-be master navigator stares bug-eyed, as does Cyborg; Raven just cocks an eyebrow, but Robin looks ready to have about five conniptions at once. The lip-lock lasts a full eight seconds and leaves the local youth with his mind absolutely blown. On the other hand, Starfire comes out of it speaking fluent Japanese, having instantly picked it up in the same way she learned English by kissing Robin during "Go!".)
Starfire: Sumimasen kedo, Shinjuku wa docchi no houkou desu ka. ["Excuse me, but which direction is Shinjuku?"]
Boy: (pointing over shoulder) Acchi da yo. ["That way."]
Starfire: (bowing) Doumo arigatou. ["Thank you very much."]
Boy: (sighs; hearts float up) Daisuki. ["I love you."]
(She gives him a last smile and giggle and backs up to the others. Robin's cape has been standing nearly straight out under its own power throughout all this, but settles around his shoulders as she steps up.)
Starfire: (gesturing) It is this way.
Robin: Um...Starfire? Why did you just...kiss that guy?
Starfire: Oh. The people of my planet are able to learn any language instantaneously through lip contact.
Cyborg: So you speak Japanese now?
Starfire: (nodding) Mmm-hmm.
Cyborg: That's great!
(She leads them toward Shinjuku, but Robin stays put, not entirely satisfied with the explanation she has just given. Evidently, she never spelled out the reason for the first kiss she gave him until right now, that, or he has forgotten it altogether.)
Robin: (sullenly, following) Yeah. Great.
(The Titans are brought up short when the crowds around them are thrown into a screaming panic. One very agitated fellow stops next to them.)
Man 2: (pointing into the sky) Nigeru. Taihen da. Kaibutsu ga densen o kitteru zo. (He runs off.) ["Run! It's huge! A monster is attacking the power lines!"]
Raven: (to Starfire) What are they saying?
Starfire: "Run! The monster is attacking the power lines!"
(Right on cue, a series of tremors shakes the camera, marking the approach of said monster; all five turn their eyes upward apprehensively and the camera tilts up to the rooftops. Here it comes, a green reptilian beast towering over the skyline, with a roar loud enough to be heard all the way across the Pacific. A set of high-voltage lines, strung somewhere near its waist level, snap like twine when it lumbers into them, and other cables meet the same fate as the beast stomps through an electrical power plant. This is Deka-Mido.)
Robin: Titans! Go!
(He leads them in a charge, Beast Boy quickly changes into a pterodactyl, and gets a handful of discs ready on the run. They go flying just ahead of two Tamaranean fastballs and a fanned-out burst of Raven's black shots; right behind them comes Cyborg, held aloft by the green flyer so he can fire his cannon. The muzzle flash clears to frame Deka-Mido, which takes the hits in the side of the head, the neck, the arm, and the chest, in that order, Cyborg's shot blowing a hole clear through the body. It only looks down at the gaping wound; zoom in slightly as it seals itself in the same way that Saico-Tek grew his arm back in the prologue, one color layer at a time.)
(Robin stares intently down the block while Beast Boy sets Cyborg down and resumes human form atop the big man's shoulders.)
Cyborg: Same power as Saico-Tek! (The girls arrive.)
Robin: Because it works for Brushogun, too.
(The thing lets go with a city-shaking roar and leans toward street level, its eyes flaring bright green and letting off a giant blast. Titans scramble in all directions and barely avoid becoming part of one very fresh and very large crater in the roadbed; Robin has done the best to hold his ground, but dives away from the descending foot. One eye beam after another tears into the pavement, but a mad string of somersaults and flips keeps the Boy Wonder's hide intact for the time being. When he finally comes to rest, he looks up with a gasp and finds the thick, weighty tail swinging straight at him. It lashes against the street, throwing dust clouds everywhere, but Robin has managed to avoid the strike and run straight ahead through the legs.)
(He goes flat out, dodging another stomp; now three cars sail into view under Raven's influence and slam against Deka-Mido's neck without effect. It turns to glare off to that side as the camera pans to frame her in midair, momentarily at a loss. Two more vehicles get the same treatment, but all they do is make the creature even angrier. She drops down next to several cars parked at the curb, all small, efficient Japanese models just like the ones she has been heaving.)
Raven: Where's a gas-guzzler when you need one?
(The question goes unanswered for the moment, as another foot wipes out the entire row and she flees the scene. One grab at her misses, the second one does not, and Beast Boy swoops in as a falcon with talons extended. Changing to gorilla form, he scores a two-fisted hit against the reptilian skull that gets Raven out of the clawed grip. His rebound sends him down to swing around a lamppost, and he resumes human form and touches down in a short backward skid. Now he has Deka-Mido's attention and capitalizes on it by transforming into a tyrannosaurus rex, but he accidentally thumps his head on a low bridge.)
(The boo-boo shakes him back to normal; he finds himself lying in the beast's approaching shadow and looking up at a great gobbet of yellow-green slime issues from the mouth. Beast Boy is left pale and half senseless amid the muck as Deka-Mido leans in far too close to sniff at him, but a cannon blast from o.c. connects with the snout and shifts the focus in a hurry. Pan toward Cyborg as the behemoth turns face him; the big man is standing beneath a sign.)
Cyborg: (puts away his cannon) I hear baseball's big in Japan. (rips a pole loose) Well, get ready for a grand slam!
(Tilt up to the sign, Wakamono Shuppan, which begins to keel over now that one of its supports is gone, then cut back to Cyborg just in time for the whole thing to come down on his head. Starfire flies in next to lay her thing down and gets in a few real haymakers; her follow-up move is to grab one ear and heave Deka-Mido across the street, where it fetches up against the architecture. However, this two-way combo only makes it even madder, a fact that ruins her triumphant mood in a heartbeat. She flies backward to build up a little steam, but gets tangled up in a set of power lines strung at exactly the wrong height. In short order she is yanked screaming up to its eye level, the wires snapping apart around her.)
(Something arcs into view and bursts against its head in a crackle of electricity, making it drop Starfire and staggering it for a moment. When it gets its head clear, it finds Robin in the middle of the street, the thing was one of his discs.)
Robin: (full volume) Hey! Over here! (cupping hands to mouth) Your mother was a salamander!
(As he runs around the nearest corner and the thing stomps off after him, the camera pans to the still-prone, groaning Beast Boy, who has regained his normal color. The slime around him is gone, but a healthy splotch of it still covers his shirt. He comes to just as Raven lands nearby.)
Beast Boy: (disgustedly) Awww! How am I supposed to pick up hot Japanese girls with a big green stain on my shirt? (Raven gets in his face.)
Raven: (ticks off items on her fingers) Your skin is green, you have fangs, and your ears are pointed. You're really worried about the shirt? (She backs off.)
Beast Boy: Hey! (as she chases Deka-Mido) Chicks dig the ears! (runs off and ditches shirt) Hey! Wait! Ugh!
(Elsewhere, Robin makes tracks down a back alley while Deka-Mido storms after him, reducing the masonry to gravel in the process. Searing green beams from the eyes rip into the ground just behind the pounding feet; a hairpin turn puts him out of range as the energy slices up the building at that corner. However, the fleeing hero soon finds himself at close quarters again and one giant stomp after another starts to flatten the area. As Deka-Mido's shadow envelops him, he fires a grappling hook ahead of himself, out the end of the alley, and manages to snag a passing train.)
(He is yanked into the clear, ignoring the monster's very nasty glare, and hauls himself ahead past the windows. One fellow is rather surprised to find someone hitching a ride like this, but the mood quickly changes to alarm as he points out past Robin. The gesture draws his attention to the tail that has been brought back into play; several cars are smashed clean off the tracks and go tumbling to the street in a cascade of contorted metal and concrete dust.)
(As the view clears, Robin drops safely into view, retracting his grapple, and catches sight of the tracks being ripped up. Deka-Mido tears this stretch in half, throws the pieces aside, and warms up for an eye blast. This time, it carves a flaming track around him; a nearby train car is pushed back by the accompanying shock wave. The fire soon dies away and Robin tenses for another attack, but before either one of them can do anything, lights blaze up from o.c. and we hear a cacophony of sirens. Within two seconds he finds himself surrounded by a semicircle of police cars and SWAT vans, flashers and searchlights going full tilt.)
(Fade to white, then immediately in to the recoiling and blinded Deka-Mido. Behind Robin, a senior man approaches from one of the cars. This is Daizo Uehara, your basic plainclothes detective type: brown hat and overcoat, white shirt, black tie and suit pants. Zoom in on him.)
Uehara: Troopers! Charge!
(Helmeted, heavily armed officers come pouring out of every single van, past their implacable superior and the thoroughly confounded Titan, and let go with a withering barrage of laser fire. This gives Deka-Mido reason to think twice about its rampage, and helicopters swarm around the towering form so that more men can drop in on ropes as backup. Beast Boy, Cyborg, Raven, and Starfire make their way through the cops only to be stopped at the front line.)
(One more cop ropes in and lays down a board from which two emitters extend upward. The tips of these flare up as a cord snakes out from either end; close-up of a connection being made, then pull back to an overhead shot of the combat zone. The helicopter riders, all carrying identical rigs, have formed a ring around Deka-Mido and are hooking up one to the next. Pan to the other side of the clearing, then cut to ground level as the last few plugs snap together.)
(Now Uehara strides forward, revealing what looks like a sheathed katana at his belt, and stops next to one of the officers. The latter backs off a step, and the weapon is drawn, not a sword, but rather a long curved tube liberally striped with circuitry, and swung down to strike a button on one of the connecting plugs. The electrical pathways blaze up on contact; instantly the emitters shoot blinding white beams skyward, forming a cage that traps the green monstrosity and briefly drains the local power grid. Four sidelined Titans can only stare dumbfounded at the display of technology and teamwork.)
Cyborg: We have got to get one of those!
(The emitters slide in closer, so that the cage contracts and Deka-Mido is forced to curl up into a ball to keep away from the bars. Now the boss turns to greet the team.)
Uehara: (sheaths a trigger device) Ah. You are the Teen Titans, hmm? (He crosses to them and bows.) Welcome to Japan. I am Commander Uehara Daizo, of the Tokyo Troopers.
(He has followed the Eastern custom of giving his family name first. All Titans bow respectfully except Beast Boy, who soon gets his head shoved down by Cyborg.)
(Cut to an overhead view of the densely packed urban center. Tilt up to point ahead over the teeming streets and overpasses and stop on the upper stories of an imposing red edifice whose exterior is a study in streamlined angles. It is now the following day. We next see an overhead view of a bank of elevator platforms on inclined tracks inside; one of these, carrying Uehara and the Titans, begins to ascend.)
Uehara: Tokyo is a unique city, my young friends, with its own unique dangers. (Close-up.) Of course, I am sorry you had to learn this the hard way.
Robin: We're used to danger, but we appreciate your help, Commander.
Uehara: "Commander"? (laughs) No, no, no, no. You may call me Daizo, hmm? (rests his hands on Robin's shoulders) We are friends.
(He gets a smile in return; long shot of the lift again, tilting up to follow its progress.)
Uehara: I will honor you with a tour of our headquarters and our home. (Close-up.) I founded the Tokyo Troopers to help keep the city safe. We're not too different from you Titans, except... (chuckles) ...we are all grownups.
(He turns to face up the slope as they come to its peak and continue along a horizontal track. Off to both sides, sets of one-man platforms carry Troopers up and down. The party of six is carried through a large, opening door; cut to its other side, where they emerge into a high, wide chamber topped by a full-length curved skylight. The black dots of hurrying people can just be made out on the elevated walkways. Tilt down to frame the platform fully on the start of the next line.)
Uehara: My operation is a triumph of Japanese culture, technology, and design. (Cut to one side; he continues o.c. as Troopers leap down in line.) Living units are efficient but comfortable.
(Overhead view of the track, below which several regiments have fallen into formation for a workout. The group continues along.)
Uehara: Hourly training sessions keep my Troopers in peak form.
(At ground level, the men practice combat techniques as the tour continues. Pan to follow the boss and his five guests, then cut to another stretch as a new door opens to let them out of this area. Now they reach the end of the line, in a large room with a flight of steps leading down from the tracks. Uehara gazes out approvingly, the Titans following his line of sight, and the camera shifts to his perspective and pans across the place. Troopers man the banks of control panels that line the wall-to-wall windows, while large display screens are suspended from the ceiling.)
Uehara: My highly advanced command center has reduced crime in Tokyo by two hundred percent. (Back to him.) Not bad, hmm? Hmm? (He gestures for them to step out; jaws drop.)
Cyborg: Whoa. (They do so.)
(The commander stays at the top of the stairs while the five young heroes stare wonderingly across the floor. Pan to one side, Beast Boy making his way toward a few of the men at work; he slips up between two of them, sees a lever being thrown, and plasters a big eager smile across his face. In on time flat, he is over at the panels and eyeing a rather large and inviting red button; close-up of it as he reaches in, only to get his hand slapped away by Raven. Sight gag: he shrinks a size or two while she grows the same amount, looming up behind his back with teeth sharpened to points.)
Raven: (emphatically) Don't. Touch. Anything.
(She returns to normal size and wheels away in a swirl of blue cloak; Beast Boy, on the other hand, stays shrunken and drops out of sight with a pitiful little whine to end the gag. Back to Robin and Uehara.)
Robin: With your permission, Daizo, I'd like to use this equipment to complete our mission.
Uehara: Ahhh. Certainly, my young friend. And what, may I inquire, is your mission?
Robin: We're tracking a criminal who calls himself Brushogun.
(Pan slightly to frame the other Titans behind him as he says this; the response is a burst of hearty laughter which does not sit well with the spiky-haired leader.)
Uehara: (composing himself) Forgive me. (puts his hand on Robin's shoulder) But you are ignorant of our culture. Brushogun is an urban legend, a myth.
(Close-up of Robin's decidedly unsettled expression.)
Uehara: (from o.c.) I'm afraid you've come a long way for nothing. (Pull back to frame both on the end of this.) As you can see...
(Cut to a couple of Troopers and their overhead screens, now tiled with images of the crew doing their thing against assorted villains and monsters. Pan across this side of the command center.)
Uehara: (from o.c.) ...my Troopers have Tokyo's real criminals well under control.
(Another one approaches; back to the pair again.)
Robin: But Saico-Tek said--
Uehara: (abruptly) I'm sorry, I don't know who that is. (smiling) Someone is playing a trick on you, perhaps, hmm?
Robin: (uncertainly) I...I'm not sure.
(He fishes around in his utility belt for something as a new male voice speaks up from somewhere near the door.)
Male voice 2: Commander Uehara!
(Pan to frame a group of new arrivals on this line; the speaker is a rather hefty fellow in a light gray suit, dark shirt, and blue tie, the mayor of Tokyo. Flashbulbs pop behind him, indicating that the others are reporters and photographers sent to cover these events.)
Mayor: Tokyo thanks you. You've saved our city once again! (Uehara crosses to him; they bow to one another; the Titans watch bemusedly.)
Uehara: It is my honor to serve, Mr. Mayor.
Mayor: Come, Commander. (gesturing at the press corps) The people want their hero, (holds up a medal) and I want to give you another medal.
Uehara: (to the Titans) Enjoy your visit. But remember, here you are just tourists. (not smiling) Leave the law enforcement to us, hmm?
(He follows the mayor over to the news crew and gets one broad arm around the shoulders as the cameras click away. Robin is having no part of it, though; close-up of the shuriken globe he confiscated from Saico-Tek, clutched in one hand whose fingers loosen after a moment, this was what he was trying to get from his belt. Uehara's dismissive comments notwithstanding, he still wants to get to the bottom of this whole Brushogun business.)
(Dissolve to a roof-level pan through the district and stop on a long shot of the Titans, gathered at the railing atop the Troopers' headquarters. A closer shot reveals that they are, for the moment at least, without even the first idea of what to do next.)
Raven: So... (Close-up of the rail.) ...this was a fairly impressive waste of time. (Tilt up to Robin.)
Robin: I don't understand. How could this whole thing be a wild goose chase? I feel like an idiot. (Starfire's hand finds his shoulder.)
Starfire: (from o.c.) No, please, do not blame Robin for the wild chasing of the goose.
(Pull back to frame her by his side on the second half of this line.)
Robin: I can't even find my way around in this town, much less catch a criminal.
(Longer shot of the entire group during this line. Beast Boy has sat down at the edge, letting his feet hang over into space and resting his head and arms on the railing. As a shadow passes from this spot, a light bulb goes on under the perpetually unruly green hair.)
Beast Boy: Ooh! (He leaps to his feet and waves his arms madly.) Dudes, I got it! I totally know where we need to go!
(Cut to the upper stories of the Wakamono Shuppan headquarters and tilt down to the base; he pops up into view.)
Beast Boy: Ta-da!
(Sight gag: he now faces the building, and stars shine in his eyes and around his head as four stunned teammates slide up behind. He rubs his hands together eagerly.)
Starfire: Wakamono Shuppan? (Gag ends; close-up of Raven.)
Raven: The comic book place? (Pan to Robin, vein throbbing on forehead.)
Robin: I thought you were leading us to a clue about Brushogun.
Beast Boy: (walking ahead) Hel-lo? Daizo said he's not real, remember? But as long as we're here, we gotta take the tour!
(By this time, he has reached the front door, but his enthusiasm is rather rudely interrupted when he walks face first into it and it does not even budge. Cut to just inside, the camera pointing out through the tinted glass; he slides down o.c. and the others approach, Starfire flying point this time. She fixes her attention on something just o.c., and when the camera shifts to outside again, it is seen to be a sign hanging on the door.)
Starfire: The sign says "Closed."
(Beast Boy comes up with a loud, frustrated groan and pulls his hair.)
Beast Boy: (stomps) No fair!
(He soon moves into the screaming-and-pounding-fists-against-the-door phase of his tantrum, which thoroughly fails to impress Robin.)
Robin: Come on. Let's just go home.
(Before he can get three steps down the sidewalk, Cyborg scoots in from one side, arms outstretched to block his path.)
Cyborg: (tapping Robin's head) Are you out of your spiky-head little mind?!? (Cut to a Japanese-flag backdrop, against which he pops up with a forehead vein flaring.)
Cyborg: We are in Tokyo, man! (pulls out a camera) We gotta look around, see the town!
(He snaps a picture; pull back to show the normal background and Robin blinded by the flash. The latter shakes his head clear as Beast Boy crosses to the group and Raven watches.)
Beast Boy: (as he and Cyborg head out) Yeah! After all, that's what vacations are for.
Raven: (shrugs) Whatever.
(She follows them out; Starfire flies over, giggles, and drags the Boy Wonder along. Cut to a long shot of the quintet and pull back to show it playing on a monitor in the same dark room seen at the end of the prologue. The deep voice of the male silhouette is heard as the camera movement frames him from behind, head and one shoulder.)
Silhouette: They are no longer looking for me, but I will be watching their every move.
(Extreme close-up of the narrowed white eyes on the second half of this line. If the idea that this person is Brushogun was only a conjecture before, now it has begun to swing some weight. Cut to a pan across a bank of four buttons: blue, magenta, yellow, black, as each is pressed in turn, then to the printing press seen in the prologue. It kicks into gear, the camera roving briefly along its length before cutting to a close-up of the wide sheet of paper stock being pulled along. A loud groan, and five jet-black fingers lash into view to press their tips against the unmarked surface; ribbons of color, the same four as those seen on the control buttons, issue forward from the points of contact. It is as if the fingers were markers leaving their tint on the paper as it winds ahead.)
(Tilt along the vividly-hued streaks for a moment, then cut to a long shot behind Robin and Starfire as she giddily leads him off for some adventuring. Just before they disappear around a corner, four silhouettes advance into view near the camera and eye them intently. One is a formless shadow that trails off into a ragged hem; a second has a wild mane of hair and a long tail; the third is short and squat, with a large oval head topped by a spike; and the fourth can be seen only as part of a large floating orb with the end of a tentacle hanging down next to it.)
(Snap to a light blue background, against which two glutinous pink masses slam into each other, Pull back to show them as the bellies of the competitors in a sumo wrestling match, which is being broadcast on a giant-screen television set up in a city square. Young people of various shapes and sizes are watching intently, as are Robin and Starfire; she is loving every second of it as he eats a snack and the camera zooms in. A bit more grappling leads to one wrestler being dumped out of the ring, and the winner's V-for-Victory sign nearly brings tears to Starfire's eyes. She cries out in delight and yanks Robin away; his food goes flying into the nearest trash can as the camera zooms in on it. A moment later, it rises back into view, speared atop the spiked head of one of the four silhouettes seen previously. Two shimmering blue eyes peer out from the lightless form, which has darker glints of this same color around its outline.)
(Cut to another block, the camera pointing up at an angle from ground level to frame the upper stories of the buildings. A tilt down to the street reveals two things of particular interest: the profusion of restaurants in this area, and Cyborg walking along with his nose stuck in a guidebook. Pedestrians pass on all sides, but he does not even break stride and keeps reading with his tongue clamped between his teeth. After a few more steps, he stops for a good look around and his whole face instantly lights up with a google-eyed, ear-to-ear grin.)
Cyborg: (rubbing his hands) There it is! The only Japanese I need to know!
(Close-up of a sushi joint's sign.)
Cyborg: (from o.c., pointing at each character) "All You Can Eat"!
(He leans into view on the last word and squeezes his clasped hands together eagerly, then licks his chops and strides in whistling like he owns the place. From here, cut to a long shot of a temple situated on a peaceful hillside; cherry blossoms flutter in the breeze as the camera pulls back and tilts down to frame a nearby river and the foot bridge that spans it. A rowboat glides into view, Robin manning the oars and Starfire along for the ride; they pass beneath the bridge and o.c., after which the camera zooms in on one arch. Out pops that spike-topped shade again to eye them closely.)
(Cut to the Wakamono Shuppan building and pan/tilt away from it until the closed outer gates come into view. Beast Boy sits glumly on the steps outside these and lets off a piteous moan. Sight gag: in "Super Deformed" style, he stands before a scrolling background of manga covers and clutches a book to himself as tears stream down his cheeks.)
Beast Boy: This was the only place in Japan I wanted to see. (smiling, dropping o.c.) It's like paradise for comic book geeks. (Gag ends.) Did I just call myself a geek?
(It takes him only an eyeblink to forget the slight and lose himself in the pages. He does not notice the broad shadow that extends into view from outside the gates to ruin his light. In extreme close-up, he lowers the book for an annoyed glare but quickly turns it into a look of total bewilderment. His perspective of the shadow's source, tilting up from the feet; it is a giddy, shaggy-haired schoolgirl right around his age, and stars sparkle all around her. This is Timoko.)
Timoko: (giggles) Otaku? (Back to Beast Boy, leaning forward.)
Beast Boy: "Otaku"? (hearts appear in his eyes) I think that means I'm cute.
(She wheels into a laughing run and he is on his feet in very short order. Sight gag: she hurries down the block, while he floats after her as a semi-boneless blob with hearts billowing from his slack face. From here, the view shifts to the upper reaches of a huge room whose balconies and high ceiling are liberally bedecked with neon lights. Tilt down to frame this place as a video arcade, where Robin is watching Starfire play one of the games as a couple of teens wander past. Setup: she wears a virtual-reality helmet and steps on the various squares of a light-up floor grid, while at the same time playing a guitar-shaped controller-something of a cross between the Konami games Dance Dance Revolution and Guitar Freaks. Her moves are synchronized to the chords and arrows flashing across the screen, and from all appearances, she has gotten the hang of this game in record time. The Boy Wonder can only aim two nonplussed eyes at her high-speed performance; fingers and boots find their mark time and again, and one gamer after another looks up from the controls to take note.)
(They slide up behind the now, flabbergasted Robin, one kid bears a distinct resemblance to Beast Boy, while another has brought a camera along to capture the moment. Now Starfire's cues are whipping by almost too fast to follow; the speed may be starting to get to her, but she keeps her rhythm going as everyone in the arcade gathers to watch. Our shutterbug friend snaps a picture, annoying Robin enough to bring out a vein on his forehead. Close-up of Starfire's helmeted, beaming face, then pull back as she grabs the guitar's neck and hauls it back overhead. The instrument comes whistling down repeatedly to bash stuffed animals that pop up from the floor: now the game is Whack-a-Mole gone berserk.)
(Tilt up from her to the rows of signals, which have reached a truly idiotic speed, as a grinning monkey appears on screen and throws a double thumbs-up. Wild cheering from the crowd; sight gag: in a pan across them, SD Robin is pitched over their heads like a beach ball at a concert. The gag ends with a cut to Starfire, pulling back as she removes the helmet and shakes her hair back into place. Once she has her mind all the way back in the real world, she drops all the gear and curls up in midair, floating back and forth with a fit of the giggles before flashing a V-for-Victory at the camera. As for Robin, he still cannot wrap his brain around the fact that she has managed to take this game down in one try, but he manages to get a congratulatory smile in place.)
(Cut to a busy shopping district, the camera set a couple of stories above ground level, and tilt down to frame the strolling customers. Raven stands before a magazine rack set next to one of the stalls; close-up of the wildly diverse contents, panning from one end to the other. There are so few English words mixed in with the Japanese text that they can be counted on one hand. She takes a couple of steps down the way to the counter, behind which the significantly overweight vendor is busy slurping down a lunch of noodles. Cut to within the stall, the camera pointing out past his chopsticks and thick lips at one very unhappy Titan.)
Raven: I know English, German, Latin, Romanian, Ancient Sumerian, and Sanskrit. Do you have anything I can read?
(Fat boy eyes her quizzically, sucks down the mouthful he has been working on, and ducks out of sight for a moment. When he comes up, he has a very small package in hand; she takes this and inspects it, and the camera shifts to her perspective. What she has been given is a pack of chewing gum whose label is decorated with a braying donkey's head, yellow stars, and the following four words.)
Raven: Super Twinkle Donkey Gum.
(Back to her; she throws a slightly irked glance at the vendor and gets a wink in response, which makes her shudder from head to toe for a second. Once the revulsion has passed, she unwraps the gum and pops it into her mouth. Zoom in slowly as she works it back and forth, clearly not expecting too much from the experience.)
(Cut to a rooftop view of the city sprawl and Mount Fuji at the horizon, the sky fading into sunset, and pan slowly past a gigantic latticework tower in the foreground. We next see a group of visitors gazing out through the expanse of its windows, followed by Robin and Starfire sitting on the roof when the camera tilts up.)
[Animation goof: Her armband disappears for the first part of the following exchange.]
Robin: Brushogun's a myth. (Close-up of the pair.) So why do I feel like he's still out there somewhere? (Cut to her nervous hands; tilt up to frame both on the next line.)
Starfire: Uh, Robin, about that boy and the...lip contact?
Robin: Yeah. Is that why you kissed me when we first met, to learn English?
Starfire: (nodding, stroking her hair) On Tamaran, this signifies merely the transfer of knowledge. (Close-up.) But on your world, it means...more...or so I have heard.
(Pan to Robin, who has let a satisfied little smile play across his face without realizing it. The reverie ends suddenly as his eyes pop and he blushes a bit.)
Robin: Oh. (Pull back; he scratches his head.) More...heh, right. (Behind them.) I mean, yes. (She starts to edge closer.) Lip contact is...I-I've heard that, too.
(Head-on view of both on the end of this; now she has nearly closed the gap. They trade a nervous little laugh before whisking away from each other. He squirts breath spray into his mouth; she sniffs her underarms; he pats his hair down with the reflection off his birdarang to guide him, then polishes one tooth with his tongue. Starfire, meanwhile, produces a small tin and removes its lid to reveal breath mints inside. These are dumped onto one palm and then into her mouth as three huge handfuls, the empty container being thrown away; she chews down the lot and blows out a frosty gust of minty-fresh air.)
(With their respective not-so-surreptitious grooming completed, Robin and Starfire slide back together and trade a warm smile.)
Starfire: Greetings. (Pause.)
Starfire: Yes, Robin?
Robin: You know you're my...best friend, right?
Starfire: And you are mine.
(Close-up of the small bare patch of roof between them; his hand rests on the metal.)
Robin: (from o.c., as she eases hers into view) I never want anything to get in the way of that. (Their fingers slide toward each other.)
Starfire: (from o.c.) Nothing ever could.
(The little fingers curl together and the camera pulls back to frame both faces as they lean in, slowly and expectantly.)
Robin: I know.
Starfire: Then...we have nothing to fear.
(No points for guessing what they have on their minds: heroes or not, they are still teenagers, and in the throes of a budding romance. Both angle their heads ever so carefully so as to enjoy this bit of lip contact to the fullest, something they were not exactly prepared to do at their first meeting, but at the last second, a thought strikes the Boy Wonder.)
(He backs off, taking his hand from hers, and socks that fist into his other palm; her face falls in disappointment on the next line, but he does not notice.)
Robin: Saico-Tek was afraid of someone terrified. (stands up) And whoever they are, they're here in Tokyo. (Rooftop view of the skyline, tilting down to frame him from behind.) Everyone may think Brushogun is a myth, but to Saico-Tek, he was real. (Starfire stands up.)
Starfire: But even if he is real, the Commander Daizo and his Troopers can surely handle--
Robin: Well, if they can handle it, then what are we doing here? (She backs up a bit.)
Starfire: (deflated) I...believed us to be having...the fun.
Robin: (stepping away a bit) There's nothing fun about looking like a bunch of stupid kids. We're heroes, Starfire. We don't take vacations. (turns to Starfire) We don't make mistakes, and we don't have time for--
(Now he sees, reflected in her expression, just how badly he has stepped all over the moment.)
Starfire: For what? (Long pause.)
Robin: For this. (She crosses to him and touches his arm.)
Starfire: Must we always be heroes? Are we capable of nothing else? (stroking his cheek) Can we not, for a few moments, be something...more?
(Her appeal to his softer side comes to naught when he pushes her fingers away on the next line.)
Robin: There is nothing more. A hero is what I am. And if you don't like it...
Starfire: (softly) Robin, I like it more than you will ever know.
(Keeping her downcast eyes trained on him, she takes a few steps backward along the edge of the roof and takes flight. The end result is that he cannot see the tears that have flooded her huge green eyes, which she wipes dry with her forearm.)
(Cut to an overhead view of a quiet side street and tilt down to frame Raven walking alone through it. Night has fallen. A tentacled shadow-matching another of the four silhouettes that popped up when the Titans' shadowy watcher started his printing press, and begins to reach into view from behind her. Cut to a profile close-up; the Super Twinkle Donkey Gum she tried earlier has not remedied her lousy mood one bit. She glances back over her shoulder, stops suddenly for a full look that way, and finds nothing but empty air and the lampposts that line both sidewalks. Presently she resumes her walk; after she has passed o.c.,, the shadow's source pops up into view. It is a formless black blob with the aforementioned tentacles and a grotesque, heavily made-up face reminiscent of Japanese kabuki theater. Prominent eyes stare fixedly straight ahead above a mouthful of small pointed teeth. Back to Raven.)
Raven: Thirty million people, a hundred thousand stores, and in this entire city, the only thing to read is gum.
(Now she stops short and has her cloak blown open by a chance gust of wind; again she looks back only to find the street dark and deserted. The camera zooms in briefly on the intersection behind her and the curtained entrance of a shop at its far side, where the breeze seems to be leading. A large sign on the roof bears the katakana for "nyuusu"; news. Next, the view cuts to an extreme close-up of the curtains, which part to expose Raven just outside; pull back slightly as she peeks into the place. Her next words echo a bit.)
Raven: Hello? Anybody here?
(Overhead view of her, still on the sidewalk and looking up and down the block, then another close-up.)
Raven: This is probably a bad idea.
(Outside again; she pushes all the way through the draperies and ventures into the unlit interior. The action now shifts to Cyborg in the all-you-can-eat sushi restaurant he found earlier in this act; he is stowing away the latest of God knows how many helpings from the board of fare. Before he can finish it, two hands reach into view to yank the food away.)
Male voice 3: Ii kagen ni shiro. ["Cut it out!"]
(Pull back to frame the speaker, a short fellow with an overlarge nose standing atop the sushi bar right in front of the big man, the owner.)
Restaurant owner: You, you, you go now! You eat too much, you! You will put me out of business!
Cyborg: (thumbing over shoulder) But the sign says "All You Can Eat"... (grinning madly) ...and I can eat more!
Restaurant owner: (chuckling mischievously) Hontou ka. ["Oh, really?"]
(He jumps back down behind his side of the bar. Pull back to frame Cyborg's determined profile as cooking implements flash here and about.)
Restaurant owner: You can eat more? (Cyborg's side; he continues o.c.) Can you eat...octopus?
(On the last word, he shoves a plate of the freshly prepared cephalopod into the diner's face, so fresh, in fact, that it may have just been killed. Cyborg recoils at the sight as a scream of disgust rings out from another table; cut to just behind the creature's bulbous head as it is lowered and he eyes it warily. However, the ear-to-ear grin that comes up next shows that he is up to this gastronomic challenge, and he slams one hand flat on the counter and retrieves his chopsticks.)
Cyborg: (emphatically) Yes, I can!
(Extreme close-up of one tentacle on the second word as he gets a grip, then of his mouth on the last word as he shovels it in. The camera shifts to frame both, and the restaurant owner stares incredulously at the whole creature disappearing into Cyborg's gullet. Cut to the latter's side.)
Crowd: (from o.c.) Ooooh!
(Pull back; the owner drops behind the bar and the human garbage disposal makes a loud retching noise, reality has finally caught up with his gut. From here, cut to an overhead shot of a brightly lit street and tilt to frame the giggling Timoko, who darts along under the stretch of neon and out of sight.)
Beast Boy: (from o.c.) Hey, wait up! (He runs up and stops for breath.) I'm otaku, remember?
(Only now does she stop at the end of the block and turn to face him. The pause lasts just long enough for her to throw him a wink, after which she ducks laughing into a brightly lit building entrance, a karaoke club, according to the neon-lit katakana characters on the marquee. The shape-shifter's exhaustion dissipates in the time it takes for hearts to pop in his eyes, and he clumps after her as if sleepwalking with more hearts trailing behind him in the air. Just after he pushes through the doors, the camera cuts to just inside them; this place is dimly lit and absolutely quiet. On the next line, he composes himself again and reaches a stage.)
Beast Boy: Where'd she go? (Spotlight flicks on him; he stops.) Huh?
(A chorus of female voices starts chanting "Go! Go! Go!" as a slightly seedy-looking MC hands him a microphone. Looking off to one side, he spots a sound machine with a screen mounted directly above it, showing the kanji for "Nihongo," the term used by the Japanese to refer to their native tongue and is shocked to realize just what he has gotten himself into. The MC presses a button on a remote control to start the fun and eggs the crowd on a bit, and in a longer shot we see cheering girls at every table. Here cones the music: the show's opening theme.)
Beast Boy: Karaoke?!? (zips to the machine, hammering buttons) Wait! Uh, the, the lyrics are in Japanese!
(The display changes to read Español. During this line, then Francais, Deutsch, Farsi, and finally, English. By this last, he has rushed back to center stage; pan to him in the spotlight, hunched over to try and read the now-on-screen lyrics on the screen. He gradually gets more and more into it as the song goes on.)
Beast Boy: I will obey the traffic rules. Teen Titans! I will eat everything without likes or dislikes. (Pan to the screen, which now displays the show's title in its multicolored font.) Teen Titans!
(The words pop up on screen and highlight, syllable by syllable, to mark his place.)
Beast Boy: Earthquakes, lightning, fire, Dad, (gestures around at the crowd) Grammar, math, science, social studies, There is nothing I am afraid of! Teen Titans go!
(More cheering spurs him to do a bit of break-dancing, during which he becomes a turtle, then an octopus, and finally, resuming human form before the next verse starts. Its first syllable is held out for six beats.)
Beast Boy: Holler my name. (The girls scream fit to burst.) Teen Titans! Half your troubles will be gone. (Zoom in on his mouth until its blackness fills the screen; the next two words slide in, colored as before.) Teen Titans! (He pops up among the tables and points to his watch.) Papa's schedule control, uh! (jumps on a table) Mama's weight control. (hanging upside down) Wishes are endless! Teen Titans, go!
(Zoom in briefly on him and then cut back to the stage as he moonwalks into the spotlight for one last spin.)
Beast Boy: (counting it off) One, two, three, four, five Teen Titans! (Song ends.) Good night, Tokyo!
(There is a whine of feedback underneath the girls' squealing; he drops the microphone and lets it roll across the stage while holding his best rock-star pose. Before he can figure out how to get out of it, though, he is summarily mobbed, carried bodily to the floor, and smothered with kisses that leave lipstick all over his face.)
Beast Boy: I love this town.
(Cut to a shot of Mount Fuji under a calm morning sky and pull back as a tree's branches wave in the foreground. This camera movement reveals that the scene is actually playing on a giant outdoor screen, and the pan that comes next shows it to be part of the nightly chaos of neon and advertising. One building after another passes the lens; finally, the view settles on a shot of Robin, who has taken a seat in the large O atop one roof's signage and is studying something very closely. Zoom in for a moment and dissolve into static.)
Silhouette: (from o.c., reaching into view to pound screen) As I suspected.
(So we have been watching one of the monitors in his dark lair, then. The hit restores the video feed; cut to the inky figure, hunched over in his seat.)
Silhouette: The child continues to investigate.
(Cut to another part of the area, from which a low, weary moaning is heard, then pan back to him.)
Silhouette: Yes. He is persistent.
(He presses a button, bringing up a katakana/kanji line that reads "Taitanzu Kougeki"; "Titans Attack.")
Silhouette: But Saico-Tek will take him off the case...permanently.
(On the end of this, cut to an extreme close-up of his forehead and tilt down to frame the narrowed white eyes. Dissolve to a patch of the vivid cityscape and tilt down, stopping on Robin in his catbird seat as sirens and car horns sing out from far below. What he has been eyeing is the pink globe confiscated from Saico-Tek in the prologue, the shuriken that failed to explode.)
Robin: It's not much, but it's the only clue I've got.
(Close-up of his distorted reflection in the surface.)
Robin: No screws, no seams...what's this thing made of?
(Pull back; he gets both hands wrapped around the orb and squeezes it hard enough to mash it out of shape, but one set of fingers slides away. The ball springs more or less back to round, and the camera cuts to his perspective of it and his free hands: the fingers now stained pink.)
Robin: (disgustedly) Nice.
(Extreme close-up, panning across the ball and his face behind it, then pull back. All is quiet for a moment until a second, fully extended shuriken flashes across the screen, striking the dormant one from Robin's hand. It embeds itself in the building's roof and begins to flash; long shot of the rooftop as its great pink blast wipes out all the neon up there. The Boy Wonder comes swinging out of the maelstrom on the end of a grappling hook's line, glancing off to one side, and the camera cuts to a long shot of a figure on a ledge over there. Zoom in and dissolve to a close-up: it is Saico-Tek, his outfit now done entirely in shades of pink without any blue.)
Robin: (from o.c.) Saico-Tek!
(The chase begins, with Brushogun's man well out in front. Hauling himself up to the ledge, Robin lets fly with a birdarang just as Saico-Tek ignites his jet pack and lifts off. The blade punches into the rig and instantly kills the power, and the flyer drops out of the sky like a ton of bricks. Gravity asserts itself forcefully when he encounters a most inconveniently placed rooftop; as soon as Saico-Tek can lift his head, he catches sight of Robin plunging straight toward him. Another crash, from which the dust clears to show one very angry Titan wrenching his foe's arms back.)
Robin: I want answers! Real ones!
(Instead of volunteering any, the man in pink twists his head around to glare at Robin, kicks him away, and somersaults into a fighting stance. He parries a few blows, lands a haymaker of his own, then grabs the hem of Robin's cape and slings him back before pinning him to a post with one foot. As our hero struggles to free himself, the ninja pivots his entire body about that leg and delivers a monster spin kick across the jaw, sending Robin staggering. He comes up, a lurid smear of pink pigment standing out on his face, and charges in again.)
(Now, though, Saico-Tek has broken into a full run toward the edge of the roof, and he vaults neatly into the structural ironwork behind a billboard before Robin can lay a finger on him. A snarling glance inside shows him the Technicolor adversary, who somersaults backward through the maze of beams; Robin follows a parallel course in front of the board to keep pace. Within seconds, he has pulled neck and neck with Saico-Tek, and he holds his own even as the chase ranges from one rooftop to another. The youth takes a sharp turn around the end of one display and catches the enemy with a flying tackle that carries both some twenty or thirty yards.)
(There is a click as the two fighters tumble across the rooftop. Robin flips away, landing in a crouch, but Saico-Tek gets a very big surprise when he stands up, his hands have been cuffed behind his back. What he does next establishes for sure that he is more than some everyday thug in a ninja suit: he dislocates both shoulders and brings both arms up over his head. The spectacle wipes the smirk off the Boy Wonder's face in an instant; back to Saico-Tek, who now has his arms crossed in front of his chest.)
Robin: (from o.c.) What are you?
(A talented escape artist, as evidenced when the pink-gloved wrists slide neatly out of the cuffs without unlocking them. He backs up before Robin's fresh charge, dropping the manacles, and pulls two pink globes out of his belt. Held one in each hand, they elongate and sharpen into a pair of jitte-stiletto-like shaft somewhat over a foot long, end tapering to a vicious point, a short parallel prong extending from the hilt. Saico-Tek then brandishes them and leaps neatly over Robin's sliding kick. Extreme close-up of the R-insignia as the point of one jitte slices it in two; the pieces fall away and the camera pulls back to frame one somersaulting foe and one infuriated Titan getting to his feet.)
(Robin whips two birdarangs from his belt, gripping each by a side blade, and rushes back into the fray. Close-up of his and Saico-Tek's weapons clashing at a point between them, then pull back as the latter tries a thrust with his free hand and has it blocked. This is followed by a shoulder ram to the solar plexus that drives the wind out of Robin and makes him drop one birdarang. He has barely gotten his lungs working again when here comes Saico-Tek for a big roundhouse slash. It draws no blood but does take off a swatch of Robin's cape.)
(Next, Saico-Tek tries a new flurry, then Robin; the point goes to the ninja when he blocks a birdarang strike and shatters its blade. The fragment arcs high over the rooftops and is soon lost to sight; just as quickly, the man in pink parries a punch and smashes the now-unarmed Robin away with a sweep of his other arm. Kicking legs collide in midair once, twice, then Robin tries again, but hits nothing due to Saico-Tek's nimble leap. On the way down, he plants a powerful right cross on Robin's cheek. This time, as the Boy Wonder tires to get his bearings, the man scrambles in close with blades at the ready; cut to Robin's perspective of the lightning-like slashes, then dissolve to a close-up of his chest. The tunic splits open down the middle, as does the glove on the hand he raises to cover himself, rent by the deadly precision of those shocking pink jitte.)
(A tilt up to Robin's face comes just in time for his mask to split apart at one corner. This is absolutely the last straw, and as soon as Saico-Tek starts to back off, he dashes in with the intent of rearranging a few body parts. A handful of discs finds its mark, blowing the ninja all the way to the other end of the roof and taking out quite a bit of it in the bargain. Even this strong a bombardment is not enough to stop him; he wheels into a run, but Robin scales a few more discs and scores another hit, near the base of a huge red billboard. This time, the spiky-haired slugger goes up for a midair flying tackle and slams him into the damaged sign, whose supports immediately give out to send the whole rig toppling over the edge.)
(Cut to ground level, where it smashes against the roof of a building and breaks in half, one piece causing further property damage when it thunders to the street. As the dust clears, the camera shifts to a pan across the second crash site. Robin has finally gotten Saico-Tek where he wants him and is pounding him back and forth while a chunk of the billboard flashes on and off. There is a brief flash of Robin's clasped hands coming down for a finishing stroke, followed by a close-up of the pink lens on Saico-Tek's smeared chest cracking apart. Its frame flies off in pieces, after which the lens does likewise to reveal total blackness underneath, and Saico-Tek moves no more.)
(As Robin heaves for breath and the red glare cycles on and off, throwing his figure into silhouette, he slowly gets to his feet. Now both arms are liberally slathered with the dye, matching the swath left on his face earlier; close-up of the hands, tilting slowly up to the look of total disbelief that has taken hold of his face. Not since he last took on Slade in Season Four has he worked himself into such a frenzy.)
(A soft, fearful murmur from o.c. draws his attention away from the battle. Cut to his perspective of the source, panning jerkily across; a sizable crowd of onlookers has gathered in the street, all of them scared to within an inch of their lives. Back to Robin, who looks off in another direction only to find even more terrified faces and a few indignant ones. Now he takes a faltering step backward and regards his sodden hands; cut to his perspective of one, with the immobile Saico-Tek's chest as its backdrop, as he lifts the other alongside.)
Robin: (softly, horrified) No...
(Pull back to an overhead shot. An o.c. searchlight is switched on, bathing the combat zone in its blinding glare, and a cut to ground level reveals that Uehara's Troopers have arrived en masse. The light is mounted on a van parked behind them; cut to a pan across the impassive ranks.)
Uehara: (from o.c.) I am sorry, my young friend... (Pan stops; they part to let him through.) ...but you leave me no choice. I must place you under arrest.
(Several of the men surround Robin; there is the snap of handcuffs being applied, and Uehara's stony expression never flickers as the young fighter is taken away. The camera pulls back slowly overhead and dissolves to two longer shots in turn, framing Saico-Tek, the Troopers standing guard around him, the smashed billboard, the onlookers, and what used to be a perfectly ordinary and undamaged Tokyo thoroughfare. A helicopter cruises high over the intersection.)
(Dissolve to just outside a jail cell, the camera pointing through the bars at a very sullen Robin sitting on a lone chair in the middle of the floor. The space is bereft of all other furnishings, and harsh light pours in from above. His cuffs have been removed, as have his belt and the lacings of his tunic. A door is heard opening o.c.; cut to a longer shot of the cell, which is now seen to be quite large. Robin's seat is near the bars, and a second one has been set facing him in the darkness just outside. A slim male silhouette stands at the open door, closes it, and walks to the free chair. Close-up of Robin's stained hands rubbing together in a vain attempt to scrub off the paint, then tilt up to frame the now-seated new arrival. He has brought along a magazine and begun to read it; close-up. Only his voice establishes him as Uehara.)
Uehara: (chuckling sardonically) They just don't make heroes like they used to... (lowers the magazine) ...hm, my friend?
Robin: Please, I didn't mean to. He had a power! He could regenerate! (holds up his hands) And this...it isn't blood. (The bars again, pointing out at Daizo; he continues o.c.) He wasn't human.
Uehara: Neither are most of your friends. Whatever this Saico-Tek was, he was alive. And now...
Robin: (from o.c.) I couldn't have. (Back to him.) I would never...this isn't happening. This can't be real. It has to be some sort of sick joke, or a setup. (Back to Uehara's barely visible face.)
Uehara: Ah, really? And who precisely, do you think, would wish to frame you?
Robin: (softly) Brushogun.
Uehara: (standing up) Brushogun does not exist! (Back to Robin on the end of this; he continues o.c.) Tokyo does not tolerate vigilantes! (To Robin again.) And you, my friend, are in very deep trouble.
(The magazine he brought in is flung through the bars, sliding to rest so that it can now be seen as a manga volume. Long shot of Robin, who regards it glumly as the door closes o.c. to mark Uehara's exit and then hangs his head. Snap to black.)
(Fade in to a stretch of skyscrapers seen from ground level, the camera angled up toward their pinnacles. Tilt down to the quiet street where we last saw Raven entering the Nyuusu establishment, then cut to her inside. The available light has brightened just a bit, enough to show that the place is a bookstore; pan to follow her walk over to the counter. Here she stops, eyes the literature stacked all over the place, and begins to read a bit.)
(Close-up of her, panning slightly to frame a small black shape standing just behind; only the blank white gleam of its eyes can be seen at this point. The camera then shifts to this point as a hand falls on her shoulder, accompanied by a wheezing cry. It has barely died away when she drops the book and whirls toward the camera, ready to throw down and now, the shape advances into the light for a full view. Short old fellow, bald, bushy white mustache and eyebrows, thick glasses that threw the gleams seen earlier, the owner of this store. He maintains his composure despite the black burning hand that has been thrust toward him.)
Bookstore owner: Welcome to my shop, young lady. Looking for something in particular?
(She cools down sheepishly, then gets herself under control. Now the camera angle shows that the little man is actually standing on the counter.)
Raven: I'm trying to find a book about Brushogun, but there's nothing in Fiction or Mythology.
Bookstore owner: (turns away) Well, of course not, my dear.
(He leads her through the stacks and shelves, stops at one, and pulls out a thick volume.)
Bookstore owner: Although few people today believe it, Brushogun was no myth.
(He hands her the book; close-up of its cover, which shows a samurai figure whose armored chest is marked with a burning red circle or jewel. Raven stares down at it, her widened eyes telegraphing the connection she has just made between this detail and the lens on Saico-Tek's chest.)
(Cut to a close-up of Beast Boy in the karaoke club, grinning nervously as the giggling girls plant kisses all over his face.)
Beast Boy: Um...heh...okay, ladies, uh, you're all great and I want your phone numbers, but there's this girl I was looking for and it's... (Sight gag: his head grows a size and he tries to drag himself loose.) ...getting kinda hard to breathe in here, so...
(The gag ends and the laughter dies out right away, replaced by a round of hostile glares. He is swiftly dragged down again and buried under a sea of smooches; a large heart floats up past the camera, the view changing behind it to show a mound of smaller ones hiding the amorous melee from view. Our would-be Lothario tries to extricate himself a couple of times without success, after which the camera pans to a clear stretch of floor and he flops away as a fish. A couple of lucky bounces carry him toward the exit and he resumes human form, but before he can even think about making a break for it, several girls rush over and form a human wall to block him. Clearly, they do not intend to let this one get away, judging from the set of their faces.)
(Pull back to frame Beast Boy in the foreground and pan to follow the nervous gaze he throws back over his shoulder. Other girls have closed ranks here, their eyes glowing bright magenta from the spotlights, and one snaps her head to one side to loosen up her neck. The prospect of full, contact karaoke puts a big uneasy grin on Beast Boy's face; he manages a weak little chuckle, followed by a panicked scream. Cut to the sidewalk outside the club as he crashes out through the wall in gorilla form. After a quick backward glance, he sets off running, followed by a mob of crazed, squealing girls with hearts in their eyes.)
(Now the camera cuts to a close-up of the sushi restaurant owner, whose mood has soured greatly since Cyborg scarfed down that octopus. He is so mad, in fact, that he has called out two of his chefs and braced for a scrap-hunched over so low that his big nose is touching the counter. Pull back slightly as he starts throwing the food items he names.)
Restaurant owner: Raw eggs? Devilfish?
(Cut to the big man, who chomps the second item out of the air, plate and all, then pan ahead slightly to more food coming his way.)
Restaurant owner: (from o.c., increasingly unhinged) Pickled sea cucumbers? Cow eyes! (Pan to him, holding up an...) Old shoe full of wasabi?!?
(Close-up of this as he names it and throws, then cut to the overeager Cyborg; he takes it in one stinging, stinking bite and swallows without so much as a bead of sweat. Zoom in slightly.)
Cyborg: What's for dessert?
(Extreme close-up of the owner's twitching eyes, then pull back to just behind Cyborg's head to frame the two flunkies as well. Fork, ladle, carving knife, and meat cleaver all flash out, and the owner kicks it up a notch by blowing a stream of fire straight into Cyborg's face. Cut to outside; the severely scalded Titan barges out screaming and runs off down the block. He promptly collides head-on with Beast Boy and both tumble backward to the pavement, the latter resuming human form.)
Beast Boy and Cyborg: (in unison) Who's chasing you? (They lean in, sweat drops on both temples.) Girls!/Chefs!
(An angry shout and a chorus of screams from opposite ends of the blocks; pull back.)
Beast Boy and Cyborg: (in unison) RUN!! (They clear out just ahead of their respective pursuers.)
Restaurant owner: Oi, tsukame yo. ["Hey, catch them!"]
(More yells from the chefs and the girls accompany the deranged chase as the camera pans to the mouth of a nearby alley. Two pairs of eyes gleam in the near-total darkness: one pair pink and catlike, the other yellow and shaped as short vertical slits. A bit of detail can be made out on the owner of this second pair: a large bulbous body and head, and the same sort of tentacles seen on the third of the four silhouettes that began to track our heroes in Act Two.)
(Zoom in slightly and cut to an overhead shot of the jilted Tamaranean, who regards her own reflection sadly in a store window as people hurry by. Close-up of the display: two wind-up toy mice scurrying toward each other and joining hands to kiss as the backdrop hearts flash. Starfire's image is superimposed on the view, indicating that the camera is just in front of the window; she sighs and lets her head drop as if it were full of lead shot. A small girl's head pops into view next to her.)
Tokyo Girl: Are you sad about something?
(Shift to frame both; she looks up at Starfire with a little smile.)
Starfire: (feigning her cheer) No, thank you, please, I am sad about nothing, and I do not have the boy troubles.
Tokyo Girl: Okay. (She walks o.c.; Starfire drops the act.)
Starfire: Ohh...I am not even certain that I have a boy with whom to have the troubles.
(She sets off after the rugrat on the end of this line and quickly catches up.)
Starfire: Since the day I met him, I have had... (gestures at a storefront sign) ...the feelings. I have waited most patiently and had hoped that someday...
(The sign bears the kanji for "shukuga", "congratulations," perhaps a bit ironic considering her flubbed liaison with Robin in Act Two. She and the girl both stop at the trail-off; Starfire's head falls dejectedly, but the youngster grabs her hand and quickly leads her farther on.)
Starfire: Perhaps I was foolish to hope. Perhaps we are just heroes and nothing more.
(The new companion just smiles, more broadly than before, and Starfire returns it.)
Starfire: But no. We are more. I feel this! And he does also, even if he fears to admit it. (Now she takes the lead, half-dragging the girl along a few last steps.) And I shall not let him go without a fight. Oh, I thank you for this talk. (rufflies her hair) You are most insightful. I must go find--
(The last sentence ends in a sharp, shocked gasp and the camera shifts to just behind the pair. Above the nearest storefront is a gigantic screen that is broadcasting Robin's mug shot. Tilt up to frame the display fully.)
(Transition: the shot is pulled away like a tablecloth, revealing the mayor with a forest of microphones pushed into his face.)
Mayor: He was apprehended at the scene by the Tokyo Troopers. His associates, the Teen Titans, are ordered to turn themselves in or leave Tokyo at once.
(On the end of this line, cut to a slow pan across the incredulous Starfire, the girl, and the knot of bystanders who have gathered. The previous shot was playing on the big screen. From here, cut to a long shot of Tokyo proper, with Mount Fuji as its backdrop, and pull back slowly as Starfire flies up, with her communicator in her hand.)
Starfire: Titans! Emergency! Cyborg, Raven, Beast Boy, please!
(Cut to Raven, now walking through a small graveyard, and pan to follow her.)
Raven: Starfire, what's wrong? (Close-up; she has her comm in one hand, the Brushogun book in the other.)
Starfire: (over the comm) Robin has been arrested... (Raven stops.) ...for a terrible crime!
(The formless black shadow that stalked her in Act Two flits past behind her and goes unnoticed. Back to Beast Boy and Cyborg, who have taken shelter in a sidewalk stall to avoid the throng of angry sushi chefs and groupies. The big man is addressing his forearm comm; the next three lines are delivered in hushed tones.)
Cyborg: Girl, are you crazy? (Close-up.) Robin would never commit a...
(He breaks off sharply as both pairs of eyes turn toward the latest edition of the daily newspaper, which shows that mug shot; zoom in and cut to a close-up of the battered, black-and-white leader.)
Cyborg: (from o.c.) Whoa! (The paper is snatched away and given a quick skim by the boys.)
Beast Boy: And he was telling us to stay out of trouble.
(Cut to one of their foe's monitors, on which Raven is shown; the display zooms in on her.)
Raven: Do we know where he is? (Pan past another, Robin in his cell, and stop on a third, Starfire in flight.)
Starfire: No. I have tried to reach him, but he does not respond. (Tilt down to a fourth, Beast Boy and Cyborg peeking up; zoom in.)
Cyborg: (softly) All right. I'm transmitting rendezvous coordinates. Let's regroup and figure this out.
(The tilt to this monitor frames part of the silhouette's head, and as he speaks, the camera pans past the rest of the black skull to a fifth one that shows the exterior of the stall. This view zooms in slightly before the camera cuts to a long head-on shot of the man at his controls.)
Starfire: (over her speaker) Hurry, please! We need to help Robin!
Silhouette: But you shall never get the chance. (Extreme close-up of his narrowing eyes.) Erase them!
(Close-up of his control panel's blue button as he presses it, then cut to Starfire. She cruises high over several blocks, finding nothing of importance, and is then hit in the back with a laser blast that sends her plunging toward the street. Here comes her assailant for a dive; a grinning blue-and-black robot whose big blue eyes and cowlicked head give it away as the shape that spied on her and Robin earlier on. It bears some resemblance to the manga/anime character Astro Boy and has a blue lens or emitter set between the eyes.)
Blue robot: Konnichiwa. ["Hello!" "Good afternoon!"]
(It backs up a bit and fires a wide-angle beam whose glare completely whites out the screen.)
(Fade in to Raven, now also airborne and riding low over the graveyard so she can make better time. The kabuki-faced creature slithers behind her among the tombstones; this time she stops short and turns back toward its passage, but a pan from her perspective frames only row on row of silent graves. Cut back to her, just in time for that thing to make another pass. The hand not holding her book warms up for action, but upon finding nothing to exercise it on, she cools off and sets off over the rooftops. The grotesque face rises into view, tracking her movements intently.)
(Overhead view of one rather uneasy flyer, then cut to a long shot behind her and zoom in, the camera is now riding with her pursuer. When it is about to collide with her, she throws a panicked glance back over her shoulder; now the demon closes in, the blackness of its opening mouth filing the screen.)
(Fade in to a close-up of Cyborg's forearm panel, on which the comm signal is going crazy, and then cut to him and Beast Boy racing through the streets.)
Cyborg: Starfire! Raven!
(The situation takes yet another weird turn when a large set of mental tongs reaches into view from behind and yanks him off his feet.)
Cyborg: Whoa! Hey!
(Said tongs are attached to a long flexible arm, which waves the big man around as Beast Boy gapes up at him. The arm and its mate, in turn, belong to a scowling yellow robot whose spherical body, set with an oven's door and knobs, and stumpy head float at least one story off the ground. We have now seen yet another spy sent from the press room to track the Titans, and the vertical slits of its eyes, as seen in the alley earlier in this act, confirm the fact. It proceeds to toss Cyborg bodily into its mouth, but the muffled cursing from within tells just how much he hates being dished up rare. The head shakes back and forth from his struggles, and presently he forces the jaws open and dives clear; however, the tongs lash out and seize him again.)
Beast Boy: Dude!
(He breaks into a run, paying no mind whatsoever to the fact that Timoko is standing on the sidewalk. A second later he doubles back.)
Beast Boy: Hot girl! Don't go away! I've just gotta help my friend, then I'll be back to take you on the best date of your life!
(His perspective of her on the end of this. After he finishes the line, she disappears in a sudden swirl of magenta light, which dissipates to reveal that it is now time for something completely different. Namely: she has become Nya-Nya, a white-furred feline humanoid in a magenta leotard and shin/wrist guards, with eyes and long mane of this same color. The tail is striped in magenta and black, and the clothing and fur carry black accents as well. Her eyes were one of the two pairs watching Beast Boy and Cyborg in the alley, and she was the last of the four shapes dispatched to keep an eye on the Titans in Act Two.)
(She hurls herself toward the camera for a devastating spin kick; a flash of impact, and the view clears to show the green joker bouncing gracelessly across the street to crash into a vending machine. A can of soda falls from the wreckage and clunks off his head; she meows seductively in his direction.)
Beast Boy: On second thought, uh, maybe we should just be friends.
(Bad call, judging from her growling leap toward the camera with fangs and claws bared. Fade to black as her face fills the screen.)
(Fade in to a close-up of Robin sitting on a bench, cape draped around his shoulders and his wrists cuffed in front. All the pink paint has been cleaned off his hands and face. Pull back slowly as a heavy steel door slides shut to block him from sight and black out the screen; the gloved hand of a Trooper reaches into view to tap the metal, and the view shifts to frame him standing at the back of one of the crew's vans. Robin has been loaded into it for transport. Pan to the cab as the man walks up on the driver's side; he flips a thumbs-up, the engine and headlights come to life, and the prisoner is driven away. This movement reveals the milieu as a garage and also exposes Uehara and a second Trooper, both of whom were on the passenger side. Uehara glances stolidly after the van.)
(Cut to a close-up of the road unwinding toward us and tilt up to frame the vehicle from behind. The back door has a high, narrow horizontal slot for light and ventilation; cut to just inside it, through which erratic beams flicker in from the passing streetlights to frame the face of a Titan lost in the deepest self-loathing he has ever known. As he sits there, morosely regarding that sliver of night sky, a slip of paper flutters in and lands at his feet. It bears a single word, written in untidy capital letters, which he reads off with widened eyes.)
(Close-up of the paper; now the letters are seen to be written in bright pink. They float free and up to eye level, where they merge into a small, twirling orb, and then, after a long moment, this turns into one of Saico-Tek's shuriken, ready to mince him very fine indeed. Beeping from the hub tells the Boy Wonder what is to come next; he dives away as far as he can, just before the device blows its top. Cut to the bridge on which the van is traveling as the blast hurls it all the way back onto solid ground and flips it onto its side. One barrel roll after another carries the armor-plated vehicle along until it slews into a building at the end of the block.)
(Close-up of Robin, who stands up to find three things. One, the front end of the van's prisoner compartment has been broken open; two, smoke is billowing in all directions; three, the Trooper who was driving is slumped over in the breach and groaning in agony. Cut to outside the van; the back door crashes out off its hinges and Robin emerges with the injured man on his shoulders. The still-fettered hero lays his charge gently on the pavement and covers him with the remains of his cape, then gets to his feet. The two are now in the center of an intersection, the van lying at a crosswalk, but not for long, as it promptly blows itself to kingdom come. Dust and debris from the blast boil in all directions, stretching as high as the rooftops, and Robin turns resolutely toward this brand-new bit of chaos.)
Robin: Brushogun is real...and I have to find him.
(He sets off. Dissolve to a closer shot of the burning wreckage, which is promptly doused with streams of water as sirens sing out in the night, and pull back slowly to put the wounded, badly dazed Trooper in the foreground. A few of his colleagues are manning the fire hoses; he, meanwhile, has made it up to a sitting position and cast off Robin's cape, which probably has him more puzzled than anything else. Here comes Uehara, who takes an interest of his own in the article; close-up of his silent grimace as he straightens up, gripping it in one hand.)
Uehara: Troopers! (Several salute.) There is a criminal on the loose in our city! Bring him in... (menacingly) ...or bring him down!
(All scatter. Cut to another close-up of him as he strides ahead; the men fanning out behind; with no warning, he leans toward the camera and the view fades to black.)
(The screen splits in a horizontal zigzag, the two halves opening to reveal Cyborg, held in the tongs of the yellow oven robot from earlier in this act and being thrust toward the camera. This shot is from within the mouth, and he uses every scrap of his strength to keep those teeth from chewing him up. Cut to a head-on shot of the combatants; Cyborg struggles some more, then manages to kick loose and knock it back a few hundred yards. Crash, general commotion, and he drops safely to the street below.)
(He takes only the briefest instant to gather himself before leaping in again. The big yellow wrecking ball hoists itself out of the masonry and charges, turning its two sets of pincers into a giant carving knife and serving fork. The two clash on the pavement; Cyborg dodges a swing from the blade and readies his cannon.)
Cyborg: Think you can make a meal out of me? You don't have the guts!
(What it does have is a set of choppers sharp enough to bite off the weapon's muzzle, as it readily demonstrates. The big man eyes the sparking stump with considerable surprise.)
Cyborg: Or maybe you do have the guts.
(Here comes the knife again; he ducks away, letting the point gouge deep into the storefront behind him, and dodges a follow-up swing. Next, the fork catches him between the tines and pins him flat, and the look of sweat-soaked panic on his face is answered by the robot's awful sneer. Up come both arms, the fork having been switched for a second knife; they flash back and forth and Cyborg goes flying between the steels, minus his arms and legs, which have been neatly cut into slices.)
Cyborg: Yo, B! I could use a hand here!
(It balances him upside down on its head, stacking all the pieces on top, then bucks him off and lets everything drop into its mouth. An instant later, Cyborg forces himself halfway out, his arms and legs properly reassembled.)
Cyborg: Ugh! B!
(The tongs come back into play and force him into the mouth one more time as the shape-shifter, now a bear, backs into view and resumes human form briefly. His next idea is to become a T-rex and go thundering off down the street; cut to Nya-Nya, who springs into a whirling, snarling kick that finds the broad green snout. Despite the incredible size mismatch, her blow packs enough of a wallop to lay him out; he becomes himself once more as she lands not far away.)
(Up he comes for a snarl and a headlong rush, filling the screen with one crazed eye, and in a twinkling he has become a rhinoceros. His leonine foe is ready for him, though, and leaps high enough to avoid the charge and somersault off his back. She throws him a mocking little giggle and comes down in a crouch.)
Nya-Nya: Kawaii doubutsu o shitsukeru no... (He swoops in as a pterodactyl; she leaps onto his back.) ...daisuki na no ureshii wa. (steers him upward) Anata o ijimeru no ga tanoshimi. ["I love to discipline cute animals. I look forward to tormenting you."]
(The insults and the flight end at the same time when she crashes him into the top floor of a building and leaps clear with a giggle. In human form, he bounces gracelessly off the neon signs and slams to the sidewalk on his back, sparks flying from the electric charge.)
Beast Boy: (sitting up) Come on! How can I think of a good comeback when I don't even know what you're saying?
(She bounds nimbly down the architecture, hangs upside down to plant a kiss on his cheek; which leaves a bright magenta lip print, and then prowls around him.)
Nya-Nya: Me o tojite... (giggles) ...itai wa yo. ["Close your eyes...this will hurt."]
(The net result is to plaster a big stupid smile across his mug; pull back briefly as she crouches for a spring, then cut to a head-on shot of her lunging up to deliver a handful of razor-sharp claws.)
(The screen flashes white and clears to show Raven about to get busy in the graveyard.)
Raven: (levitates assorted debris) Azarath Metrion Zinthos!
(Her spell hurls the pieces straight ahead, but the amorphous black creature that has been chasing her just flies straight through the hailstorm. Momentarily surprised by this gutter ball, she changes gears and conjures up a long black arm that hooks around the floating nemesis. Even this is not enough to stop the attack; it throws off this grip and stretches its own hands out in an attempt to snatch her. Only a swift drop to the ground keeps her in the clear, but the grasping fingers leave smears of black ink on her cloak.)
(She lifts off, barely avoiding the next grab, and soars up for a second before diving into a low run through the tombstones. The creature matches her every move, though, and when she tries to rise into clear sky, it manages to get her badly tangled up and hurl her to the ground. Her Brushogun book tumbles down behind her as it disappears into the earth.)
Raven: The book!
(Looking around frantically, she catches sight of the volume and reaches to take it, but that grotesque gray-and-black face rears up out of the ground to head her off and force a gasp from her The bizarre factor ratchets up even higher when its body opens up to expose a myriad of distorted gray faces that lunge straight at her to black out the screen.)
(Fade in to a long shot of Starfire and the blue flying robot that tried to shoot her down earlier in this act, still high above the Tokyo skyline. She veers all over the place to stay ahead of its shots and returns fire as best she can before taking a missile square in the back. The airburst only staggers her for a second, though, and she takes off again as more shots and ordnance come her way. No more hits scored on the Titan for right now, but plenty of buildings get a forceful split-second renovation as she swoops low over the busy streets. This move buys her only an instant's respite; here come the lasers again and she goes into a sharp climb to spare the civilians.)
(A bit of tricky flying puts Starfire above her pursuer for a surprise starbolt, but it hits only pavement and the two square off again. Their next volleys explode against each other, throwing the two to opposite sides of the street; she is first to get her bearings and get moving, with the robot hot on her tail. Cut to inside the windows of the tower on which Robin and Starfire nearly shared a kiss in Act Two. The building vibrates as the robot flashes past; outside, a healthy portion of the upper trusses gets blown to scrap, almost a bullseye on the Tamaranean. She flies out of the blast and heads for ground with missiles and lasers nearly scorching her boots.)
Starfire: Go away now, please! (No soap.) You are a mean little boy and I have no time for your games! (flies toward the camera) I must find--
(She slams on the brakes and cuts herself off with a sharp gasp. Cut to the robot, now coming straight at her and waving.)
Blue robot: Sayounara. ["Goodbye!"]
(Here comes the real parting shot, in the form of a giant missile which it regurgitates at her. Long shot of the skyline as it finds its target and explodes with a shock wave strong enough to set every air molecule vibrating, then fade to black.)
(Fade in to a roof-level stretch of skyline. A police chopper swoops across, its searchlight slashing across the nocturnal panorama, and the camera tilts down to follow its descent toward a major interchange. At ground level, it cruises over an alley and the camera follows the light as it washes downward over the buildings and sirens howl not too far away. The garish neon signs have yielded to a decidedly less friendly atmosphere; it is here, from a darkened side passage, that Robin peeks out once the coast is clear. He is holding something in his still-cuffed hands, and a close-up shows it to be a copy of the newspaper showing his mug shot.)
Robin: If everyone's looking for Robin... (drops the newspaper and flicks a lockpick out from one finger) ...then I can't be Robin anymore.
(Close-up of the paper by his feet, a puddle reflecting the masked teen's face; after a moment, the cuffs fall free and splash into the water. In a longer ground-level shot from behind, he massages his wrists to get the circulation going as leg clad in black pants and boot plants itself near the camera. The hem of a white overcoat blows into view as well; in a head-on shot and tilt up, the owner of these features advances into the light. Male, dark blue shirt, black fingerless gloves, and wraparound sunglasses hiding a pair of eyes that are best kept out of sight, judging from the malevolent expression on the rest of the face. He draws a gun from an inside pocket and points it at Robin's back.)
Mugger: Give me your money.
(The intended victim half-turns toward him with a frightening little smile, whereupon the camera shifts to point straight up at the full moon. Three reports from the weapon are accompanied by three o.c. muzzle flashes; cut back to ground level, where the mugger is revealed to have come out on the losing end of this very short fight. Now he lies unconscious, dressed in Robin's tunic and pants but wearing his own boots, and his hands are cuffed behind his back. The gloves are dropped nearby; tilt down to frame both them and the mask on the pavement.)
(Up comes Robin with his back to us, draped in the white coat with hair unkempt and seen from the waist up. One hand flicks open the sunglasses, both settle them in place, and he turns toward the camera to make his exit. He has traded clothes with his attacker to throw the Troopers off his scent. Fade to black as his face fills the screen.)
(Snap to another span of rooftops as a chopper patrols the night, then pan across several blocks to frame another one on the move. The next shots are of a flickering katakana sign, "kurabu," club, then a pair of young toughs hanging around in an alley, and finally, three bikers looking over their machines nearby. Raucous rock music is playing somewhere in the vicinity. Attention is drawn to the sound of approaching footsteps, which belong to Robin as he leaves the rainbow-hued chaos of the main drag. He passes the five bystanders, heading straight for the door whose sign flickered a second ago; the music is coming from in here.)
(As he begins to drop from sight, following an unseen flight of stairs leading down from the street, the camera cuts to within that area briefly and then to just inside a heavy door at its bottom. There is a slot at eye level to allow a bouncer to get a good look at people before letting them in; however, no one is on duty right now and the door simply swings open to admit the Boy Wonder.)
(Cut to just behind his head and pan to follow his swiveling gaze. What he finds is a bar filled with biker gang members and other unsavory types, many dressed in white and all giving him the ultimate hairy eyeball. The bartender nods to a particularly hefty specimen whose back is to the room; presently the latter turns to glance at the new arrival, who crosses to him easy as anything. Only when the Titan is less than a yard away does the man stand up to stare him down, fully exposing a chunky face whose right cheek displays a prominent scar.)
Scarface: Oi. Koko wa puraibeto na kurabu na. (His perspective; he clamps a beefy hand on Robin's shoulder.) Dete ikanai to ha tadajya sumanai zo. ["Hey! This is a private club. Leave, or you'll pay for it!"]
(The offending arm is seized lickety-split, and the camera pulls back to frame both as Robin hurls Scarface the full length of the room. This affront to the general decor is enough to spark a massed charge in his direction, but he holds his ground and lets a smile flick across one corner of his mouth for just an instant. In the next one, the screen flashes white and he starts laying into every ruffian who comes within striking distance. The bartender, who has not left his station, ducks away just in time to let a thrown chair splinter against the backbar instead of his skull.)
(One final punch lays out the last man still on his feet; after he tumbles down on top of his buddies, the camera tilts up to frame the two waitresses standing amid the prostrate brawlers. Not only have they not taken part in the free-for-all, their entire attitude is that of people who have seen this sort of thing happen so often that it no longer fazes them. Close-up of Robin's stolid face, panning slightly to frame the out-of-focus bartender standing not too far behind him. The focus shifts to the latter as the youth turns to eye him; he reacts with fearful surprise.)
Robin: Speak English? (He approaches the bar.)
Bartender: Yes. (A step back.)
Robin: Good. This is the worst dive in the worst part of town, (Profile close-up; slow zoom.) so I'm guessing you know a little something about Tokyo's criminals. (Cut to the bartender; he continues o.c.) I'm looking for Brushogun.
Bartender: Ha! He's just a myth!
(He finds himself being roughly yanked across the bar for some face time and gets the fear of God thrown into him.)
Bartender: Troopers don't like us talking about him, all right? They say it inspires more criminals! (Extreme close-up of Robin's face.)
Robin: Inspire me. (Pull back to frame both; slow zoom.)
Bartender: He was real, and very bad, with strange powers. (Long shot; pull back.)
Robin: Was? Where is he now?
Bartender: Nobody knows. One day, he just disappeared.
(Close-up of Robin; behind him, one of the waitresses tries to revive a fallen man by fanning him with a cloth.)
Bartender: (from o.c.) That's when all the new criminals started showing up.
(Pan slightly away from the shaggy black head as searchlight beams pour in through the windows and the Troopers' approach is heard, then cut back to the pair.)
Bartender: (smirking) Tokyo Troopers, and I doubt they're here for me.
(That crack earns him a shove that propels him into the backbar, and Robin heads for the back door, snagging an abandoned motorcycle helmet as he goes. Cut to outside the front entrance; chopper lights train themselves on this corner, and the camera pulls back to frame the airborne patrols hovering just down the block. A few police cars have pulled up as well. Close-up of Uehara, tilting up from the feet to frame him standing in a chopper door with bullhorn in hand, then cut to a ground-level pan behind the cars. Troopers have piled out and trained their weapons on the watering hole.)
(A brief pause, after which two men take up positions on either side of the door and the camera pans to a roll-up gate next to them. A noise from within draws their attention; the relative piece comes to a very sudden end when this barrier bursts outward and Robin speeds out, wearing the helmet he picked up and hunched over the handlebars of a borrowed bike. It has the same general contour as the R-Cycle, but blue instead of red, and he handles it as if it were his own.)
(A quick twist of the throttle sends him barreling toward the police cars and the Troopers' merciless laser barrage. Certain death for any mere mortal, but the Boy Wonder cheats the Grim Reaper by popping a wheelie and leaping over the entire squad to peel out onto the main road. Within seconds the cruisers are after him in a howl of sirens and a screech of burning rubber.)
(The chase moves onto the freeway, with Robin swerving around a slow truck to get out of the line of fire. It takes the Troopers only a moment to get wise to him, though, and all too soon two units have him hemmed in on both sides. The man riding shotgun on his left aims a pistol; Robin squeezes the brake hard and drops back, and the shot punches into the right-side cruiser. It swerves out of control and takes both itself and the shooter's car out of the chase, leaving the fugitive with nothing but clear road for a second or two.)
(Now the rest of the pursuers come up around the bend. This in itself unnerves Robin a bit, but a glance ahead really puts a scare into him, and he skids hard so as not to collide with the roadblock that has been set up to cover the entire width of the freeway. Choppers hover at low altitude, ready to cut off another Evel Knievel move if he should decide to try one; in an overhead view and pull back, the rest of the chasing cars screech up to block his retreat. They have him well and truly bracketed now.)
(Close-up of the helmeted face, half-hidden behind those wraparound sunglasses; he looks off to one side, and the camera cuts to a slow pan through the ranks of Troopers behind him.)
Uehara: (from o.c., through the bullhorn) Give up, my friend!
(Cut to him, standing ahead of the front group with the instrument in hand.)
Uehara: (through the bullhorn) You cannot win!
(A steely glare from Robin, then cut to just behind the commander's feet. What the Boy Wonder does next is definitely out of character, he actually gets off the motorcycle and throws down his helmet. Close-up of it bouncing to rest on the pavement, then of him as he raises his hands in surrender. The gesture brings a smirk to Uehara's face as his quarry just stands there, without any cards up his sleeve for perhaps the first time in his young life.)
(However, he suddenly catches a queen, or rather gets caught by it. Starfire swoops down out of nowhere at blinding speed, grabs his wrist, and airlifts him away from the standoff; payback for his rescue of her during the prologue. Before anyone can react, she has flown so far away that nothing can be seen of her but a glowing green speck that fades into the night sky. Tilt down from this spot to frame the stymied authorities; Uehara throws his bullhorn away and stomps toward the camera, his teeth gritted so hard they might crack.)
(Dissolve to a long shot of a quiet temple whose windows glow with a warm, inviting light. The camera shifts here and there, the front porch, koi swimming in a pond, burning candles and smoldering incense sticks on a table inside, and tilts up from this last shot to frame Robin and Starfire at the far end of the room. They have knelt facing each other.)
Starfire: You are not the only one who has been pursued. We each were attacked and barely escaped with our lives.
(On the latter part of this line, she reaches for something and the camera cuts to a close-up of it being slid across the floor; one of Robin's spare outfits, mask and all. Pull back to frame both.)
Starfire: But we believe this place will be safe... (straightens up) ...for the moment.
Robin: Thank you. (Close-up of Starfire; she smiles.)
Starfire: (turns away) I shall give you time to--
(Profile close-up from chin to waist; he reaches into view to catch her arm, stopping her.)
Robin: (from o.c.) Starfire?
(Tilt up to her surprised face; she finds him returning the smile and leaning toward her slightly. It takes a moment for her to realize that he is trying to pick up where they left off atop the tower in Act Two. Her eyes close as their faces approach, slowly and gently, but just as before, the mood changes with all the subtlety of a train wreck. This time, the interruption comes in the form of the sliding doors behind them being thrown open to reveal the other three Titans. All have managed to clean up and put themselves back in proper order.)
Beast Boy: Wassup?
(Dead silence except for a few cricket chirps as he looks back and forth between the two flabbergasted paramours.)
Cyborg: Man, are you ever glad to see us!
Robin: I am? (He and Starfire get up; the others come in.)
Beast Boy: You're gonna be, once we tell you the news.
(Raven closes the doors with her powers. This shot reveals that she has managed to keep the Brushogun book out of the kabuki demon's grasp.)
Cyborg: We went back to the crime scene and found a sample of that ooze from Saico-Tek.
(Tapping his forearm panel as he continues, he brings up a holographic image of two molecules side by side.)
Cyborg: I ran a full molecular analysis,
(Close-up of the display; the molecule on the left changes as he continues and finally stops on a duplicate of the one on the right.)
Cyborg: (from o.c.) and after a few thousand comparisons, I got a match.
(The two images are replaced by one, underscored by the word "MATCH." Cut to Robin as he continues.)
Cyborg: (from o.c.) That wasn't blood on your uniform. It was ink!
Robin: Ink? (Back to the big man.)
Cyborg: Yeah, just like the stains on my armor...
(Cut to him being chomped by the yellow oven robot that came after him; a smear of that color covers his chest. We next see Raven being menaced by her foe and eyeing the black residue it left on her cloak.)
Cyborg: (voice over) ...the streaks on Raven's cloak... (Cut to Nya-Nya as she kicks Beast Boy across his lip-printed cheek.) ...and the lipstick from that girl who kicked BB's butt.
(Back to the present: Beast Boy is very much put out at this last.)
Beast Boy: She was a cat girl! (He steams quietly.)
Robin: So the criminals are all connected. (Pan to Raven by the candles.)
Raven: Because they were all created by the same person.
(As the others gather around, she kneels at the table and sets the book on it.)
Raven: Brushogun, Tokyo's first supervillain.
(She opens it. Dissolve to a patch of trees, against which a new branch swiftly draws itself in while the foliage thickens considerably. This view is rendered entirely in gray tints; the effect will last unless otherwise noted. Other dissolves move the camera through this forest and place it near a small cottage on the far side of a stream. Zoom in slowly on this and dissolve to a pile of pages that all bear sketches of the same attractive young woman, seen from various angles. Her long, straight hair cascades over her shoulders and kimono. As Raven continues, tilt up to show these sheets on the floor inside the house, along with dozens of drawings of other women and several balled-up rejects.)
Raven: (voice over) Once, he was an ordinary artist who dreamed of bringing his creations to life.
(We have gone into the past, then. On the end of this line, stop on the sunlit far window, against which a topknotted figure kneels over the floor, then cut to a close-up. Young, male, in a kimono, face set in total concentration over the swirling paintbrush in his hand. Extreme close-up of the bristles sliding across the paper to leave their mark, then of his steadily moving eye. He stops, glances critically down toward the work, and holds it up. A slow tilt up the length of the page reveals that he has completed yet another study on womanhood, this one a head-on picture with chin-length hair. The artist gazes reverently upon it and swivels away, the edge of the page passing the camera lens.)
(Behind it, the view changes to show an overhead shot of him kneeling within a large circle drawn on the floor. Eight candles have been set around the edge, spaced evenly at 45-degree angles: black, blue, magenta, yellow, with the flames directly across from each other paired by color. Four diameters have been drawn to connect the pairs, with a square inscribed among them and a smaller concentric circle within that. Our man is positioned at the intersection of a diameter and a side of the square, facing the painting he has set at the center. The camera points in through an opening in the ceiling, then zooms into the room as Raven continues.)
Raven: (voice over) He tried to make that dream come true using Japanese dark magic.
(Streams of wax flow toward the artwork, their hues matching the flames; cut to ground level as the candles rapidly melt down and light blue smoke boils up from the center to hide him from view. This is followed by a great blast of blue-white light that forces him to shield his face, but he is able to see that the brilliance is coming from his painting. Its subject sits up off the sheet, her body waving at first as if it were still paper-flat, but she assumes normal three-dimensional aspects as she gets to her feet.)
Raven: (voice over) His spell worked... (She holds out her hand; he takes it.) ...but at a terrible price.
(The little smile she had in the painting gives way to a malicious leer while her hair blows wildly and blackness flows up to cover her entire body. It is as if she has been drenched in printer's ink, which courses down the length of her arm toward his; he starts in fear as it spreads to him, and he finally lets go as all his features disappear beneath the ooze. Pull back as he crumples to the floor and long tentacles shoot forth from his back. Only his silently screaming mouth and eyes, now blind white, are visible to remind us of who and what this new horror used to be.)
Raven: (voice over) The darkness stained him. His skin became paper. (Twisted smile.) Ink flowed through his veins.
(Now his fingertips sprout long deadly claws and he slams one palm flat on the floor, drawing it along to smear bright magenta ink across the boards. The pigment begins to sprout a small forest of unwholesome growths, and the monstrosity grins madly and slaps down a dose of blue that does likewise. In a longer shot, he watches with sick glee as four pinnacles begin to rise from the floor, one in each of his candles' four colors. This is followed by a head-on view of the silhouettes of the four henchmen who came after Robin's four teammates, each highlighted by glints of its respective color. Finally, their master rises among them and floats toward the ceiling. This tableau moves our background idea, that the dark figure in the printing press lair is Brushogun, from conjecture to solid hunch to near-certainty.)
Raven: (voice over) He was transformed into Brushogun.
(A tentacle lashes toward the camera to black out the screen.)
(Fade in immediately to the present: an overhead shot of Robin, kneeling alone at the table and reading the account for himself. The spare uniform Starfire brought him lies by the book. Zoom in slowly.)
Robin: Drawings! That's what we've been fighting! (Head-on shot: the others are behind him.) Then I didn't actually hurt anyone! I couldn't hurt Saico-Tek, because Saico-Tek wasn't real!
Beast Boy: They were ink.
Starfire: All of them.
Robin: Then Brushogun created him to frame me!
(Cut to a close-up of the open book, tilting to frame Robin's spare clothes. These are snatched up, the borrowed threads go flying toward the ceiling, and he gets himself fully tricked-out mask, belt, cape, the works, even before they hit the floor. Cut to the others, who watch him with the deepest respect, Starfire's gaze mixing in a healthy doze of affection.)
Robin: (from o.c.) All right, Titans. (Shift to frame him as well.) This is our mission. We're fugitives from the law.
(Slow pan across the others, now all spoiling for a good fight.)
Robin: (from o.c.) We've got a criminal on the loose who can make other criminals, and the only way we can clear our names is to hunt him down... (Close-up.) ...and bring him to justice.
Beast Boy: Yeah, um, great plan, but there's this one teensy problem. EVERYBODY IN TOKYO'S OUT TO GET US!
(Overhead view of the Titans, the focus shifting from a hanging lamp to them as a low rumbling makes itself heard from somewhere outside. All turn toward it, braced for action, and the camera swivels quickly to frame the temple's far wall. After a long and very uncomfortable pause, four familiar, unfriendly shadows appear through the rice paper. The doors open to reveal the vividly tinged quartet of Brushogun's henchmen; seconds later, all the other doors slide away on both sides of the Titans. Troopers, sushi chefs, karaoke club girls, it looks as if the changeling's assessment of the situation was right on the money.)
(Slow pan across the lawmen on one side, then the fish-slingers and amateur singers on the other, then cut to the quintet at the center of it all. Starfire has both hands warmed up.)
Robin: Titans! Go!
(They jump for the ceiling and Robin hurls a disc at the camera with a savage yell. Cut to outside the temple and pull back quickly in time with the explosion that tears out a fair bit of the roof.)
(Now a loopy chase sequence begins, in the style of those featured in "Mad Mod," "Fractured," and "Revolution." A map of Tokyo appears, with the damaged temple prominently marked; the Titans scramble out through the hole in the roof and away, only to be chased by the four enemies, then the Troopers, then the girls, and lastly the chefs. Tilt down to follow them all along one freeway for several blocks, during which a hail of right-pointing blue arrows flies across the screen. Behind the last and biggest, the view changes to show the five heroes fleeing ahead of the girls and chefs against a blue checkered background as "GO GO GO" scrolls past over and over beneath them.)
(Now a mass of magenta arrows pointing to the left whips past and we see the gang bugging out with the Troopers' cars and choppers on their heels as "TITANS" scrolls by underneath. Yellow arrows to the right give way to a blue field of zigzag curves, "GO GO GO" running at the top, and Brushogun's four assassins taking up the chase. Everyone has turned upside down for this one, with the foot portion of the pursuit moving along the lower edge of the lettering. Suddenly, they all stop and gravity reasserts itself forcefully; they disappear into a large "AHHHH!!!!!!!!!!" that has been placed several yards below.)
(Snap to blue, Beast Boy drives a car back and forth across the screen at all angles, a solid stream of lovestruck girls trailing from the bumper on every pass; after the last one, the image of vehicle, driver, and girls grows in from center screen. Next, we see Cyborg beating feet to keep the enraged chefs from dicing him up or denting his skull with thrown food and cooking implements.)
(Cut to close-ups of Robin, Raven and Starfire, and Beast Boy and Cyborg in turn against a black field. Each is initially rendered in his/her signature tint from the show's opening, red, violet, orange, green, blue, in that order, but resumes normal coloration as spotlights play over them. Beast Boy is hitching a ride on Cyborg's back. Shots of several dozen Troopers slide in to tile the screen, after which the camera tilts up to frame a veritable swarm of them piled up around a building. Uehara, shown as giant size, leans over the scene with his badge in one hand and a pair of handcuffs in the other, but one by one, four of the five Titans swing, fly, or leap nimbly past him.)
(Raven is the last to appear, but instead of joining her teammates, she stops and throws her cloak open, unleashing a spiral of black energy toward the camera. Fade to white, then instantly to a rendered photograph of an actual Tokyo street that serves as the backdrop for several Troopers on the prowl. Sight gag: one of them peeks out from behind a building at the end of the block, a perspective trick making him appear to be just as tall as it is. Similar shots and tricks frame the girls on another block, then girls, chefs, and Troopers bobbing in a river with their heads just breaking the surface. No sign of the Titans anywhere; ditto for a couple of Troopers nosing around in front of a hotel and peeking out its windows, or for the mixed group that peeks around a corner at the shoppers taking care of business. After they have retreated, the entire image is pushed up like a windowpane, revealing the Titans behind it on a black field and exposing Cyborg as the one responsible for the scene change.)
(At a thumbs-up from Robin, he pulls down a new scene to hide them from view again: the graveyard where Raven nearly lost her new favorite piece of light reading. Normal background style resumes at this point. Pan through the area to bring the Titans into view among the tombstones; now a few more shots of Cyborg overlay themselves; he checks his forearm panel, a radar display comes up, "!!" appears by his head. This last shot expands to full screen, whereupon we see Robin's jaw about to his the floor as he notices the battalion of Troopers set to pounce. Cyborg, though, does not figure it out until two more pop up right behind him.)
(Overhead shot of the graveyard, with the Titans properly surrounded. The glare of chopper searchlights hits them as the air patrol buzzes by; at ground level, all five steel themselves for a full-scale brawl. Robin pulls a grenade from his belt and throws it down, producing a blinding flash and a cloud of thick gray smoke. Once the air clears, the Troopers find themselves staring at nothing but the broken tombstone where their would-be captives had been standing. Uehara, in one of the choppers, glares down at the botched operation with unalloyed disgust.)
(Cut to a point just below a set of power lines, the camera pointing up toward the craft as it zooms by, then tilt down to ground level. Now the action has shifted to an alley, where the Titans emerge one by one after the coast is clear. Raven peeks out through a building wall; Cyborg's head pokes up from a manhole, lifting the cover along with it; Starfire hoists up a small vehicle she has been hiding underneath; Beast Boy pops up out of a full trash can; and the Boy Wonder hangs upside down into view. The chase montage ends at this point.)
(He is upright in an instant to take a careful look down the way, giving a hand signal that brings Beast Boy on the jump. Feet turn into paws in mid-leap, and the shape-shifter hits the pavement as a bloodhound and begins to sniff his way ahead, leading the others on. Close-up of Cyborg and Starfire.)
Cyborg: (to the o.c. Beast Boy) Can't you sniff any faster, man? It's a matter of time before somebody jumps us again. (They pass Robin; stop on him.)
Robin: Beast Boy! You can stop. I know where the trail leads.
(Cut to behind the Titans and tilt up...and up...and up...until the camera has passed all the nearby rooftops and reached the Wakamono Shuppan headquarters not too far off.)
Cyborg: Brushogun's hideout is the comic book factory? (Beast Boy resumes human form.)
Beast Boy: Told you we shoulda taken the tour.
(Robin, Cyborg, and Starfire set out, leaving him alone in his grim smugness. Several steps behind them is Raven, who stops briefly to smack him upside the head before continuing on; he rubs the spot and glares angrily after her.)
(Cut to somewhere in the black storm clouds that have gathered above the city. Thunder rumbles ominously as the camera tilts down to frame the full height of the skyscraper. The Titans are visible as five tiny specks in front of the main entrance; inside the darkened lobby, the doors disintegrate in a mighty blast and they are inside. Cyborg, Raven, and Starfire have their respective weapons at the ready, but a pan behind the group reveals no one to use them on.)
Cyborg: No guards.
(Robin points ahead and all advance toward the heart of the operation. Cut to within an inner lobby; it is even darker than the entrance area and there is no sign of life save the same labored breathing first heard in Brushogun's hideout during Act One. Lightning flashes outside the lobby's wall-to-wall windows and clears to give a slow pan across the quintet, followed by a brief zoom toward the innermost darkness.)
Robin: (whispering) This way.
(All rush ahead. He leaps down a ramp, filling the screen with his masked eyes for an instant, and the dimness bursts into blinding white light as he hurls himself through a closed door.)
(Pull back; the glare fades as the other four catch up, and we can see more of the new area; boxes and materials scattered about. Cyborg flicks on his shoulder-mounted flashlight and lets it play around the room: more boxes, huge rolls of paper stock, stairways and balconies that give access to the uppermost machinery. As the Titans advance gingerly across the floor of this production facility, a camera shift exposes the sheer size of the main printing press: at least a hundred yards long and twenty tall.)
(Pan ahead of the group to partially expose several of the now-darkened monitors that displayed their progress, then cut to a shot of the steps leading up to them. Cyborg's flash sweeps toward the platform, but picks out only an empty seat among all the hardware, he and Robin step into view for a closer look. The Boy Wonder's hunch appears to be correct; the villain has been using this place as his base of operations.)
Robin: Brushogun! He's not here!
(Another wheezing breath echoes in the silence, drawing both their attention and the camera eye toward the great press. One of its panels flips open, releasing a belch of thick dust that clears to reveal an all-too-familiar silhouette between the rollers. Dark from head to toe, tentacles snaking from the back; it matches the depiction of Brushogun from Raven's book, but there are some noticeable differences. The humanoid frame is badly stooped, the muscles emaciated, and the voice tells right away that he was the source of all those asthmatic respirations.)
Brushogun: I am...
Robin: (from o.c.) Brushogun?
(The apparition grunts softly and lifts his head into the light. Now his worn face can be fully seen, along with the fact that the jet-black tint of his skin has faded into dark gray. The "tentacles" have been replaced by tubes hooked to his back that snake into the guts of the press.)
Brushogun: ...so glad to finally meet you. (The Titans approach.)
Robin: You're not the one behind all this, are you? (Cut to him and Cyborg.) You're just--
Brushogun: (from o.c.) --His slave. (Back to him, tilting up slowly past the rollers and down again.) He trapped me in this thing...this cursed printing press that uses my powers against my will. The criminals I create serve him now.
Robin: But you sent the card, didn't you? You set me free. And you sent Saico-Tek to our Tower because--
Brushogun: --It was the only way I could call for help. (Zoom in slowly.) I knew that if one of my creations attacked your home--
Robin: --It would give us a reason to come to Tokyo. (Cyborg steps up.) A reason to find you. (Tilt up to the big man.)
Cyborg: So you weren't the one who framed Robin.
Brushogun: Saico-Tek was printed twice. I sent the first to you as a messenger. (Extreme close-up of his eyes; slow pan.) He sent the second to Robin as a trap.
Beast Boy: "He" who?
Raven: If you're just the brush, who tells you what to paint?
(The camera now points between these two at the control platform; zoom in on it during the next line, which is spoken in the tone of the dark figure we previously took to be Brushogun.)
Voice of Silhouette: That would be me.
(Close-up of the chair, turned around most of the way to present the back of the figure's head.)
Silhouette: I must say, you Titans have proven formidable adversaries. (Extreme close-up of the black face and narrowing eyes.) Once you are destroyed, perhaps I shall print copies of you to serve me.
(Back to the Titans on the end of this. The idea of being reincarnated as newsprint appeals to them not at all.)
Starfire: (warming up his hands) Show your face, coward! (Close-up.) Who are you? (Tilt down to Robin.)
Robin: There's only one person who stands to gain from creating criminals, the hero who catches them. (The chair's back again; he continues o.c.) Isn't that right...Commander?
(A swivel puts its occupant in the light: Uehara himself, without his hat and sporting a thoroughly nasty grin.)
Uehara: Very good, my friend. (puts his hat on) But you haven't caught me. (Extreme close-up; he angles his face up a bit.) I've caught you.
(A finger snap brings the noise of a door being kicked in from o.c.; pan quickly to the Troopers who have just burst into the place. Reinforcements arrive in very short order, and the camera pulls back from an overhead view to show still others drawing a bead from every foot of balcony space. A ground-level pan across the besieged heroes only serves to point up the gravity of their predicament, but Beast Boy is concentrating very hard on something else for the moment.)
Beast Boy: So wait. If the good guy was really a bad guy, then that means... (Brainstorm.) Oh, sweet! (laughing) We're the good guys again!
(Cut to Robin and Cyborg; the former points o.c. toward the Troopers' superior officer.)
Robin: You're a fraud, Daizo, a fake. (crosses the floor) Brushogun was the only real criminal you ever caught, wasn't he? (Uehara is now on his feet.)
Uehara: One was enough. (Pull back; the Troopers near him close ranks.)
Robin: You used his powers to lie, to make yourself look like a hero. And when I started searching for the truth, you made me look like a criminal! (Behind him, the camera pitching slowly as if seasick.)
Uehara: That's a nice little story, young man, but I doubt anyone will believe it once you're all behind bars. (Close-up.) Troopers! (Pull back.) Charge! (They do so.)
Robin: Titans! Go!
(A flying leap carries him neatly through the Troopers' laser barrage so he can kick one down and somersault over to hurl another into the wall. Just as quickly, Cyborg flattens his man with a left hook; others take their shots at him, but he throws up both arms to cover his upper body. Glare and smoke dissipate around his intact form, and he lets his right do the talking this time. These fellows are barely out cold before another bunch gets thrown back against the wall by Raven's powers. She then puts up a shield to block the fusillade coming her way and turns it into a black wave that sweeps these shooters off their feet.)
(Next, Beast Boy, as an elephant, drops into the middle of the melee, cuts his eyes off toward the Troopers, and instantly becomes a cobra. Lasers pepper the floor all around him as he slithers toward one of them and strikes; by the time he reaches the Trooper doing the shooting, he has transformed into a large bear and has no trouble pinning the man. The cleanup hitter is Starfire, who zooms overhead and takes down two of her own with a pair of supercharged flying tackles.)
(Extreme close-up of Robin, pulling back to frame both his hands and those of a Trooper locked around his fighting staff, which has been pushed up so far as to almost choke him. The Titan gives a bit of ground before throwing the enemy off and delivering a monster spin kick; cut to ground level as the helmet bounces free, then tilt up to frame its staggering owner. Robin's attack has reduced most of his head to Technicolor mush and knocked the rest of his skin and clothing hues out of kilter. The Trooper tries briefly to reconstitute himself, but instead ends up disintegrating into a large puddle of...)
Robin: Ink! (addressing himself o.c.) Titans!
(Long shot of all, pulling back; Beast Boy is in human form, and the other three are variously slugging it out with Uehara's crew.)
Robin: The Troopers! They aren't real!
Cyborg: Which means we don't have to hold back! (He throws off the two who have piled on him.)
Uehara: It also means there are plenty more where those came from!
(He presses the blue button on the printing press control panel, causing Brushogun to straighten up with a long, agonized yell as his eyes burn bright blue-white. The Titans stare in total bewilderment; cut to the side of the press and pan toward its front end as the rollers begin to turn, then back to the captive artist and tilt down to the blank white paper before him. All ten fingers are on the surface, and streams of the four ink colors pour ahead, just as they did in Act Two when Uehara forced him to unleash the four strange strongmen.)
(Another tilt down; the inks ooze over the last rollers and are transferred to a sheet of paper that slides out onto the floor. In no time flat, they begin to work their way into three dimensions; as soon as he gets an eyeful, Robin leaps high toward Uehara, twirling his staff for a skull-cracking strike. With less than two yards to go, though, a pair of freshly minted Saico-Teks, matching the pink coloration seen during his Act Two reappearance; slide in to protect the commander. The swinger is knocked backward, landing on the steps to the platform; his teammates rush in, only to find themselves facing three duplicates of the blue robot that attacked Starfire.)
(A collective gasp; now the camera shifts to the top of the press, pans to frame a trio of brand-new Nya-Nya copies, and tilts up to the five black kabuki demons hovering just above the machinery. Last to report in are three of the yellow oven robots, one of which lashes ahead with a meat cleaver that slams into the floor between Cyborg and Raven. They dodge, Starfire hoists Beast Boy away, and Robin finds a Blue flying in to ram him headfirst. He is driven back several yards and skids to a stop before a Yellow, which tries to crush him with a whip of its arm, whereupon two Nya-Nyas pounce on Beast Boy and kick him almost out the door. Deciding to play off past experience, he becomes a rhino and charges ahead; they somersault off his back and he resumes human form. One of them licks her lips as if anticipating a juicy bite of rare Titan, and leaps back into the fray.)
(Cut to Raven, backing quickly away from the camera, then to the demon rushing at her. She gets a shield up just in time to stop it cold, the hit causing it to splatter everywhere in a burst of ink. Now a Blue fires off a salvo of missiles; she clears out fast to keep from being turned into confetti. Here comes a Saico-Tek, who lets fly with three shuriken; Starfire shoots these down only to get a pair of bright pink boots in the back. As soon as she can raise her head, she uncorks a fierce eye blast and nails one of the two ninjas square in the gut.)
(He is propelled past Cyborg, whose cannon is going full blast at something airborne; it proves to be a Yellow, which lashes one arm down toward him. The big man disarms in an instant, gets all ten fingers wrapped around the flexible limb, and decides to try his hand at the hammer throw. Several thousand pounds of ersatz circuitry and cooking utensils describe a wide circle, knocking down every enemy in range before being released to go tumbling the length of the factory floor.)
(The behemoth rolls toward Robin, who gets backed up into its path by a Blue; he notices first and leaps clear, and the robot gets bowled off its feet and carried along. The jump puts the spiky-haired brawler on top of a pile of boxes, but he is far from in the clear; another Yellow is rearing up behind him. It lifts a very sharp knife, which barely fails to cleave him in two; he runs straight up the arm, jumps aboard, and drives the end of his staff through the banana-colored chassis. Out comes a gush of black ink, which streams past Robin, and he is thrown off when the whole thing plunges to the floor and bursts like a rotten grapefruit on impact.)
(He comes down some distance away and, after fully regaining his balance, glares up past Uehara's platform toward the rafters. A quick tilt up into the poorly lit upper reaches affords him an eyeful of the bad cop, racing along the catwalks; cut to one of them, where Robin arrives in a movement far too quick to follow. Uehara stops short.)
Robin: Running away? I guess they just don't make heroes like they used to.
(Close-up of the grimacing man, who draws a pistol and fires several shots; Robin deflects the slugs with a deft twirl of his staff and then hurls it ahead. The gun is struck away, a steel-soled boot slamming into Uehara's gut in almost the same instant. He stumbles back, badly winded and having lost his hat, but soon straightens up with a derisive chuckle.)
Uehara: (as Robin closes in) Give it up, my friend. You cannot win.
Robin: I'd say I just did.
Uehara: You can knock me down all you like. (Overhead view; Robin starts to back him up.) Destroy me if you wish. It doesn't change a thing!
(Close-up of the Boy Wonder's implacable, advancing figure.)
Uehara: (from o.c.) When this is over, everyone out there will still think you're a criminal. (Back to him.) And the people of Tokyo will still call me a hero!
Robin: (quietly) I know what it means to be a hero, Commander. And trust me, you are no hero.
(He continues his steady approach, stopping only when Uehara halts near the end of the catwalk. A glance over the railing shows the press' black ink reservoir almost directly below the man's position, and without warning he flips over the rail in a swirl of brown coattails. The horrified Robin darts ahead, far too slow on the draw, and can only watch as the smirking Uehara plunges toward the tank and the spinning rollers beneath it. Just before he disappears into the machinery, cut to a close-up of Brushogun, his energy drained by the brigade of creatures he has just had to turn out. Suddenly, he snaps bolt upright with a long, labored scream and electricity begins to crackle over the entire press.)
(Pull back to frame Beast Boy and Cyborg watching nearby, then cut to them and Starfire; jaws drop open and eyes bug out as the floor begins to tremble beneath their feet. Patches of it crumble near both this trio and the assorted enemies, buckled by the breakthrough of ruptured pipes gushing black ink. Many more punch into the walls as if they were tentacles rather than plumbing work, now Brushogun's mouth opens in a choked moan and the dark fluid bubbles out over his chin.)
(Cut to the exterior of the building, which sits quietly under the thick storm clouds for a moment before the entire ground-floor facade blows out in a terrific explosion. All five Titans are propelled out along with it, bouncing heavily across the courtyard, and find their footing for a good look at the blast site. Cut to behind Robin and pull back slowly as three more detonations trace their way up the building; he then jumps backward to avoid the smash of two massive black hands that reach out from the remains of the company headquarters. The arms are nearly as long as the building is, or was, tall, and the jet-black body that stands up from them is humanoid, with the ink pipes hooked into his back, shoulders, and body. Eyes and mouth blaze a hideous red as the creature bellows the next four words in a horrible, demonic parody of Uehara's voice, he has been changed into this form by jumping into the press.)
Uehara: THE POWER IS MINE!!
(Lightning cracks the sky A long roof-level shot frames his full height properly, towering over just about every building in the city.)
Beast Boy: That's a lotta ink!
Cyborg: Gonna be one heck of a stain when this is over!
Raven: He may have Brushogun's magic, but I don't know how long he can control it.
(Cut to the ebon face on the end of this, then tilt down to the chest; here we see Brushogun's withered head and shoulders protruding from the swampy flesh. Now Uehara raises a dripping hand, which disappears briefly under the glare of more lightning, and lets a few globs of ink splatter on the ground. These swiftly assemble themselves into three-dimensional form and take on details as the camera pans across the courtyard; Troopers and henchmen, but with their colors mismatched in every conceivable way.)
(The other hand throws down more ink; cut to a long shot of the Titans and pan across as a new crew takes shape, then to a head-on view of Uehara and his entire contingent. Lightning throws his form into sharp relief for a moment, after which the view shifts to a pan across the heroes.)
Starfire: What must we do? (Stop on Robin.)
Robin: Erase him.
(Cut to a close-up of Uehara, who aims a vast palm down at the Titans with the intent of flattening them. General scatter in five different directions, from which Robin emerges to kick a couple of enemies aside before a Yellow tries to slice and dice him. Hurling himself backward, he lets go with a handful of discs and comes to a stop just ahead of the black slash of energy Raven projects to dash several others away. His projectiles blow the crazed oven apart and give us a good view of two other Titans in the thick of it; Cyborg caught within a standing dogpile, and Starfire flying backward with starbolts going full blast against the demons that pursue her.)
(The big man throws off all his assailants and breaks out his cannon for a little skeet shooting; one after another is blasted apart in midair, and now the Tamaranean zooms past, just ahead of a Blue's laser barrage. It has brought a few buddies along for the ride, as well as a couple of demons, and they chase her all the way up toward Uehara's head. Needless to say, he is not particularly pleased by such a move, and he raises one hand and projects those metallic pipe/tentacles from every finger. Starfire dodges four of them, but the fifth wraps her up tight and slams her to the ground a couple of times before letting go. It rears up and lances in, ready to cleave her in two at the waist; the strike is stopped when Raven inserts herself in its path and throws up a shield to protect the two of them.)
(Her counter-spell slashes the snaky limb into pieces that pour out ink as they crash to the pavement and disintegrate. Pan to Beast Boy, stuck in the middle of five adversaries. He turns into a T-rex and bites one apart, but in a twinkling at least a dozen more are jumping on board. Another pan brings Cyborg into view, sliding backward and facing down a pair of Yellows; they get their flexible arms spinning like high-speed flails and close in.)
(Attention shifts back to Robin, who leaps and somersaults backward from a fresh fusillade. Deadly accurate disc throws send the shooters off into the hereafter; next, he notices Starfire repeating her previous backward strafe against the demons still on her tail. Cut to behind the masked hero and tilt up to frame Uehara in all his infernal glory, then zoom in on the chest and dissolve quickly to Brushogun at its center. The sight draws Robin's focus in a very big hurry; his boots pound toward the monstrosity, around the lashing tentacles, and straight up one of them toward the body. A gang of minions is perched up here and waiting for him, but he brings his staff out for a quick twirl and makes very short work of them all.)
(Once he is in the clear, he charges up the home stretch and leaps high through empty space, raising the staff as if preparing to drive it through five yards of solid concrete. The end stabs into Uehara's chest, just barely clearing Brushogun's slumped torso, and he hauls himself closer as Raven flees a trio's lasers.)
Robin: How do I stop him? How do I break the spell? (Brushogun starts to sink into the chest.)
Brushogun: Without me, he is nothing. You must remove me from this machine.
(By now, only his face remains clear of the ooze; as it, too, disappears, Robin plunges both hands in after him and heaves as if trying to drag an El Camino out of quicksand. His efforts are for naught, though, and in time black tendrils ensnare one ankle, then both arms, and he is dragged bodily into the great living morass. The last we see of him is one straining eye and cheek.)
(Uehara's mad laughter grates the air as he directs all his tentacles ahead. Raven is snatched out of the air, then Starfire; at ground level, Cyborg and his attackers are flattened under a giant hand. Beast Boy, back in human form, is propelled backward and sits up woozily, and the camera cuts to just behind the lone Titan, facing the survivors of the crazy-quilt garrison, and tilts up to frame their triumphant commander. Close-up of the laughing face, which suddenly goes slack with shock as a loud rumbling issues from somewhere below decks.)
(Back to his chest, the source of the new distress; one of Robin's hands thrusts itself into open air, followed by head and shoulders, and Uehara voices a long, frustrated scream. The Boy Wonder strains mightily at something just below the surface and finally gets it free; Brushogun, with the green-gloved forearms locked securely around his chest as the two plummet toward earth. Out comes a grappling hook for a shot into the gargantuan body; he swings lightly to a stop on the ground and deposits his charge. The tubes in Brushogun's back are gone, and he wears nothing but a pair of black briefs. He is lowered gently into a reclining position and gazes up feebly at Robin with an expression of the deepest gratitude.)
Brushogun: (with the last of his strength) You saved me.
(The eyes slowly close as he lets out one final, labored breath, and the frail gray body fades away to leave no trace of its existence. As Robin stares down at his now-empty hands with a total lack of comprehension, gobbets of black sludge begin to splat down all around him and a pan across the surviving enemies shows them turning into the same stuff. Uehara's wails mingle with the smoke rising from his body, but Raven and Starfire are still firmly caught in his tentacles.)
Raven: Brushogun's spell! It's breaking!
(One more groan from the behemoth gives way to a sudden swelling about the head and shoulders. Now Beast Boy and Cyborg are in the clear; they stand up amid the disgusting shower, just in time to see Uehara's entire body bulge out of all proportion. His tortured screams rend the air as the camera pulls back between the nearby buildings to frame his vast, distorted bulk, and after a couple of seconds that last perhaps six months, the dam bursts. Uehara's body comes apart in a flood of ink that douses the entire street and leaves the three boys smeared and speckled from head to toe.)
(Cyborg leans against Beast Boy for support as Robin straightens up; the big man throws an A-OK salute to the leader, who begins to brush himself off. Raven stands up a moment later, puts down the hood of her befouled cloak, and lets him have a tranquil little smile that sums up her thoughts quite nicely. As Robin returns it from beneath his sodden hair, an arm clad in a lavender wrist guard flops weakly up from a mass of half-congealed ink behind him. It is accompanied by an almost inaudible moan from its still-buried owner, and Robin rushes toward her.)
(The fully raised hand trembles a bit before the entire arm drops back into the muck; it has barely settled before he digs in both of his and hoists her up. Close-up of the unconscious Titan's smeared face, supported by one of his hands behind her head.)
Robin: (from o.c.) Starfire...
(Long silence, which finally breaks when she voices a woozy groan and gets her eyes open. The free hand comes up to brush some of the ink off her cheek, bringing a grateful smile to her lips.)
Robin: (from o.c.) Are you okay? (Pull back to frame both.)
Starfire: I am now.
(Lightning flashes over and over from the storm clouds to mark the start of the long-expected thunderstorm. The ink is washed from Beast Boy, Cyborg, and Raven in an instant, and the changeling tips his head back and opens wide to let the drops go down his throat. A particularly large splotch of the gunk gradually dissolves away under the action of the water, revealing none other than Uehara; his normal self, flat on his back, and in about as bad a shape as Starfire was. He can only manage a barely audible groan of supreme exhaustion as the rain drenches every square inch of him. This shot establishes that Beast Boy's crack in the prologue about the first Saico-Tek not being waterproof was dead right; he washed himself away as soon as he kicked out the fire sprinkler head in the Tower's interrogation room.)
(Cut to a long shot of Robin and Starfire, also washed clean and now kneeling before each other as in the temple scene of Act 3. Their heads are turned to watch the aftermath, but in close-up, they switch their attention back to one another.)
Robin: I think I was wrong before.
Starfire: You do? (Close-up of him.)
Robin: Maybe a hero isn't all that I am. Maybe I could be...maybe we could be...
Starfire: (from o.c.) Robin? (Pull back to frame both.)
Starfire: (smiles) Stop talking.
(The unspoken words: "and kiss me." For the third time, their two faces lean toward each other, slowly and tenderly, angling themselves just so; but now there is nothing to interrupt them, not even the driving rain. As the camera slowly pulls back and tracks around them, Robin and Starfire share a long, passionate kiss to put the capper on an attraction that has been bubbling as far back as "Sisters." When it finally comes to an end, they trade a quiet smile and the camera cuts to the other three, who thoroughly approve of what they see.)
Cyborg: Well, it's about time.
(Overhead view of the couple and the trio, pulling back slowly, then dissolve to a patch of clear sky marked by a few happy clouds. It is now the following day, and a helicopter swoops by as the camera tilts down to the sound of a cheering crowd. The movement brings a patch of Tokyo proper into view, then a street packed absolutely solid with jubilant locals. A large stage has been set up near the end of the block, with a giant screen behind this, and a dissolve/zoom toward it presents a good clear view of the Titans' images projected on it. Confetti and streamers rain down over the whole scene; cut to Robin and Cyborg on the stage. Starfire is on her new beau's other side.)
Cyborg: (to Robin) So I guess you're not a wanted man anymore.
(Close-up of the couple, framed from waist to knees, and their joined hands.)
Robin: I wouldn't say that.
(Pull back to frame all but Beast Boy in line; Starfire beams and flashes a V-for-Victory, and most of the city's press corps pops up to get pictures. Now the singing ladies' man struts up and throws his arms wide with a huge grin, only to get a very puzzled reaction from Cyborg. A question mark appears over the big man's head; he gets his answer in the form of a wave of giggling and hordes of karaoke club girls swarm the stage from both sides.)
Beast Boy: One at a time, ladies! There's enough of B to go around!
(Tilt up slightly to the uppermost layers of teens, where Cyborg strains to get himself clear of the crush and ends up tumbling down behind it. Close-up of his supine form on, pulling back slightly to frame a new shadow and a sandal-clad foot right in front of his face; he glances up worriedly, and a from-the-ground view frames the owner of the sushi joint he nearly bankrupted in Acts Two and Three. The little man with the big nose brandishes a meat cleaver as Cyborg sits up with jaw hanging slack, then throws an open hand toward something behind himself. Here comes a truly colossal shadow, which dims the entire screen, and the camera pulls back quickly in an overhead view to frame its source. A hatch has opened up in the stage to allow a colossal, four-level buffet table to rise into view, every tier loaded with enough food to challenge even the bottomless pit that is Cyborg's stomach.)
(Close-ups show us only a tiny fraction of the delicacies that have been laid on.)
Restaurant owner: All you can eat!
Cyborg: (pumps his fist) All right!
(One mighty leap takes him high off the stage with arms and mouth open wide. Sight gag: in a long shot, a red arrow shows the tiny speck of his descending form, and the table disappears in a blast of light and flying food the instant he hits it. Cut to Raven, panning slightly to frame Starfire by her side under a hailstorm of leftovers.)
Starfire: Did you also make the new friends while exploring Tokyo?
Raven: No, but I somehow wound up as a mascot for gum.
(Quick pan down the street, stopping on a big screen set above a storefront and being watched by an attentive crowd. It depicts her showing off a pack of Super Twinkle Donkey Gum, the treat she was given in Act Two, as a donkey's braying is heard as a sound effect. Presently, the display changes to show her against a background of black energy, the pack floating in the foreground. Back to the two girls; the reluctant mascot blows a bubble and lets it pop.)
(Cut to the stage screen, which now frames all five Titans in line, then tilt down to the stage itself. The mayor of Tokyo faces them, as does a second man off to one side who holds something for presentation. He approaches as the others bow; the mayor smiles, and we see the proffered object as a velvet pillow on which five medals have been arranged.)
Mayor: (placing one around each Titan's neck) For uncovering the truth, for pursuing justice and protecting our city from a treacherous evil, I present these medals to Tokyo's newest heroes... (Pull back to frame them all, putting him o.c.) ...the Teen Titans!
(They straighten up to fully take in the crowd's rejoicing; Starfire waves to them and the camera pans to Beast Boy, who has again been overtaken by the karaoke girls. He extracts himself, pushes them all out of the way with a grin and an elongated arm, and loses the former while retracting the latter.)
Beast Boy: (to Robin, dejectedly) So I guess we have to go back home now, huh?
(No immediate response; the camera pulls back slightly as Cyborg and Raven slide over.)
Robin: You know, Beast Boy... (looking to Starfire; they smile at each other as Beast Boy grins) ...sometimes, even heroes need a vacation.
(They hold each other's eyes for a moment, after which all five turn their attention back to the cheering populace. Cut to a long shot of the stage, pulling back over the sea of heads and waving arms, then back to them.)
Beast Boy: (grins and rubs his hands) Okay, next time, we're going to Mexico!
(Very bad call, judging from everyone else's thoroughly disgusted expressions. Raven hates it enough to clump him in the back of the head and send him tumbling off the stage. Snap to black.)
(The show's opening theme starts up.)
Beast Boy: I will obey the traffic rules! Teen Titans!
Robin: I will eat everything without likes or dislikes! Teen Titans!
Starfire: Earthquakes, lightning, fire, Dad, Grammar, math, science, social studies. There is nothing I am afraid of! Teen Titans, go!
Cyborg: Holler, holler, holler, holler, holler, holler, holler my name! Teen Titans! Half of your troubles will be gone! Teen Titans!
Raven: Papa's schedule control, Mama's weight control, Wishes are endless? Teen Titans, go.
Beast Boy: One, two, three, four, five!
Titans: Teen Titans! (Song ends.)
Beast Boy: Good night, Tokyo!
(The audio now shifts into a montage of scores from various scenes, finishing with the main title music as the credits end.)