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Hotspot

Alias: Isaiah Crockett
Formerly: Slagger, Joto

Titans Member
Joined:
Teen Titans (second series) #1 [1996]

Hotspot Quick Bio: The H’San Natall race produced alien/human hybrids that would be activated with super-human powers on their 16th birthdays. Isaiah Crockett’s average middle-class life was shattered when he learned he of his heat-manipulating powers. Taking the name Joto – which is Swahili for ‘heat’ – Isaiah joined the Teen Titans. Isaiah later changed his codename to Hotspot.

Recent File Photo:


Archived File Photos (in chronological order):


Hero History


It Came From Outer Space

Isaiah Crockett was raised in a stable middle-class family. His mother was already expecting him when she married Judge Crockett. Unaware his son was actually a alien-human hybrid (part earthling and part H’San Natall), Isaiah’s father just tried to instill his son with a strong sense of right and wrong. Isaiah was diligent and intelligent. At age sixteen, he qualified to take college classes. But his first day at Ivy University would prove a fateful one.

Isaiah’s powers emerge in TEEN TITANS #3 [1996].

Just as Isaiah’s heat-based powers manifested, he and the Atom were mysteriously teleported away. Awakening on the alien ship of the dreaded H’San Natall, Isaiah met other super-powered teenagers in the same situation. Together, they rescued another meta-human teenaged girl who was raised in a virtual-reality simulator program. The group of teenagers escaped the aliens and returned to earth, where they found safe haven with the wealthy Loren Jupiter and his enigmatic associate, Omen.

Teen Titans

During the adventure, the teens learned that they were half-alien, and their mothers were impregnated by the H’San Natall years ago. All born on June 21st, the kids were part of a sleeper agent program by the H’San Natall to defeat the super-powered beings already on Earth. The group stayed together, and with the funding of Loren Jupiter, became the newest incarnation of the Teen Titans. The heat-generating Isaiah Crockett became Joto; Toni Monetti’s silver plasma powers earned her the codename, Argent; With enhanced speed and strength, Cody Driscoll took the nickname, Risk; And the alien girl who could absorb and project light adopted the name, Prysm. Atom decided to remain on the team to learn how to readjust to his life as a teenager, since he was de-aged by Extant during the Zero Hour Crisis.

ABOVE: Omen reveals the H’San Natall’s sinister plan.
BELOW: The new Teen Titans gather in TEEN TITANS #3 [1996].

Isaiah initially adopted the codename Slagger, due to his heat powers. His father suggested a new codename for him: Joto (which is Swahili for ‘heat’). Joto served as a dedicated member of the team.

Death & Rebirth

During a battle with Haze (Jarrod Jupiter), Joto made the ultimate sacrifice. In an attempt to save Mr. Jupiter’s life, Joto’s body was badly burned, and he seemingly died. Although the team presumed Joto dead and grieved him, Joto had not actually died. Just before Joto’s physical body expired, he touched Prysm on the cheek and sent out a heat pulse with his ‘life essence’ into her.

Joto’s life essence remained within Prysm, dormant, until another altercation with the H’San Natall and The Veil. The H’San Natall had exhumed Joto’s body and reanimated it, making him a mindless killing machine. When Prysm came within close proximity of Joto’s reanimated corpse, he was able to transfer his life essence into his body. The Titans and Superman were able to talk to H’San Natall out of any further acts of aggression. Prysm and Fringe elected to remain in space. The rest of the team returned to earth but decided to go their separate ways and disbanded. Joto went back to his previous life to resume his schooling and reunite with his family.

ABOVE: Joto is alive! In TEEN TITANS #21 [1998].
BELOW: After rescuing Joto and defeating the H’San Natall, the team goes
their separate ways, as seen in TEEN TITANS #24 [1998].

Joto aided the Titans again during the Technis Imperative conflict, which involved the Justice League as well as all Titans, past and present. The two teams eventually worked together to save the earth and former Titans teammate, Cyborg.

Isaiah later returned to Ivy University in Rhode Island, concentrating his studies in physics and chemistry.

After Superboy’s tragic death during the Infinite Crisis, the Teen Titans faced a year of heartache and turmoil. Isaiah – deciding to resume his super-heroic career – assumed a new name as Hotspot. Hotspot joined the team for a short time, but later quit. The group remained in constant upheaval until Robin returned and reorganized the Titans into a team.

Powers & Abilities


Joto can generate and sense heat.

Beast Boy’s substitute Titans team: Hotspot, Power Boy, Little Barda,
Zatara and Raven from 52: WEEK TWENTY ONE [2006].


Essential Reading


Teen Titans #1-3 [1996]: Three teenagers are kidnapped by the alien H’San Natall and joined by a fourth, as well as by the Atom. Dubbed Argent, Joto, Prysm, and Risk, these teenagers are taken in by Loren Jupiter and the mysterious Omen and become the new Teen Titans. First Atom as a Teen Titan in issue #1. First appearances of Argent, Risk, Joto and Prysm in issue #1.
Teen Titans #15 [1997]: “Then and Now: Part Four”: Omen’s identity is revealed as Lilith, as is her connection to Mr. Jupiter [her father] and the wicked Haze [her half-brother]. The villain uses Omen’s power to make his illusions real. Tapping into the original Titans’ minds, he unleashes a plethora of their past foes — from Brother Blood to Deathstroke to Trigon — in an explosive showdown that seemingly ends the life of Joto.
Teen Titans #21-24 [1998] Four-Part “Titans Hunt”: The final TITANS storyline by writer/artist Dan Jurgens. Deathstroke hunts the Titans and delivers them to the H’San Natall. Once there, Prysm discovers her mother, known as Queen Miraset, is alive and living among the H’San Natall. Prysm also meets her father, Ch’ah, who has a glasslike appearance similar to Prysm. Pylon reveals the H’San Natall used a group called the Veil as a front for their objectives. On the outside, the Veil was an organization with one objective: Eliminate all alien influence from the planet earth. In actuality, its leader Pylon was a member of the H’San Natall. The Titans and Superman are able to talk to H’San Natall out of any further acts of aggression. The team also discovers that Joto is alive! They rescue him, but Prysm and Fringe elect to remain in space. The rest of the team return to earth but decide to go their separate ways and disband.
Teen Titans (third series) #38 [2006]: Hotspot revealed as member during one year gap. First Isaiah Crockett as Hotspot.

 

Dan Jurgens’ Teen Titans


Less than a year after the cancellation of the New Titans with #130 [1996], DC Comics decided to re-launch the Teen Titans concept. Dan Jurgens spear-headed the new concept and characters, with George Pérez providing inks. Jurgens’ Titans team was a group of teenagers united by a common origin: the sinister H’San Natall alien race produced alien/human half-breeds. The Teen Titans group included H’San Natall seedlings Argent, Risk, Joto and Prysm. The team was led by Atom, who had been de-aged to a teenager during the Zero Hour event.

Writer/Artist Dan Jurgens set out to create a diverse cast: “I tend to approach a group title differently from a solo character. What I think of first are the personalities and their family and social backgrounds. I knew I wanted an interesting blend of personalities. I start by pulling various elements together, adding characterizations, then powers and talents. First, I create an individual personality, then fit that into the concept of a team comic book for an interesting mix. There are a thousand comics out there right now that have young people with powers. You can pick them up by the dozen each week. I want us to be a little different by having more character-oriented stories; I want to create characters here that the readers are really going to become interested in.”

Although an all-new concept with all-new characters, Jurgens still provided ties to past Titans teams. The Teen Titans were funded by Loren Jupiter, who had funded the original Teen Titans for a time; allies included Omen (who was revealed to be former Titan, Lilith) and Neil Richards (former Teen Titans villain, the Mad Mod); a storyline in issues #12-15 featured a reunion of the original team.

The team seemingly broke up following events of #16. Following that issue, a number of one shots provided a spotlight for individual members. These double shots (February 1998) featured: Argent/Robin, Supergirl/Prysm, Atom/Impulse and Risk/Superboy. Issue #17 featured a membership drive, and new members Fringe and Captain Marvel Jr. joined the team. Former Titan Arsenal also joined the supporting cast.

These changes failed to invigorate the title. It seemed readers didn’t accept these new characters as “Titans” and the book, while not a failure, failed to reinvent the franchise. The title was canceled with issue #24.

Short List of Notable Appearances
Teen Titans #1-24
Teen Titans Annual #1
Titans Beat Promotional Flyer
Robin & Argent Double Shot
Superboy & Risk Double Shot
Supergirl & Prysm Double Shot
Impulse & Atom Double Shot
New Year’s Evil: Dark Nemesis #1

 

Dan Jurgens’ Take on Teen Titans Members


from Wizard #60 [1996]

RISK: “Cody Driscoll is loose, flamboyant and bored stiff by school and other aspects of everyday life. And he’s hyper, in the truest sense of the word. His abilities are increased over those of the average person by a multiple of five: five times the speed, five times the strength and five times the ability to get into trouble. I could see him emerging as the real star of the book, and he’s certainly a character who is very different from the Atom, which should prove interesting.”

SLAG: “lsaiah Crockett has heat-based powers. He can do incredible things with waves of heat and, when he’s touching it, he can even melt steel or concrete with his bare hands In many ways, he is the most stable and normal member of the group, because the last thing I to write was yet another sullen black youth from the ghetto. lsiah is very solid middle-class, with a very healthy family relationship.”

ARGENT: “Toni Monetti comes from a very wealthy family, one where material things have been more important than love and understanding. She seems bright and happy and perky, but she is really very lonely and isolated. Her power is the ability to create and fire plasma energy bolts that become instantly tangible.”

PRYSM: “Audrey Spears comes from the most bizarre family situation of all, in that she did not grow up on earth, but was raised by aliens in a controlled atmosphere, something like living in a ‘Brady Bunch’ or other sitcom world. She can capture and reflect light, fire light beams and travel at light speed. By emptying her body of light, she can become nearly invisible. She is potentially the most powerful of all the Titans.”

ATOM: And then there’s the Atom, a Silver Age DC character who went from thirty-something to teenager in Zero Hour two years ago. The shrinking hero will be team leader-, and Jurgens is looking forward to him being in the Titans, “The Atom has always been fairly conservative both socially and politically, and now he’s a kid again. He appears to be I7, even though he’s really in his mid-30s, and has been married and divorced,” says Jurgens, “How is he going to handle that?” Jurgens believes the Atom (a.k.a. Ray Palmer) is a pleasant throwback to the heroes of yesterday. “He becomes a DC Silver- Age character that’s preserved in a way, and need not become a dark, brooding character like many Silver Age characters have become. Hal Jordan has gone nuts, Aquaman is a hermit that lives under the sea, Hawkman is.. well, you figure it out.”

 

Hotspot: Animated Origins


Fighting for truth, justice and the last piece of pizza, the Teen Titans animated series debuted on Cartoon Network on Saturday, July 19, 2003. A new generation of superheroes came to life as Robin led Cyborg, Beast Boy, Starfire and Raven in this all-new, high-adventure series based on the popular DC Comic Book Series. Teen Titans was produced by Warner Bros. Animation under the guidance of Emmy Award-winner Glen Murakami. The series ran for 65 episodes from 2003-2006.

In the animated series, Joto was redesigned as Hotspot, making his animated debut in the second season episode, “Winner Take All,” which aired in 2004. Hotpot was later featured the the fifth season episode, “Trust”. His voice was provided by Bumper Robinson.

The animated Hotspot.

Producer David Slack on Hotspot: “Then there’s Hotspot. He was Joto originally, and then we learned what that meant in Spanish and changed his name. [note: Joto is Swahili for heat; in Spanish, it’s a derogatory term]. With Hoptspot, the description we wrote was “A human flame-thrower with a fiery temper to match.” So he became the not-so-nice one.”

With Teen Titans (third series) #38 [2006], Isiah Crockett has changed his name to Hotspot and adopted the look of his animated counterpart.


Sources for this entry: DC Secret Files, Teen Titans [1996] letters page bio entries supplemented by titanstower.com

 


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