Some initial thoughts for the new Season of the Doom Patrol TV Series. Assume spoilers.
The character of Dorothy Spinner was introduced into the Doom Patrol comic before the beginning of the Grant Morrison and Richard Case run, though they brought her into the “team” as a regular. While they had some ideas, I don’t know if they, or any of the later writers, ever knew quite what to do with her. She would have important roles in the plots of stories, often struggling with the emotional and biological issues of being an adolescent, but as a character she never progressed the way the others did. Sometime she seemed to regress, becoming ever more a winey and tearful child.
In adding her to the Doom Patrol TV series, Jeremy Carver and company have made the wise decision to take the core idea of Dorothy and then rebuild her from the ground up, much as they did with as Larry and Rita (Cliff and Jane are more adaptions of the Morrison/Case versions of the characters than rebuilds). It’s a promising start, though there is still the issue of how much complexity they can give a child this young (as they have now made her) in such extreme circumstances. Starting her off with the growing threat of the Candlemaker — which was part of the culminating arc of the Morrison/Case run — also seems like a good call.
What I didn’t think worked, or was necessary, was her flashback. It was too contrived and excessive. I didn’t care for any of the flashbacks in this episode. Do these people really need even more painful revelations about their lives? I’d rather see them move forward, rather that be tortured by more and more past traumas. That’s why I find Rita the most interesting character. She’s still got a lot of problems, but she at least has something she wants to work towards. It’s just the wisdom of her goal of becoming a superhero in this show’s version of the DC Universe that remains to be seen.