Quick Thought: Doom Patrol 2.02: “Tyme Patrol”

Some thoughts on the new Season of the Doom Patrol TV Series. Assume spoilers.

As much as I like tracing down ideas and noticing Easter Eggs from the Doom Patrol comics, I feel this show’s potential is in developing into its own vision of its own Doom Patrol. That’s mostly what we get in this episode. Results were mixed.

The Chief’s goals and motivations are laid out in some detail now — and I hope they will remain in place, as we don’t need more revelations and “shocking” secrets. I wonder where the show will ultimately go with the Candlemaker since, after setting up the initial idea, they could do anything they wanted with their interpretation.

Dr. Tyme

Dr. Tyme is an old silly villain from the original run of Doom Patrol comics. He also seems a way to play with one of the signatures of Richard Case’s villain designs: people with weird things for heads. Clocks, cathedrals, planets, etc. His main thing here is just not being what everybody expected of a time-traveling supervillain. He’s quite relatable, really. If you could manipulate time to your pleasure, might you also just find your favorite era and make an eternity of it? Otherwise his use in the episode was kind of thin and just setup the cliche of giving characters mysterious glimpses into the past and future.

Vic’s plot is okay, for an offbeat take on a superhero. The thing that concerns me is that he doesn’t really have a connection with the rest of the show. Cyborg had always been shoehorned into Doom Patrol, and while in Season One he provides some contrast with the other characters, now that he’s left the team it will take some work to justify bringing him back. His scenes just seem part of a different show.

Liza Radley

I don’t know where they are going with Jane. I keep thinking the “change” might be the arising of the Liza Radley persona, who shook things up in Morrison/Case comics.

Larry’s segment hasn’t really added much that’s new to his character. It appears mostly setup for the next story. The butterflies might or might not have been enough of a clue, if previews hadn’t already given things away. The Red Jack story in Morrison/Case centered on Rhea Jones, who in the TV series is one of the elder “Doom Patrol” members. It seems like Larry is being set up to take her place. But who know where the show will take it? Hopefully somewhere new and unexpected.

Quick Thought: Doom Patrol 2.01: ”Fun-Size Patrol”

Some initial thoughts for the new Season of the Doom Patrol TV Series. Assume spoilers.

Doom Patrol Season 2 Cast

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.