”Our story begins, as such stories do, with a visit to a Nazi.”
Doom Patrol premiered last night on the DC Universe streaming service and boy, are we in for a ride! We first met this cast of misfit characters on Titans. On Titans we got a sense of their personalities, and now we get to know their back stories. Be warned, there are spoilers ahead.
Doom Patrol starts, as any good story does, in the 40’s with Nazi experimentation on a man who probably shouldn’t be given super powers. All throughout the episode, our story is narrated by this man, Eric Morden (Mr. Nobody), played by Alan Tudyk. He regularly breaks the 4th wall, adding a chuckle to this frequently heavy episode. The pilot mostly centers around Cliff Steele, from his back story to him coming to grips with what has happened to him and what he has now become: Robotman. Your heart breaks for Cliff as his memories return and he remembers what actually happened to his wife and daughter, that the accident that left him with only a brain, also claimed their lives (or so he is told).
We are also given brief backstories to Rita Farr, AKA Elasti-Girl, and Larry Trainor, AKA Negative Man. Rita Farr, the lovely 50’s movie star who is left disfigured by a mysterious force after a horrible accident on set. Larry Trainor is the hotshot pilot who made a trip into space and brought back something inhuman that allowed him to survive the plane crash, yet left him permanently and horribly burned. Our mystery girl is Crazy Jane who has 64 personalities, each with their own unique power. And there’s the Chief, Dr. Niles Caulder, who brings them all together.
Once all our characters are together, they decide to make a trip into town while Chief is away, which of course goes terribly wrong. This of course draws attention to their location, allowing them to be located by our villain, Eric Mordern. The episode ends on a cliffhanger, as they are confronted by our strange villain.
After the surprise hit that was Titans, many of us were looking forward to Doom Patrol and we weren’t disappointed. The story in just the first episode was attention grabbing, drawing you and making you quickly fall in love with the characters. The only real change from Titans to Doom Patrol was the recasting of Chief, who was played on Titans by Bruno Bichir. Now Chief is played by Timothy Dalton. The change is a welcome one however, as he brings a fatherly aspect to the character which is needed as he is their protector in the series, were as he was the antagonist on Titans. After a long time out of the spotlight, it was wonderful to see Brendan Fraser on screen once again. The chemistry between the characters was perfect, and you can quickly see them becoming a team.
The show is also bringing fantastic content to its streaming service. While the service is still slightly lacking in content, there is more original content slated to premiere this year. If that content is anything like Titans and Doom Patrol, then we are definitely in for a wild ride.
Doom Patrol stars Alan Tudyk, April Bowlby, Brenden Fraser, Diane Guerrero, Matt Bomer and Timothy Dalton, and on the DC Universe Streaming Service. New episodes release every Friday.