Doom Patrol “Pilot” Review

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Since the Doom Patrol’s introduction in the first season of Titans, this series premiere has been highly anticipated for what it has to offer in contrast to other DC series. From what we had seen so far, Doom Patrol is a series which would give us hope that you can strike a balance between being funny, having heart, and delivering on some action. Now that’s not to say that there aren’t some questions surrounding the two new additions for the show, but there’s only one way to know if they fit.

Now I was already moved by our first experience with this cast, but this series premiere was another thing entirely. The introductions were all quite heartbreaking because there was much more to who they were versus what they became. Normally I love these obscure characters for how they break the mold, however at the same time you are never really given reasons to connect with those characters outside of things they might do for the sake of a laugh. These weren’t characters who you wanted to laugh with or at. Not when you had to first understand what makes them misfits. The actress who had it all and now fights to keep from turning into a blob. The racer who lost his family and everything aside from his brain. And lets not forget the pilot who who is scarred from head to toe from a bad exposure to negative energy. Some might look at what these guys have to see a second chance with a side of powers, but at what cost? Through the events of this first hour it was made clear why these guys wouldn’t be so keen on taking too many trips into the outside world.

Cyborg’s time is still to come, but for this premiere we start off with Crazy Jane. Off the bat, I wasn’t so sure how I felt about this character. In contrast to the others she seemed the most normal. It was great feeling to be wrong about her when the time came to reveal what makes her so special. Her situation might make you instantly think of Legion (Marvel), but at least she is a character who they are bold enough to actually give her her dissociative identity disorder. I mean, to have 64 alternate personalities with a different super-power? Pretty badass even if like the others there’s still a matter of self-control which she is lacking. That made for some awesome interactions between this cast and some others along the way.

The team taking a trip outside Doom Manor was fitting for a start to the series. Plenty of people unfamiliar with this team will no doubt wonder why they don’t simply go outside the walls of this mansion to experience the world around them. You would question that for anyone in their positions, but it was smart that this question was answered immediately. It’s not just about being comfortable with themselves. It’s about the world being ready for what they are, and them being ready for the kind of welcome they could receive if they weren’t. Their responses were perfectly executed without being too predictable. Things were obviously going to go wrong, but it was how which mattered most. Everything flowed naturally and nothing happened that was too dramatic. It was in fact disastrous in an odd kind of way. You think of the worst case scenario for them, and it’s not the kind of trouble you would deal with when considering out of the ordinary problems.

One big difference between Titans and Doom Patrol is how we have switched to Timothy Dalton. His presence was never as consistent as the others, but you still got the picture about the kind of man he was. Someone generous enough to give these people second chances at life, yet just as easily you could see the way that he can be possessive and controlling. I enjoyed the way that the rest of the team either subtly or directly confronts him about this habit.

It does take by the end of the episode before Mr. Nobody actually makes his presence known, but I was much more interested in how this first episode would be used as set-up rather than jumping straight into the fire. There’s plenty more room for that kind of action and gives us reason to anticipate next week’s episode just as much as the first. Unlike Titans, this is already a team. That means we expect them to act like a team when the call to action comes. That much did not disappoint, and the introduction of Mr. Nobody was better than you would imagine for the quality of effects that aren’t too distracting.

The Doom Patrol “Pilot” quickly makes this another win for the DC Universe streaming service. You can tell now that they mean business with these series which satisfy all your comic book loving needs. The best recipe was found giving us compelling characters, accuracy to the source material, and endearing us with what you get when you strive for more than drama.

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Editor Rating
 
Total Score
8.6