Saturday, March 16, 2019

REVIEW: 'Doom Patrol' - Jane Takes Center Stage in Order to Stop the Apocalypse in 'Paw Patrol'

DC Universe's Doom Patrol - Episode 1.05 "Paw Patrol"

With the Apocalypse in full swing, the Doom Patrol must work with an unlikely ally - and a very special pug - to stop the end of the world.

In 2018, there were 495 scripted shows airing amongst the linear channels and streaming services. The way people are consuming content now is so different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, there is less necessity to provide ample coverage of each specific episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site is making the move to shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of DC Universe's Doom Patrol.

"Paw Patrol" was written by Shoshana Sachi and directed by Larry Teng

This hour offers the first real glimpse into Jane's tragic backstory. The start of the season was expositional in some ways by offering the details that led to the creation of each individual of the Doom Patrol. They are still struggling with so many inner turmoils because of their traumatic pasts. Larry feels that he tortures everyone who is around him simply because of who he was before his accident and who he became after it. The spirit inside him only seemed to confirm that fact when it spoke for the first time. Rita is standing up and doing the right thing for once in trying to protect Elliott in the face of the Apocalypse. She doesn't want this innocent kid to be killed or manipulated simply because he was used by his parents for his entire life in order to bring about the end of the world. But that glimmer of hope is quickly blinked away when she tries to convince him that there is still time left to enjoy life. She wants to believe that some good has come from all of this. And yet, that only leaves her sitting on the bench outside of Doom Manor waiting for Elliott to return just like everyone else once the Apocalypse has been stopped. She's not inside the manor when the latest fight between the Doom Patrol and Mr. Nobody takes place. She's still separate from that ongoing struggle. But she is also showing that she cares and is devastated by this significant loss of life. She doesn't want another innocent kid to be hurt just in order to stop the Apocalypse from happening fully. The Chief returns to the Doom Patrol because he has concocted a plan with Mr. Nobody to create a rival cult that could bring the arrival of the Recreator to battle the Decreator. It's wondrously insane especially since Niles throws up whenever Nobody's name is mentioned by the team. That is the burden he carries. He returns to the team improved in some ways. He can walk once more. That's a gift that Nobody can give him. However, he also stands as a more complicated man than the Chief the team has always known. Vic has looked to him as a beacon of justice. Someone who would never compromise himself in any situation. And now, he is literally teaming up with the villain of this story in order to deal with this other threat to the universe. Nobody doesn't want the world to end because he hasn't finished his own story of making Niles suffer. He loves being the narrator and he hasn't served in that role for awhile now. He even notes that he has been missing from the last two episodes. Now, that's some incredibly meta commentary. However, it still proves how Nobody insists that he is in charge no matter what. He has the power to bring Niles back to Doom Manor and take him away just as easily. He can do so while leaving the team crippled as well. Everyone rejoices at this reunion even though it's short-lived. The Chief isn't able to say goodbye. He is snatched away. That again shows that the team really doesn't know how to combat Nobody quite yet. They may be unable to do so until they get a stronger hold on their own issues. Vic refuses to call his father for help even when he is critically injured here. That's devastating. Of course, Nobody also gives Jane a glimmer of hope in the past. In 1977, he gives one of her personalities - Dr. Harrison, who has the ability to manipulate whomever listens to her - a purpose in forming this rival cult. It's a strategy that is insane but actually works. The eyes in the sky face off and essentially cancel each other out. As such, the world is restored to what it once was. But Nobody still has big plans for Dr. Harrison and will continue to ask her for help. She may be willing to give it to him because of the crucial tools he gave her. Sure, Niles was the one who rescued her from this psychiatric facility that only increased the torture on her. He gave her a place to belong at Doom Manor. And yet, she is no closer to dealing with the trauma of her own past because she emotionally shuts down whenever anyone confronts her with her true childhood persona of Kay.