Doom Patrol (2019) s03e04 – Undead Patrol

It took me a second to realize returning guest star Jon Briddell is not Robert Carradine. It took another second to remember the last time Briddell was on the show—they quickly remind the audience, but it was still the first season; it’s been a while. The keyword there being but. Or butt, as it were.

Briddell’s back with another scheme to destroy the Doom Patrol, with the team not in the best shape to deal with the threat. They’re recovering from their trip to the afterlife and coping with an unexpected and unknown houseguest. Ostensibly time-traveling Michelle Gomez has finally arrived in the mansion—she’s been on her way there since the season premiere end credits scene—and the team has questions for her. Gomez, however, doesn’t have any answers. Time travel gives you amnesia it turns out (something ever-welcome guest star Phil Morris confirms). All she remembers is she wants to talk to Timothy Dalton.

Too bad he’s dead.

So April Bowlby keeps an eye on Gomez—Bowlby’s pretty sure they’ve met even if Gomez is cagey about it—and they try to figure out what around the mansion might give Gomez some clues into her identity. Gomez doesn’t appreciate the help, which leads to Bowlby bitching to a surprisingly unsympathetic Matt Bomer. They hash out that hostility in an absolutely fantastic scene, juxtaposed against Diane Guerrero getting life advice from Brendan Fraser (and Riley Shanahan). Mostly it’s just Fraser (and Shanahan) bullshitting, but it’s an outstanding conversation performance. Shanahan doesn’t have an action sequence, just a fantastic “talk with his hands” sequence.

The team’s got Joivan Wade fiddling with the time machine, which is where Morris shows up for an impromptu argument. Wade confronts him with the things he learned from his dead mother last episode, and Morris has a volatile reaction. The show does just shoehorn Morris in—how does he get to the mansion so fast; he’s got to have a STAR Labs transporter—but it’s a great little scene thanks to Morris’s phenomenal performance.

However, all of this angst is just the beginning because Mark Sheppard needs the team’s help. And in return, Gomez might get the chance to talk to obviously dead Dalton, who Sheppard reveals is dead but not comic book TV show dead. The show hinted at Sheppard’s return at season premiere end credits cutscene along with Gomez’s, but it didn’t seem like he’d be back so soon. It ends up being a very good outing for Sheppard, as unexpected events foul up everyone’s plans.

There are a lot of laughs and a lot of gross-out gags in those unexpected events, with the show ending up with three profoundly, delightfully disgusting moments. The grossest might not even be the most visually icky. It’s an absolutely inspired episode, with great performances from the main cast. Even Guerrero, in part thanks to the plot.

It’s one heck of an episode.

It took me a second to realize returning guest star Jon Briddell is not Robert Carradine. It took another second to remember the last time Briddell was on the show—they quickly remind the audience, but it was still the first season; it’s been a while. The keyword there being but. Or butt, as it were.

Briddell’s back with another scheme to destroy the Doom Patrol, with the team not in the best shape to deal with the threat. They’re recovering from their trip to the afterlife and coping with an unexpected and unknown houseguest. Ostensibly time-traveling Michelle Gomez has finally arrived in the mansion—she’s been on her way there since the season premiere end credits scene—and the team has questions for her. Gomez, however, doesn’t have any answers. Time travel gives you amnesia it turns out (something ever-welcome guest star Phil Morris confirms). All she remembers is she wants to talk to Timothy Dalton.

Too bad he’s dead.

So April Bowlby keeps an eye on Gomez—Bowlby’s pretty sure they’ve met even if Gomez is cagey about it—and they try to figure out what around the mansion might give Gomez some clues into her identity. Gomez doesn’t appreciate the help, which leads to Bowlby bitching to a surprisingly unsympathetic Matt Bomer. They hash out that hostility in an absolutely fantastic scene, juxtaposed against Diane Guerrero getting life advice from Brendan Fraser (and Riley Shanahan). Mostly it’s just Fraser (and Shanahan) bullshitting, but it’s an outstanding conversation performance. Shanahan doesn’t have an action sequence, just a fantastic “talk with his hands” sequence.

The team’s got Joivan Wade fiddling with the time machine, which is where Morris shows up for an impromptu argument. Wade confronts him with the things he learned from his dead mother last episode, and Morris has a volatile reaction. The show does just shoehorn Morris in—how does he get to the mansion so fast; he’s got to have a STAR Labs transporter—but it’s a great little scene thanks to Morris’s phenomenal performance.

However, all of this angst is just the beginning because Mark Sheppard needs the team’s help. And in return, Gomez might get the chance to talk to obviously dead Dalton, who Sheppard reveals is dead but not comic book TV show dead. The show hinted at Sheppard’s return at season premiere end credits cutscene along with Gomez’s, but it didn’t seem like he’d be back so soon. It ends up being a very good outing for Sheppard, as unexpected events foul up everyone’s plans.

There are a lot of laughs and a lot of gross-out gags in those unexpected events, with the show ending up with three profoundly, delightfully disgusting moments. The grossest might not even be the most visually icky. It’s an absolutely inspired episode, with great performances from the main cast. Even Guerrero, in part thanks to the plot.

It’s one heck of an episode.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.