Posted on Sunday, February 10th, 2019 by Fred Topel
After releasing the most recent trailer for the series, DC Universe brings their second original program to the fans starting next week. Doom Patrol stars Brendan Fraser as Cliff Steele/Robotman, Matt Bomer as Larry Trainor/Negative Man, April Bowlby as Rita Farr/Elasti-Girl, Diane Guerrero as Crazy Jane, Joivan Wade as Victor Stone/Cyborg and Timothy Dalton as Dr. Niles Caulder. But they’re not the only members of Doom Patrol we’ll meet in the first season.
Find out the rest of the Doom Patrol characters coming to the series, as well as details on the new Cyborg, where the money is being spent, and how much of Brendan Fraser and Matt Bomer we’ll see despite the fact that the characters they play don’t really show their real faces much.
Celsius, Lodestone, Danny the Street and Beard Hunter
Doom Patrol has a pretty strong slate to begin with, but of course there are many more great characters in the comic. Series creator Jeremy Carver said we will see at least three more in the first season.
“I think the show is dipping into different versions of the Doom Patrol over the years. We touch on and take a great jumping off point is the Grant Morrison run in the ‘90s. We dip into the silver age where we are seeing the Celsius and Loadstone characters. We’re going to see some other characters that have graced over the years such as Danny the Street. We’re going to see one of my more beloved characters the Beard Hunter.”
Danny the Street was confirmed for the show in December. Celsius and Lodestone give Doom Patrol more female representation, and WOC representation in the case of Celsius. Beard Hunter (seen above) will join Mr. Nobody (played by Alan Tudyk) as the show’s villains.
You Get What You Pay For
When you see the first two episodes of Doom Patrol, there are four origin stories that all involve major catastrophes, and superhero team battles that destroy city blocks. TV can do that now, as seven years of Arrowverse shows proved, but DC is spending more money on DC Universe. Carver said:
“Warner Bros. and DC are very serious about putting that money up on the screen to give you a premium viewing experience.”
“Money up on screen” and “premium viewing experience” are buzz words, but having seen the first two episodes, I can tell you it looks like Zack Snyder’s DC movies. That’s not just money on the screen, that’s DCEU money.
Yet Another Cyborg
Ray Fisher played Cyborg in the Justice League movie and presumably there is still a solo Cyborg movie in the works. Jovian Wade’s Cyborg is much different though. The actor explains:
“This DC Universe is another exciting opportunity for us to cross over and live in a world that hasn’t been seen. We’re in a world where Cyborg is a different version than we’ve seen in Justice league or any other version. I have my own take on it. It’s an earlier Cyborg. It’s a version of him that’s coming into his powers and a long way off from the Justice League.”
Cyborg is also an animated character in Teen Titans GO! and Teen Titans GO! To the Movies, although no one is likely to be confused between the animated and live-action Cyborgs.
“DC has made a decision to separate the feature world from the television world,” executive producer Sarah Schechter said. “I don’t think there’s been any confusion. Comic books have always had multiple version s of the same character with different writers, artists and stories.”
Where Are Brendan Fraser and Matt Bomer?
Fraser provides the voiceover of Robotman, but still plays Cliff Steele in flashbacks to his life. Bomer is covered in bandages or heavy prosthetic makeup, but also has flashbacks to before Trainor’s accident. While Bowlby, Guerrero, Dalton and Wade may get more screen time, Fraser and Bomer still have their moments.
“It depends on the episode,” Schechter said. But Carver added, “Some episodes they’re all over the episode. Some episodes they’re less. It’s episode by episode.”
Bomer was not on the panel because he was the one cast member still filming his scenes. Fraser had no issues with how much work Doom Patrol gave him.
“There’s a parity in the casting and the way the story is revealed,” Fraser said. “Everyone gets time to carry the flag.”
Forget What You Saw On Titans
The Doom Patrol made an appearance on DC Universe’s first streaming series Titans. However, Carver said viewers could, and should come to Doom Patrol fresh.
“There are elements that were present in the Titans Doom Patrol, but I think everyone is best suited coming into this Doom Patrol understanding we have our own continuity and own story.”
That’s a neat trick. They get to advertise their upcoming series in the middle of Titans, but still get to start over without being beholden to the Titans episode. I haven’t watched Titans so I didn’t have any problem following along.
Getting the Origin Stories Out of the Way
Except for Cyborg, most of the Doom Patrol characters have origin stories we haven’t seen yet. It’s not exactly Batman, Superman or Spider-Man where new iterations get bogged down in the same old origin story.
Still, Carver wanted to get the origin stories on the table up top, because he has plans for more flashbacks along the way.
“Because we were dealing with particularly two characters who you couldn’t see, one wrapped in bandages and one inside a robotic body, I thought it was really important you get a very good grounding of not just those two characters but the others so that you’re fully behind the characters in the story. You needed to feel the people who were under the bandages and inside the robot body. Also knowing there was plenty more story and plenty more reveals, we go to it a lot. There’s a lot to unpack. We are telling a much larger story against a much larger canvas that we just start to hint at in the pilot.”
Plus, they’re pretty cool origin stories. Trainor crashes a space flight. Steele was a race car driver but that’s not what cost him his family and his life. Farr was a movie star diva before an on set accident changed everything. So they get Doom Patrol off to a good start and it’s great to know there’s more to come.
/Film will have an in-depth interview with Jeremy Carver later this week, so stay tuned.
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