Doom Patrol review: A nearly pawfect episode


The Doom Patrol survived the apocalypse and created the anti-apocalypse. Beyond changing some of the Decreator’s comic book limelight, the team has grown a lot in “Paw Patrol.”

We figured out what Mr. Nobody was doing on his vacation from his narration job the last two episodes. Sure, torturing your archenemy might not seem like relaxing time off, but we’re glad Morden found a way to unwind before he had to momentarily team up with the Doom Patrol (even if they still haven’t officially taken on that moniker yet). In an episode about an overwhelmingly powerful eye, “Paw Patrol” celebrates Jane’s power beyond one of her alter’s on-screen debut.

Doom Patrol, the characters in the series, and the writers understand and appreciate that convention isn’t a common theme for the strange family. While all of the episodes have embodied what it means to be unconventional, “Paw Patrol” thoroughly embraces the unorthodox theme by adding some new and complementary mythos in a classic Decreator lore: the Recreator and the Cult of the Rewritten Book.

The episode uses this mysterious new addition and Mr. Nobody’s temporary mostly good alignment to prevent viewers from predicting how the team will stop the Decreator and close the gates of Nurnheim. Going back in time to change the past for the present’s sake allows the episode to further develop Mr. Nobody’s extensive powers on the series. By tinkering with one of Jane’s other alters and ultimately her future, the episode reminds us that despite the humor and oddities, Doom Patrol is a tragic story about even more tragic heroes.

Using Jane’s unfortunate history with abuse and oppression reminds us of the horrifying undertones in the DC Universe series. From the scenes where she endeavored racism and physical and mental abuse at the hands of her alleged caretakers in the past, the tragic undertones seep into overtones. The flashbacks of her abuse aren’t used as plot devices to give us insight into her origin story. They do serve as an implicit origin to Dr. Harrison. Still, these disturbing flashback scenes are just there as a grim reminder to the audience how some of the most distressing moments that are embedded in Doom Patrol lore.

However, in an episode about creating, Jane’s characterization (along with her other alters, especially Harrison) shows how powerful she is. Beyond just surviving a lifetime of abuse and cruelty, a part of Jane created a god. Literally. Harrison created the Recreator and annihilated the apocalypse itself. Though Mr. Nobody’s manipulations might have aided her in the process, it’s undeniable how empowering that narrative is.

Like tinkering with Harrison’s entrance in the Doom Patrol timeline could have a ripple effect in another culty comic book arc, Jane isn’t the only character who showcase powerful character development. Niles Caulder’s second disappearance from Doom Manor will have even more critical impacts on his newly heroic kids. As Victor Stone embarks on his path to become the undeniable leader of the team and Jane ignites the namesake of the team, we have faith the soon-to-be official team will be able to handle the ominous references in Mr. Nobody’s closing monologue.

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Though Ezekiel, the apocalyptic fanatic cockroach, might not be happy with the outcome of seeing another attempted doomsday squandered, “Paw Patrol” created heartwarming and heartbreaking character development. Just like the impact of the apocalypse and Mr. Nobody’s fiddlings, Doom Patrol isn’t done with Mr. Nobody or officially constructing the namesake team.