TV REVIEW: "DC's Doom Patrol" S1 E11 "Frances Patrol"


Larry Trainor and John Powers

The latest episode of DC Universe's original series Doom Patrol was released Friday April 26th and is titled Frances Patrol. A fair warning, you may want to have a box of tissues nearby for this beautifully written and acted tear-jerker. This series does a great job of continuously diving deep into the main characters, who they are, their loves, their heartbreaks, and their struggles. After all the bizarreness of last week's Hair Patrol, the show scales back the crazy a bit with Frances Patrol. Strange things still happen, of course, this is Doom Patrol we are talking about, but there are several heartwarming as well as sad scenes throughout this very touching episode.


The theme of Frances Patrol is acceptance. Understanding to accept yourself and to appreciate others for who they are. In episode 11, you see Larry Trainor (Negative Man) and Cliff Steele (Robotman) trying to make peace with the past and who they are. Throughout season one, we have watched Larry Trainor struggle with his sexuality and his love for John Bowers. In this episode we get to see more of Larry's past with help from the negative spirit inside him. The spirit takes him back into his memories and his time spent with John. You see how much he truly loved him and how extremely difficult it was for him to be comfortable letting others see their love. Matt Bomer continues to knock it out of the park as Larry. He does a tremendous job of bringing this character to life and making us, the viewer, care so deeply for him.


While Larry deals with his past with John, Cliff Steele (Robotman) and Rita Farr (Elasti-Woman) set off on an adventure to "gator country." Since Cliff found out his daughter Clara is still alive, he has been struggling with how to handle it; should he tell her he is dead, but is still alive as a robot? In light of recent events, he and Rita go to see her. It is an incredibly difficult situation to be in, trying to figure out what the right thing to do really is, and how or if he should apologize to her. Giving the character of Robotman such humanity is a very cool and smart move.


The remaining two team members, Vic Stone (Cyborg) and Jane (Crazy Jane), check out the mysterious comic book that Danny the Street gave Cyborg in episode 8. Since her return from the Underground, Jane is on a mission to find Niles Caulder (Chief) and get some answers as to why he was going to lock her up in the old folks home with the original Doom Patrol team. They both believe the comic book, more importantly the missing "Hero of the Beach," holds the key to finding the Chief. With Cyborg still uncertain about his operating system, and all the malfunctions he's been having, the two set off to find this "Hero of the Beach."


There are only four episodes remaining in season one, and you can catch them Fridays on the DC Universe streaming service.

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