Doom Patrol – “Francis Patrol” Review

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Larry and John reliving a cherished memory. Photo courtesy of KSiteTV.

Please Keep In Mind That This Article Contains Potential Spoilers For “Francis Patrol” and Events That Occurred Prior

“Francis Patrol” in general swung for the heart strings on nearly all fronts, with not one—but two major characters going through huge reunions. You know during all of that Jane and Beard Hunter drama, I was starting to think that Larry was the only one that was going to come out of all of that unaffected. Looks like I was wrong—turns out that the Negative Spirit is a pretty good multitasker.

We finally got the answer to a question that’s probably been in the back of a lot of people’s mind. What ever happened to John? Well now we know—and boy was it a tear jerker. We learned that these memories that Larry was experiencing throughout the episode were not only triggered by a dying John, but also shared by his conscious. Knowing that all of those memories contained the real John was incredibly fascinating and added multiple new layers added to the scenes.

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Larry having trouble figuring out why this is all happening. Photo courtesy of KSiteTV.

Seeing them reunite in person all of these years later didn’t disappoint either. Not only was the entire sequence of Larry and John meeting again done incredibly well, but the real stand out moment took place on the porch. That last conversation was phenomenal—as both of these men got to have a real conversation, something that they always longed to have with each other. It was a fitting final moment for John, who seemed to have only been clinging onto life so long in desperation to see Larry one last time. The closure finally experienced by Larry was well deserved, and hopefully going forward he will be in a better place.

Usually one big reunion would be enough to sink your teeth into. But no, not for Doom Patrol. While Larry was off finding closure with John, Cliff got to see his grown daughter for the first time. Simply seeing Cliff watch Clara from a distance was enough to make feel my emotions dance around. What also really added to the emotional resonance was how Cliff simply had no idea what to do. He comes from such an absurd situation that anything he could say would simply be outlandish to this woman who had never met him. So what does he do? Hunt down a crocodile in order to prove his love of course. It’s always oddly poignant when Cliff gets to such an emotional state that his mind and body don’t really know how to handle it—and he essential shuts down. In the end however he did prevail, and was able to leave the watch for his daughter. Now it’s hard to accurately get a reading of what faced through Clara’s mind…but is she possibly suspecting something? Even just a small outlandish thought?

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Larry and John together at a gay bar Photo courtesy of KSiteTV.

I also really want to make note of just how fantastic April Bowlby is as Rita. Her performance is always something else, but she really shined in this episode as a foil to Cliff in his time of need (a unique pairing that I fully approve of). The way that April Bowlby plays the character is simply perfection, and the comedic timing/elements that it can bring to scenes are consistently hilarious. Also, even in the midst of everything else happening in the episode, somehow Rita was able to find a small moment for herself to show character growth. She used her real name! It’s quite incredible how such a small moment can shine so brightly for the character.

Now while all of this was happening elsewhere, Vic was dealing with some bodily horror on his end. I mean how gross and unsettling was it to see Vic cutting himself open? I mean he even sorted through various layers of muscle. It would seem that he’s becoming more and more Cyborg—and well that’s not good. I really love the angle they are taking with Vic’s storyline—and Grid in particular. Grid has some villainous associations when it comes to the comics, and the show is taking a fantastic and unique approach in introducing this to us. It feels so devilishly natural to the story, and so subtlety set-up throughout the season that I just help but think “how didn’t I see this sooner?”

“Frances Patrol” was another installment of Doom Patrol at its finest. There was plenty to digest here. Things like the two big reunions, Grid threatening a hostile takeover, and further questions being brought up thanks to Danny’s clue. The main question though—who is Flex Mentallo? And how is he important in finding the Chief? It’s only a matter of time before we find out. However the team has a more pressing matter to deal with first—rescuing one of their own.

 

Bonus Note:

  • I didn’t get around to saying anything about Jane, but needless to say she’s still great. Her summation of the ridiculous events prior was a sight to behold.

 

You can catch new episodes of Doom Patrol when they air on DC Universe streaming network every Friday.

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Author: Russ Milheim

I'm Russ, and I'm a nerd to the core. Pop culture is the fuel that drives me. Television, Movies, Games, Comics, and Superheroes are my passions in life. Want to talk anything DC or Marvel? I’m here for you. Like Funko Pop! figures? Those are my thing as well. The moral of the story, is that I felt Game of Nerds was the best place to try and share my love for all things pop culture to the world, and engage with people across the world.

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