I miss Marvel, now what?
One reason to dabble in the DC Universe even though you love Marvel.
If you are a fan of the Marvel Universe, especially The Avengers movies, then you NEED to check out Doom Patrol.
Now, if you are a die hard fan of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, then you may be savvy to the fact that Doom Patrol is part of the DC Universe. So you may be asking yourself, why in the world would someone who loves Marvel, ever cross over to the dark side??
Well, that’s what I asked myself when I was first told to watch Doom Patrol. I love Marvel. I love all of the characters and how they are developed both together and individually. I love the messages they send about camaraderie and standing up for what you believe in while still staying true to yourself and supporting the people you love. I love that the characters are relatable and that someday I’m going to marry Captain America (Chris Evans I love you!). All of it is a culminating tale of heroes, love, and family. Marvel truly has it all!
So why, oh why, am I telling you to watch a television show in a rival creative universe?
Because Doom Patrol hits all of the delightful buttons that The Avengers does, but in some truly unique ways.
Let’s begin with character development. When we first meet our ragtag group of heroes, they are all living in a secluded manor and being watched over by a man named Niles Caulder, or more affectionately known as Chief. We first discover this sequestered group through the eyes of Cliff. After a horrific accident during his successful career as a race car driver, Chief found Cliff and gave him a second chance at life. Unfortunately for Cliff, it was nothing like his old life. All that Chief could salvage of Cliff’s original body was his brain, which he put inside of an advanced although seemingly rudimentary robot body.
Cliff is belligerent, crude, and lacks tact in nearly everything he does. And yet he manages to be an amazing amalgamation of Captain America and the Hulk. Like Cap, he never asks to lead the people around him but does so relentlessly, and stands up for those who can’t stand up for themselves. Like the Hulk, he has parts of himself that he struggles to control. Parts that make it hard for him to connect to people around him.
And Cliff is just one of the colorful characters in this ensemble of unsuspecting heroes. There’s “Crazy Jane”, who has 64 personalities (each with a different super power). Jane’s story beautifully highlights the serious struggle of mental illness and the personal battles that many people are forced to face within themselves. And if you’re looking for a villain to give you conflicting feelings like the god that is Loki, look no further than Mr. Nobody. His fourth wall breaking antics and mysterious powers will leave you questioning your own sanity while wondering what he’ll get up to next.
Next, the messages Doom Patrol sends are inspired. My favorite? The one sent by the character Danny. Danny is a sentient, non-binary, telepoting street. No, none of that was a typo. They are a street that teleports it’s inhabitants all over the world. Danny moves because he is home to a large group of individuals who felt out of place in the outside world. They were people who didn’t feel as though they could be themselves, or were ostracized, or were just tired of being left alone. At the worst parts in their lives, they found Danny. Danny provides them with a home to be unapologetically themselves, while evading anyone who would try to harm them. Danny and the people they have provided a home to ( known better as the “Dannyzens”) teaches viewers many things, my favorite being that we all deserve a place in this world where we are accepted and loved.
Lastly, I’ve never known heroes who could be so relatable. For this point, let’s go back to “Crazy Jane” or Jane as she is known to her fellow heroes. As I mentioned before, Jane has 64 separate personalities. While not everyone can relate to having a personality disorder, many people either have or know someone who struggles with a mental illness. Some, like Janes, have the potential to dominate people's lives. Even more, we watch her go through different methods of coping with her illness, some healthy and some very much not. But we watch as she and the people who consider her family do all they can to help bring her back to who she truly is. Again, I know not everyone can relate to this kind of struggle, but I know we can relate to what it’s like to face our own demons if only to stop harming the ones we love.
Listen, I ADORE Marvel, and I’m not saying trade in your Captain America shield for a Superman cape. What I am saying is that if you are looking for a show with genuine characters, that makes you reflect on yourself and gives you some solid laughs, then you need to watch Doom Patrol. It’s a fun tale of underdogs, personal morals, and trusting in your truth. Doom Patrol, it’s worth the watch.
Besides, if you do decide to defect to DC, your Marvel friends don’t have to know.