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Review: ‘Doom Patrol’ Season 1 Episode 4 – “Cult Patrol”
“Cult Patrol” Writer: Marcus Dalzine & Chris Dingess
Director: Stefan Pleszczynski
Starring: Diane Guerrero, April Bowlby, Matt Bomer, Brendan Fraser, Joivan Wade, Mark Sheppard & Ted Sutherland. Featuring Riley Shanahan and Matthew Zuk
Review by Steve J. Ray
In this week’s episode: The power of The Beatles, hot sauce, Simon & Garfunkel in a French accent (blue style, and a little bit pony) plus; what exactly happens to letters that never get sent? Yes, the whacky’s back, and this episode is pure magic… literally.
Time To Pick Up A Good Book
This episode of Doom Patrol has a completely different feel to the first three. Not better, not worse... different. The attention to detail and respect for the comics is as high in this chapter as it is in any comic-book adaptation I’ve ever seen. The Cult Of The Unwritten Book, and all it’s various members, are beautifully brought to life. If you haven’t read the comics, don’t worry; in fact, I’m actually quite jealous. Writers Marcus Dalzine and Chris Dingess, along with director Stefan Pleszczynski, have done an amazing job of updating and enhancing all these wonderful characters for TV.
I must applaud fellow Brit Mark Sheppard, too. This man is one of my favourite actors and, like Alan (Mr. Nobody) Tudyk, is a veritable GreekGeek God. Sheppard has appeared in almost every franchise imaginable: X-Files, Star Trek: Voyager, Battlestar Galactica, Firefly, Doctor Who, and of course, as the King Of Hell, Crowley, in Supernatural. This fella’s the real deal.
It’s Not Just The Sauce That’s Hot
Willoughby Kipling was created specifically for Doom Patrol by writer Grant Morrison. Back in the day the original intent was for John Constantine to battle the Cult, in the Doom Patrol comics series. These days we all know and see Constantine across the entire DC Universe, both in comics and on-screen. Back then, though, the editors of Vertigo Comics (DC’s mature readers imprint where Constantine made his home), wanted to keep their worlds separate from the rest of DC Comics continuity. Thus, Willoughby Kipling was born.
Yes, there are very many similarities between the two characters, but their backgrounds are quite different. You’ll find this out for yourselves in this wonderful episode.
Mark Sheppard is also very, very different to Matt (Constantine Ryan). Not better, not worse… different. After just one episode I am completely in love with Sheppard’s irreverent, ballsy, and rough around the edges character. I’m not spoiling anything by saying that this isn’t the last we’ll see of him either.
Keep an Eye out.
The entire Doom Patrol team also grows in leaps and bounds this week. We learn a lot more about Rebis, the energy being who lives within Larry Trainor, and it's not too much of a stretch to say that Rita Farr finally starts to live up to her name. Cliff and Jane also reach a turning point in both how they see other, and themselves. We finally get to see our first glimpse of Kay Challis, too.
The writing team really has done an outstanding job of getting to the heart of these characters, while still delivering an hour of action, thrills, magic, suspense and silliness. That’s where the difference I mentioned earlier comes in. Yes, this episode delivers as much mind-bending lunacy as its predecessors, but a lot more action. We get to really see the Patrol start to coalesce into a fighting force, and a team. Four episodes in, that’s a fantastic sign.
This week’s episode completely delivers everything that I love about Doom Patrol, but the stakes have been raised. We’re finally seeing the kind of threats on TV that fans of the comics have enjoyed, and come to expect, for decades. Oracles, mystical realms, killer nuns, undead assassins… it’s all here.
This show is unlike any other series on television. Not better, not worse… different.
It's very rare that the worlds of geeks and music collide in a powerful way, but Professor Elemental has made that happen.
'School of Whimsy' sees Brighton's finest export solidify his career with his strongest album to date. Over a ten year journey Paul Alborough has helped create the phenomenon of Chap-Hop, a mix of hip hop and a tongue-in-cheek take on English gentry.
The character of Professor Elemental has allowed Paul to push the boundaries of his music, as well as allowing him to show the world his love of anything nerdy. His songs are littered with references to superheroes and comics, and have a huge underlying message of positivity.
Luckily, Fantastic Universes' resident music ninja Scott Hamilton managed to chat not only with Paul, but also with the crazy genius that is Professor Elemental. Here's part one where we talk to Paul about his musical career, his love of comics and what we can expect from the Professor in the future…
I make it no secret, readers, that I love two games more than the air I breathe. Dungeons and Dragons, and Magic: the Gathering. Despite being made by the same publishing company, Wizards of the Coast, they've made almost no crossed streams.
The talk of Wizards wanting to publish a new setting for their supplemental campaigns left many wondering where we can go. This is no mere Plane Shift - like those of Zendikar or Kaladesh, leaving us with races and statistics, and prompts on where to go. This is a full, world guide. And it's RAVNICA!
Next to nothing is known about this supplement. It appeared on Brazilian Amazon then later on an American version of the site. The product description features very accurate portrait of the Acumenopolis in the heart of every Magic player. All we can do is speculate.
As an avid player of both games, I have exceedingly high expectations for this supplement. It needs to deliver new races seen on Ravnica. Goblins of…
a cold, wet, dreary morning as I sit on the bus heading to work, but
I'm smiling and in a cheery mood. Why? Because I'm listening to Professor
Elemental's "School Of Whimsy!" For
the uninitiated, Professor Elemental is the country's finest example
of Chap-Hop Emcee. Marrying beats and rap, with a nod towards geek
and UK culture. It's certainly more tongue in cheek than the likes of
other rappers, but that is part of it's charm. The
Prof is one of us, a geek, someone who'd like to try and focus on
having fun. Yeah, you can look deeper into the meanings behind the
lyrics but, you know what, sometimes it's just about trying to put a
smile on your face. "School
Of Whimsy" is the latest collection of tunes from the Brighton
based rapper and he's dropping a solid gold set of tracks. The lessons
here aren't maths, geography and the like. These are life
lessons, learned from experience, by being there an…