May 26, 2024

Gabbing Geek

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Doom Patrol “Jane Patrol”

Season One, Episode Nine.

Well, I think anyone watching the show up until this point knew Jane had problems.  Now we get to see how messed up she is.

Plus, this episode made me want to rescue a puppy.

Yeah, much of this episode takes place inside Jane’s head, particularly in a place called “the Underground”.  After the previous episode, where the Karen personality was dragged back inside, the other personas in there insisted the Jane personality had to go out and be the anchor again since all these different personas have a job to do and that’s hers.  And Jane…decides she doesn’t want to go.

Arguably, there isn’t much plot to this episode, but instead we get a lot of really weird and crazy visuals representing Jane’s psyche and memories.  And as good as actress Diane Guerrero has been playing all of Jane’s various personalities in the series thus far, inside her head she plays only one or two of them, mostly Jane.  Other actresses come in as different personas, all of them rather well cast even if they have no actual lines.  Hammerhead is a bald punk woman?  Works for me.  Heck, the episode even names them as they appear, and the chainsaw nun from the issue of the comic series Grant Morrison wrote that is the basis for this entire episode is there, and I finally learned her name even if she doesn’t speak.  Who is she?  The Nun.

OK, it isn’t the most original, but she still had that freakin’ chainsaw.

Point is, the personality known as Jane has had enough and may not go back, meaning Kay Challis’s mind may have to put together yet another anchor personality.

And then, well, Cliff goes into Jane’s mind.  Larry’s “Negative Spirit” can apparently just zap Cliff in there, and he appears as his pre-robot self, so Brendan Fraser gets to actually show his face for most of the episode.  That was nice.

And there is one thing most if not all of Jane’s personalities all agree on:  they don’t want Cliff in there.  The one exception is Penny Farthing, and she’ll only guide Cliff but so far deep into Jane’s mind where all the really bad memories are.  The worse the memory, the deeper her mind buries it.  What’s pretty deep in there?  The day Jane met Cliff.  Why?  Penny says it gave Jane “hope”.

As it is, Jane’s heading to “the well” where personas go to die.  What’s down there?  A memory of Jane in the 1950s as a small girl whose father clearly did bad things to her.  Jane takes her juvenile version’s place and Cliff wants to stop her.

First, though, Cliff needs to get past the man-hating Black Annis.  He can because Cliff’s robot form is under his flesh, and Robotman may be many things, but he isn’t technically a man, so Cliff can help Jane confront the personality at the center of the raging darkness that is her mind.  What’s there?

Jane’s father made of puzzle pieces (young Kay was working a giant jigsaw puzzle just before he abused her).  And when Big Daddy starts to toss Cliff around like a rag doll, well, Jane has had enough and takes care of him, allowing both Jane and  Cliff to wake up.

So, see, that was nice.  Will Jane be nicer to Cliff now?  Has Cliff earned forgiveness?  Did their meeting give rise to hope that isn’t in vain?

I dunno.  Check back with this spot next week.