Monday, May 14, 2018

TITANS Spinoff DOOM PATROL Gets Series Order from DC Universe

DC's strangest heroes are finally getting their own series.

Deadline has word that the upcoming digital service DC Universe has given a straight-to-series order for Doom Patrol, based on the DC Comics superteam.  The live-action drama series has received an order for 13 episodes and will spin out of the events of the Titans TV series.

The Doom Patrol is expected to debut in the fifth Titans episode, "The Doom Patrol", written by Geoff Johns.  The spinoff series should star Bruno Bichir as The Chief, April Bowlby as Elasti-Girl, Dwain Murphy as Negative Man, and Jake Michaels as Robotman.

The series is the sixth DC Comics adaptation in development for DC Universe, after the animated series Harley Quinn and Young Justice: Outsiders, and the live-action series Titans, Swamp Thing and Metropolis

According to the article, Doom Patrol is described as "a re-imagining of the beloved group of outcast superheroes: Robotman, Negative Man, Elasti-Girl and Crazy Jane, led by modern-day mad scientist Dr. Niles Caulder (The Chief).  The Doom Patrol’s members each suffered horrible accidents that gave them superhuman abilities — but also left them scarred and disfigured. Traumatized and downtrodden, the team found purpose through The Chief, who brought them together to investigate the weirdest phenomena in existence — and to protect Earth from what they find. Part support group, part Super Hero team, the Doom Patrol is a band of super-powered freaks who fight for a world that wants nothing to do with them."

In addition, the series will pick up "after the events of Titans, Doom Patrol will find these reluctant heroes in a place they never expected to be, called to action by none other than Cyborg, who comes to them with a mission hard to refuse, but with a warning that is hard to ignore: their lives will never, ever be the same."

Supernatural's Jeremy Carver will write and executive produce the series with Geoff Johns (Titans), Greg Berlanti and Berlanti Productions’ Sarah Schechter.  Berlanti Productions will produce in association with Warner Bros. Television.

Created in 1963 by Arnold Drake and Bruno Premiani, The Doom Patrol first appeared in
My Greatest Adventure #80 as a team of super-powered misfits brought together by Dr. Niles Caulder, a.k.a. The Chief, to protect the innocent and fight crime, and to teach humanity to accept others who live as ostracized "freaks," who have been radically transformed from terrible accidents.  Eventually, tragedy struck when the Doom Patrol's enemies, the Brotherhood of Evil, threatened a small New England fishing village.  The Patrol members opted to sacrifice themselves to save the innocents, and were killed in an explosion.

Although initially believed to have been killed by Madame Rouge, Cliff's brain had survived. Will Magnus, the robotics expert who created the Metal Men, recovered Cliff's brain and built him a new body.  Cliff then joined a new Doom Patrol headed by a woman claiming to be Caulder's wife, Arani.  Refusing to believe that Niles was dead, she formed this new team to search for him and took his place as leader, calling herself Celsius, due to her heat-and-cold-based powers.  This new Doom Patrol was eventually almost all killed in action, with the exceptions of Cliff, Tempest, Negative Woman, and Rhea Jones (who remained comatose).  Caulder had turned up alive by this time, and denied having been married to Arani, although he admitted having known her.

Cliff voluntarily committed himself to an asylum, having fallen into a state of depression due to his condition and the loss of his teammates.  In particular, he was angry about being in a metal body and unable to enjoy the feeling and senses that humans take for granted. Caulder sent Magnus to try to help Cliff, and he introduced Cliff to a person with "worse problems than [his]", a woman called Crazy Jane.  It was soon revealed that the Chief secretly caused the "accidents" which turned Cliff, Larry Trainor, and Rita Farr into super beings.  The Chief stated he caused them to gain their powers (or in the case of Robotman, destroyed his original body in order to obtain his brain to put into his robot body) because of his hatred for them.  He felt they were spoiled and narcissistic and shallow individuals, and that by turning them into "freaks," he could "improve" them as human beings.  He further revealed that he lied about not being married to Celsius, whom Caulder claimed was insane/lying about being married to him) out of anger.  He was upset over how the experiments performed on her (like with Elasti-Girl) only gave her super-powers and did not turn her into a freak.  When Tempest and Robotman found out his role in "creating" Robotman, Elasti-Girl, and Negative Man, Tempest was killed and Robotman paralyzed. Having been exposed as a villain, Caulder planned to unleash nanobots into the world, hoping to create a catastrophe that would "improve" humanity, regardless of the carnage it would cause.  However, Caulder's plan was hijacked by the Candlemaker, a violent cosmic horror who was freed by Dorothy Spinner in exchange for him resurrecting Tempest (whom Candlemaker killed once again).  Candlemaker then decapitated Caulder and sought to use the nanobots to enslave humanity.  Dorothy, Crazy Jane and Robotman (freed by the former two) defeated the Candlemaker.

In the current DC Comics continuity known as "The New 52", the Doom Patrol went on a mission to capture the Ring of Volthoom, which had attached itself onto a woman named Jessica Cruz.  Their mission put them in opposition of the Justice League.  However, it was revealed by Lex Luthor that Caulder caused the team's respective accidents, forcing them to lose morale and give up.  It is also revealed that Caulder poisoned an entire fishing village as part of an experiment, and cured the residents only after Luthor discovered the truth and threatened to expose him.

This will be the first time the Doom Patrol will have their own television series, although they've appeared in various animated projects, including the Teen Titans animated series, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, the DC Nation animated shorts, and a cameo in the animated film Justice League: The New Frontier.

Doom Patrol is expected to premiere on DC Universe sometime in 2019.

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