Our fabulous freaks learn there’s no good Tyme to visit the past, the present, or the roller disco.
Warning! Spoilers ahead for “Doom Patrol” episode 2.2!
In “Tyme Patrol,” written by April Fitzsimmons and Neil Reynolds and directed by Harry Jierjian, Dorothy’s (Abigail Shapiro) massacre of that freakshow in 1927 London is seen from the point of view of the lone survivor – The Chief (Timothy Dalton).
Niles tells Cliff (Brendan Fraser) he got a tip that a girl bearing a striking resemblance to the woman he loved and left was in a circus.
“it was as cruel as had imagined and as real as I feared,” he says of seeing Dorothy in a cage as the “ape-faced girl.”
She lost control of her beast – her spiritual familiar – when the beast spotted Niles.
Niles glimpses the Candlemaker, a terrifying behemoth with a ring of giant candles around his head.
When he opens his eyes again, everyone around him has been ripped apart. He approaches Dorothy and shows her a drawing of her mother, and Dorothy agrees to go with him.
Two years later, Dorothy has barely aged a day. Knowing he had to protect her from the world – and the world from her – he led her to Danny, a young sentient highway, “a loving teleporting refuge for all people.”
Dorothy is heartbroken to see her father go, but he is determined to find a way to help her.
“Yeah, yeah, weepy shit. Bet you cried for weeks. Not what I asked you,” Cliff says. He wants to know more about the experiments that changed them all.
The Chief reveals he had to sacrifice his necklace, the one thing keeping him alive, to return them to normal size.
“You gave away your longevity like some kind of asshole – then what was all this for?” Cliff bellows.
Chief recognizes the irony, but he warns, “Without me, she will unleash hell on earth and you will be powerless to stop it.”
Darling drops in on Jane (Diane Guerrero), who is terrified to be awakened by Dorothy’s imaginary pal, no matter how damn cheery she is.
“What in Doris-Day-IKEA-fuck was that?”
Jane is not pleased to see the words, “Time for a Change,” scrawled on her mirror, and shoots up the last of the formula to quell her alters.
Everyone learns Chief is dying.
He reveals he’s 139 years old.
Rita can’t help becoming “Blubberstiltskin.”
“He’s practically dead,” she says. “His teeth are probably loosening as we speak … we could be days away from daddy diapers!”
Danny is still a brick, so who will protect Dorothy?
Cliff wonders, which experiment will he re-create to gain immortality? Which one of them will he become?
“None of us,” says Larry (Matt Bomer), looking dapper in a suit. “Right, Niles? We’re your failed experiments.”
He informs the group he is leaving to go to his son’s funeral.
“The Chief get him, too?” Cliff says.
Larry doesn’t need their condolences.
“It’s okay. I doubt he even knew I existed,” he says, looking at the Chief.
In Detroit, Vic (Joivan Wade) drops in on a trauma support group and ticks off one member, Roni (Karen Obilom), when she recognizes him and realizes he’s filming the session.
Vic objects, saying he can’t help it, his camera runs automatically, and if he shuts it down, he’s defenseless.
And the counselor reminds him, that’s kind of the point of group.
Vic powers down – and decides to listen to the group.
Chief knocks on Dorothy’s door and finds himself getting a knock-knock joke from the huge spider that attacked in the previous episode.
“Armageddon tired of all this knocking!”
Oh, familiars! When they’re not trying to kill you, they’re trying to kill you with laughter.
Something like that.
Dorothy frets no one will be there to walk her down the aisle. She could make a wish to save Chief.
“Never, not for me, not for anything,” Chief insists.
Cliff is ecstatic when he sees Jane at the truck, but she’s not hitting the road, she’s moving back in.
That formula she took is gone, and she is going to need the Chief’s help to manage her alters in the Underground.
Rita learns from Chief there might be one person who can help him – Dr. Jonathan Tyme, who discovered an alien particle in a meteorite that can control time.
That’s enough for Rita. She convenes a meeting with Cliff and Jane, complete with her artist rendition of what Tyme looks like – a stick figure with a clock on his head.
If they can steal some of those Continuinium particles in Tyme’s helmet, they can stop Chief’s aging. They can save Dorothy.
Jane is up for the mission.
“I’m generally opposed to putting little girls in cages. As long as I’m on the surface, I’m helping,” she says.
Cliff is not helping the Chief, no way.
Chief agrees, saying it is too dangerous.
Wait. Is this reverse psychology?
Cliff volunteers to go.
In the laboratory, Chief creates a miniature worm hole for them by sprinkling what looks to be purple dust in a circle. It creates a temporal doorway to Tyme’s location outside time and space.
To invoke its power, they must join hands and reveal, in clockwise order, what they were doing at midnight on Aug. 8, 1980.
Cliff, it turns out, was banging a waitress, with a tub of Crisco nearby.
When the fog lifts, the trio find themselves in a roller disco blasting Donna Summers’ “Bad Girls.”
Tyme leads a crew of skaters. Rita’s picture was fairly accurate. Cliff apologizes.
Tyme is a big fan of Rita, and zaps some skates on her, leaving Cliff and Jane on the sidelines.
Vic and Roni bond over stories of their moms and onion rings. When they part ways, a kid tries to steal Roni’s bag, but he’s no match for the military veteran with a cane.
Vic wants him jailed. Roni doesn’t want the kid to get lost in a system that will make his life hell.
The kid is just happy to get a chance to run away.
“Nobody should be judged by the worst thing they ever did,” Roni says.
Vic is intrigued.
In Greensboro, Ind., Larry waits until the few mourners leave before approaching his son’s coffin at graveside and leaving a small flight wing badge.
He still manages to draw the attention of one mourner – his grown son Paul, who recognizes his father’s voice.
“You’re alive… Gary was right. I don’t even know what to do with that.”
Gary killed himself. And if it would’ve drawn his father out, he would’ve done it sooner,” Paul says.
He invites his father to a gathering at Gary’s home. He’ll be there. So will Larry’s grandson.
Back in whenever, Tyme tells Rita humanity peaked at a roller disco on Aug. 8, 1980.
Cliff can’t listen to “Bad Girls” another moment and destroys the DJ’s turntable.
Tyme turns and blasts him.
Rita stretches and grabs for Tyme’s helmet –
– only it’s not his helmet, it’s his head, and his brain plops right out.
There are fractures in time all over the disco floor.
There also seems to be a murderous mime.
Cliff grabs the brain and Jane grabs him, and they are both frozen in time.
Jane has flashes of an exorcism at the hands of religious fanatics.
To save her friends, Rita turns back the dials on Tyme’s clockface – and time moves backward, to the point just before his brains fell out.
Restored, Tyme taunts Rita. He’s followed her from birth to death, and she’ll always be a fraud.
He sends them back through the wormhole to the Doom Manor laboratory.
“Another adventure, another trigger,” Jane says, storming off.
Chief tries to apologize for not knowing Tyme’s helmet was actually his head.
Rita slaps him. “You turned us into what we are.”
Larry can’t bring himself to enter that gathering, but finds in his son’s barn all sorts of newspaper clippings and photos of Larry in his glory days. Gary never gave up on him.
He finds a letter Gary wrote to him as a boy and begins sobbing.
A butterfly alights on his shoulder.
With the help of her alters, Jane explores that new memory of being subjected to an exorcism.
The alter known as Miranda handled it for her. Maybe she would be a better primary – she was powerful before they underwent metahuman experiments, one tells her.
“She knew what the girl wanted.”
Dorothy knocks on Rita’s door, seeking her help. Rita, still upset by Tyme’s words, says she can’t help anyone.
Not that kind of help, Dorothy says – and the two end up happily stirring batter in the kitchen.
Cliff keeps replaying the video in which the Chief says Cliff’s daughter was expendable.
Larry tries hitching a ride back to town.
A butterfly settles on his thumb. He sees a kaleidoscope of butterflies.
The butterflies swarm him.
Oh, that can’t be good.