Ever have one of those days where every idea you have is bad?
Our fantastic heroes just can’t do anything right – with good reason.
In “Dumb Patrol,” the latest episode of HBO Max’s “Doom Patrol,” written by Tamara Becher-Wilkinson and Eric Dietel and directed by Jessica Lowrey, Cliff (Brendan Fraser) makes a hilarious crash-landing into Earth (after the Chief so rudely ejected him out of their space capsule) and spends the entire episode walking back to the manor ranting about his plans to kill the Chief (Timothy Dalton).
When he finally gets back, he finds his daughter Clara, heavily pregnant. She’s seen the videotape of the Chief “working” on him. She seems suddenly sympathetic to her father.
Rita (April Bowlby) has but one line in her community theater production: “My bees!”
It’s enough to make her decide to shadow an actual beekeeper.
To keep it real.
It turns out to be an afternoon of drinking beer and talking about her mommy issues.
Rita knows she’s screwed up, she just doesn’t know how to fix herself.
The beekeeper suggests talking to her bees.
It’s not nearly as cathartic as Rita hoped it would be.
On her way back to Doom Manor, she spots a mugger holding up a man in an alley. One super-stretchy punch and that mugger is out cold.
“I’m sorry – did that sting?” she says, still wearing her full beekeeper garb.
Is this enough to cure Rita of her imposter issues? Has a new hero been born?
In the main event, Larry (Matt Bomer), Vic (Joivan Wade), Roni (Karen Obilom) and Miranda (Diane Guerrero) – in control of Jane – open a box they really should not have. It came with enough warnings.
They become infected with skants, parasites that cause them to act on all their very worst ideas.
For Larry, this means trying to visit his hospitalized grandson repeatedly and getting confronted by armed guards.
Kipling (Mark Sheppard) stops the crew from operating on Roni.
The only way to stop the infestation from killing them is to kill the queen, but Kipling advises them against that.
They get the bright idea to step into the painting that ate Danny to find and kill the Queen. Only Miranda is somehow immune to the skant stupidity, but even she joins them.
The Beard Hunter (Tommy Snider) has half-painted himself white to blend in with the nonexistent scenery.
When Vic asks about Mr. Nobody, Beard Hunter says, ““He got a gig on some animated bullcrap – haven’t seen him since.”
(Leave it to “Doom Patrol,” DC Comics’ most meta comic to have a DC Universe show that gets meta about another DC Universe show. Alan Tudyk voices the Joker on DC Universe’s “Harley Quinn.” It must be noted: It is so not bullcrap.)
Our crew is most happily captured by the Skants and taken to the Queen, who resides on a water bed filled with the energies generated by their bad ideas.
She drops some hard truths on the team, but Miranda switches personalities and blasts the bed, ultimately killing the queen and freeing them from the skant influence.
Roni decides to leave Doom Manor, but not before pocketing what looks like a glowing stone.
Somewhere in the Yukon, the Chief tries to conjure up Dorothy’s mother.
Candlemaker appears, warning Chief that he, like the mother, will soon be gone – and Dorothy will be his.
The Chief summons Kipling. Given their enigmatic conversation, it sure sounds as if Chief has asked him to kill his own daughter.
Jane, in the Underground, discovers Scarlet Harlot is missing.
Worse, her station is closed. What does that mean?
Two episodes remain!