From pain to pleasure this week as Doom Patrol is on a “Sex Patrol.” It’s paranormal perverted parasitic poltergeists propagating promiscuously at an impromptu party and I am here for every bit of it. Is the fondue hot? Are the drinks cool? Is it wack or wild when the Freaksome Five host a soiree for the Dannyzens of Danny Street? Here’s five thoughts about “Sex Patrol” to answer your…burning questions and remember, as always, beware of spoilers.
1. On the Beaten Path for Once
The fourth episode of this season is the first to focus primarily on one storyline, as each of the previous episodes had several interwoven but separate plots. Making Danny the center of such an episode was a wise choice and brings a lot more fun into play while still allowing for some very emotional beats. Maura Lee Karupt’s speech to Vic is especially hard-hitting for anyone who has ever dared to be different.
Flex Mentallo gathers the Dannyzens at Niles Manor to throw a party for the purpose of resuscitation of Danny from brick to street, though this turns out to have an unexpected effect, due to Danny’s desire to be something better. Regardless, the shindig is a success and a vehicle that serves well to help the cast sort through some of their issues, and the show to reveal more to its audience. While there are ancillary plot threads running throughout, the strongest effect of “Sex Patrol” is how it gets the show back on track.
2. Butcher, Baker
The only truly new recurring characters so far this season are Dorothy and the friends who live in her head. While the only visual occurrence of the latter is a shot of Herschel hanging out on the bed with Dorothy, we are given more hints at the true nature and influence of the “Candlemaker.” This world may be made of pure imagination but wishes have consequences and this wishmaster seems to be a Djinn who influences with a heavy hand. The foreshadowing here isn’t exactly subtle but it does leave one with a sense of anticipation and dread seeing seemingly sociopathic tendencies within Dorothy. We know that Babydoll will meet a friend of the furrier variety next week, but how long until the principal cast is introduced to what appears to be the primary antagonist of this season?
Neil’s the one they call Dr. Feelgood this week as Cliff is having a conniption and he’s got the prescription. That’s right folks, we’re talking drugs. As Cliff puts it “I’m in a full-blown psychological crisis, and you’re offering me Ecstacy?” This is actually nowhere near as crazy as it sounds. MDMA actually has been tested on those suffering from depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder. And, more recently, tests are being done with ketamine. There’s no solid data yet to say this is a viable treatment for mental disorders and instabilities but, if you’re someone who has never tripped, you might stumble over the importance of this moment.
4. That Thing You Do
Pecs-a-pumpin’ gets blood-a-rushin’ in “Sex Patrol” as things heat up between Rita and Flex, though with some social distancing involved. Rita’s desire to control her affliction–or, potentially, powers–is one of the overarching stories this season builds upon that as she and Flex attempt to overcome a mental block of hers. It’s…well, it’s sexy and like the best sex it has consequences as they nearly unleash a cataclysm upon the world. Is it bad to say I’d do it again?
5. Sex Pistols
That non-coital crack at a catalyst to kickstart Rita’s abilities sets off a small-scale sexual hedonistic landscape that threatens to end the world before the intervention of the Sex Men and, of all personalities, Hammerhead. Goo Guns, unfortunately, won’t solve this conflict as Hammerhead walks defiantly in the face of a load of cum–I promise this is hyperbole, it isn’t that graphic–to prevent a wail of Revelations-level-destruction. I’ve never seen someone shove a demon baby back into its mother’s womb via its…well, let’s just leave the rest of that up to an imagination that little Dorothy will hopefully never physically manifest.
All in all, “Sex Patrol” really sets Doom Patrol firmly back into its groove as it has all of the balance that the best episodes of season one carried. It is funny and poignant without ever feeling the scales holding the two are broken. While the first season had me hooked by its third episode, season two feels as though it is slowly reeling me back in. We will see if next week has me hooked.