It’s always hard to say goodbye to a show you’ve grown to love. It’s even harder to imagine a television superteam landscape without the unpredictable, over-the-top, completely unapologetic hijinks of the Doom Patrol.
After three and a half seasons of flatulent donkeys, time travel, interdimensional shenanigans, sex ghosts, puppets, and freakin’ were-BUTTS, our misfit superbeings are wrapping up their adventures and facing off against their greatest challenge yet — old age. Oh, and someone called Immortus.
Doom Patrol Season 4 returns on Max on October 12 with a double-decker wallop of a premiere. I’d recommend you prepare yourself, but there’s really no way to prepare for what’s coming.
When last we left our intrepid team, Rita, Jane, and Larry had lost their longevity. Rouge and Rita had returned to the Ant Farm and learned that Wally Sage was the puppetmaster behind the rise of Immortus.
Meanwhile, Cliff, Jane, Vic, and Vic’s childhood bestie, Deric, are facing off with Wally in an imaginary world called Orqwith.
Yup, imaginary world. That’s where we’re at.
And, within the scope of Doom Patrol’s many missions, an imaginary world staffed with living scissors isn’t the weirdest place they’ve been by a long shot.
As the hours tick down, we can expect a lot of closure opportunities as Time makes itself felt and our until-recently perpetually-adolescent heroic-if-you-squint-at-them-in-good-light protagonists begin to — dare I say it? — mature.
Rouge and Rita have the greatest wounds to mend as their history winds through decades and even folds back over itself.
As noted on Doom Patrol Season 4 Episode 6, they are an impressive pair when pulling in the same direction.
Between Rita’s elasticity powers and Rouge’s ability to shapeshift, they have the best infiltration and espionage skillset.
Their first challenge is to escape the Ant Farm undetected. Next up, sneak into Orqwith to deal with Wally and Immortus.
If history holds true, they’ll need some liquid courage to blur the edges of their ire and light their creative problem-solving skills.
Jane and Cliff have always been a crass but affectionate dynamic duo. (I actually think their swearing increases exponentially when they’re paired up.)
With Cliff the sole team member still in possession of his longevity — although not so much when it comes to that stray were-butt — it seems a risky venture to bring him within arm’s reach of Wally, the high priest of Immortus.
Perhaps Jane plans to bargain for her own longevity or hopes that Cliff has some way to force Wally to give it back.
With his oven-mitted hand as a constant reminder of the importance of seeing his grandson again, Cliff has arguably the most important reason for wanting to hold onto his longevity.
Will he bargain with Wally, or will The Artist have some way to coerce Robotman into providing the last piece to Immortus’s resurrection?
Every new beginning must start with an ending.
While his teammates grapple with the aches and desperation of aging, Vic’s on his own journey of reconciliation.
He probably didn’t wake up that morning with a plan to bring Deric into Orqwith. Of course, as Vic no longer has Cyborg’s firepower or Internet connectivity, it may help to have someone with as innovative a mind as his own nearby to even the odds.
At the same time, they have a lot of history to make peace with. What better time to clear the air than fighting through a hostile imaginary kingdom that doesn’t obey the laws of physics?
Don’t forget that Doom Patrol has many guest characters capable of recurring.
From Doctor Yu (the Were-Butt expert from Doom Patrol Season 4 Episode 2) to Mr. Nobody or Monsieur Mallah, to Willoughby or even Niles himself, with time travel and ghosts and alternate futures, anyone could appear.
We can definitely expect to see Dorothy and Space Case arrive at some point since Dorothy was the whole reason Niles wanted the Longevity Talisman, and Casey’s father is one of Immortus’s minions.
Also, after Keeg unexpectedly throws in with the Immortus resurrectionists, Larry resignedly gives up his longevity when he realizes it’s what Keeg believes needs to happen to avoid the future Buttpocalypse.
Fatherhood’s never been an easy path to walk, but Larry’s drawn the worst hand repeatedly. We can only hope his desire to see a child through to a better life will be fulfilled eventually.
And while it seems highly unlikely, perhaps Keeg’s faith in Immortus will pay off.
I also look forward to seeing Larry and Rama reunite somehow. They both deserve a little happiness.
The Doom Patrol Season 4, Part 2 trailer promises so much — flamethrowers, dance numbers, so many Butts — I’m almost afraid it’ll drive expectations to a level that is impossible to meet.
What do you think, Fanatics? Will the Doom Patrol go out with a bang or a whimper?
Will we have Dead Boys and Dada Sisters join us in this final Hurrah?
Are these heroes that deserve a happy ending? Can they save the world one more time, even if they say they don’t give a f-ck?
Is Immortus as all-powerful as the advertising claims, or will it be another Red Jack bait-and-switch?
Hit our comments below with your wishlist of bonkers showdowns!
The first two of the final six episodes of Doom Patrol EVER drop on Max on October 12.
Diana Keng is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. She is a lifelong fan of smart sci-fi and fantasy media, an upstanding citizen of the United Federation of Planets, and a supporter of AFC Richmond ’til she dies. Her guilty pleasures include female-led procedurals, old-school sitcoms, and Bluey. She teaches, knits, and dreams big. Follow her on X.