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Doom Patrol #20 00a.jpg



We open with some typically Morrison-ish non sequitur absurdist comedy as a priest finds himself in the middle of a rain of fish... he notes that there are many species present, but "There is no Cod" and start laughing, before getting crushed by a giant refrigerator that ALSO falls from the sky. It basically has nothing else to do with the story

Meanwhile... following the strange events of last issue, the Chief and Joshua have come to the hospital...

Doom Patrol #20 04a.jpg

Doom Patrol #20 05a.jpg

The Chief isa bit of a smug git... a lot of the time.

We cut away again, to Greenock, a seaport about 25 miles west of Glasgow (We globe trot a lot in this series) where a young boy is in his bedroom pondering whether he'll have to go to confession to confess about the porn mags he has hidden away, when he hears noises coming from the wardrobe..,

Doom Patrol #20 06a.jpg

His dad hears... something and comes racing upstairs.

Doom Patrol #20 07a.jpg

This series REALLY lucked out when they got Richard Case to be the regular (and VERY consistent) artist on this book... He manages to mix the realsitic and even mundane, with the utterly freaky without missing a beat.

Back at the Hospital The Chief asks "Larry" to explain what happened to him.

Doom Patrol #20 08a.jpg

The Chief nods wisely and explains to Joshua (and the reader) that this is a term from alchemy, and the concept of an alchemical marriage, male and female combined into one being.

Rebis says they are tired, and asks the others to leave, but the Chief returns to find...

Doom Patrol #20 09a.jpg

Again, there is nothing titillating or exploitative (IMHO) with how Rebis is presented here, they have male and female features and.. that's it. Bear in mind this was the late 1980's the era of Reagan and Bush Sr. This was DEEPLY subversive material (and before Vertigo was even an imprint, this was released as part of DC's regular imprint.

And then we cut back to the mental facility where Cliff Steel is meeting up again with Will Magnus to discuss their recent progress...

Doom Patrol #20 10a.jpg

Magnus explains he has taken Cliff's earlier derogatory remarks about the quality of his robot body to heart and is going to build him a new, much improved one, with improved sensory capablitiy.

He leaves as Jane arrives...

Doom Patrol #20 11a.jpg

Driver 8 explains that she is responsible for driving the train....

Doom Patrol #20 12a.jpg

"I'm one hell of a guy"

I love Cliff's comment to Black Annis about it being too late to castrate him. The fact that he can make even a gallows humour joke like that given his comments last issue suggest that helping jane is helping him too.

We will meet those people eventually, but there ARE a lot of them.

A patient jumps from the roof, dying in front of the two of them and in his last breath starts muttering about "Scissormen" and "Snip snap snip"

Meanwhile, remember I said last time that the cleaner clutching a black ball in background of one scene was important? Well here he is again...

Doom Patrol #20 14a.jpg

The stations flash by, Chambers, Franklin, Canal, Houston, Christopher, 14th, 23rd... Orqwith... Wait... Orqwith?

The train stops and we KNOW there's something freaky outside, because the platform appears to be made entirely out of bone and there are some nasty looking shadowy shapes out there..

Doom Patrol #20 15a.jpg

Back at the Institute, Cliff finds Jane standing in the middle of the corridor bleeding from stigmata and repeatedly wailing about "The Blood of the Lamb" and how she'd WARNED them about this... and THEY were coming... much to Cliff's confusion. When he asks who she means, she points behind Cliff and simply syas "Scissormen!"

Doom Patrol #20 18a.jpg

One of many recurring tropes in Morrion's DP is the multiplicty of faceless embodiments of malevolent abstract "things", which communicate in a way which doesn't actually communicate anything.

Our heroes make a break for it, and then hear someone calling for help...

Doom Patrol #20 19a.jpg

Doom Patrol #20 20a.jpg

Did I mention this was effectively a horror title as much as anything else?

One of Jane's people, a teleporter named Flit, manages to transport herself and Cliff outside and they dind that the entire institute is now full of people who have been cut out of our reality...

Doom Patrol #20 21a.jpg

Whilst Cliff basically stands there shouting "What is going on??" (a fairly reasonable question) we finish with another classic Morrison trope, the series of random, nonsensical events, which make no sense, but sound cool,

Doom Patrol #20 22a.jpg

More weirdness next time! Same Doom Time, same Doom Channel...

Now, we are lucky that this issue also includes a non-story based second component which can be reproduced without hitting the 1/3 rule, a missive from Grant Morrison in the letters column. which I thought might make for interesting reading.

Doom Patrol #20 Lettercolumn01.jpg

Doom Patrol #20 Lettercolumn02.jpg

Date: 2017-05-05 01:26 am (UTC)
zylly: (Default)
From: [personal profile] zylly
I think this series occasionally veers into the "too weird to make coherent sense to anyone who isn't Morrison and/or hasn't done a shit ton of drugs", it's also got a lot of heart and good character moments throughout.

And Morrison's right about the original Doom Patrol too. They really weren't much like anything else DC was doing at the time. They're great stories and they straddle this bizarre line between DC and Marvel style storytelling.

Date: 2017-05-05 01:45 pm (UTC)
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
From: [personal profile] alicemacher
Another, also British, example that comes to mind is the climax of the Sandman story, "Calliope," in which Morpheus drives Richard Madoc mad by flooding his mind with non-stop fantasy/horror story ideas.

Date: 2017-05-08 03:59 pm (UTC)
randyripoff: (splash brannigan)
From: [personal profile] randyripoff
I think this series occasionally veers into the "too weird to make coherent sense to anyone who isn't Morrison and/or hasn't done a shit ton of drugs", it's also got a lot of heart and good character moments throughout.

Word. Still, the first few storylines were pretty good.

Date: 2017-05-08 11:45 pm (UTC)
zylly: (Default)
From: [personal profile] zylly
Yeah. And I've got a lot of fondness for Flex Mentallo, and his whole story arc of remembering and embracing heroism and silliness and everything else about comics.

Date: 2017-05-05 10:54 am (UTC)
mrosa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] mrosa
"My race is mixed. My sex is mixed. I am woman and man, light with darkness, mixed, mixed. I am nothing special, nothing pure! I am mud and flame!"

Morrison sure loved David Rudkin's Penda’s Fen He quotes from it again at the end of the second Brotherhood of Dada arc.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penda%27s_Fen
Edited Date: 2017-05-05 10:57 am (UTC)

Date: 2017-05-08 04:02 pm (UTC)
randyripoff: (Maggie and Hopey)
From: [personal profile] randyripoff
Cliff is the Doom Patrol. He's always been the most likeable and relatable character. I often wonder what his voice sounds like--I know we sort of got to hear one idea from Batman: The Brave and the Bold but I don't necessarily agree that it would be that flat--I think some sort of voice modulator would have been built in to make him sound more human.

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