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HBO Max announced the season four premiere date of the superhero misfits series Doom Patrol along with a teaser trailer at New York Comic Con, where several cast members previewed what’s in store for their characters.
Fans can expect the DC series to return on Dec. 8, with the teaser trailer encouraging viewers to “hold on to their butts” with a very musical introduction to the mysterious (and vicious) creatures known as the were-butts. The creatures have been conceived by a shadowy agency “as a weaponized force of nature” that see the Doom Patrol forced to team up to take them down.
In the more than one-minute look at the new season, these teethy butt monsters are featured hilariously singing a Music Man classic as part of their debut to a few powerful officials. At other points, they are seen being tossed around by Doom Patrol members. That includes being punted by Cliff Steel, also known as Robotman (voiced by Brendan Fraser and physically portrayed by Riley Shanahan).
The season itself will see the team traveling to the future where they find an unwelcome surprise and, faced with their demise, must once and for all decide whether happiness or the fate of the world is more important.
During the Sunday panel, which featured actors Fraser, Joivan Wade (Vic Stone/Cyborg), April Bowlby (Rita Farr/Elasti-Girl) and Michelle Gomez (Laura De Mille/Madame Rouge), the cast talked about what’s ahead for their characters, with actors teasing this season as a chance for their heroes to really find themselves, and — in the case of Bowlby’s Farr — finally get to put on a hero suit.
“I loved it so much,” the actress said of getting to don the outfit Elasti-Girl is seen in during the teaser. “It was the best thing ever because I’ve been wanting a proper superhero costume since season one and I was so afraid that it was never gonna happen.”
Both Bowlby and Fraser called costume designer Carrie Grace “incredible” and “so talented” before the actress behind Rita Farr added, “I have no input in what I’m given. She just creates it. And every time it just fits like a glove and it’s exactly perfect for Rita.”
As for Rita’s journey this year, Bowlby noted her character “is super stoked to be the leader” but initially “alienates her Doom Patrol because she wants to perfect.”
“In the beginning, I think she’s putting on airs a little bit even though she doesn’t know it and by the end of the season, I think she really truly is grounded and is a true leader for everyone else and kind of becomes what she hopes she would be,” she continued.
Looking toward Cyborg’s arc in the upcoming season, Wade noted this season will see Vic “really battling with finding his superheroism without the superpowers” and as a result, give the audience a chance to connect with him on “what it means to be a Black man in Detroit.” While stepping back from all the “shine” and “glory” he’s used to as Cyborg means that Vic will have to find a new way to help his fellow Doom Patrol members.
“How do you help a superhero team when you’re not superhero?” Wade questioned. “He also gets to a place where he realizes that the superhero within him is not about the superpower, but the mentality … the mindset is what makes him a superhero and wanting to protect or wanting to serve or wanting to do everything in his power to still risk himself — still risk his life — without all those cybernetics.”
When it comes to Robotman, Fraser shared how much he appreciates the show as a story about misfits, “an unconventional family, whether they like it or not, and they need one another as much as they don’t want to admit it.” As for his season four journey, the actor describes it as a continuation of Cliff’s effort to make up for his hard early — and human — life.
“His quest, as I’ve always seen, it is for Cliff to become a better human than he ever was as a robot, which is poetic in a way to me,” Fraser said. “I think we’ll see in season four that he does get a chance to reconcile with his daughter, with his grandson.”
As for Gomez’s Madame Rouge, she and Rita are opposite sides of the same coin, with Laura being “infected by Rita’s goodness.”
“Like anybody that we love, we want to be our best versions of ourselves, but for that person,” she added. “We’re all just trying to be as good as we can be. But some days you don’t want to be that.”
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