Connecting the Dots: Doom Patrol

 

There are two types of speculators: those who lead and those who follow. By the time news hits, cheap copies of relevant keys are gone and sometimes all that are left are overpriced, often lower grade scraps. It’s the individuals who actually read and research comics who ultimately profit by making insightful, sometimes far-out, connections that puts them far ahead of the market.

DCU streaming has another hit with Doom Patrol. First introduced in the Titans series, the show has received critical acclaim adapting many of the themes and characters introduced in Grant Morrison’s legendary run on the title. Topher detailed some significant Doom Patrol first appearances in his article located here.

However, there are some characters left on which you can still speculate. While already announced and scheduled to appear in the March 8 episode, the character of Willoughby Kipling was initially designed as a substitute for John Constantine, who DC refused inclusion in the title, since it was not yet a Vertigo title. Kipling first appeared in Doom Patrol #31 (1990).

Perhaps the most important Doom Patrol character whom has yet to appear in the show is Dorothy Spinner. Dorothy, who has simian features and the ability to bring her imaginary friends to life, made her debut in Doom Patrol #14 (1988); she subsequently became an integral part of many significant storylines of Morrison and Rachel Pollack. Some have already jumped on this one, but copies are still available in the wild.

When Dorothy appears, it’s logical that her chief antagonist won’t be too far behind. The Candlemaker, who lives in Dorothy’s mind, is a psychic entity that lives in Dorothy’s mind. He is ultimately freed when she is being tormented by bullies and he grants her three wishes that turn out tragic. The character’s first appears in Doom Patrol #57 (1992).

Among the characters whom the producers of the show have announced are Rhea Jones a.k.a. Lodestone (Doom Patrol #3 and 4) and Danny the Street (Doom Patrol #35). In issue #23, she was kidnapped by serial killer/butterfly collector Red Jack who claims to be God and Jack the Ripper. If you've got a sentient street, why not a painting with so many levels it can swallow up a city? (Granted, a Donkey regurgitated a town in episode one.) The Painting that Ate Paris debuts in Doom Patrol #27 (1989).

Perhaps the most speculative Doom Patrol characters is Coagula, one of the first transgender characters in comics. Coagula is Kate Godwin, a transgender woman, who has the ability to coagulate liquids and dissolve solids. She is also linked romantically to several members of the team. She was conceived by Pollack in Doom Patrol #70 and is ultimately killed by Dorothy in a psychic explosion. (Note the photo cover!)

From an investment perspective, do not overpay for these books. While they all have low representation in the CGC census and might be harder to find online in higher grades, they are far from desirable and a profitable return is less than guaranteed. Also note that “villain spec” is always risky; these books may see an initial surge on announcement, but they usually come crashing down shortly after. Rather, find these undervalued books in discounted back issue and dollar bins and stay ahead of the announcements. That's where you'll find your greatest return.

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