In our final installment, Deane and Rod Keith describe the mammoth task of creating the Doom Patrol founder, The Chief!
Rod Keith: Deane, how many DOOM PATROL action figures are on your shelf?
Deane: Uh… I count…
Rod Keith: Take your time.
Rod Keith: Correct! And Deane, how many members of the Doom Patrol are there?
Rod Keith: No rush.
Deane: …I would say…
Rod Keith: Deep breath.
Deane: … more than three!
Rod Keith: Exactly, my dear Otis. In our last Atomic Two on One, we solved MATTEL’s problem of the missing Doom Patrol adoptee, Beast Boy. Today, we join forces to produce the genius leader of the Patrol, Nile Caulder: The Chief!
Deane: The Chief was the founder of the team: he created the robotic body that saved the dying Cliff Steele, he invented the bandages that contained pilot Larry Trainor’s Negative Man energy, and he coaxed Rita Farr out of reclusiveness to become Elasti-Girl. Without The Chief, there is no Doom Patrol.
Rod Keith: There are numerous do-it-yourself online solutions to The Chief. Most of them boil down to one of two options:
Option 1. X-Men wheelchair+ Batman Movie Masters suit body+ MATTEL Starman head:
Problem: The body is waaay t0o small in scale and the wheelchair is forty years too advanced.
Option 2: Jakks Wheelchair+ WWE Whippleman body+MOTU Fisto head
Problem: The body is way too big in scale for the Doom Patrol.
Deane: Now, the MATTEL DCUC suit buck fits the JAKKS wheelchair very nicely. The Chief wore a single-breasted suit, ruling out Clark Kent and the Sandman. Black Mask, however, would be perfect. You can easily remove the joystick from the wheelchair arm for the correct mid-Sixties look. But the Fisto head…
Rod Keith: That’s just too darn big.
Deane: So we quit?
Rod Keith: So we do NOT quit, we cross the border, conceive a plan over fish tacos and mojitos, and resin.
Deane: Size-changing resin! First, we created silicon molds for the Fisto head:
Rod Keith: We then used a reactive resin, such that it would expand uniformly when placed in water. Using Deane’s mold, we then cast a Fisto head with this reactive resin. Two days of swimming in the Detroit River later and:
Deane: A giant, green gummi Chief!
Rod Keith: I want to eat that.
Deane: With the oversized head, we could play around with a second kind of reactive resin, one that shrank. We cast a mold of the Gummi Chief head and tested several different doses of the shrinking resin in order to get the scale just right:
Rod Keith: To cover the costs of the silicon and reactive resin, we took donations from 23 of our closest internet friends. A 24th friend then offered to paint the heads, if so desired.
Deane: It took some time to get them all casted, but we did it:
Rod Keith: And off they went to the paint shop!
Deane: All in all, this was a wildly successful first go at this kind of nonsense. Importantly, it can’t be stated enough that this project was only possible because of all the people who supported it happening.
Rod Keith: True.
Deane: We were very happy to see some pictures of people’s completed Doom Patrols:
Rod Keith: My final Doom Patrol shot includes the infamous Mento, a figure I purchased from “ibentmymanthing”:
Rod Keith: What?
Deane: Look- that’s not…
Rod Keith: What?
Deane: That’s not the Chief head we just burnt my fingertips to make!
Rod Keith: I know. I wanted to show people who didn’t get our head that they could still make The Chief.
Deane: Ohmygod… I just… Ugh. So, here’s to the Doom Patrol:
Rod Keith: Where’s your Mento?
Deane: A-ha! See, I don’t think Mento was ever a part of the team. I think they liked keeping him out to make him miserable, so that’s why I don’t have his figure in the picture.
Rod Keith: That’s the most blatant attempt to cover up not finishing a job I’ve ever heard.
Deane: Believe what you want: Mento isn’t on the team. Quite frankly, I think we should discuss which DC teams need our help the most, filling in the blanks that MATTEL left.
Rod Keith: Like Terry Sloane, Sylvester Pemberton, and Johnny Thunder?
Deane: No, like Sandy Hawkins, Rick Tyler, and Jakeem Thunder.
Rod Keith: See you in 2014 then?
Deane: You’re on!