Dissecting “Dada Patrol” with ‘Doom Patrol’ Writer Shoshana Sachi, Part One

Murphy’s Multiverse had the chance to interview Doom Patrol writer Shoshana Sachi regarding “Dada Patrol” and how she pitched the episode.

In Doom Patrol’s latest episode of season 3, titled “Dada Patrol,” the team is tested mentally and emotionally in various ways. As character arcs shift, our favorite misfits have to find a way to deal with these new challenges. Murphy’s Multiverse was fortunate enough to talk to Shoshana Sachi, the writer of this episode for a two-part Q&A. Sachi talked to us about pitching the episode, introducing new characters and plenty more!

Murphy’s Multiverse: What was the thought process in pitching this episode, and then writing this episode as you’re introducing new characters in the sisterhood of Dada?

Shoshana Sachi: At the beginning of the season we as a writers room pitched on what we would like to see in the season, and plotted out the arc of the entire season. Jeremy (Doom Patrol EP) assigned me to episode 5, where we had plotted the Doom Patrol would intersect with the Sisterhood of Dada. From there, I took leadership for my particular episode and continued to have discussions/pitch sessions with the rest of the writers’ room to discover how we wanted to present the Sisterhood, and what conversations we wanted them to have with the Doom Patrol.

It felt organic to me that the Sisterhood of Dada wouldn’t be a smash, bang, pow sort of group– they would more likely defer to psychological warfare so to speak. They’re interested in having existential conversations. For me, it was more of a task of finding where the Doom Patrol characters’ journeys intersected with the thoughts and preoccupations of the Sisterhood, and how they could have meaningful conversations that threw the Doom Patrol off their game. 

Writing in hyperbolics and poetic speech is most fun and interesting to me, and I’m excited that Jeremy always indulges me in doing so. It seemed to match the sort of energy the Sisterhood had, so I believe it worked, though I’ve become aware that some found it esoteric, and I understand that.

MM: What’s one of the biggest challenges for you as writer when you’re trying to figure out what works and doesn’t thematically?

SS: I guess it’s finding ways to make sure everything we do is true to the character and makes sense for what the characters are going through at that moment in time. We also want to make sure we give the characters a respectful amount of time to get to where they need to go and not rush them. Sometimes it might seem like we’re moving them slowly, sometimes it may seem like characters backtrack a little, but I believe we’re always working in service to a truthful place that the characters are at emotionally. 

MM: Who do you find the most challenging character to write for on the show? 

SS: All of the characters have such different points of view and come from different backgrounds/ traumas. It’s always hard to navigate social issues or traumas because you want to make sure you portray it in the best way possible, with the best intentions– while being as truthful to what the trauma is. It can be a hard tightrope to walk, but I think because we have such a diverse room, we’ve managed to always find the right conversations and resources to navigate these things in a way that felt honest and eye-opening. 

Be sure to check out Part 2, where we talk to Shoshana about some of the character arcs on the shows, along with her advice for aspiring screenwriters.

Season 3 of Doom Patrol is on HBO Max now.

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