Sorry for the delay on these, the new season of Doom Patrol premiered last week on HBO Max with its first three episodes. Matt still voices Larry Trainor, but he only made an appearance physically on the first episode. These first few episodes have been quite sad for Larry. Check out high-resolution screencaps in our gallery!
As part of their Rainbow Crew interview series, Matt spoke with Digital Spy to discuss his heroic role in Doom Patrol. The first three episodes of the new season are available to stream now on HBO Max!
Matt Bomer wasn’t planning to star in a superhero show. He had just finished up Boys in the Band on Broadway when DC approached him for the role of Larry Trainor. As Bomer puts it, “Doom Patrol came out of left field,” and that’s rather fitting given how wild this show actually is.
Based on comics first written in 1963, the “World’s Strangest Heroes” are misfits in every sense of the word. Not only do their bizarre powers alienate them from the world at large, but the Doom Patrol franchise has always been an outlier too, often sidelined in favour of more ‘appealing’ outsiders like the X-Men.
That’s starting to change now though thanks to the Doom Patrol TV show. Inspired by Grant Morrison’s relentlessly weird run from the late eighties, this new adaptation subverts superhero tropes by incorporating Dadaist elements of abstract surrealism… and that’s exactly what appealed to Bomer in the first place.
“I think we’re living in an era of episodics where, you know, the more unique, the better! There’s so much content out there. So, I hope the show continues to get weirder and weirder.”
Given what we’ve seen of season two so far, it’s safe to say that Bomer’s got his wish. Following on from all those carnivorous butts and the cockroach kisses of season one, new episodes include a super-powered ape-faced girl and Doctor Tyme, a disco-loving time traveller who wears a clock for a head.
That’s a lot to absorb for even diehard comic-book fans, but as Bomer points out, these “bizarre, offbeat” stories are actually grounded in something far more universal:
“As much as it’s a fun superhero show, Doom Patrol is really about the human condition, and the capacity for even the most marginalised amongst us to find our inner hero.”
Watching Robotman contend with his shitty past or Rita struggle with her self-worth, it’s clear that each member of the team is deeply flawed in some way, much like we all are, and it’s this trauma which grounds Doom Patrol, transforming it into something truly special.
You can read the full interview at Digital Spy!
In light of the premiere of Doom Patrol, Matt spoke with ET Online to discuss the new season and bringing Larry Trainor to life.
Known for his breakout role in White Collar, his Golden Globe–winning turn in The Normal Heart as well as the Magic Mike films, Matt Bomer is the first to admit that doing a superhero series wasn’t at the top of the list of what he wanted to do next in his career. But when it comes to Doom Patrol, the trippy DC Universe series returning for season 2 on HBO Max, he found himself attracted to the pathos imbued in the storytelling. “What I love about this show is that as much as it is prestige superhero television, it’s really about the human condition and the capacity for even the most marginalized among us to find their inner hero,” he tells ET.
On the series, which was adapted for the screen by executive producer Jeremy Carver along with superhero savant Greg Berlanti, Bomer plays Larry Trainor, whom he describes as “one part Montgomery Clift, one part elephant man.” A closeted Air Force pilot who’s badly burned in a plane crash after he makes contact with a negative spirit, Trainor has managed to survive decades later thanks to the special bandages covering his body that prevent the spread of radioactivity emitting from his body.
Over the course of season 1, Trainor is haunted by his past as he tries to come to terms with his sexuality and relationship with fellow pilot John Bowers (Kyle Clements), whom he pushed away after the accident and never fully got over.
“I love working on Larry because it never felt — other than some of the bigger-budget action sequences or special effects sequences — it never felt like I was working on a superhero show,” Bomer says. “There was so much pathos and character-driven drama in those scenes that it felt like I was just getting to work on a really great well-written show. Especially those scenes with John.”
The scenes the actor is referring to include some of the flashbacks with Trainor and Bowers in a motel room and later at a gay bar, where they both get to be themselves, even as Trainor is trying to figure out how to be completely comfortable in his own skin.
“Season 1 was so much about self-discovery and being able to finally come to terms with his own authenticity after 60 years of basically shutting down and diving into his past, and going from a man who had thought that he had to, in order to achieve what he wanted, cut off the most authentic part of himself,” Bomer says, explaining that journey then allowed Trainor to “ultimately find love and acceptance for himself and be able to come out to his crew.”
Read the full interview at ET Online!
Last April, Matt talked with Backstage magazine through a short Instagram live and discussed The Sinner and the discoveries he made through portraying the character of Jamie Burns. This interview is also featured in the June 25th issue of the magazine, you can view the scan in our gallery!
TIFF has teamed up with the Crave streaming service to offer Stay-At-Home Cinema series, which offers virtual Q&As with actors and filmmakers. Matt is joining the series this Friday, June 26th 7 PM EDT, to revisit his work on the The Normal Heart and the legacy of its screenwriter, playwright and activist Larry Kramer. It will be streamed simultaneously on TIFF.net, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. You can join the discussion on Twitter with the hashtag, #TIFFAtHome.
In partnership with @PrideToronto, actor @MattBomer joins Stay-at-Home Cinema this Friday to revisit his work in THE NORMAL HEART and celebrate the enduring legacy of its screenwriter, playwright and activist Larry Kramer. #TIFFAtHome #Pride pic.twitter.com/EZ4Hbf4Bso— TIFF (@TIFF_NET) June 22, 2020
As previously announced, Matt appeared via video chat on Live with Kelly and Ryan to discuss the new season of Doom Patrol. He also admitted that this was his first time attending a talk show in socks! Check out two clips from the interview below.
In celebration of Pride Month, Entertainment Weekly is doing a special four-episode podcast series, Untold Stories: Pride Edition, hosted by Tre’vell Anderson. Matt is part of the first episode wherein he gives a moving tribute to the late Larry Kramer. You can listen to the full podcast episode below. Matt’s part begins around the 38:30 mark.
Matt will be making a special appearance on The Concert for Love & Acceptance, the annual LGBTQ-supportive benefit show taking place as an online event on June 30. He will introducing singer and actress, Rita Wilson. Other announced appearances are Lauren Alaina, Dennis Quaid, Kalie Shorr, Terri Clark, Billy Gilman, Lewis Brice, and many more! The show will be streamed on Facebook, YouTube, and at https://www.f4la.org/concert.
“This show just gets better and better each year, and while we would rather be doing it as a live event in Nashville, we know that we have the opportunity to reach so many more people with our message of love and acceptance through this one-time online format. And, of course, our message takes on an especially elevated meaning this year in light of all that is happening around us, and our hope is that on this night we can all stand together – not just for love and acceptance – but also for justice,” said event founder Ty Herndon.
Check out the full trailer for the new season of Doom Patrol, arriving on HBO Max June 25th! The first three episodes will be out on the premiere day, followed by a new weekly episode for the next six weeks. I hope everybody is as ready as we are! Matt will also be appearing (via video chat) on Live with Kelly and Ryan on June 16th to discuss the show.
DC’s strangest group of heroes — Cliff Steele aka Robotman (Brendan Fraser), Larry Trainor aka Negative Man (Matt Bomer), Rita Farr aka Elasti-Woman (April Bowlby), Jane aka Crazy Jane (Diane Guerrero), and Victor Stone aka Cyborg (Joivan Wade) — are back again to save the world. That is, if they can find a way to grow up…both figuratively and literally. Following the defeat of Mr. Nobody, the members of the Doom Patrol now find themselves mini-sized and stranded on Cliff’s toy race car track. Here they begin to deal with their feelings of betrayal by Niles Caulder aka The Chief (Timothy Dalton), while confronting their own personal baggage. And as each member faces the challenge of growing beyond their own past traumatic experiences, they must come together to embrace and protect the newest member of the family: Dorothy Spinner (Abigail Shapiro), Niles’ daughter, whose powers remain a mysterious but real threat to bringing on the end of the world.
Larry Kramer, playwright and AIDS activist, has died on Wednesday morning due to pneumonia. He was notably hailed for his autobiographical play, The Normal Heart, which had an HBO adaptation in 2014 starring Matt Bomer and Mark Ruffalo. Matt has paid tribute to Larry on his Instagram account. He also spoke with Marc Malkin from Variety, and referred to Mr. Kramer as “one of the most courageous people I’ve ever known.”
Matt Bomer’s career took a major upswing in 2015 when he won a Golden Globe for his performance as Felix in Ryan Murphy’s HBO adaptation of Larry Kramer’s “The Normal Heart.”
“Larry Kramer, thank you for your anger and your passion and writing this story that changed so many lives,” the actor said in his acceptance speech.
Today, Bomer is remembering the late writer and AIDS activist as one of his heroes. “I, and countless others, owe our lives to Larry,” Bomer told Variety. “Without his tireless advocacy and his outspokenness and opposition to everything that was going on and encouraging people to educate themselves and be responsible for themselves, I, growing up in a semi-rural environment, wouldn’t have had any clue about the epidemic if it weren’t for him.”
Bomer said he first read Kramer’s writings when he was 14 or 15. “For me, it was the first time that someone really stood up and said, ‘You should be proud of who you are and you should be outspoken about who you are and you should be bold about who you are and passionate about who you are.’ He was a trailblazer and one of the most courageous people I’ve ever known.”
You can read the full interview at Variety.
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Larry Kramer. I don’t have the words to properly express my gratitude, admiration , and love for you. Your writing was bold, courageous, and urgent. It educated, stirred people to action, and saved lives. A towering intellect and an amazing wit. My time with you is something I will treasure for the rest of my life. Rest In Peace my friend.