Author Topic: Is there life on mars? Who is watching the Watchman? (HBO spoiler discussion)  (Read 384 times)

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Online brilligtove

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From Wikipedia:

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Moore used the story as a means to reflect contemporary anxieties and to deconstruct and satirize the superhero concept. Watchmen depicts an alternate history where superheroes emerged in the 1940s and 1960s and their presence changed history so that the United States won the Vietnam War and the Watergate break-in was never exposed. In 1985, the country is edging toward World War III with the Soviet Union, freelance costumed vigilantes have been outlawed and most former superheroes are in retirement or working for the government. The story focuses on the personal development and moral struggles of the protagonists as an investigation into the murder of a government-sponsored superhero pulls them out of retirement.

Creatively, the focus of Watchmen is on its structure. Gibbons used a nine-panel grid layout throughout the series and added recurring symbols such as a blood-stained smiley face. All but the last issue feature supplemental fictional documents that add to the series' backstory, and the narrative is intertwined with that of another story, an in-story pirate comic titled Tales of the Black Freighter, which one of the characters reads. Structured at times as a nonlinear narrative, the story skips through space, time and plot. In the same manner, entire scenes and dialogue have parallels with others through synchronicity, coincidence and repeated imagery.

From the movie page,

Quote
Owen Gleiberman's Entertainment Weekly review reads, "Snyder treats each image with the same stuffy hermetic reverence. He doesn't move the camera or let the scenes breathe. He crams the film with bits and pieces, trapping his actors like bugs wriggling in the frame."[112] "[Snyder] never pauses to develop a vision of his own. The result is oddly hollow and disjointed; the actors moving stiffly from one overdetermined tableau to another," said Noah Berlatsky of the Chicago Reader.[108] David Edelstein of New York agrees: "They've made the most reverent adaptation of a graphic novel ever. But this kind of reverence kills what it seeks to preserve. The movie is embalmed."[109]

Despite this, Snyder rewrote the ending of the story. In terms of theme it was broadly similar to what happens in the book, but still a drastic departure from the original tale. It was a strange place to depart from the source material.
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Offline Rai

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As long as it is better than the totally-missed-the-point Snyder movie, I am game.
Given that I'll never read the hardcopy can you tell me what the point actually was? Spoilered if you wish>

To me, the point of Watchmen is that there is nothing super about superheroes. The genre is mired in authoritarianism and people who would willingly become masked vigilantes are bound to be distinctly un-awesome and all kinds of damaged, if not complete monsters of different varieties. 

This whole thing just flew over Snyder's head. he depicts all the main characters as with his usual awesomebro aesthetics. He greatly out the sparse and insignificant fight scenes to show off the amazing heroics and to glorify the gory, brutal violence and attitudes Moore was condemning and deconstructing.

The best example is the bit where one of the main characters is confronted by a SWAT team in a residential building.

Here's the original version (it wasn't easy to find all three pages):
(click to show/hide)

Here's Snyder's clueless awesomebro adaptation:
https://youtu.be/eS9_T045vz4?t=87

« Last Edit: August 01, 2019, 04:18:12 AM by Rai »

Offline PANTS!

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I will watch it eventually but I just cant muster the interest.
It was a great graphic novel and really needed at the time, but its been done to death by so many imitators that I dont think there is space for an expansion by writers other than Moore.
But maybe it will be good.

I'm with you.  I am often not an originalist, and can be convinced to watch many a reboot on its own merits.  But when it flies in the face of the original's tone and themes AND the original tone is do fucking on point for us here and now, I get a little miffed and strt thinking "How do these supposed 'artists' not get what the art they imitate was about."
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Offline PANTS!

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No howling about "not canon"? Looks like an interesting watch.

My biggest concern is that it's from Damon fraking Lindelof. After the terrible ending of Lost, the dumbing down of Star Trek 2009 , the idiotic Prometheus, and the utter butchering of World War Z, his name on a project does not inspire me with confidence. But a sequel to WATCHMEN could be interesting, I have no problem with that concept.  I'll give it a shot for an episode or two, at least.

In his "cover letter" to Watchmen fans for his application to be the director Lindelof talks about how he got the comic when he was a 12 yo boy from how dad.  His dad gives it to him with a warning "You are not ready for this".

Lindoelof then states

Quote from: Damon fraking Lindelof
The old man was wrong.  I am ready for this.  Because this was written just for me.

No.  Just, no.  Yes 12 yo boys may get it, they certainly may love it (often unironically for the violence), but in no way was this work aimed at 12 year olds.  Ever.

The be fair - the letter goes on for several more pages, and addresses so much more, but I can not accept his central thesis, and I think that if this is how he approaches the work - as a 12yo superfan - then he is gonna fuck it up.

Yeah - he goin' fuck that little dog.


« Last Edit: August 01, 2019, 09:11:07 AM by PANTS! »
Now where I come from
We don't let society tell us how it's supposed to be
-Uptown, Prince 👉

The world is on its elbows and knees
It's forgotten the message and worships the creeds