Tag Archives: the watchmen

Who watches The Watchmen? This girl.

I saw The Watchmen. My friend dressed up as The Comedian. I respect him more.

As I am not found of giving public movie reviews, primarily due to my lack of any background expertise in movie making, so I will decline writing a review on even this extraordinary event but there are a few comments I have to give here:

1. Overall I give the film an 8. This “8” is in reference to my level of expectations of the movie living up to the glory of Moore’s novel. Overall, that 8 means that 80% of what I wanted to see I saw.

2. The scene of Dr Manhattan going to Mars remained to be my favorite in both the novel and now the movie. Setting it to Philip Glass was a brilliant move and truly appreciated by this Glass nerd fan. The comparison of time movements and unorthodox composition was a subtle but genius inclusion. 

3. I was impressed with the capture of the relationship between Silk Specter and Dr. Manhattan. 

4. I missed the level of sexual tension between Night Owl and Silk Specter, the relationship seemed a little shallow to me and I felt that nuance of what that relationship was in comparison to the one with S.S. and Dr. Manhattan was lost a little.

5. I loved Rorschach character in the film. I thought it to be a brilliant casting and great work on the part of the actor.

6. I wish they did more with the Psychiatrist.

7. I wish they hadn’t changed they ending to the scene with Rorschach and the little girl kidnapper. The novel does it more justice and illustrates Rorschach’s desire to bring criminals to justice, not to be violent.

There is much much more and maybe I will break my own rule and write a more detailed review, but until then I direct you to a review done by a friend of mine. He also happens to be the man who introduced me to The Watchmen and has made my life better for this. He also happens to be a giant film geek and thus has a little more creditability interviewing then I do.

Check out James Wade’s review of The Watchmen on this new film blog thespotlessminds.wordpress.com/

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The Watchmen are all clothed!

Woah!! This is the coolest thing I have seen all week.

The Watchmen

The Watchmen costumes have been released and a huge thanks to Bananatree for the update. Totally rockin. Silk Spectre isn’t at all what I imagined but still very sweet. Rorschach is fantastic and totally in keeping with Gibsons interpertation in the novel and The Comedian looks bad ass, to say the least.

This is actually getting me excited about the movie….sorry Moore.

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who are we?

Its 12:09 on Thursday evening, or Friday morning depending on how you look at it. I am yawning wider than I thought my jaw could go and have had app. 3.5 hours of sleep in the last 48 hours, including the 1/2 hour nap just taken.

Why this late night post? Busy fighting crime and saving the world, am I? Nope. No Spiderman web slinging action for me, just bad attempts at Yoda references. I am currently running in my university’s student election’s and it is campaign week which means speech’s, talking to everyone you know and checking facebook upteen times to check the status of your group. It also means battling the constant anxiety of inadequacy or external perceptions of who ‘you’ are.

These past couple weeks have had me thinking much ado about…well…nothing. Ok, not nothing. Superhero’s. Average Joe/Jane by day and Superman by night? Possible? Do my friends/colleagues/pets have secret identity’s? Probably not, but being a supehero can be more than donning a pair of red tights and a kickass cape, or having your symbol shone into the night sky. El Devo lent me the Daniel Clowse Caricatures novel,which is just about ordinary people. Incredibly ordinary people. People more ordinary that the most ordinary people in my life. This desire to make the ordinary into extraordinary is interesting. In The Watchmen, Moore and Gibson highlight the average day job of being a superhero. It is about more than just fighting crime sometimes, it is about your intention and your motives. Rorsauch was killing the bad guys yet he WAS the bad guy. Moore wrote about auto mechanics and nerds, women with midlife crisis and sexual needs, rape and marrige. These all happen everyday. What doesn’t happen everyday is donning an owl suit and saving people from a fire. However, very ordinary people do very heroic things everyday.

At my fine institution of higher learning there will be a fundraiser held next week to raise awareness and much needed money for the homeless issue in this city. This is heroic. This is what saving lives is. Looking around you, I bet you couldn’t say who has spent time homeless, or one paycheck away from being homeless. Yet, it is more common than many think. Yet, we all have the power to combat this. To become everyday superhero’s.

So, in my election mode mind at 12:23 am I sit here wondering what I could be doing. What could be done. I ran for office because I believe in something. Something that is worthwhile putting my studies on hold for, something that is worthwhile long days and too short nights. Neglect of my friends and family. Something which I cannot name quite yet.

I found a couple cool links and articles on the very ordinary afflictions of very extraordinary super hero’s.

Religion, sociology, and feminism are all ordinary ideas and ideals that we have all encountered in our lives. I guess it isn’t any different in the comic world.

The more I get into comic literature, the more I see its direct reflection of and influence by society. Moore’s hyper political nature and Clowse’s almost boring plot lines are just what we see everyday. Only this way, there is change. There is a difference made. There is a good and a bad. A right and a wrong.

There is always someone asking who are you.

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Who watches the Watchmen?

The Last Man vol. 1

I have heard a bunch of buzz around this recent publication from Vertigo’s , Y: The Last Man, and I am starting to buy into it. From the available “sneak peek” this publication looks pretty cool. I think I am a little behind the times but a girl can only do so much.

However, the main reason for this post is that when looking up some information on Y: The Last Man I saw that they are in the process of making a movie out of it. This, like all lit. based movies has the potential to make every fan cringe and shrink so low in their seats (and I do say seats because fans will come see it just for the sake of curiosity) you would think the hellmouth was opening up underneath the theater and pulling all the cool people down. A director has been nailed down (D.J. Caruso who also directed The Salton Sea – which I think is funny…Caruso…Sea….am I right?) and Shia Labeouf has been tossed around to play the lead character….which I guess makes sense. He likes comics right? Trandformers wasn’t totally terrible, right?
The main reason this makes me cringe has more to do with the latest comic based movie soon to be hitting our local theater’s: The Watchmen. Alan Moores masterpiece will soon be splashed across giant screens everywhere. I cannot help but scoff at any directors attempt to translate Moores hyper political and yet somewhat blase tone to a script, although I totally concede that Gibsons art would translate pretty well to film. A very cool thing about it is that some of it was filmed in Vancouver. There are some production pics up for looking at and thus far, it does indeed pretty cool, but is cool really enough? ( That being said, look how bad ass Rorsauch looks!)

Rorsauch

(This pic appears in the trailer for 300, which I have to say, was also pretty bad ass. But we have already seen how wicked Frank Millers stuff translates, esspeccially in the hands of the right guy. Rodriguez, you have my heart. Speaking of….at HMV (in Canada at least) you can get a copy of Sin City, complete with the extended version, bonus footage (which comes with it anyways to be fair) AND vol. 1 of Frank Millers Sin City graphic novel all for a measly sum of $16.95. I totally recommend checking out some of the bonus stuff. How Rodriguez got Miller on board is pretty interesting, and its cool to see how those two worked together. Personally, I didn’t find the hidden pic but maybe someone else would… )

Back to The Watchmen…. the reason why I really don’t feel that this is going to rock my world a la Sin City, or even 300 is Moores complete and utter distaste with this film or any other film done of his work. I just recently saw V for Vendetta and I agree. It just didn’t work for me. Moore is not a script writer. The work he does is perfect for the medium but changing it, cutting it up and making it into something newly packaged takes away some of the beauty. The concept is gold and I can see why any producer/director/script writer would want to use it, however when the creator wants no association to what you are doing, doesn’t that tell you something? That being said I do believe I once read that Moore didn’t want association to any film being done of his work (both V for Vendetta and The League of Extraordinary Gentleman did not receive the seal of approval from Moore) for the simple reason he couldn’t condone somebody messing with “his baby”. Pretty understandable if you ask me. If you are a fan of Moore or even interested, check out this interview done. Its a little lengthy but well worth the time.

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GWAR!

Oh man…

So, this weekend (precisely – yesterday) I had my geek out/comic book session with El Devo. Fan-tastic. Like any good mentor, he took me to the beginning of how he developed his (very intense) relationship with comics. Boy, oh boy what a lesson. Going through all the universe’s and the different streams in Marvel was enlightening to say the least. There is so much out there, I am feeling a bit over whelmed. Where to start? How can I even begin when there is so much that came before me!

He did lend me some awesome trades with a nice cross section. Frank Miller’s Batman, Daniel Clowse (famed writer of Ghost World, although he lent me Caricatures which is proving to be a easy read and not nearly as insightful and interesting as I was led to think.) A Marvel universe cross over trade, a Alan Moore publication I have never even heard of and a bunch more.

So, I essentially have my work cut out for me, which is great to say when “work” is reading comics. For real.

Now, onto to something incredibly important. There is the most awesome GWAR reference ever. Page 21 of chapter five in The Watchmen there is a great reference to GWAR in the second last panel of the page. What is GWAR you might ask? Well, in The Watchmen GWAR is an acronym standing for “Gay Women Against Rape”. More currently known, Gwar is a band which I cannot genrify aptly but can be described somewhat by a trash metal/shock rock/glam rock type group whose main appeal is the outrageous costumes, crazy erratic, somewhat grotesque behaviour and a stage show which has become infamous for the amount of (supposed) bodily fluids which are sprayed out continuously throughout the performance.

Now, in the information available to myself via the World Wide Web I have yet been able to find anything actually and significantly linking The Watchmen and GWAR together.

The band formed in 1985 (according to their official website, which has an awesome mythological type bio available, a good and entertaining read for all) and according to both the website and wikipedia GWAR’s name came from shouting out “Gwarggghhhh” in every show which adhered itself nicely to their particular brand of entertainment.

The Watchmen was published in 1986 through DC Comics and Alan Moore very much strikes me as the type to pick up what GWAR puts down. So, in my typical rational and completely logical fashion I have put two and two together. GWAR formed in 1985 (ish) and The Watchmen would have been in the process in 1984/85/86 to be published in 1986. Ergo this leads to me think only one thing: Alan Moore loves/loved GWAR and when opportunity presented itself, he would (of course!) be beside himself with glee to reference this then obscure group of entertainers/musicians.

Until I find something to prove me other wise, this is what I will believe.

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The Watchmen pt.II

Reading this book the second time around is giving me all this information, context and general awesomness that I did not pick up on previously.

One of the coolest things about this novel is the quality of the writing. Alan Moore is quite possible on par with our great contemporary literary icons, such as Henry Miller, Hemingway, Chabon, Aster and dare I say….Klosterman? Actually, Moore is much more talented in this particular field that Klosterman could ever hope to be but one of the greatest strengths of The Watchmen is how much the reader cares. (which I believe to be a particular strength of Klosterman, after-all, why else would we put up with his pretentious self loathing unless we cared about it?)

A friend of mine put it wonderfully when discussing the novel last night, the characters are not only classically imperfect but they are also put into terribly imperfect situations, contrary to the classic ‘imperfect – perfect’ dynamic that both DC and Marvel tend to employ. They really are fallen hero’s who all suffer the classic downfalls. Lust, greed, sloth, anger/rage, pride, envy and gluttony.

These very human emotional states are then juxtaposed by a basic sense of good. What is good? What is evil? Such basic questions but clearly without answers. Not to make The Watchman sound overtly philosophical but both The Comedian and Rorschach are supposed “superhero’s” whose actions are contrary to what they are supposed to stand for. This becomes even more apparent with Dr. Manhattan, who is completely amoral as he is no longer human. Although he completely understands what love, anger, lust, hate, pleasure, pain, right and wrong are supposed to be, how could he employ them correctly when they are no longer a part of his inherent nature?

The political tone to the novel is a adhering itself to my heart rapidly. Despite being written in 1986 (and being a groundbreaking movement into making comic books an art, or at least a respected form of literature and art…) the context is as relevant today as it could ever be. I will get much much more into this is in subsequent posts but a passage on the placed insert entitled “Dr. Manhattan: Super-Powers and the Superpowers” is good fodder for thought…and potential discussion…if you know….you like this sort of thing….

“It is the oldest ironies that are still the most satisfying: man, when preparing for bloody war, will orate loudly and most eloquently in the name of peace. This dichotomy is not an invention of the twentieth century, yet it is in this century that the most striking examples of the phenomena have appeared. Never before has man pursued global harmony more vocally while amassing stockpiles of weapons so devastating in their effect.”

post script – Marvel lends itself to imperfect characters in always rewarding and character building situations, whereas DC tends to lend itself to perfect superheros (ie. Batman and Superman) and then puts them in imperfect situations.

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