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Watchmen Graphic Novel Review

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Watchmen Graphic Novel Review

Watchmen #1

Copyright DC Comics




Alan Moore


Dave Gibbons


DC Comics


Watchmen is for mature readers and contains scenes of violence, sexuality, coarse language, and adult themes and situations.


Hailed as the greatest graphic novel of all time, Watchmen has had a staying power in the realm of comics for quite some time. It is thought of as not just a comic, but literature and has been used in college courses and been the source of discussions the world over. This comic officially helped end the age of comic innocence and ushered in a new thought of how comic books could be told and presented to the world.


The Watchmen are the last line of a dying breed...superheroes. They once banded together to fight crime and worked together for the betterment of mankind, but now they have dispersed, many retiring from the limelight, only to be brought together once again when the murder of one of their own sends shock waves through their world.

Old friends band together to unravel the mystery about who killed their ex-teammate and find a deeper, more insidious plot that threatens to change the very face of the planet. The story that unfolds is rich and complex as it leaves no easy answers to what this new scheme will do for the world.


What The Dark Knight Returns did to bring a sense of grittiness to comics, Watchmen showed a sense of complexity and inter-weaving storylines that hadn't truly been done in comics before on such a grand scale. What Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons accomplished was a timeless piece of fiction that continues to stay relevant some two decades later.


Copyright DC Comics
The first thing one notices about this comic is that it is not a quick read. It is deep and bounces from plot line to plot line, weaving them together to show the overwhelming frailty of humanity and its wonders as well, all in the same page. Watchmen is not a fluff comic, it is a story that is scaffolded, with each story building upon the other in information, character development, and intrigue into this truly bleak world. Alan Moore is really in rare form here, telling a story that has been used to compare the rest of comics that have come since against it. Many creators have tried to tell their "Watchmen" story, but few have been able to weave such an intricately designed comic tale such as this. That new readers are drawn into its pages each and every year is a testament to the solid writing and art that still reads well today.

The art by Dave Gibbons is also one that stands out as a wonderfully crafted piece. Gibbons shows a very detailed and realistic style that plays well with the story, giving us believable characters and settings that pop out on the page and help to convey what Moore intended with this comic.


There's a reason why Moore has stated that Watchmen could never be adopted into a movie, as the comic has so many storylines and characters that it can be difficult to keep up. Each part though, is vital in telling the overarching story that isn't necessarily about superheroes, but more about humanity and what we do to satisfy our needs and desire.

If you haven't read Watchmen, it is one of the best long form stories out there and well worth the time invested in reading the twelve issues. Don't rush them as you'll be bound to miss a detail here and there that will take away from the experience and I'm sure you'll come back sooner or later to re-read this classic series.

Nite Owl

Copyright DC Comics

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