Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby SecondTalon » Wed Sep 17, 2008 6:27 pm UTC

Endless Mike wrote:
SecondTalon wrote:Indeed. Barring those from oldschool and Japanese RPGs. Story would take place in those regardless, such as it was. (Story: Go kill the badguy, because we say he's bad!)
You're just angry that Garland knocked you down.
*sniff* Did he tell you that? Bastard. Always bragging about it....
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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby Nyarlathotep » Fri Sep 19, 2008 3:51 pm UTC

Ok, so, amusing little thing I found today (THIS IS RELEVANT TO WATCHMEN, SSRLY). Some background:

On Livejournal, there is a very sad community called Fandom Secrets. It is like Post!Secret, except you may only post secrets about fandom.

You can imagine how well this goes.

Occasionally, however, you find incredibly amusing little gems.

Such as the following:
Spoiler:
Image


I'm not sure if it's reassuring, really. I mean, now I'm terrified that McCain is going to jump out of a refrigerator at me.
'Gehȳrst þū, sǣlida, hwæt þis folc segeð?
hī willað ēow tō gafole gāras syllan,
ǣttrynne ord and ealde swurd,
þā heregeatu þe ēow æt hilde ne dēah.

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby Quixotess » Fri Sep 19, 2008 8:53 pm UTC

Best presidential debates ever
Raise up the torch and light the way.

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Fri Sep 19, 2008 9:42 pm UTC

"Country not well. Have to take back Washington. Lobbyists powerful."
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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby 1hitcombo » Mon Sep 22, 2008 1:57 pm UTC

Asked for my help today. Said no.

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby mosc » Tue Oct 07, 2008 5:13 pm UTC

That poster is HILARIOUS! I an SO going to print that out.
Title: It was given by the XKCD moderators to me because they didn't care what I thought (I made some rantings, etc). I care what YOU think, the joke is forums.xkcd doesn't care what I think.

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby Killy_mcgee » Thu Oct 09, 2008 2:18 am UTC

I just finished the book. I loved the thing to death though. Rorschach was definitively favorite character. I understood why he had to warn society.

Also, Could anyone suggest a book that is reminiscent of this book?
[insert random quote/ some stupid "bunny takes over world" thing.]
FUCK BUNNIES.

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby SecondTalon » Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:38 am UTC

In..which way?

A more real/hard/hardcore take on Superheros? Warren Ellis's The Authority.
A deconstruction of the genre? Alan Moore's Supreme (Google books preview! Go read it!)
Alan Moore mid 80s style? Alan Moore's V for Vendetta or Alan Moore's Swamp Thing (Get the first issue of his run here)
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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby Killy_mcgee » Thu Oct 16, 2008 3:08 am UTC

SecondTalon wrote:(words pertaining to my original post)


Thanks. All of them will do.
They will all do very nicely.
[insert random quote/ some stupid "bunny takes over world" thing.]
FUCK BUNNIES.

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby smw543 » Sat Nov 01, 2008 6:22 pm UTC

Concerning this idea that things will fall apart after the book ends: Veidt didn't plan to do all that and just leave it to work itself out; he included a part of the plan that allowed for him to personally gain considerable power/influence (I'm pretty sure he stated this explicitly, though it may have only been implied; I lent my copy to friend.) He would presumably use his political and financial influence to maintain the peace.

Now for the more subjective part. When I first read Watchmen, as well as upon rereading, I assumed there would have to be more alien bombings, probably one or two more within a year or so, just to make it clear it wasn't an isolated incident or a Russian attack, then another one every ten to twenty years, just so people didn't forget. Not too often, but not too far apart either, as per the rules of Conditioning in behavioral psychology.

I think it's obvious, however, that Moore implies that the peace won't be permanent, or, at least, Veidt's efforts will eventually fade and have to be replaced with a new ploy. Besides the "Nothing ever ends" quote mentioned earlier, this is also implied in Moore naming Veidt's superhero personality "Ozymandias." Although Ozymandias was, in many ways, Egypt's greatest pharaoh (even the longest serving, perhaps implying that Veidt's plot will last a while,) he is normally always referred to as Rameses II; the name Ozymandias almost exlusively connotes the poem by Percy Shelley:
Spoiler:
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shatter'd visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamp'd on these lifeless things,
The hand that mock'd them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains: round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
More significantly (and more specifically to my point,) the name of the Chapter is a quote from the poem; "Look on my works, ye Mighty...", purposely leaving out "and despair!" for the literary effect (emphasizing the devastation of Veidt's "works".) This line is immediately followed by the whole point of the poem, "Nothing beside remains", which refers to the pervasive Romantic idea that nothing good can stay (see: anything Shelley wrote containing the word "mutability", which is damn near all of it.) True, Rameses did a lot of good, so much so that he's even recognized today, but all that truly remains of his efforts are statues, idealized snapshots of time that neither grow nor change and lack any true meaning. This can be read two ways: (a)It implies that even after the alien gimmick wears off, the peace will continue (to this day, we still have an Egypt, which, although very different, can essentially be traced back to Rameses) or (b)It implies that everything will go to shit and the world will end a la "The lone and level sands stretch far away", as if to imply that nothing remains at all of that world.

Continuing with the Devil's advocate spirit of arguing either/both sides, I'll point out that leaving out "and despair!" could be done to intentionally differentiate between the poem and the actual statue described by Diodorus Siculus, which was engraved with the inscription, "I am Ozymandias, king of kings; if anyone wishes to know what I am and where I lie, let him surpass me in some of my exploits." This interpretation could also lead to the possibility that nothing else remaining but a statue surrounded by miles of sand is specifically referenced in Veidt's line, "...Save for Richard Nixon, whose name adorns a plaque on the moon, no human vestige would remain. Ruins become sand, sand blows away...", wherein "no human vestige would remain" is, in terms of wording and implication, reminiscent of "Nothing besise remains", and "Ruins becom[ing] sand harkens to the final line of the poem. As such, this implies that Veidt is leading mankind down the path to ultimate destruction, just as his namesake's world was destroyed (this reading requires accepting conclusion (b) mentioned above, and, therefore, the destruction of mankind.) Keep in mind however, that this only implies that Veidt's plan for the world would cause it's end; there is still hope for survival if the journal is published and believed (although this could potentially bring destruction even sooner.)

Hmm. I started out with the first interpretation but, in writing the second one, convinced myself of its validity, although I still believe the first argument (for the interpretation of lines 11 and 14) is sound.

/wall of text
Spoiler:
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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby 1hitcombo » Sun Nov 09, 2008 2:52 pm UTC

If you take the first interpretation with the pirate/comic story in the backdrop, Ozymandius's plot can be considered not only transient but also self-deceiving. One of the main themes of Watchmen seems to be the mortality and powerlessness of superheroes. The ideas of justice, peace, and stability are foreign to the rest of the world and rather than serving as symbols to unite the world around such ideas, the heroes are ultimately outsiders to the realities that they cannot accept. They instead attempt to impose their own sort of justice and peace but for the most part their efforts are not sustainable because of the world that they live in. Even the all powerful Dr. Manhattan, who is pretty much god, is unable to sway the way of the world because he understands that even he cannot do anything but let the world unfold on its own natural path, most likely to destruction.

Also on a side note: I was at Borders last night and Watchmen was everywhere. There were at least 50 copies in the store. It's so conflicting, the repulsion of the trendiness yet the joy of graphic novels becoming more mainstream and acceptable a legitimate artistic medium...

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby ADXCKGuy » Mon Mar 09, 2009 5:35 pm UTC

How has this topic gone so long with comment when the movie just came out?

I just finished it a little more than 25 hours after purchase, on a whim because I was about to board a train and had been advised to read it first because those who see the film first will enjoy both less. When I say I just finished it, I mean about 10 minutes ago. Dried tears still on my face.

I just wanted to revive this for the moment, I will go through and actually read the thread a little later, for now I just hope to draw the attention of people interested and willing to discuss it when I come up with commentary of my own on it.

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby Jesse » Tue Mar 10, 2009 3:31 am UTC

The reaosn no-one commented is because we have a thread about the film in the Movies subfora, and we'd all read the book before we saw the film. :P

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby Azrael001 » Tue Mar 10, 2009 3:39 am UTC

There is no other way.
23111

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby rat4000 » Sat Mar 28, 2009 9:56 pm UTC

I just finished the book some 20 minutes ago and read the thread now. I will need a rereading (or two, or five, or ten) to talk about how awesome the novel really is; now I'll just state my opinion on a couple of things:

Rorschach. He did the right thing, which was sticking to his moral code, but he had to die because the damage was already done and revealing Veidt would just make it pointless.

Veidt. He was completely right. He killed off 3 million people and may have ruined the lives of about 14 million, but probably way less. This is, I think, 10 times less than the amount of people who died at Hiroshima. Through those deaths he prevented, for at least several years, Russia resorting to mutually assured destruction, and through that time, more people would get born than those that had died. His plan is justified.

Dr. Manhattan's line: "Nothing ever ends." I think this works this way: Veidt did what he could, but he could not predict the consequences, or indeed some of the circumstances (journal). People will eventually start warring again. That's almost a given. So, what Manhattan meant was that, since nothing ever ends and ordinary human beings cannot see the future, all we can do is do what is best for the moment. What we hope will affect the foreseeable future in a good way. This is, unfortunately, not what Veidt thought and not what he wanted, which is why the line shook him so badly.

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby Jack Saladin » Sat Mar 28, 2009 10:47 pm UTC

He killed off 3 million people and may have ruined the lives of about 14 million, but probably way less. This is, I think, 10 times less than the amount of people who died at Hiroshima.
... What? How many people do you think died at Hiroshima?

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby smw543 » Sat Mar 28, 2009 11:29 pm UTC

Jack Saladin wrote:... What? How many people do you think died at Hiroshima?
Apparently, 30 million. With presumably comparable numbers for Nagasaki, this would mean that the American nuclear strikes claimed over 80% of the Japanese population. Now that's what I call a war crime. 8)
Spoiler:
LE4dGOLEM wrote:Now you know the difference between funny and sad.
Ubik wrote:But I'm too fond of the penis to let it go.
gmalivuk wrote:If you didn't want people to 'mis'understand you, then you probably should have tried saying something less stupid.

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby rat4000 » Sun Mar 29, 2009 12:03 am UTC

Uh, yeah, right, that Hiroshima number was thousands.

...thousands...

...now that's embarassing... was I even thinking when I wrote that? That bomb killed 1/40 of the world's population? I can do better than that...

Ah well. I still think more people would die in a global nuclear war than live in New York.

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Re: Watchmen. Let us discuss. SPOILERS!

Postby FrankManic » Mon Sep 14, 2009 2:39 pm UTC

264,000 including cancer victims is the number I've generally heard. Compared to... well.. everything else Nuclear Bombs have about the same kill count as Toilets and accidents involving office chairs.


So. Adrien Veidt. Tall. Blond. Blue Eyes. Probably born sometime in the forties. Parents died in a wreck when he was young. He's the smartest man in the world. He's the fastest man in the world. And he's the strongest man in the world. On top of that he's on the only person with the foresight to realize that the only thing that can save the world from total annihilation is a massive Xanatos Gambit decades in the making, staggering both in it's unambiguous awareness of the animal stupidity of mankind and it's utter moral and ethical ambiguity.

See, me? I read that and I thought 'This guy is some sort of Nazi Uberkind. The American's must have grabbed him as part of Project PAPERCLIP along with the unsavory rocket scientists.'

Did anyone else read that into the character? Is there anything that suggests it was intended, or clearly suggests another origin for the character?

I'm not implying that he's enhanced, merely that in keeping with his Perfect Man nature he would fit as some sort of biologically perfect result of Nazi Germanies Eugenic fad. And it would make for an interesting back ground, a nice counterpoint to PAPERCLIP, which basically kidnapped, then whitewashed, some very unpleasant bastards who happened to know useful things about rockets.


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