The OF Blog: Alan Moore, Watchmen

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Alan Moore, Watchmen


Despite my months' long avoidance of writing any "true" reviews here at this blog (due mostly to time/energy factors related to my day job), I did want to take the moment to make a brief observation about Alan Moore's classic 1986 graphic novel, Watchmen. While doubtless I could spend hundreds of words analyzing how Moore constructed his plot and even more on his dialogue and his characterizations, I would rather spend this time noting my own initial reaction to this book.

It was, for me at least, one of the more "existential" novels I have ever read and it's going to take days before I can process all of my reactions to it. Suffice to say, it was a rewarding read for me and one that leaves me even less confident than before that a credible movie can be made that will incorporate all of the wonderfully disparate elements in Moore's work. Not going into specifics here, as I have other things to do this holiday weekend, many of which have nothing at all to do with blogging. Ciao.

9 comments:

zaneasher said...

I'm rereading this now as I have time. It's just an amazing piece of work and really holds up well over the years...

Larry said...

Yeah, even with the Soviet references, it didn't feel dated at all, likely because Moore really tied it into "the human condition," plus those quotes at the end of each chapter really fit the scenes well, no?

zaneasher said...

The quotes are definitely a nice touch. I also really like the 'book excerpts'. In fact, I really need to read the prose novel Moore has written and wish he would write more novels...

Si- said...

Yeah, I found Watchmen powerful, also.
Being a student illustrator, I remember being taken aback by the communication and depth Moore was able to maintain in the novel. This novel, and V for Vendetta, re-ignited my hope in the medium of the graphic novel. On par with your previous post about the potential in graphic novels, I hope that there is a lot more to come in the future of the medium, as it's power to combine visual with text is huge, and quite unexplored. A few underground german magazines I studied come to mind.

I also read his novel 'Voice of the Fire' this year, which is powerful, sinister and one of the darkest books I have ever read. It took him five years, and his control of his word choice is something to witness.

Trinuviel said...

I recently read this for the very first time - and it totally blew me away. It is the most complex and multilayered comic/graphic novel that I have ever read. It is almost filmic in its use of montage and I just love the way how apparently "meaningless" visual motifs constantly recurr and are re-interpreted. I also love how they play with the notion of chronological time. A masterpiece! And one that will be very hard to translate into just one film.

Anonymous said...

I've not read this book, yet. But I'm adding it to my list. I love anime and animated films (those that put story above quirkiness). This book sounds like it would make a better animated feature (or series) than a live action film, the better to capture the nuances the author intended. I wish more US film makers would use this medium. (See Avatar: The Last Airbender.)

Camilla said...

I agree. It blew me away when I read it, and I have been mad about it ever since. I came across a self-professed "geek"/stand-up comedian a short while back who claimed the ending was off, and I found myself protesting loudly. It is such an amazing piece of work. And I foresee myself hating the movie.

tabata timer said...

I have to agree with you. I think watchmen is very powerful.

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