The Master

Watchmen *SPOILERS*

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I do dig the Rorschach-inspired fascist morons.

This series apparently understands that Rorschach is not someone to admire, which was not something I always felt Snyder got.

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Nothing beyond the original comic has been worthwhile or necessary when it comes to Watchmen.

Every permutation misses the point of the comic, and while that alone isn't cause to not do more, the products have been so crass and commercial and basic that it really is head-spinning how superficial they keep being. 

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After watching the first episode, I have a theory about Adrian Veidt.

His servants were rather odd, almost inhuman. The horseshoe moment, for instance, was clearly meant to show there's something off with those two. So your mind starts to ask questions. But then they drop three big clues:

  1. Veidt's mansion -- castle, really -- had the same shape and design of the one we saw Jon building (and destroying) on Mars during the classroom scene.
  2. When the servants gifted Veidt with the pocket watch, they note he had sketches of it laying around. He's also visibly moved.
  3. After swallowing his somber emotions, Veidt gleefully informs his staff that he writing a play entitled "The Watchmaker's Son."

Those things combined are enough clues to help me formulate my theory, however, there's one more thing to note.

This episode takes place in early September 2019. When the servants present Veidt with the watch and cake, they say it's to commemorate an anniversary. It can't be of his squid-bomb detonating, because that took place in November 1985.

So what then?

Though an exact date is never given, according to Watchmen #4, Jon Osterman died in September 1959. September 2019 would be the 60th anniversary of that event. Jon's father was also a watchmaker -- as Jon would have been had his father not pushed him into the sciences.

So thanks to that combined with the watch touching Veidt, I propose that the Adrian Veidt we see on screen is actually Jon Osterman / Doctor Manhattan in human form. (Or he's using / controlling Veidt's body as a puppet of sorts.) This would also explain the odd behavior of the servants. From the day he was transformed into Doctor Manhattan, Jon lost touch with humanity. He doesn't know how humans act, so if he were to have created automatons, they would surely be a little off.

Please don't tell me if I'm right, because I've only seen the first episode and there are five more to go as of this writing.

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1 hour ago, The Master said:

After watching the first episode

Okay, I'm glad someone else is watching the show now, because I am dying to talk about it! Some minor details you and Dan have pointed out in TMTM have come back in major ways. 

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Three in. I like the introduction of

Laurie Blake as a Federal Agent. She's much more gruff than she was 1985, but, as Dan and I pointed out in 12 Minutes to Midnight episode 7, she definitely has a darker side when she's on-the-job. Add in another 34 years of life and you very conceivably get her character here.

I'm also thinking Keene Jr. is somehow affiliated with the Rorschach clan, and had something to do with the attack at the funeral. Further, I think he helped them stage the White Night three years prior to the events of this show. He could have given the group the names and addresses of the police officers, knowing the mass murders of police officers would trigger local -- if not national -- outrage. Outrage he could then use to build his own political legacy by masking police officers in an attempt to look like a police-first politician.

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38 minutes ago, The Master said:

Three in. I like the introduction of

 

  Reveal hidden contents

Laurie Blake as a Federal Agent. She's much more gruff than she was 1985, but, as Dan and I pointed out in 12 Minutes to Midnight episode 7, she definitely has a darker side when she's on-the-job. Add in another 34 years of life and you very conceivably get her character here.

I'm also thinking Keene Jr. is somehow affiliated with the Rorschach clan, and had something to do with the attack at the funeral. Further, I think he helped them stage the White Night three years prior to the events of this show. He could have given the group the names and addresses of the police officers, knowing the mass murders of police officers would trigger local -- if not national -- outrage. Outrage he could then use to build his own political legacy by masking police officers in an attempt to look like a police-first politician.

 

 

Spoiler

I think Laurie is definitely one of the most fascinating aspects of the show. Considering some people often critique her lack of character in the original source material, I think having her as a central force is a great way to connect the importance of both stories and give her more play. Her resentment towards masks and the course of her life post-squid makes (in my mind) complete sense. I don't know if I would have ever thought Laurie would adopt the persona of The Comedienne, however, the show and supplemental material has definitely made me consider it plausible. 

On that note, the supplemental material (Peteypedia) is a nice addition and another great mirror to the original formatting. Similar to how the original had a comic within a comic, and now we have show within a show in the form of American Hero Story

 

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All caught up. And I'll say:

I am beyond fed up with the Veidt rubbish. He is so vastly out of character at this point, I thought maybe my theory (in the spoiler tags way above) might actually be correct. But then there's a certain scene set in 1985, and even in that he's not consistent with any Veidt we've ever seen. The sooner that thread ends, the better.

The  Lady Trieu stuff feels like they're setting up something for a second season. The only moment I've enjoyed with the character was her dark "I'm joking" moment with the Clark family. Otherwise I'm checked out on her scenes.

The Wade-centric episode, though exceptionally predictable, featured solid acting from Tim Blake Nelson. And the flashbacks to 11/2 are something we've long needed to see in any Watchmen-spawned media. Experiencing the squid from an outside / survivor's point-of-view better informs the post-squid universe.

More importantly, Watchmen is discussing America's horrific history with slavery and racism in ways I've rarely -- if ever -- seen on television. The opening sequence in 1921 Tulsa is brutally honest in its raw violence, and the entirety of episode six is one of the best single episodes of TV I have seen since the Deep Space Nine episode "Far Beyond the Stars." Further, the way it uses grey tones, limited colors, sounds, and background details to tie eras together and inform us which events are happening in 1938 and which are deeper memories set in 1921 is a true masterclass in creativity and craft. I'm specifically thinking of the B&W police car rolling past Will as he walks home from work. As it drives a few feet beyond him events from the now converge with the then in a splash of muted color and shocking violence. Not only are we seeing events play out in this jumbled mess due to the consequences of Angela's actions at the end of the fifth episode, but, moreover, this is how Will always sees things due to the trauma he suffered as a child in Tulsa. It's so very rare to see PTSD represented so perfectly in any medium, yet here we are. Watchmen nailed it.

Something of note: at the end of Watchmen #12 (as well as the movie), it's heavily implied that New Frontiersman was going to pluck Rorschach's journal from the "crank file" and run it as a story. However, this clearly did not happen in the TV universe. Had they, Veidt would have been revealed as the architect of the squid attack. Who knows, maybe they did run it and it went unnoticed because the paper is a rag. But had they run it, you'd think there would be some mention of it somewhere in the show. This show is filled with tiny background details and Easter Eggs, so it wouldn't be that difficult to mention a conspiracy theory website connecting the dots between the squid and Veidt or have one of the anti-Redfordations protestor's signs being anti-Veidt. I'm not saying they should do this; I'm saying the fact that they have not (along with something we see in episode five) makes me think it never ran in New Frontiersman.

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The Veidt characterization is very suspect, but I was willing to get on-board with it so long as we would eventually figure out what is going on and where exactly he is in time and geography. I do feel it has gone on too long, however. Now that we know he is

Spoiler

on Europa, it seems that he is either imprisoned by Lady Trieu or Manhattan. Why, I am unsure about. In an episode Veidt tells the clones that he may be their master, but he is certainly not their maker. From that line and the other clues you've also brought up (horse-shoe, tomato tree) my first inkling was Manhattan, and his artificially created prison was a little off because of how out of touch with humanity Jon is. Also, the years are passing so rapidly, that I am under the assumption that whatever is happening with Adrian culminates in something crashing to Earth, as witnessed by Lady Trieu.


Speaking of Lady Trieu, I like her inclusion to help represent Vietnam as part of the United States, but I will admit I find her plot and scenes to be fairly boring. Most theories about the show all circle back to her, however, so I am curious to see just how involved with everything she was.

Regarding the representation of the horrific racial history of America, I sadly have to admit I was completely unaware about the Tulsa massacre in 1921. I don't know if that is because I am Canadian and we aren't taught about it, or if it is for other reasons, but regardless; I am thankful to the show for bringing it to my attention. 

1 hour ago, The Master said:

it's heavily implied that New Frontiersman was going to pluck Rorschach's journal from the "crank file" and run it as a story. However, this clearly did not happen in the TV universe. Had they, Veidt would have been revealed as the architect of the squid attack. Who knows, maybe they did run it and it went unnoticed because the paper is a rag. But had they run it, you'd think there would be some mention of it somewhere in the show. 

This is explained in a document found on Peteypedia. In short, New Frontiersman was in fact printing excerpts of the journal: “ 'Rorschach’s Journal' sold thousands of copies of New Frontiersman, but for most people, it wasn’t apocalyptic revelation. At best, it was outrageous entertainment from an outrageous outlet." The editor could never verify the authenticity, so it never made it further than the die-hard believers. The entire document is worth a read however, there is more history filled in regarding this and multiple journals. It also confirms numerous people (mostly Government) are aware of the truth regarding 11/2.

Some other theories to consider going forward:

Spoiler

 

  • Lady Trieu's daughter is a clone of Trieu. She mentions experiencing memories as dreams that aren't her own (i.e. soldiers raiding the village in Vietnam). Furthermore, I don't think Lady Trieu would be old enough to have lived through the Vietnam war unless she was a child, which gives more credence to the theory that Lady Trieu is the daughter of the comedian, and her mother was gunned down, but the baby was saved. 
  • The Millennium Tower will function as a Hypnotic Device, as seen utilized by Will on Crawford and by the Cyclops in 1938. 
  • Lube-Man is Petey

 

 

 

 

 

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Regarding Lady Trieu, the actress who plays her is 40. If they wanted to age her up by eight years, they could indeed make the claim she's The Comedian's daughter. (Blake shot the pregnant Vietnamese woman in June of 1972. So they'd only have to say she's 47.) While Lady Trieu does make a passing reference to her mother making her promises to never leave Vietnam, it doesn't have to be her biological mother.

Love the idea for the tower. And yes about the identity of Lube-Man.

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Some people are speculating that the villain of the episode six -- the man named Fred who set the Jewish deli on fire -- is meant to be a stand-in for Fred Trump.

If you don't want to click the link: The villain is named Fred, he owns a grocery store on Jamaica Avenue in Queens in the 1930s, on his truck we see his business is called FT & Sons, and he's involved with the Klan.

In real life: Fred Trump owned the very first grocery store on Jamaica Avenue in Queens in the 1930s, his mother owned a business called ET & Son, and Fred was involved with the Klan.

There are too many coincidences here for that not to be the case.

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That definitely seems to be the case and is a great (and somewhat frightening) real world connection. And seeing as the episode plays out as it does, it can be assumed that the Watchmen universe is a universe without Donald Trump, as he now could not have been born in 1946.

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8 hours ago, batguy10 said:

This is explained in a document found on Peteypedia. In short, New Frontiersman was in fact printing excerpts of the journal: “ 'Rorschach’s Journal' sold thousands of copies of New Frontiersman, but for most people, it wasn’t apocalyptic revelation. At best, it was outrageous entertainment from an outrageous outlet." The editor could never verify the authenticity, so it never made it further than the die-hard believers. The entire document is worth a read however, there is more history filled in regarding this and multiple journals.

One thing I enjoyed from the Peteypedia is the note that Seymour enjoyed a certain minor celebrity on the crank/Jerry Springer-type circuit as "guy who found Rorschach's journal".

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43 minutes ago, batguy10 said:

That definitely seems to be the case and is a great (and somewhat frightening) real world connection. And seeing as the episode plays out as it does, it can be assumed that the Watchmen universe is a universe without Donald Trump, as he now could not have been born in 1946.

I want to go to there.

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20 minutes ago, Dan said:

One thing I enjoyed from the Peteypedia is the note that Seymour enjoyed a certain minor celebrity on the crank/Jerry Springer-type circuit as "guy who found Rorschach's journal".

That's cool. And I'm glad they're addressing certain aspects via supplemental material.

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I'm certainly enjoying the show, but it doesn't quite scream 'Watchmen' to me.

Just watched episode seven:

Spoiler

I know this was a Big Reveal and a heck of a cliffhanger, but... I did feel like we just went to the same well twice. The week after 'OMG! Abar's grandfather is Hooded Justice!' we have 'OMG! Abar's husband is Dr Manhattan!'

 

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On 11/27/2019 at 4:28 AM, batguy10 said:

In short, New Frontiersman was in fact printing excerpts of the journal: “ 'Rorschach’s Journal' sold thousands of copies of New Frontiersman, but for most people, it wasn’t apocalyptic revelation. At best, it was outrageous entertainment from an outrageous outlet." The editor could never verify the authenticity, so it never made it further than the die-hard believers.

I kinda figured. We know what he wrote about Veidt is true, but it'd be hard to imagine most people saw him as anything but his world's version of a Birther or 9/11 Truther. 

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