WATCHMEN The Complete Motion Comic DVD Review

     February 21, 2009

Written by Andre Dellamorte

I love Watchmen. Alan Moore’s graphic novel is one of the most perfect pieces of art ever created. Because it absolutely deconstructs the superhero mythos while also being a compelling story in its own right. I love that people love Rorschach, I love that people don’t get it.

I was talking to a friend who got to read the thing as it unspooled. I was super jealous. I’m 32, so I wasn’t exactly cognizant enough to read Watchmen at the time. He told me there was a long wait between the second to last and the last installment. Immediately I became jealous. I hadn’t ever thought about it as anything more than a complete thing. I like pleasure delaying, and the idea of having it not as a complete thing but that waiting to see if Moore and Dave Gibbons could pull it off must have been intoxicating. It must have been like being there.

What is Warner Brothers Watchmen: The Complete Motion Comic? Well, do you own the collection, the graphic novel? You do? Well, then the 325 minute version is that comic, sans the text documents, slightly animated. Characters walk. Sorta. They move things. They light cigarettes. Their dialogue bubbles appear as their lines are spoken by the narrator. Yeah, there’s no women in the cast, but Tom Stechschulte does everything. So it’s the entire story moving before your eyes. And you don’t have to read it, because everything’s read to you, but the dialogue is still on screen, so if you don’t want to listen, you have that going for you.

Everything happens, in the sense that nothing is cut, because there’s no variation from the novel, except the removal of the text documents. But it’s fucking boring. Why? Because it’s like reading novel without actually reading. I have the novel, why would I like this? Why would I want Stechschulte read me the Watchmen novel? Again, there’s not a lot of editorial choices made, but the action is pathetic, and it makes you ready for Zach Snyder to turn it into a real movie.

Alan Moore’s novel is one of those genre-destroying works that really was a game changer. But it works as a comic because it is a comic, and it deconstructs the thing it is. Watching that on screen may have a certain appeal to certain fans who have no sense of how to make an adaptation. Things will be lost. For those who just want to see everything this is their relief. For those who want to see the material turned into a movie, they’ll have to wait for Zach Snyder and see if he can pull it off. Fingers crossed.

Speaking of, Warner Brothers DVD comes with a free movie ticket, which is worth Seven dollars and fifty cents. Other than that, there are trailers for Watchmen, Tales of the Black Freighter, and a preview for Wonder Woman (10 min.).

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