Tuesday, July 22, 2008

What's So Funny?

Okay, I know it’s a little early to get excited about Watchmen. It’s not out until March, and unlike the trailer, I’m not sure that Zack Snyder quite deserves to be called a “visionary”. But damn if this doesn’t push all the right buttons for me. Sure, some of the costumes are a bit off (it looks like they tried a bit too hard to make them look cool, when some – especially Night Owl – should look kind of clunky)

And yes, I got a bit fed up with all the slow motion in Snyder’s previous 300; but the slo-mo trailer for Watchmen doesn’t bother me because it’s the perfect introduction for all these characters that have been living in our heads for the last 2 decades. Rorschach, full of contempt – Dr. Manhattan, effectively ethereal and other-worldly – Ozymandias, aloof and vain – and then there’s The Comedian.

Eddie Blake may be one of the most unlikely heroes in the long history of comic books. Killed off just before the book begins, we learn about Eddie and his alter ego, The Comedian, through flashbacks. We see a military honor guard at his funeral, and it’s obvious that he was a hero of some note. But that’s just the beginning; we soon learn about the darker side of Eddie – things that people unfamiliar with the comic should avoid reading at all costs.

It’s very encouraging to see that Snyder, in just a handful of production stills released online and a few brief shots in the trailer (including his fatal defenestration), seems to have nailed the look of The Comedian. He may be a smug, right wing rouge on the verge of homicidal rage, but he’s our smug, right wing rouge.