Watchmen: A Novel About the Comics Industry

‘Watchmen,’ a TV hit for HBO, was ’embarrassing’ for the comic’s creator Alan Moore (Courtesy: Everett Collection)

It has taken me more than 15 years to finally read one of the greatest comic books of all time, Watchmen, by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons.

Even now, after having finished the third part of the graphic novel that I can now be sure will never get a movie (Watchmen: The End), I can’t put the book down.

It’s not that it’s too challenging. It’s not even that it’s too easy.

With all of its brilliant, sometimes painful, sometimes comical, but always moving story lines and its richly drawn panoramic imagery, Watchmen is at once easy and difficult to write about; brilliant but frustratingly opaque; and difficult to grasp at once, but then easy to comprehend later, as you go through it again.

This complex, time-bending and wildly imaginative fantasy, with its hero Bruce Wayne and his mentor Dr. Jonathan Crane on a collision course with the criminal underworld, has for more than 30 years been at the center of the comics industry.

For years, those stories were told to a cult audience, and then, as the movies continued to overshadow them, the world began to turn elsewhere.

But Watchmen is something different from previous works in many ways.

I can’t honestly say that I understand it. And I know I’ve read it so many times that I probably don’t.

It’s been an obsession for me. A passion.

It’s the first book I’ve read where I knew I was doing more than just passively consuming a story. I was actively participating in creating it.

When I first walked into the comic shop in New York City in 1996, on my first visit, I had no idea that any store in the U.S. could show a graphic novel in its window. I felt

Leave a Comment