Watchmen-short review on influences

They really don’t kid when they say Watchmen is the best graphic novel in existence. “They” being the collective unconscious of all of sentient life in this Universe and every other Universe ever. Yes, it’s undeniable, WATCHMEN embodies the apex of artistic achievement in the graphic novel format (says so on the back cover). It’s equivalent in other mediums might be Picasso’s wartime painting Guernica or Bob Dylan’s “All Along the Watchtower” in rock and roll. All three are revered in their respective worlds as works of considerable political and moral content. Guernica manifests, through Picasso’s choice of muted colors, a tragic aspect of mankind underpinned by the unifying spectre of death. The latter, as every fan of Watchmen knows, played a crucial part in the creation of the novel. Consequently, Dylan’s influence on the book and it’s authors imbued in the narrative a consistent theme about the conviction to stand determined against uneven odds. Or as brusque main man Rorschach puts it, to “Never compromise”. The song lyrics illustrate archetypal characters that parallel Watchmen’s lucid portrayal of uninhibited human behavior through its multifaceted and representative characters. The joker and thief of Dylan’s landscape are approaching outsiders opposed to the established power structure of the castle off in the distance, characters in an impending conflict between a stagnant regime and liberal revolutionaries. In the same way, Watchmen’s characters fight against the prevailing structure of disorder and amorality they see as the stagnant regime of their world. Throughout the graphic novel, author Alan Moore (with incredible visual aid by artist Dave Gibbons and colorist John Higgins) continuously develops on themes concerning the human condition and the uncertain nature of morality. I know, sounds like some pretty heavy stuff-but it’s totally accessible and a satisfying experience for all ages. Watchmen is a book with widespread influences and, in turn, widespread influence in our own modern culture where many of its insights still hold significant weight – a fantastic novel for anyone searching for a deeply poignant (and fun!) read.


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