DC Comics' "Watchmen" is Now an HBO Series
Thu, April 22, 2021

DC Comics' "Watchmen" is Now an HBO Series

The Watchmen was a group of unusual superheroes that were very different from the other DC Comics characters. / Photo by: Alexandru Nika via Shutterstock


For anyone who was able to catch the “Watchmen” film when it was first shown in theaters in 2009 who didn’t know its source material would have been surprised to learn that it was actually based on a DC comics, the same company that brought us Superman, Batman, and Wonderwoman. The Watchmen was a group of totally unusual superheroes that were very different from the other DC Comics characters fans have known and loved through the years. Their graphic novel was a total departure from what DC has been known for. 

Vox, an American news and opinion website, pointed out in their article that the covers for all 12 issues of Watchmen comics, which were released from 1986 to 1987, also had a different way of showing their respective titles. The Watchmen logo, for one, was written in all caps and traced up vertically on the left side near the spine of the comic book. Unlike other comic book covers, which usually depict an awesome fight scene or a heroic pose from their main characters, the “Watchmen” cover page didn’t have any character on it. 

It was no gimmick or trick, as its creators—writer Alan Moore and artist Dave Gibbon—emphasized that the “Watchmen” comic book series would not succumb to the superhero comics status quo. At the time when most comic books were treading the traditional path, “Watchmen” took a risk, and DC Comics managed to pull it off and made the title one of the most popular anti-hero stories in their universe. 

“Watchmen” TV Series

Due to the popularity of “Watchmen” to the DC Comics fans, HBO has decided to work with the comic book giant on a TV series adaptation of the said maxiseries. CNET, an American news and opinion website, reported that the cable company has stepped up with this adaptation as they stay true to their promise that they will adhere to the original story and texture of “Watchmen.” 

The TV series presents a very rich cast of new characters and several of the more popular ones from the graphic novel. This move by HBO is said to be an intriguing take on the superhero genre. The HBO series has nine episodes, with the first one being launched last October 20. The initial reviews for the series mention that the show might live longer on the small screen as expected. After all, the show has managed to combine both history and fiction from DC Comics. 


HBO has decided to work with DC Comics on a TV series adaptation of “Watchmen.” / Photo by: Katherine Welles via Shutterstock


Cast and Characters

The “Watchmen” comic series has a lot of rich characters that are seeing the light in the TV adaptation. Even before its launch, the TV show has created a lot of buzz among its loyal fanbase when the cast, who will play their favorite Watchmen characters, was announced. According to Newsweek, an American weekly news magazine, the leading cast consists of Oscar winner Regina King, who will play Angela Abar, a character who is living a double life as a police officer and a masked vigilante at night. 

Fans were also delighted to learn that veteran British actor Jeremy Irons will assume the role of Adrian Veidt or Ozymandias, the main antagonist, who holds the title of being the smartest man alive. Silk Spectre, who was played by Malin Akerman in director Zack Snyder’s 2009 movie adaptation, is now being played by Jean Smart, popularly known in her roles in “Fargo” and “Legion.”

Here are the other characters fans should watch for in the show: 

- Don Johnson plays Judd Crawford, Tulsa chief of police, whose actions in the first episode sets up the plot of the series.

- Tim Blake Nelson plays the intriguingly named Detective Looking Glass.

- Louis Gossett Jr. plays Will Reeves, a survivor of the real-life 1921 Tulsa massacre depicted in the opening moments of the show.

- Yahya Abdul-Mateen II (recently seen in “Black Mirror” and “Aquaman”) plays Cal Abar, husband to King's character.

- Tom Mison plays Mr. Phillips and Sara Vickers plays Ms. Crookshanks, companions to Ozymandias.

- Frances Fisher plays Jane Crawford, wife of Judd.

- Hong Chau plays Lady Trieu, a mysterious trillionaire who shows up in later episodes.

A lot of casual and avid fans are hoping that the Watchmen TV series will be long-lived and that it will achieve the same success as the film adaptation by Snyder. It has been teased that there will be new characters to be introduced in future episodes. Who knows, maybe we’ll even see the Justice League and the Watchmen superheroes in the same universe.

Why We Love Anti-Hero Comics Characters

Superheroes are usually valiant and honorable individuals who are willing to take a bullet or even a nuclear bomb to save people. But, it can be tiresome to see and read this kind of character all the time. This is why anti-heroes have become wildly popular. Stories similar to “Watchmen,” like the “Batman” series, easily capture the attention of comic book readers as they present something different from the usual comic book fare—uncomfortable scenarios where even superheroes encounter debilitating situations that make their powers useless.