Well, when something is lavishly praised, there is usually a backlash, too. Personally, I am not a superhero comic reader nor do I read much "genre" fiction, graphic or otherwise. I thought Watchmen
was outstanding, and really does deserve being placed beside Catch-22
, All the King's Men
, Gravity's Rainbow
and so on, as Time
did in its 100 greatest novels of the century list a few years ago.
Aside from its plot and characterization, which are excellent, Watchmen
pulled off something structurally that would be hard to do in another medium: Having a story within a story (the pirate comic) as a commentary and counterpoint to the main plot, with art from one story and text from the other intertwining. I don't know how to characterize it other than brilliant writing.