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Old September 2 2008, 12:12 AM   #16
Hicks
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

I ordered it out of curiosity and good word about a month or so ago. After I finished, I thought it was great.
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Old September 2 2008, 12:24 AM   #17
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

Sometimes a comic is just a comic
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Old September 2 2008, 12:38 AM   #18
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

misskim86 wrote: View Post
Sometimes a comic is just a comic
Joe Piskapo taught Data how to tell Jokes.

Personally i resent this thread being called Watchmen "the Graphic Novel". It's just Watchmen. That movie will be forgotten about a couple weeks after it airs , like the League of Extraordinary gentlemen THE MOVIE or From Hell THE MOVIE which were both abominations and quickly relegated to obscurity.
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Old September 2 2008, 01:00 AM   #19
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

misskim86 wrote: View Post
Sometimes a comic is just a comic
And sometimes it's not.
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Old September 2 2008, 01:46 AM   #20
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

Guy Gardener wrote: View Post
Personally i resent this thread being called Watchmen "the Graphic Novel". It's just Watchmen. That movie will be forgotten about a couple weeks after it airs , like the League of Extraordinary gentlemen THE MOVIE or From Hell THE MOVIE which were both abominations and quickly relegated to obscurity.
Doubt it. Despite my lack of enthusiasm for the movie, the fan reaction has already been pretty strong, and Snyder carries with him a certain sense of cult enthusiasm that will keep the movie around for quite some time, regardless of quality.
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Old September 2 2008, 01:57 AM   #21
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

stj wrote: View Post
After reading Promethea (reading at least one volume and skimming two others anyhow) or League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, I felt I had wasted my time. I didn't feel the same after reading Watchmen. It deserves to be taken seriously I think. Some of the raving does sound demented, true, but I hope it's hyperbolic.


That's a great last line. (in your spoiler)

I started the graphic novel when I was 12 or 13, stopped, and just picked it up again last night, just finished the first part, but also understand what you're saying stj... some people will read too much into it. There should not be (obviously in my opinion) college courses on comic books. Heck, I'm not in favor of analyzing any literature too much. Go to college to split atoms and learn how to build bridges.
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Old September 2 2008, 03:55 AM   #22
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

The Watchmen set standards that are indicative of a phase change in comics. It's no longer a medium for kiddies-and Watchmen was one of the few pieces to raise the bar. Others may have written better(not IMO) but this set the standard, along with Frank Miller's DK Returns and that amazing run of Swamp Thing. Preacher is cool but came out way later. Sandman is cool. Watchmen just looked at things differently and when it came out no one was actually doing that. Hence the reaction to it over the years.
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Old September 2 2008, 09:05 AM   #23
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

misskim86 wrote: View Post
Sometimes a comic is just a comic
Undoubtedly true - most of the time, a comic is just a comic, Watchmen is considerably more than just anything, as you must know, because you've read it.
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Old September 2 2008, 06:09 PM   #24
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

The Old Mixer wrote: View Post
(1)That's all you got out of it? (2)No symbolism, (3)no subtext, (4)no historical context?

Plainly the sort of stuff that inspires terminal enthusiasm in a certain kind of young person.
(5)And what about enthusiasm in mainstream critics and college professors? On the contrary, while I appreciated Watchmen a great deal when I first read it at the age of 17, I found that it grew and grew with subsequent readings over the years, particularly when I shared the book with others and we thoroughly discussed matters such as character motivations and symbolism. There are layers of depth in this book to be delved into.

I'm reminded of what Luthor tells Miss Tessmacher in Superman: "Some people can read War and Peace and come away thinking it's a simple adventure story."
Numbers for questions added.

(1)The other stuff is why the book is still worth reading and even taking seriously.

(2)Yes, there's symbolism but that wasn't my topic. Nor is it required to pay fealty to the book's use of symbolism when discussing the basic story.

(3)My recap of "who wins" explicitly reads the subtext, which I think is the real objection. A complaint that I ignore subtext is incorrect.

(4)The historical context of previous comic books and previous thought about comic book heroes is not of great interest. Others more interested in that topic should comment on that.

(5)Mainstream critics and college professors suffering "terminal" enthusiasm are wildly wrong and should be pitied. Genuinely comparing Watchmen to War and Peace would be a good example.

In general, although there are depths to Watchmen, there are also shallows. Diving in without caution is dangerous. Part of Watchmen's appeal to younger people (of all physical ages) is that rather crude pulp story.
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Old September 2 2008, 06:47 PM   #25
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

stj wrote: View Post
Genuinely comparing Watchmen to War and Peace would be a good example.
War in Peace is often considered one of the "greatest novels ever written."

Watchmen is often considered one of the "greatest graphic novels ever written."

I haven't had the opportunity nor the dedication to read either, but it seems that whether you want to compare the two depends on your evaluation of the relative merits of the medium of the novel vs. the graphic novel.

Do you view the graphic novel as simply an inferior medium, or is your rejection of such a comparison simply a result of your lukewarm analysis of Watchmen?
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Old September 2 2008, 08:35 PM   #26
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

stj wrote: View Post
(4)The historical context of previous comic books and previous thought about comic book heroes is not of great interest. Others more interested in that topic should comment on that.
Not to distract from Hirogen Alpha's qood question, I would like to respond to #4.

One example: Superman as a conscious response to Nietzsche's philosophy as refracted through National Socialism, who increasingly turns into a symbol of America itself (and often an instensely liberal America).

On a bigger level, the superhero represents either an evolution of or a return to the heroic model found in mythology. That the superhero resisted the death of the hero longer than several other genres is interesting, too - it's only with Identity Crisis that the superhero is inextricably affected by society's embrace of cultural and ethical relativism. Watchmen is widely seen as the start of that process (although Squadron Supreme by Gruenwald can't be dismissed).
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Old September 2 2008, 08:45 PM   #27
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

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.

--Justin
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Old September 2 2008, 10:25 PM   #28
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

I have also been recently wondering if I should read this.

So far, this thread is very discouraging. Apparently I'll need to be some kind of brilliant genius to start with, then take a college course on it, and then re-read it again several years later to really appreciate it.

Ok. Or I could go get an ice cream sandwich out of my freezer.

I dunno, it's a pretty tough choice.
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Old September 2 2008, 11:04 PM   #29
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

Small White Car wrote: View Post
I have also been recently wondering if I should read this.

So far, this thread is very discouraging. Apparently I'll need to be some kind of brilliant genius to start with, then take a college course on it, and then re-read it again several years later to really appreciate it.

Ok. Or I could go get an ice cream sandwich out of my freezer.

I dunno, it's a pretty tough choice.
Aw, screw all that. You don't need it. Just read it at your own pace and enjoy.
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Old September 2 2008, 11:48 PM   #30
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Re: Watchmen-The graphic novel

Small White Car wrote: View Post
I have also been recently wondering if I should read this.

So far, this thread is very discouraging. Apparently I'll need to be some kind of brilliant genius to start with, then take a college course on it, and then re-read it again several years later to really appreciate it.

Ok. Or I could go get an ice cream sandwich out of my freezer.

I dunno, it's a pretty tough choice.
Or you could read it WHILE eating an ice cream sandwich.
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