At Midnight, All the Agents . . .
First, a caveat:
In his introduction for the re-issue of Alfred Bester’s The Stars My Destination, Neil Gaiman wrote, “. . . you can no more read the same book again than you can step into the same river.” Which is true. When I first read The Lord of the Rings as a teenager it had a very different meaning than when I read it in my early thirties. I had matured, my understanding of the world had grown, and I had broadened my experiences during the interim fifteen or so years. It was a far different book than the one I remembered, because my perspective had evolved.
Which is to say, there are many themes one can pluck from Watchmen and its individual chapters. It all depends upon your point of view. As an introduction to each chapter, I have chosen to discuss a specific theme or visual motif found within that chapter, as a way to look at the chapter in toto and to get you, the reader, into a proper mindset for what follows. I chose to focus on a single theme with each chapter in order to keep you, and me, from getting bogged down under the weight of my own words, and to make each of these chapters a bit less cumbersome. I would also encourage you to dig a little deeper into your own reading of this book and see what other theme and motifs you discover. I hope you enjoy.