Friday, February 3, 2012

Watchmen: Chapter II - Page 2


Panel 1:  “. . . looks smaller somehow.” is overlaid on a camera angle taken from up high, making Sally and Laurie look small in this frame.

Panel 2:  “. . . you just wash your hands of it . . .” is an observation on Kovacs’s hands as the paint on his “The End is Nigh” sign washes over his hands, looking almost like blood – foreshadowing the blood that will run as the story unfolds.

Panel 4:  “Life goes on.” is set ironically over a scene focused on Kovacs and his sign reading “The End is Nigh,” who is in turn walking in front of a cemetery, where life does not go on.

Panel 6:  In response to her mother’s question of whether it was sunny in New York, Laurie replies, “Uh, yeah.  Yeah, pretty much . . .” which is a lie, again exhibiting a truth in these characters – we so often say what is untrue in order to avoid confrontation or be polite or, as in this case, to avoid our parents being right.

Panel 7:  The rest home is named Nepenthe Gardens.  Nepenthe is defined as a potion or drug used by the ancients to drown pain and sorrow, which could be stated as the purpose of such rest homes, but can also be seen as an ironic statement, since it is common for residents in these homes to become sorrowful and feel emotional pain at their solitude and separation from their families.

Panel 8:  “. . . without your health, where are you?” is a direct observation on Edward Blake’s coffin and his recent death, as well as a continuation of Sally’s conversation with her daughter Laurie.

Panel 9:  “It’s dead.  Extinguished.”  Coming from Laurie, this remark can be an observation on her relationship with Jon, it can also – within the wider scope of the literary ambitions of the book – be symbolic of the impending “attack” coming in the final issue, or a more metaphorical take on the manner in which the world will change by the end of the book, the present world eventually becoming “extinguished.”  And of course, it is also a representation of the Comedian’s status within the world.

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