Monday, May 7, 2012

Watchmen: Chapter V - page 7


Panel 1:  which has an image of a Buddha (signifying enlightenment) in the form of a poster taped to a door.  The blood splattered on the poster is also a visual echo of the splash of Rorschach’s foot in the puddle on the final panel of the previous page, adding another transitional layer between these pages.

As we get into this scene, it is also obvious that the use of the phrase “flash of enlightenment” is used ironically in reference to the father who killed his children for fear of impending nuclear doom.

Also of note in the Buddha poster are some other symbols that have been prevalent in Watchmen.  First, the Buddha is bounded by a purple triangle (symbolic of Ozymandias) and there is also a blood splatter over the right eye (on our left), which echoes the blood-spattered smiley face badge of the Comedian. Also, the life of a Buddha is one of reflection, echoing the theme of this chapter. 

Panel 3:  The poster behind Detective Fine says, “Today is the First Day of the Rest of Your Life,” which is an ironic comment upon this scene. 

Panel 6:  The Grateful Dead poster in the background is for the album AOXOMOXOA, which is a palindrome that is also a mirror image – if you were to set a mirror in the middle of the “M” we would get the exact same word through the reflection of that half of AOXOMOXOA –  reinforcing the primary theme of this issue.

Panel 9:  Again, Moore & Gibbons play with the juxtaposition of words and images as the detectives leave, shutting the door behind them, their final words in the apartment, “that takes a whole different kind of inspiration” run over the image of the Buddha, which is an Eastern motif of religious inspiration.

1 comment:

  1. purple triangles have another meaning which is very important to understanding the watchmen.