Monday, September 10, 2012

Watchmen: Chapter IX - page 10


Panel 1:  This is a panel layout we’ve only rarely seen before.  In this instance, the tall panel on the left that extends the entire height of the page provides scale for the elevation of Dr. Manhattan’s fortress, as he shows Laurie around Mars.

Panel 4:  Dr. Manhattan – Jon – is a god among men.  He is able to do things that are beyond the comprehension, let alone the ability, of anyone else.  The world does not work the same for him as it does for the rest of us.  And, in this panel, we have a subversion of the story of Christ changing water into wine.  In this case, Dr. Manhattan merely creates the water Laurie desires, needing no catalyst for this miracle.

Panel 6:  The image of Laurie picking up the chalice, which is formed like an hour glass, and the dialogue from Dr. Manhattan – “…all those generations of struggle, what purpose did they ever achieve…” – transition directly into

Panel 7:  where we have a similar image – a younger Laurie lifting weights that form a similar silhouette to the hourglass chalice – that exhibits the struggle Laurie went through to realize her mother’s dream of becoming the second Silk Spectre.  This is emphasized by the continuation of Dr. Manhattan’s remark – “…all that effort, and what did it ever lead to…” – which is not only a comment upon Earth’s civilization, but also a comment on Laurie’s efforts to become an adventurer, begging the question of “what did it … lead to?”

Panels 8-9:  Again, we only see Laurie’s hands in the picture as Dr. Manhattan speaks to her, initiating another memory in Laurie’s mind.

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