Panel 1: It is ironic that Dr. Manhattan, who claims to be following the script proscribed for him within his omnipotent point of view, would claim that an inanimate object such as the planet Mars is able to make a choice: “Life could have flourished here then, but Mars did not choose life. It chose this.”
Panel 2: Dr. Manhattan’s comment in the previous panel has initiated yet another memory for Laurie, and again we see only her hands in this panel as she begins to recount how chaotic her life was, which will lead to the flashback beginning in the second panel following this one.
Also note, this is another instance of the “blurred reflection” motif found in this chapter.
Panel 3: Laurie’s remark that her mother “eroded [her] adolescence, chipping [her] into shape…” is emphasized by the image of one of the many canyons on Mars, which was formed by erosion and the chipping away of its surface over millennia.
Panel 4: Note that, in this panel, we can see clearly the card reading “black unrest” that Captain Metropolis noted as one of the social evils he wished to stamp out with the formation of the Crimebusters, as seen in Chapter II.