Thursday, September 6, 2012

Watchmen: Chapter IX - page 6


Panel 6:  Dr. Manhattan’s description of time – that it is simultaneous and “humans insist on viewing one edge at a time, when the whole design is visible…” – symbolizes Laurie’s view of her history and heritage.  Deep down she knows the truth about who her father is, but she insists on clinging to the deception that Hooded Justice was her father.  She, like other of us, refuses to see the truth that has sitting in the back of her mind all these years.

Also note that Dr. Manhattan’s inquiry – “What is your earliest memory?” – prompts this initial flashback scene of the chapter.  Also noteworthy is the fact that we only see Laurie’s hands in this panel, symbolizing the fact that she is not in control of her own story, as Dr. Manhattan controls this conversation and pushes her to remember.  This will generally be the case throughout Chapter IX – Dr. Manhattan will initiate the memories within Laurie’s mind, controlling her narrative, in the same way she has been controlled, or led along by others, all her life.

Panel 7:  This image of a young Laurie’s reflection staring out from the snowglobe is reminiscent of Edward Blake’s smiley face button.  This is also the first instance of the “blurred reflection” visual motif that will continue through this chapter. 

Panel 8:  Dr. Manhattan’s comment to Laurie that the “[snowglobe] is still here.  Let yourself see it,” is a result of his insistence that “time is simultaneous.”  When discussing the past, as in this instance, his perception is more easily understood, as we are all able to access our memories. 

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