Friday, November 23, 2012

Watchmen: Chapter XI - page 23


Panel 1:  where the captions from the Black Freighter read:  “The world I’d tried to save was lost beyond recall.”

The caption – “…a rope snaked down…[and] I grabbed it…” – is mirrored ironically in the contemporary narrative’s dialogue (from Bernie, the newsvendor):  “…people don’t reach out and make contact.”

Panel 2:  The final Black Freighter caption – appropriately enough, “The End” – is placed above Joey and Aline just as their relationship comes to an end. 

Again, Bernie shows how oblivious he can be to the world around him despite his assertions to the contrary earlier in the story, as he laments the fact that “…people don’t connect with each other…” even as his obliviousness keeps him from immediately connecting with the conflict – something else from his dialogue – between Joey and Aline in the background.

Panel 7:  More of the secondary characters come together on this intersection, as Detectives Bourquin and Fine pull up to the altercation between Joey and Aline. 

Detective Fine was most likely suspended over the “Nite Owl incident” from Chapter VIII (where Detective Fine knew that Dan Dreiberg was Nite Owl, but instead of bringing him in for questioning he merely tried to warn Dreiberg with a visit, resulting in Dan and Laurie getting away from any possible incarceration, at that time).  We can also see Dr. Long has reached the feuding couple.

Note that the time on the dashboard of the police cruiser reads 11:24.

Panel 9:  Now we have the Gordian Knot Lock serviceman and his brother, the manager of the Promethean Cab Company, pulled into the fight on the corner.

The locksmith’s remark – “…another minute, we’d have been gone…lousy timing…” – is a bit of foreshadowing, as the culmination of Veidt’s plan will occur at 11:25 (as we saw – though we may not have been aware of this at the time – on Page 5, panel 5 of this chapter), within the very next minute.

This importance of time is emphasized by the counterfeit watch salesman packing up his gear in the foreground.  And this image of the watchman and his watches transitions directly to

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