Friday, December 28, 2012

Watchmen: Chapter XII - page 32


Panel 1:  In the pile in the foreground we can see that Rorschach’s journal is still there.

Also note that Seymour is wearing a smiley face shirt, which certainly seems in keeping with the character.

Panel 3: And we discover that the “RR” who might be running for President is, in fact, Robert Redford.

Panel 4:  Hector Godfrey’s remark, “…who wants a cowboy actor in the White House…” is obviously an ironic commentary on the fact that, at the time Watchmen was published, there was a cowboy actor, Ronald Reagan, in the White House.

Panels 5-6:  And with the drop of ketchup that fell onto his shirt in panel 5, Seymour now has a smiley face image with the same red splatter as we saw on the Comedian’s smiley face button.

Panel 7:  And with this close-up image of the splattered smiley face shirt, Watchmen ends as it began.

The dialogue in this panel – “I leave it entirely in your hands.” – is not only a directive for Seymour, but is also a directive for the audience, leaving it in our hands how we believe the story continues.  Does Seymour run something from Rorschach’s journal?  Does he run something else?  Will the tenuous peace achieved by Veidt crumble in light of the revelations from Rorschach’s journal?  Or does the world continue to move forward, working to solidify this peace that was achieved at such a cost?  The questions, and the possibilities, are endless, and Moore & Gibbons leave it all in our hands.

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