I admit that the moment I set my eyes on it Watchmen I glanced up at the sky, pleading, asking why later Star Wars I deserved this too. I was damned afraid of that Damon Lindelof did a blindfold despite his films behind him, terrified of Lost. Make a mistake Watchmen it was a matter of moments and, I admit, I didn't like the promo of the first episode. Then I continued to look at it, exactly as I did as with Shannara Chronicles, to see how it was going to die. It amazed me.

The following review is only the first of a series of nine, released at a safe distance from the Italian release, full of spoilers, references and hints to things that you may have missed.

Episode 1, Episode 2, Episode 3, Episode 4, Episode 5, Episode 6, Episode 7, Episode 8, Episode 9

Regina King, interpreter of Angela Abar

It's Summer and We're Running Out of Ice

The Watchmen episode begins in 1929, Tulsa. The city where all (almost) events will take place is in turmoil. An infant Will Reeves watch his paladin, a masked sheriff (hooded) capture a sheriff dressed in white, apparently an impostor. Outside the cinema Black Wall Street Massacre. His parents escort him down the street in turmoil and then hide him on a cart and send him away. He will never see them again, as the warehouse subsequently explodes. Reached the outskirts of the city and thrown out of the cart, the child rescues an infant, wrapped in the American flag. The worst seems to have passed, and he decides to return to Tulsa, as the fumes of turmoil rise on the horizon.

This scene is a reference to the beginning of the story of Superman. Kal-El / Clark Kent is wrapped in his cloak on his departure from Krypton, just as the infant is with the American flag. Originally the cape served to Kal-El as a source of protection and security, referring to how the US should protect the unborn child from external dangers (and how, evidently, they are not doing it).

A scene from Watchmen

It's 2019: a Tulsa police car stops a suspicious pickup. The policeman wears a yellow mask, protecting his identity and, while preparing to ask for the driver's credentials, he notices a mask to Rorschach in the glove box. The driver is a member of the 7th Cavalry, a group of fervent racists inspired by Rorschach (who is anything but a "good" in the comic) and riddles the policeman with shots, intent on unlocking his weapon.

This scene conceals references to the superhero of the homonymous and very famous comics, but makes us understand how the world of Watchmen is profoundly advanced and changed from ours. The presence of masks on the cops is a stark contrast to all the propaganda of the abolition of masks seen in the comics. The yellow color, present on several occasions within the saga, is then often used to hide sad things under (in fact) a yellow smile: it is no coincidence, in fact, that the masks are of this color.

Trought Sister Night

The scene moves to a school. Angela Abar, aka Sister Night (supposed to be a fighting nun) gives a cooking class. She explains to the pupils (among whom is her daughter, probably adopted) about her life, spent as a policewoman in Vietnam a pastry chef, after the White Night, the event that shocked the police. Thanks to the Funds Redford (yes, Robert Redford has become president and Nixon's big face is on display on Mount Rushmore) has managed to change his life.

Abar's discourse on eggs separated from egg whites is a clear reference to racial discrimination. The Smile drawn, moreover, has a trace of blood in the upper left part, just like the Watchmen brooch / smile.

Smile is a very clear reference to Smile

On the way home an alarm announces a rain of squid; a side effect of the (successful) plan of ozymandias [unknown to anyone except Silk Specter 2 (Silk Specter 2, Laurie Blake, daughter of the Comedian and Silk Specter 1), Night Owl 2, the late Rorschach and Doctor Manhattan] to maintain global peace. [No EMP on New York, it's an artistic freedom that Snyder took in the film].

When she arrives home, she receives a person search via Little Big Horn [a code name referring to a famous battle fought between the Native Americans and the 7th Cavalry (other reference)] and, after leaving the children to her husband Cal, she gets ready to take on the role of Sister Night / Sister Night.

Coming to the secret pastry / base you can see how Adrian Veidt (aka ozymandias) is announced as deceased; an elderly man in a wheelchair asks Angela some questions without any logic, but there is no time. The keypad behind which Sister Night's base is hidden is protected by the 1985 code (the year in which The Comedian / The Comedian / Edward Blake is killed). It's time for action!

The 7th cavalry in all its sparkling beauty

Reaten Latin

The suspect is soon captured and taken to interrogation; a huge abandoned building with 3 vigilantes to guard: Looking Glass, Pirate Jenny e Red scare. Some graffiti recall the phrase that we will hear later, that is Quis custodiaet ipsos custodes? Who will supervise the overseers? It is with this quote that the Chief of Police (which we will discuss later) will allow his department greater freedom.

The interrogations show us a couple of very evocative images and, thanks to Sister Night's “suspect squeezer” skills, our men manage without too much trouble to reach the ranch where the 7th Cavalry is plotting. The fight is very furious and, despite the arrival of reinforcements, no one is captured alive.

Archie, compared to his presentation in the comics

It is interesting to see how the great conspiracy of the Seventh Cavalry seems to consist in theextraction of wrist watch batteries, a figure rather linked to Doctor Manhattan. Equally pleasant is to see that these racists' last hope is a poison pill (I presume), the same one that Ozymandias forcibly shoves into the throat of his alleged "killer".

The aerial combat, besides being spectacular, brings back the jewel of Nite Owl 2, Archie, complete with flamethrower. It is interesting to see how a vigilante call is driving it Pirate Jenny; one of Alan Moore's inspirational songs in conceiving Watchmen.

The man on the horse Pale

Un Jeremy Irons savage has fallen in the guise of the wise Adrian Veidt; we find him riding a pale horse returning to his manor, happily welcomed by two subordinates. Ozymandias has not lost its luster as a cultured, rich and fascinating man; intent on celebrating his birthday and writing a novel called, oddly enough, The Watchmaker's Son.

Adrian, alone, with a world at his disposal

The figure of Adrian Veidt astride a white steed is a clear and implicit reference to a comic interview with him, in which he mentions the horsemen of the Apocalypse and the Seventh Cavalry. The title of the new novel is an all too clear reference to Doctor Manhattan who, as we know, began working with his father, a watchmaker, who took refuge in the Allied territories after the war.

A Sheriff not too Sheriff

Speaking of the Chief of Police judd crawford (a masterful Don Johnson) you can not go back to the beginning of the episode, where the sheriff Bass Reeves he catches the impostor handing him over to the confused crowd. Already this could make us understand that Judd would have a bad end, sooner or later. But the clues certainly didn't stop at the first ten minutes of the episode!

Oklahoma, subsequently, he throws us another fundamental tidbit: the work, in fact, from which the verse we hear at the moment in which Judd is warned of his wounded man is taken is extracted from Oklahoma, a novel in which the main villain is called, in fact, Judd. In Oklhaoma Judd is basically the racist, narrow-minded and mean antagonist who is ultimately defeated.

I knew right away that Judd wasn't going to last long

Last but not least, Unforgettable in the distance during the last scenes; whoever has seen the film will have smelled Comedian to leagues away. Pleasant as the version of Unforgettable was sung by the daughter of Nat King Cole, Natalia Cole, to mark that time has also passed in the series. The huge clock glimpsed in the chandelier, on the other hand, makes us understand once again how this first episode has clear ideas on where to go.

Finally, Judd is hanged from the tree by the same gentleman in a wheelchair seen near Angela Abar's pastry shop. As in a closing circle (or a clock that strikes the last few minutes), we understand that the gentleman in the wheelchair is the child who survived the Tulsa Massacre. Thus ends the first episode of the television series Watchmen