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More on Watchmen



In response to Scott Renshaw's blog entry "Who Watches the Watchmen?"

But this performance is gonna cost people jobs, no matter how absurd it was to use 300 as the measuring stick (hint: 300 had oiled-up hardbodies. Tell me what Watchmen has for women or gay men).

Well, sure, 300 had oiled-up hardbodies. But I was surprised at how little even Gerald Butler with his handsome beard held this gay man's attention after the first 20 minutes or so. In fact, the whole reason I decided to watch the movie to begin with was because, even if it sucked, there was bound to be some eye candy. Turns out I wasn't able to make it through the whole flick—I gave up about the time the Mr. Bulgy and his friends got to Thermopylae.

That did not, however, stop my friends and I from going to see Watchmen over the weekend. And it only went to prove what I knew from previous experience: We ignore Scott Renshaw's advice at our peril.

Now, you'd think that an epic-length picture about superheroes living during an alternate 20th-century history could hardly help but carry some transcendent, etiological message about truth and humanity. Or, failing that, at least provide some beguiling subtext or a literary device here and there to give the viewer something to think about during his/her three hours of forced sensory input.

But, no. Apparently, with Zack Snyder, all there is to a movie is what you see onscreen. It was the same with 300. A film adaptation of a fictionalized version of semimythologized retellings of the historical account by Herodotus would pretty much have to deal with The Big Issues, wouldn't it? Somewhere along it line it should have accumulated a measure of humanistic veritas.

But, judging from its reviews, if there were any truths to be drawn from it, they were only of the most obvious sort—a reflection of American fears during the Bush administration. It's as if Snyder has a genius for stripping every last drop of allegory from a narrative.

Still, there was one thing Watchmen had for women and gay men to rival the brutally chiseled physiques of 300: a big, swinging luminescent blue penis. Can't say I've ever seen one of those before.


Note: I originally posted this as a comment in response to Scott Renshaw's blog post about Watchmen; then I figured, what the hell--it's a decent enough blog entry.