Watchmen

by Alan Moore
Illustrator Dave Gibbons

April 1, 1995 | Trade Paperback

Watchmen is rated 4.675 out of 5 by 40.
A New York Times Best Seller!

This Hugo Award-winning graphic novel chronicles the fall from grace of a group of super-heroes plagued by all-too-human failings. Along the way, the concept of the super-hero is dissected as the heroes are stalked by an unknown assassin.

One of the most influential graphic novels of all time and a perennial bestseller, WATCHMEN has been studied on college campuses across the nation and is considered a gateway title, leading readers to other graphic novels such as V FOR VENDETTA, BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS and THE SANDMAN series.

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 416 pages, 10.14 × 6.64 × 0.8 in

Published: April 1, 1995

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0930289234

ISBN - 13: 9780930289232

Appropriate for ages: 13

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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Undeniably Amazing An Inch thick, this book is a long but good read from 1987. It has a great story with lots of twists and mysteries. It puts a series of super heroes in their own world in a very realistic setting that is very politically driven taking place during the Cold War in the 1980's referencing actual current events like the Vietnam war. I recommend this read to anyone who likes a good mystery story. If you only like X-men with big super powers this is not your comic, though there is good action often. Art 10/10 Story 10/10 Action 8/10 Cool Factor 9.5/10
Date published: 2011-05-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from "Now the whole world stands on the brink..." Stark Raving Sane’s Journal. January, 2011: “Finished reading graphic novel today. Heard good things about it, thought to try reading it. Movie made too, a few years ago, but never watched it. Not much for graphic novels. “Surprised me, though. Not typical comic book, or even typical novel, filled with loosely-connected and meaningless blood and thunder. No, this more psychological, more emotional than most novels I’ve read. “Much more. “Novel about forcibly retired vigilante superheroes in dystopian 1985 New York, and world is on verge of nuclear World War III. Was full of deeply intricate symbolic meaning, literary and historical allusions, and intelligent visual metaphors and references. Plot incredibly complex, contrasted by numerous parallel story-lines, but all made sense at end. Upon looking over pages again briefly, I notice small visual hints alongside relevant ironic dialogue, revelations in plain sight, but so discreet they avoid notice. “Must remember to be more observant in future. Pay special attention to news-vendors especially. “Characters fully developed, well-rounded and believable. Most drowning in inner turmoil. Primary protagonist especially was psychologically fascinating, more so than the others. Led to complex questions about nature of sanity versus insanity and preconceived societal/cultural expectations of heroes, among others, and shattered them. Won’t go into detail here. But he is possibly greatest graphic novel hero ever created. Certainly the most interesting. “Believe entry paints appealing picture. Recommend novel to others who are intrigued by concepts of psychoanalysis or literary symbolism. Is well worth the time, and thoroughly enjoyable. “And try to remember: nothing is ever hopeless as long as there is life. SRS”
Date published: 2011-02-01
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Not for me This was chosen as a book club selection and I was excited to try reading a graphic novel. What I have discovered, is that graphic novels are not for me. I kept forgetting to look at the pictures and only read the words and subsequently got lost many times. The plot itself is actually interesting but I had to watch the movie to get back on track and figure out what the heck was happening. I can definitely respect that this is a great book...just not the type of book that I enjoy.
Date published: 2010-09-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely great! When the average person thinks of comic books or graphic novels, generally they don’t give them the same respect as a piece of literary medium as they would a regular novel. They are often seen as nerdy and childish, due to the superhero based themes, pictures and often times awkward language that must be used. This is unfortunate because the graphic novel is a fantastic medium that blends the visual aspects of television and movies with the detail and depth of the written word. Watchmen is one such graphic novel that is just a masterpiece in fiction. It is set in a dystopian Cold War dominated America, where superheroes exist but are outlawed and the world is on the brink of nuclear war. With all that is going on in the world of Watchmen, it is really a character study of these flawed heroes who are trying to find meaning in their lives and question their values and beliefs in their quest to do what they feel is right to save the world from destruction. Amongst all the grim circumstances and events that take place as the world around them is in chaos, there is one chapter that stands out and is truly inspiring. One of the heroes is debating with another, the one who actually does possess supernatural powers unlike the others, over the meaning of life and human existence as she tries to convince him to save the world. He passes off human life as meaningless and less important to him than the complex geography of lifeless Mars or the complexity of the atom. Over the course of the conversation though, he realizes he is wrong, that all life is a miracle; that the impossible circumstances that have to take place for two people to come together and create another life make every life meaningful. We live in a world where such fantastic occurrences are commonplace and we see everything the same every day that we forget what an incredible world we live in, that everything is miraculous and has meaning. A must read.
Date published: 2010-08-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Better then the movie by far, amazing read and look into our culture. Each character is a comment on what society is. Every single detail provides something more to the ploy. The split screen stories and subplot all weave together PERFECTLY.
Date published: 2009-08-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Extraordinary Page-Turner!! For all those comic-book fans who want something new to read, this is the book i highly recommend, even if you have already read it. I so praise the idea of former superheroes reuniting after one of them gets killed, but if you are new to this novel, I am not going to reveal who was the one that died. Trust me, this will so be worth be your money's worth.
Date published: 2009-07-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Must Read for all Super Hero Fans I've been wanting to read this for quite some time. Longer than I even knew they were thinking about making a movie. I've often seen it on the library shelf but decided against picking up this very thick graphic novel. Of course, it took the recent movie to make me actually get up and read it but by then everybody else wanted to read it and I had to add my name to the very long waiting list at the library. Finally it was my turn. Only a very broad summary can tell the premise of this plot without giving anything anyway and that hardly does the story any justice. A group of costumed heroes worked at thwarting crime during the forties, early fifties but they eventually went out of fashion in the fifties. But another younger, more resourceful group took over in the sixties only to have an act passed in '77 banning vigilantes altogether, except for a select few who worked for the government. This all takes place on an alternate earth where costumed vigilantes are real, Nixon is still President in the '80s (he removed the 2-term rule) and America won the Vietnam War. Now the world finds itself on the brink of World War III as US and Soviet Nuclear weapons are pointed at each other as the USSR starts to attack Asia starting with Afghanistan then Pakistan. In this setting we have a more personal story of former superheroes, some retired, some still working underground and suddenly, former masked heroes are turning up dead or worse. One currently working costumed vigilante has an idea that someone is picking off former masked heroes and he tries to warn the others but no one really takes him seriously in this political clime of uncertainty. This is an amazing book! The story is so intricate. Not only are the two main themes going on as described above but each of the superheroes involved carries their own personal subplot as well throughout the series. Amazingly everything ties together and I'm always stunned when a graphic novel can show such depth and intricacies with such limited text. Of all the great books I've read this month this is my favourite so far. Certainly a product of it's time; the eighties fear of nuclear attack from the Soviets, the Cold War, the threat of a third world war and yet somehow things never change. While the "bad guys" are different today, we still have these threats of nuclear arms making headlines today. I'm really excited to see the movie now. I've purposely avoided any notice of it as I wanted to read the book without any preconceptions. I don't even know who is in the movie and that is why while reading the book I visualized one of the characters as a certain actor. Jon is a science experiment gone wrong and is a big blue muscular naked guy with a circle on his forehead. His voice is distinctly different from the others, unemotional, and I immediately thought of him as a Jaffa, T'ilk to be exact, and I just heard Christopher Judge's deep voice saying that character's voice throughout the novel! It's weird when that happens. Back to the book, totally engrossing and riveting. I wish I hadn't waited this long. I said this was my favourite book of the month but this is also probably one of the finest graphic novels I've ever read. It is tough, hard and bloody and most definitely one for adults though, so don't go thinking of this is a "comic" and handing it off to the kiddies. Highly recommended!
Date published: 2009-04-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Thought provoking piece Who would have thought a comic book (essentially, a twelve part comic book series) would have such a myriad of thought provoking themes: good vs. evil, morality, good of one vs. good of the many, the incessant attempt of mankind to achieve utopia, and ( I believe) its inevitable failure. I won't ruin the work by going into detail (notice how quickly after the movie's release I read this...because I didn't want anyone to spoil it for me, so I won't spoil it for you), but the tagline from the film "Who will watch the watchmen?" is only the tip of the iceberg as to what social commentary is analysed in Moore's novel. Impressive in its scope, I wish Moore would pen (and certainly there is plenty left to say about it) a second part (Watchmen II????) in this post-911 world; it made me wonder if Veidt's solution would really be much of a solution. OK...sorry...enough said. Simply put...read this book.
Date published: 2009-04-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Hopeless Masterpiece I've been in many discussions over the years -- some in classes I was teaching, some over pints in the bar, and still others late at night with people I love -- about what Alan Moore was trying to say with Watchmen, discussions about the meaning of his graphic novel, and I am convinced that the meaning is not what most people think. Most people I have talked to look at Veidt's mini-Armageddon to bring peace as inherently evil -- and the most monstrous act in a book of monstrous acts. Veidt's act trumps The Comedian's attempted rape of Silk Spectre and the murder of his child in the womb; it trumps Rorschach's punishment of the child killer, his torture of "innocent" informants, and the brutality he delivers onto anyone he happens to see committing a "crime," petty or otherwise; it trumps Dr. Manhattan's personal engagement in the Vietnam War; Veidt's action even seems to trump the not-so-petty criminal activities we see perpetrated by peripheral "criminals" throughout Watchmen. On the surface, we tend to condemn Veidt's action because of its scale. It's cold and precise and sterile and necessarily takes the lives of "millions of innocent people." We have been indoctrinated from the youngest ages to hate this kind of killing more than any other. Our great monsters are Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, but we somehow find it in our hearts and minds to forgive Truman's nuclear attacks on Japan because they "saved millions of lives," as a young Walter Kovacs (aka Rorschach) writes in an essay about his absent father, defending Nuclear War and the Truman doctrine, albeit at an early age. And if we can forgive Truman's attack (I recognize that some people cannot forgive that attack, but many, many can), why not forgive Veidt? If we can forgive one, we must forgive the other. Sure Veidt killed more people, but he saved more too, and created a utopia out of the chaos. This discrepancy in our accepted opinions is not lost on Alan Moore; in fact, it is at the core of Watchmen. We see it being played out in dialogue and action by characters from The Comedian to Rorschach, from Ozymandias to Dr. Manhattan, and even in the supporting folk who populate Moore's distopian future. When faced with this discrepancy and pressed to discover why Veidt's actions continue to rile us, it doesn't take long to uncover a deeper root for our disdain: our need for individuality and Veidt's destruction of the freedom to make our own mistakes. This realization of our anger at Veidt and why his action is "evil" quickly becomes the accepted meaning of Moore's story: that derailing humanity's ability to choose is the greatest wrong anyone can commit (the secular see this as a fundamental attack on our freedom, while the religious see this as our fundamental gift from God, but they tend to add anger at Veidt for playing God), and that Veidt's utopia will fail because the power of the individual is too great -- it always overcomes. I disagree. I don't think Moore considers Veidt's act evil so much as misguided. I am not convinced that Moore believes in good and evil at all. Throughout [book:Watchmen] we are led to see one man as the man who "gets it" and that figure is not Rorschach. Rorschach is a guide, nothing more. Rorschach acts as an Horatio figure, guiding us through the narrative, telling us what to pay attention to, whom to believe, what to see: mostly he is trying to get us to see The Comedian. If the story is anyone's it is The Comedian's. The Comedian is the man who "gets it," and what the amoral Comedian gets is that morality is a construct designed to help us avoid despairing at what Moore believes is the truth: humanity is violent and base; it is ignoble; it is doomed to repeat and repeat and repeat its violence because that is what humanity does best -- violence -- and everything else is playacting. Thus, Veidt's mini-Armageddon is futile, not because of our noble individuality, not because of the strength of our human spirit, but because of the strength of our animal instincts. All those lives were wasted to create a utopia that simply couldn't be. And Rorschach's journal, slipped through the door of the paper and ready to be printed, is the detonation cap. [book:Watchmen] may be the most hopeless popular book printed in the last fifty years, and the most truthful. I am continually shocked by its popularity (even if only as a cult phenomenon), but then maybe it is only popular through a quirk of misunderstanding. Then again, it could be popular because people understand it better than they're willing to admit.
Date published: 2009-03-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Buy it. If you like dark, twisted, thought provoking, emotion wringing graphic novels, then Watchmen is right up your alley. Buy it. Seriously.
Date published: 2009-03-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Stunning.. I actually bought the book with great expectations since everyone was saying it was so good and it won all these awards and stuff. So I started reading it, and the story was so good, the artwork so good, that I just got addicted and finished it in 5 days. My favorite character of course is Rorschach. (who's isn't?) The ending was so unexpected and so petrifiyingly stunnung that I was shocked at how it all came together in the end. That's what makes Watchmen a great story. Kudos to Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons.
Date published: 2009-03-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? Who watches the watchmen? Everyone, I say. And plenty who has and will read the visionary "Watchmen". Believe when they say it is not your typical superhero comic book. The vigilantes are for the most part average citizens, donning masks and costumes to bust crimes, yet are unique, individualistic characters. Retire or legislated out, they lead their lives until a tragedy befalls on one and soon the rest. Insightful political and social commentaries interweave the plot that pops out with the spectacular artwork - detailed drawings and contrasting dark and bright colours. And unless you have already been spoilt, you never see what's coming.
Date published: 2009-03-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Watchmen is a story for grown-ups. A superhero called the Comedian is thrown out the window of his apartment and killed ... murdered. Soon afterwards, another is framed for causing cancer to those he has been in relations with. And the strikes continue, upon the survivors of a superhero group who had called themselves the Crimebusters. Who has discovered their secret identities? How? And why do they want them removed? The threat of a nuclear war, the third World War, lingers, as these not-so-super superheroes struggle to find who has been orchestrating their removal, and the destruction of mankind. "Watchmen" is nothing that you could presume it could be going in. It's a satire, it's a drama, it's a murder mystery, it's a superhero comic mini-series ... and a landmark in the medium. The artwork is fantastic, and very professionally plotted out to make it easy to read. Colour is used more as an emotional anchor than to distract from what is happening. You'll find here is a fantastic literary achievement, chronicling the later adventures of strong-willed individuals, driven to save humanity from itself. It dishes out psychology-rich, deep-reaching personal profiles of the characters, exploring into what shaped them, what drives them. You come to feel that you are reading an illustrated recording of actual events, accurately portrayed, despite some tall-tale elements. Its believability is as striking as its vivid reflection of reality. "Watchmen" serves as a mirror to better view a world in crisis that we easily glance away from. There is no arguing with the problems which "Watchmen" exposes. It's stark, gritty realism. Alan Moore (writer of "V For Vendetta" and "Swamp Thing"), and artist Dave Gibbons ("2,000 AD", "Green Lantern") teamed up to make a comic mini-series to prove the industry wasn't just for kids, and that such a comic could be as literary, as meaningful, and as deeply gripping, as any novel. The heroes were loosely based on those of Charlton Comics, but they are fully their own characters. The idea of the book is simple -- what if superheroes were real? What if, in this messed-up world, there were people screwy enough to don silly guises and try to save it? How safe could we be without them? How safe could we be with them? I was delighted that Amazon sent it to me in mint condition, with the British release cover version as it advertises (the American release cover shows a window breaking and is a far less original first glimpse upon such a powerful book.) "Watchmen" is the first graphic novel to win a Hugo award and earn a spot in Time Magazine's 100 Best Novels. It stands as a work of high cultural influence, a subject of discussion, and a marvel in storytelling. A book to read once, read several times more, hold onto and treasure for a lifetime.
Date published: 2009-02-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from worth the read 1. great art work 2. great story 3. amazing interweaving of stories 4. all the characters had amazing back stories 5. good ending, didn't see it coming
Date published: 2009-01-29
Rated 3 out of 5 by from kinda........disapointing I finished this a little while ago, and i was kind of left saying to myself........that's it? the ending just leaves you not wanting more, but instead, NEEDING more, because sure, the characters are deep, the action is decent (go rorschach!), but there wasn't a solid story. basically, a hero gets killed, it gets investigated, more heroes get in trouble, and thats it right to the end. investigating. maybe its just because everyone (even the guy at the counter who i bought it from) said: "youre going to be blown away" so i got my hopes up. but i give it three stars because of Rorschach.
Date published: 2009-01-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A worthy read - absolutley! Amazing and revolutionary! This is slow to start, but everything comes together... It's realistic enough to convince the reader that the events unfolding are possible. The excellent artwork by Gibbons complements Moore's wonderful story. I've personally seen people who've never picked up a graphic novel enjoy this book thoroughly. It's the must read of the century!
Date published: 2008-12-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Awesome Graphic Novel - Adults Only! This graphic novel is intense, intelligent and insightful into the lives of less than stellar and quite seedy superheroes. I cannot wait until the movie comes out next year. Better believe that expectations will be really high. Only downer is that there are so many personalities in this series that it is hard to relate to a specific character. Much easier to identify with better known vigilantes like Batman as most of us have grown up to Bob Kane's vision for close to half a century. Nevertheless, The Watchmen's story-line and awesome animation is a feast for our minds and eyes.
Date published: 2008-10-15
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Is it a classic? In every official top ten list of graphic novel, this book is bound to appear. But for some reason for me, it doesn't work. Granted, we read and discover more about the emotional and mental road every costumed adventurer travels in becoming and dealing about who they are, in a way rarely seen in other graphics novel. Or University thesis. Alan Moore is a fantastic author, I absolutely love his writing, his twisted-minded borderline psychopath writing. I buy any book with him as an author immediately, no questions ask. But somehow the length of the book (350+ pages) bores me. At one point, I don't want to know about every inner problems of everyone. And adding the repetitive, traditional '9-square-by-page-drawing', specially when today the drawing, the ''mise-en-page'' is so exploded, that results in not being a book I would give first to convince someone to give a try to graphics novel. I might regret saying this one day, but Watchmen would not be in my top ten list right now. Maybe never.
Date published: 2008-09-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from BUY THIS NOW!!! Stop reading this and buy this book now. I can't describe how important it is that you purchase this book, go home and read it. In fact don't even go home. Read it in your car, or if the store has chairs read it there. This is important. The Watchmen are super, but they aren't heros. They realize that being a superhero is just a great excuse to beat the crap out of people, Anything else I tell you will ruin things. GO NOW AND START READING!!!!!
Date published: 2008-08-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from AWESOME thi is one book that delivers on it's hype, can't wait to see the movie now.
Date published: 2008-08-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Tired Genre Remake Watchmen re-imagines a stale format with the inclusion of adult themes and ideas. Not your fathers superheroes, but a series of complex characters facing the human dilemma. Well worth a read.Trailer for the movie looks very interesting. THX
Date published: 2008-08-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Hahaha . . . that's not funny: A review of The Watchmen by Alan Moore A long time ago in a city far far away I used to collect comics. By the time The Watchmen was published I was closer to the end of my interest than the beginning. I read the series and loved it. A few years ago it was one of the only comic books I remembered much about, so I picked it up. A delightful remembrance of things past. The underlying cultural politics are a bit dated when read today but it fit with a certain mood of the 80s also captured in the novels of Bret Ellis and films such as Blade Runner. The characters in The Watchmen are extraordinarily memorable. You'll never look down an elevator shaft again without laughing. For some reason I always associate The Watchmen with a great series by Michael Moorcock, Elric of Melnibone, and Fritz Lieber's Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser. Hmmm, I think I still have those novels tucked away in a box somewhere . . . I'll be right . . . back . . . . .
Date published: 2008-08-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Who Watches The Watchmen? (thebookblog.ca) Watchmen is not a superhero comic, but rather a comic about superheroes. Watchmen is the story of the men and women who decided it was okay to venture off and look strange in order to retain a sense of order in the big cities of America. When Superman came out in the fourties, these people were inspired and instead of reading, they participated in this phenomenon. They did their part to help the world, from the end of World War II, through the battles for Vietnam they have played a part. In the seventies however, a bill was passed that made vigilante justice illegal. Watchmen takes place in the mid-eighties when the Cold War is tense and the first generation of masked rebels are retiring. The second generation, still relatively young, have to choose to put away their costumes or fight on with the rest of the nation against them for good. With the murder of the famous hero, the Comedian, masked vigilante Rorschach (Ror-shok) goes on alert to undercover a conspiracy against the heroes. Watchmen is surreal, except that if super heroes existed in our world, this is how they would be. The heroes and the villians have issues and problems or they might be a little crazy, and they mostly have no significant powers of which to speak of. The ending itself is also something agreeably realistic - but like the rest of the novel - a little bit uncomfortable. With a constantly moving narrative, you get to see everything in Watchmen. We experience the fear of the cold war, the deep angst of life, and the miracle of it. Watchmen is a graphic novel that reads like a deep fiction, however you would be forced to forfeit a lot in order to remove the visuals. It is almost impossible to put down...
Date published: 2008-06-07
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Better than expected Alan Moore's throwback comic is a joy to read. Very good character development and there are two stories in one. I enjoyed the story within a story "Tales of the Black Freighter" better than the rest of the graphic novel. Watchmen is the one that has generated more interest in me for graphic novels and has made me appreciate them more as a literary source than before. Look forward to the movie version. Hope you enjoy.
Date published: 2008-06-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Best Book Ever Written. It's easy to throw a title like that around, and it has been done over and over and over again, but when it comes to a work like this, the use is warranted beyond justification. Watchmen does something that no book before or after it has done: it both literally and visually seduces the reader to the point where YOU believe you know and fully understand the characters and the world that Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons have created. It goes beyond the masks and glamour of the everyday superhero, to show that their lives are no better, and in fact worse than most of our own. But at the end of the day, it is a calling they are meant to answer, and it supercedes all the trauma that all of their lives have experienced. It brings the characters we look up to the most and envision as "super" and ""immortal", down to earth on a common level that we can relate to. These characters, even through all the negativity still manage to have a profound impact on our perception and morality, and it proves how amazing this book really is. For Superman to go and do something completely unethical, and still maintain a level of respect, honor, and morality with the reader, that is something that proves we as a people can look beyond the faults of our heroes, if their end goal and path is just and warranted. I can't stress enough the importance this book has in the literary world. Students in high schools everywhere should have the privilege of reading and understanding this masterpiece. If you had one book left to read in your lifetime, this is the one. Everytime you pick it up, you learn something new, and expect something different. Thank you Alan and Dave for gracing the world with such a revolutionary piece of art.
Date published: 2008-01-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Must H Sometimes I think the best comics were written in the 80's, but then I think, no it's just Alan Moore comics. Beyond my Moore praise, there is a reason this comic makes top 10 lists of all time. IT SIMPLY is a great, multi-layered, complex, character driven, and a fantastic book of fiction. It's another re-read book by the great Alan Moore.
Date published: 2008-01-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best comic book ever written I really don't know where to start with this book. It is the best comic book every written and there really isn't anymore to it. Honestly you shouldn't be wasting your time reading any reviews for this book, you should just go out and pick it up. The coolest thing about this book is the characters Moore created. Originally the book was planned to include characters like batman and blue beetle along with other already established DC characters, but I'm very glad that it didn't end up that way.
Date published: 2008-01-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Greatest Graphic Novel Ever Written The only graphic novel I would include as a literary work of art and the only one ( that I know of ) taught in University courses...not too shabby for a "comic book". Time magazine included "Watchmen" as one of the best novels written in the English language since 1923, and deservedly so. Very complex story about would-be superheroes solving a murder that leads to an unexpected and devastating ending, no one sees coming. It is a novel that benefits from multiple readings. This book is definately the "Citizen Kane" of the graphic novel genre. Allan Moore wrote this brilliant story and Dave Gibbons did the artwork. A stunning achievement.
Date published: 2008-01-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Unparalleled This classic of the medium is considered the best by many for a reason. Innovative and inventive with its storytelling, this book took the sequential art page to a new level, creating techniques and tools to craft its epic story that have since been copied a hundred times over, but never to this level. A thrilling plot, and engaging characters take you through this piece of history, which accomplishes something that few works of this medium have attained; it evokes the feeling of a specific time and place of our past, but does so in a way that does not seem dated by today's standards as so many Comic Book 'classics' do. Despite the alternate histories contained within, this book evokes a late 80s cold war era, and while the reality in this story is different from the one we know, it feels right, feels like it could have happened sometime not too long ago. If you're a comic fan who hasn't read this, pick it up just to see the best use of the technical tools of the medium that exists to date. If you're not a comic book fan, pick it up simply because you enjoy great stories.
Date published: 2008-01-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The greatest piece of graphic literature. This is the greatest piece of entertainment I have ever had the pleasure of experiencing. Every other book I have read pales in comparison to the sheer genius that is Alan Moore’s “Watchmen”. When I read Art Spiegelman’s “The Complete Maus” I was deeply affected and was surprised how much a book could move me. The emotions I felt while and after reading Maus were significant and I will never forget them. But “Watchmen” is a completely different beast. After reading this book, I actually feel enlightened. As if I now hold some truth, previously obscured. This is why I started reading comics. The only thing that worries me is I’m afraid I might never again read something this amazing. A book to rival “Watchmen”, might never exist. If you find anything, let me know.
Date published: 2007-06-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Could Have Ended Comics The original premise for the Watchmen story used golden age characters from the DC Comics universe. Thankfully, DC objected to the use of mainstream heroes and so Alan Moore had to develop an entire pantheon of his own. When Mr. Moore wrote Watchmen, the modern comics industry was about thirty years old. Watchmen took those thirty years, put it all into one book, and then made it mean something. Watchmen gave us a reason why these heroes were chasing criminals in their underwear, and more importantly it gave us the reason why we read comic books. In my opinion, Watchmen summed up the world of the super hero comic book so well it could have all stopped there. Fortunately, the industry continued to grow and new stories needed to be told. Having said that, I don't think there's a comic book (let's call them graphic novels instead)... a graphic novel writer working today who doesn't owe a lot to Alan Moore.
Date published: 2006-07-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from As real as it gets What if super-heroes really lived among us? What if they were actual real people, with real problems, real feelings, real obsessions and real fears? How would their presence among us have changed human history? This is the answer. Exceptionnally realistic characters living in a frightening and yet very believable world are disappearing one by one. Some of the remaining heroes race against the clock to find the person responsible as the world is on the edge of nuclear war. Definitely one of the greatest comic story of all times...
Date published: 2006-07-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best Comic Ever Well written and well drawn. This is the best graphic novel i've ever read (and better than more than a few novel novels i've read too for that matter). First off, although the comic features "superheroes", there is only one character in the book that has any kind of supernatural power (and he is very distant from the superhero scene). Instead, the characters are regular people who, for individual reasons, feel compeled to dress up and fight crime... and then the world they're trying to save rejects them. And then the story actually begins. This is a deep book. The characters are deep and well thought out, as is the setting, the philosophy, etc.
Date published: 2006-07-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Regular folks in cloaks. Why has reality taken hold of the modern super-hero comic? Watchmen by Moore and Gibbons. By placing regular people into spandex and then allowing them to have normal and messed up lives, Moore ushered in the self-reflecting and more-often-than-not morally ambiguous person. Other creators have tried to use this formula to "better" other, established characters and fail always. What they don't grasp is that Moore is a writer of stories, while they are writers of fads. Moore's take on super-heroes and non-super-heroes has always been to play them as differently as possible as to create a realistic world. He has yet to fail.
Date published: 2006-05-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from 'Who watches the watchmen?' Watchmen is the greatest graphic novel ever written - an ethical tale with real emotional depth based around mostly believable superheroes. I can't recommend this to you enough! You've never read anything like it, and you never will again.
Date published: 2004-12-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A true classic The term graphic novel is bandied about so much you'd be forgiven for thinking it just meant a pretentious comic book. Watchmen is one of the few works that truly live up to the name. Alan Moore takes a simple premise - superheroes existing in a "real" world - and extrapolates an alternate history of the past 40 years. Coupled with Dave Gibbons' beautiful flat-colour illustrations, the story is compelling enough to be called a real epic novel.
Date published: 2004-10-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Haunting Storyline Six years ago I read this book, and to this day the multi-faceted characters and their journeys are still stark in my mind. These images and plot developments broke fresh ground in a tired industry and still continues to inspire creativity today. For six years I have looked for this book in vain - only because other literature gourmets got there before I did. Thank god you found it here too. Don't do what I did - buy it right now!
Date published: 2000-07-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Comics unfulfilled direction I don't have too much space here, so I'll be brief. I write comics. I don't write superheroes. Why? Mainly because of Alan Moore. This is writing that deserves to be called such. This is a 'comic book' that is studied in some universities. It depresses me when I see the constant superheroic drivel that Image, not to mention Marvel or DC, but Moore reinvigorates my creative process. Comics do NOT have to be aimed at the 13-15 range. Not anymore. Read the Watchmen. I'm not going to tell you about the multiple layers, or anything like that. I'm just going to tell you to read it.
Date published: 2000-07-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Political Intrigue and Superheroes? The modern superhero revival begins right here! This huge trade paperback contains writer Alan Moore and artist Dave Gibbons' powerful story of a world where superheroes have been outlawed! It's a story of sex, power, betrayal & murder! This is considered by many to be the most influential story ever produced in the history of comics! The modern superhero was forever changed after the publication of Watchmen!
Date published: 2000-06-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow I remember finishing this for the first time. I turned right back to page one and started again right away:it's just that good. Watchmen is not a typical comic book. It has some of the most unique and human characters ever created, and a story that will draw you in and not let you go until the unexpected climax-if then. Highest possible recommendation.
Date published: 2000-06-19

– More About This Product –

Watchmen

by Alan Moore
Illustrator Dave Gibbons

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 416 pages, 10.14 × 6.64 × 0.8 in

Published: April 1, 1995

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0930289234

ISBN - 13: 9780930289232

From the Publisher

A New York Times Best Seller!

This Hugo Award-winning graphic novel chronicles the fall from grace of a group of super-heroes plagued by all-too-human failings. Along the way, the concept of the super-hero is dissected as the heroes are stalked by an unknown assassin.

One of the most influential graphic novels of all time and a perennial bestseller, WATCHMEN has been studied on college campuses across the nation and is considered a gateway title, leading readers to other graphic novels such as V FOR VENDETTA, BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS and THE SANDMAN series.

About the Author

Alan Moore is perhaps the most acclaimed writer in the graphic story medium, having garnered countless awards for works such as WATCHMEN, V FOR VENDETTA, SWAMP THING and Miracleman. He is also the mastermind behind the America''s Best Comics line, through which he has created (along with many talented illustrators) THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN, PROMETHEA, TOM STRONG, TOMORROW STORIES and TOP TEN. As one of the medium''s most important innovators since the early 1980s, Moore has influenced an entire generation of comics creators, and his work continues to inspire an ever-growing audience.

From Our Editors

This stunning graphic novel chronicles the fall from grace of a group of super heroes plagued by all too human failings. The concept of the super hero is dissected and inverted as strangely realistic characters are stalked by an unknown assassin. Originally published as a 12-issue series in 1986 and 1987, WATCHMEN remains one of DC Comics' most popular graphic novels.

Editorial Reviews

"A work of ruthless psychological realism, it’s a landmark in the graphic novel medium. It would be a masterpiece in any."
–TIME, TIME MAGAZINE’s 100 best English-language novels from 1923 to the present

Appropriate for ages: 13