Creator: Moore, Gibbons
I remember reading this when I was at primary school - I must have been nine or ten. Whilst I didn't understand a lot of it at the time, it stuck wit ...
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I was 19 and waited two weeks for it to be delivered at my local comic shop. It was more than worth the wait!
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A revolutionary take on superheroes which proved comic books aren't just for kids.
Watchmen, along with The Dark Knight Returns, helped to popularise the graphic novel, and thus bring a new audience to comic books - the fruits of which we're still very much reaping today. Watchmen's writer, Alan Moore, conceived of the project - originally issued by DC in a 12-issue comic-book form - as taking "familiar old-fashioned superheroes into a completely new realm", and with fellow Brit Dave Gibbons certainly succeeded in that aim.
Created in a mid-1980s climate when Cold War paranoia was still at its peak, the parallel universe presented in Watchmen is one where superheroes must register with the state, public opinion has turned against vigilantism, and the graffiti legend "Who watches the watchmen?" spreads across the city. While ostensibly tackling a straightforward murder-mystery plot and a suspected conspiracy against former superheroes, the labyrinthine structure and multi-layered narrative rewards multiple readings.
As well as dispelling the notion that comics were solely for children, Watchmen had much to do with breathing new life into old archetypes.