This past weekend at the Warner Brothers panel at the New York Comic Con, Watchmen artist Dave Gibbons appeared to show us the first 18 minutes of Zack Snyder’s adaptation. Why 18 minutes? Who knows. BNAT got 22. We got everything they saw (read Devin’s piece on it here for a full description of how good it is) except the Dan Dreiberg section. What we did see, however, was a two minute clip from the middle of the film that no one, not even Dave Gibbons, had ever seen before.
That scene featured Rorschach in prison…. more specifically, on the lunch line at prison. Fans know where this is going…
Yes, Rorschach has been arrested and jailed, and is waiting to get his lunch on the line. There’s a ton of criminals around him who are giving him shit for being who he is.
It’s amusing to note how small he looks on screen, but when the guy next to him pulls a shiv on him and Rorschach just demolishes him thanks to the one-two combo of a a tray table and then fryer grease, it’s completely believable. The guards immediately grab him and start to carry him away, and his raspy line of “None of you understand. I’m not locked up in here with you,” turns into a monstrous bellow at “YOU’RE LOCKED UP IN HERE WITH ME!”
It’s fucking chilling how well he delivers it. Chilling. Jackie Earle Haley has nailed this character completely. The one thing I can see taking people out of the film is how similar his voice is to Bale’s stupid Batman voice but it just works for him so well.
So yeah, the footage did nothing to me except make me hate myself for not being able to see the rest of the film. Be glad you missed it. Afterwards Gibbons took to the stage and answered the usual idiotic questions from the people in the crowd who paid good money to sit there and listen to all of this.
See, giving a fanboy a microphone is like handing a baby a knife. It won’t know what to do with it and there’s a good chance someone will get hurt.
In this case, it was our collective IQs. For example, the first two people asked about the motherfucking squid. Yes, the second person in line heard his question asked not a minute before and decided to ask again anyway. Gibbons restated that no, there’s no squid, and that it doesn’t matter what the MacGuffin is as long as the result is the same. (Those of you who’ve never read Watchmen, don’t worry about any squid and just enjoy the film.)
The other questions were the usual stupidity as well… some kid actually asked how naked we get to see Dr. Manhattan.
Gibbons did touch on a couple of interesting points, however, like how Joel Siegel actually wanted to do a version of Watchmen with Arnold Schwarzenegger as Dr. Manhattan (with an Austrian accent because he was infiltrating the Germans!) and how Alan Moore’s really not insane, he just sticks to his guns. He stated how he was happy with his first experience with the film industry, but of course we all know Mooore wasn’t so lucky.
So, while for about the thousandth time I’m telling myself that I won’t sit through another panel again, the footage was far worth it… and the days counting down till next month have gotten a lot longer.