Better a Witty Fool than a Foolish Wit

Inner Workings of My Twisted Mind.

Who Watches the Watchmen?

I’m back from the best weekend of my life. That may be an exaggeration, but it was freaking awesome. Yes, that’s right, this weekend for the first time I went to Comic-Con International in sunny San Diego California (shout out to my cousin and cousin-in-law who let me crash in their house with the, literally, tons of free crap that I accumulated.

Comic-Con is not for the faint of heart. It is four and a half days of fanboys and fangirls dressed as anything from Storm Troopers to Cling-ons, Sailor Moon characters (I apologize but that is the only anime I know) to The Spirit. It’s a veritable free-for-all of nerds. In other words, it’s my mecca. As Phoebe said in one episode of Friends, ‘It’s like the mother ship is calling you home.’ Of course, she was speaking of Bloomingdales, but I did get a big frakkin bag to take home with me.

Yes, it was a fantastic weekend. But Comic-Con 2008 just happened to be the Comic-Con where the most anticipated comic book movie ever was being promoted. It’s a little movie I like to call Watchmen.

Yes, Watchmen is a movie based on a Comic book. But it’s based on THE comic book. Basically, if any of you came to me and said, Julia, I want to start reading graphic novels because I’ve heard that they aren’t just men in tights battling weird creatures. I would say to you, okay, start with Watchmen and The Dark Knight Returns, both of which were written in 1986 and basically changed the face of comics as we know them. Before these two books comics weren’t taken seriously, but these books went to a darker, more adult place with superheroes. Basically, they went somewhat realistic because really, if superheroes were real things they would be fucked up in the head. I mean, we’re talking about men and women who put themselves above the law and the workings of the law. They dress in costume and fight criminals, sometimes killing them in the process. Batman may never kill the Joker, but there are other bad guys that die along the way at his hands.

Yes, comic-con was a Watchmen-fest. But one other big comic book movie is coming out at the end of this year, and its presence didn’t go unnoticed in the face of the Watchmen-mania. This movie would be The Spirit. Will Eisner, the king of comics (the awards for comics are called the Eisners for a reason), created The Spirit in the 1940s. He’s a grittier and sexier superhero along the lines of The Shadow and the movie is directed by a comic book writer you may have heard of: Frank Miller (he wrote Sin City and The Dark Knight Returns among others).

Yes, it’s a good day for comics and for film. What I realized at Comic-Con while walking through the 135,000 people in attendance: These are the people that dictate popular culture. These are the people that make The Dark Knight the fastest grossing movie of all time (it’s been out for just over a week and has made over $400 Million worldwide), they are the people that make or break t.v. shows, they are the people who dictate what’s cool and what’s not, yet they are the people who get/got picked on in high school, who’d rather spend time in front of their computer than at a bar. It’s quite a spot to be in, both loved and mocked, but no one ever said that being a geek was easy, and would we like our geekiness so much if it were mainstream?

Peace, Love, and Rorschach,


July 29, 2008 - Posted by | Culture, Hollywood, Los Angeles, Movies, Television

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