HBO’s Watchmen Comic-Con trailer goes deep into masked vigilante war

Very ominous.


Damon Lindelof, best known for creating The Leftovers, is the man lifting the mask off HBO’s Watchmen. A new trailer for the writer’s TV series sequel of sorts to Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ graphic novel snuck up on San Diego Comic-Con, despite the absence of a panel.

The trailer opens with a vigilante crashing into a convenience store being robbed by a gunman, but this isn’t your fun Shazam-type hero moment. For one, the vigilante wears a noose around his neck. We cut to a Rorschach-inspired mask-wearing vigilante, who says, “Soon they will shout, ‘Save us.’ And we will whisper, ‘No.'” He and his vigilante cohort then attack the homes of officers in the Tulsa Police Department. This explains why in all the promotional materials, the police wear yellow masks — they hide their faces so the bad guys don’t know where they live.

The masks, the vigilantes, Ozymandias — they’re all familiar to fans of the graphic novel, but Lindelof isn’t exactly adapting it. Well, at least that’s what he implied in an open letter to fans: instead of retreading “sacred ground,” he’s going to remix it. That means whatever happened in the Watchmen graphic novel really did happen. The Comedian and Rorschach are dead. The TV series is an original sequel set in the Watchmen world, where new masks and new characters will take the stage.

Regina King plays Angela Abraham, Jeremy Irons plays an older Ozymandias, Jean Smart plays Agent Blake — and that’s pretty much all we know about the new cast of characters. A war seems to be in the cards between vigilantes and the police, who — twist! — have also jumped on the mask-wearing bandwagon.

Watchmen is set to arrive on HBO sometime in October, 2019.

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Originally published July 20, 11:15 a.m. PT. 

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