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Alan Moore's Watchmen Essay

1437 words - 6 pages

Alan Moore’s “Watchmen” focuses on several characters throughout the novel making the idea of a main character moot. However, one character can be described as the most influential to the plot of the graphic novel. Rorschach can be seen as such due to the fact that he narrates a large portion of the novel, and his heroic code that he follows. Not only does he influence the plot by those two reasons, but also by uniting the characters after a long silence. The Comedian is the only character that almost perfectly fits as the character with the most influence on the plot of “Watchmen.” The death of his character allows for the plot to be set in motion. He has not only has he shaped every other character in the novel, but the symbol that represents his character can be found throughout the graphic novel. Although Rorschach can be interpreted as the most influential character of “Watchmen,” The Comedian influenced more aspects of the plot than any other character of the graphic novel.
After The Comedian’s murder, Rorschach determines that the motive behind his death is the fact that he was once a masked adventurer. He takes this motive and turns it into a theory of someone hunting down masked adventurers and killing them. Once he comes to this conclusion, he visits his past partners to warn them of the potential danger they may face soon. He first visits the partner he was closest to Dan Dreiberg, Nite Owl, and warns him of a possible murder attempt against him. He then visits Ozymandias, Dr. Manhattan, and Laurie Juspeczyk to warn them as well. Because he mentions Dan to Laurie, she instantly wants to contact him after a long period of time, thus rekindling the bond between the two characters (Moore, 1.23).
One would automatically assume that the narrator of a story would have the most influence on the plot. It is true that by narrating most of Watchmen Rorschach has a huge influence on the reader’s interpretation of the parts he narrates. A clear example of this logic can be found in the first chapter:
“On a Friday night, a comedian died in New York. Someone threw him out of a window and when he hit the sidewalk his head was driven up into his stomach. Nobody care. Nobody cares but me.”
This gives the reader the idea that no one is affected by The Comedian’s death, no one but Rorschach. One would think that a true hero would not only care about the big problems in the world, but also the small evils, so this puts Rorschach above the other characters in the reader’s mind. They are influenced to come to this conclusion because Rorschach believes this himself, he believes his is above everyone, and it is clear that the reader would not have put him a pedal stool without his narration.
One of the most influential aspects of Rorschach is his never swaying morals. His uncompromising heroic standards allows the readers to operationally define what it means to be a hero in the reality of Watchmen. However, Rorschach does not have the cleanest way...

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