Editors' Choice

We Will Watch the Watchmen on HBO in 2019

Steve Porter / August 20, 2018

HBO has confirmed they are picked up a full series order for Watchmen. The upcoming series based on the critically acclaimed graphic novel by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons from DC Comics will appear in 2019.

The company dropped a new teaser poster for the show from writer and director Damon Lindelof and provided a list of the full cast in a press release on Friday, including Regina King, Jeremy Irons, Don Johnson, Tim Blake Nelson, Louis Gossett Jr., Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Adelaide Clemens, Andrew Howard, Tom Mison, Frances Fisher, Jacob Ming-Trent, Sara Vickers, Dylan Schombing, Lily Rose Smith and Adelynn Spoon.

According to the release, Watchmen won’t be a direct adaptation of the infamous comic. Instead, the show will be set in an “alternate history” where superheroes are treated as outlaws. HBO promises that the series will “embrace the nostalgia of the original groundbreaking graphic novel while attempting to break new ground of its own.”

We have to admit we’re a little confused; while it’s for the best that the show won’t simply follow in the footsteps of Watchmen (2009) from Zac Snyder, which was a faithful adaptation almost shot-for-shot, it’s an unusual property to adapt for television if you’re not attempting to recreate the original twelve-issue series. Watchmen was a ruthless and compelling deconstruction of the superhero genre that needled the very concept of masked heroes in tight spandex, not an exercise in nostalgia for those same heroes.

The obvious answer as to why HBO is adapting Watchmen is, of course, the title’s enduring commercial success. But if anyone can pull off a reasonable adaptation of Alan Moore’s iconic work that doesn’t dilute the message of the original comic it will be HBO.