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WATCHMEN TP Paperback – 20 Apr 2005

4.7 out of 5 stars 302 customer reviews

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Paperback, 20 Apr 2005
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Product details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: DC Comics; 1st edition (20 April 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0930289234
  • ISBN-13: 978-0930289232
  • Product Dimensions: 16.9 x 2 x 25.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (302 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 448,150 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Amazon Review

Has any comic been as lauded as Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons' Watchmen? Possibly only Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns but Watchmen remains the critics' favourite. Why? Because Moore is a better writer, and Watchmen a more complex and dark and literate creation than Miller's fantastic, subversive take on the Batman myth. Moore, renowned for many other of the genre's finest creations (Saga of the Swamp Thing, V for Vendetta, and recently From Hell, with Eddie Campbell) first put out Watchmen in 12 issues for DC in 1986-87. It won a comic award at the time (the 1987 Jack Kirby Comics Industry Awards for Best Writer/Artist combination) and has continued to garner praise since.

The story concerns a group called the Crimebusters and a plot to kill and discredit them. Moore's characterisation is as sophisticated as any novel's. Importantly the costumes do not get in the way of the storytelling, rather they allow Moore to investigate issues of power and control--indeed it was Watchmen, and to a lesser extent Dark Knight, that propelled the comic genre forward, making "adult" comics a reality. The artwork of Gibbons (best known for 2000AD's Rogue Trooper and DC's Green Lantern) is very fine too, echoing Moore's paranoid mood perfectly throughout. Packed with symbolism, some of the overlying themes (arms control, nuclear threat, vigilantes) have dated but the intelligent social and political commentary, the structure of the story itself, its intertextuality (chapters appended with excerpts from other "works" and "studies" on Moore's characters, or with excerpts from another comic book being read by a child within the story), the fine pace of the writing and its humanity mean that Watchmen more than stands up--it retains its crown as the best the genre has yet produced. --Mark Thwaite --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.


"A work of ruthless psychological realism, it's a landmark in the graphic novel medium. It would be a masterpiece in any."-TIME, TIME MAGAZINE's 100 best English-language novels from 1923 to the present

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a review of the 'Absolute Edition' of 'Watchmen' by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons. Unfortunately, Amazon place together reviews for the different editions of this item ... I recommend that you read a review that specifically relates to the version of 'Watchmen' you're interested in.

The 'Absolute Edition' collects the 12 issues that comprise this comic book series (originally released in 1986-7), and presents them as a deluxe graphic novel. This book is hardback, with a dust-jacket, and is 'oversized' (each page is larger than the standard comic book). This edition was published to celebrate the 20th anniversary of these comic books, and it comes with plenty of 'extra' features (including 48 pages of supplemental material). Additionally, this edition comes in an attractive slipcase (an outer box).

I have attached some photos of this particular edition - including an image which shows the size of this book compared to a standard comic book.

Moore’s 'Watchmen' is a seminal contribution to comic book writing. It is, perhaps, the most important and influential graphic novel of all time. The story is excellent - dark, serious, original, and thoroughly entertaining. And the artwork - by Gibbons - is also fantastic, serving to 'bring to life' the various adventures depicted in the story.

I won't provide a detailed review of the story itself ... Put briefly, it concerns an alternative world, from the late 1930's to the mid-1980's, that stands at the cusp of ruination. Crime is rampant, and gradually political divisions around the world are leading to nuclear annihilation. In this context, a group of costumed vigilantes seek to make a difference - to change things for the better - as 'heroes'.
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Format: Hardcover
I'm going to give my opinion on the actual book itself. I would imagine most people reading reviews of the Absolute Edition have already read Watchmen. It is probably Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons finest hour - `nuff said.

So, for starters, the absolute edition is much bigger than the original trade paperback. It is hardback, has a paper cover wrap and comes in a well-made, sturdy slipcase to protect it. The slipcase fits perfectly and has very bold text down the spine (looks nice on the shelf!).

The paper is very good quality, bright white and heavy stock. The printing is the key to this edition. It is flawless in every way. The colours jump off the page and the ink saturation is perfect. All the details are extremely clear (which is also helped by the larger format) it makes the first colour job look very murky and dark in comparison. The original colourist has made a return to tweak and improve his work (rather than completely change it) and he has done a grand job.

There is quite a bit of supplemental material thrown in at the back of the book (interviews, original script / concept drawing highlights etc.) which adds alot of insight into this classic of the graphic novel form.

So my final word? If you love Alan Moore, and you re-read Watchmen alot, this absolute edition is an absolute MUST.
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Format: Paperback
At the time of it's release , Alan Moore ( author of 2000 AD stories such as Skizz , Halo Jones and D.R. & Quinch , not to mention DC stalwarts such as Swamp Thing ( he invented John Constantine in this series ) , and several short Superman stories ) had grown tired of the spandex brigade in mainstream comics , and decided to re-invent superheroes as if they had come to life in our own world . This tale is a classic tragedy about the trials and tribulations of a former group of vigilantes , who find themselves thrown together when one of their number dies .
This is no short 5 minute read , like those who are uninitiated with graphic novels may expect . Instead , this is a story that will take time to read ( and should be relished ) , with intermissions between chapters that help to flesh out the protaganists characters and give us insight into their world .
The story has been rightly decribed as one of the main influences on modern comic story-telling , and the superlatives have been deserved .
Without doubt , a story deserving of anyone's attention , whether a graphic novel enthusiast , or new to the genre .
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Format: Hardcover
So, you've read Watchmen, you loved it, you obsessed over it, you've been kicked out of civilized gatherings when you refused to stop waving it in front of people's faces, telling them it was "The Most Important Comic Ever Written EVER!!!", and you've come to blows with those that insist that that title in fact belongs to Frank Miller's "The Dark Knight Returns" (they're wrong). Where else is there to go?

This edition, not only comes in an imposing hardback cover, but is also packed with extras, including samples of promotional art for the comic, preliminary character design sketches by Dave Gibbons, and excerpts from Alan Moore's insanely detailed scripts. And if that's not enough to satisfy you, then the new print of the comic will. Each panel has now been enlarged so the obsessive fan can now pick out every single embedded smiley face in the book, and see every speck of filth and street detritus on Rorschach's trenchcoat.

If you're debating whether this is worth £50, then I'm afraid you'll just never understand...
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