Watchmen: The Complete Motion Comic – DVD Review

watchmenmotioncomic

So you’ve read the graphic novel, or at least heard of it; you’ve seen the trailer a thousand times and you’re excited to see the movie when it opens next week. But you’re worried. What are they going to cut and change from the comic in the movie? Well, with this Motion Comic you need not worry at all.

Part cartoon, part audio book, The Motion Comic animates all twelve issues of the comic into twelve twenty-five minute cartoons. The animation is limited, meant only to enhance the panels drawn by Dave Gibbons, and the whole thing is narrated by Tom Stechschulte. He does all the voices, including the women. This is my only gripe about this DVD. It’s acceptable for most of the scene and you do kind of get used to it (especially if you’ve listened to a lot of books on tape) but during the more intimate scenes it’s just kind of creepy.

In case you’re one of the ten people out there who doesn’t know what Watchmen is about, it takes place in an alternate reality 1985 where Nixon is still president, the world is on the verge of World War II and Superheroes have been banned. The story opens with one hero, The Comedian, being murdered. The one remaining superhero, Rorschach, is trying to figure out who killed him and if it’s a threat to all masked heroes retired or not. There is a lot more to it really but to say too much more would be to ruin it (or waste your time if you already know).

These cartoons are word for word and frame for frame exactly the same as the comic book. Limited animation has been added to bring the scenes and characters to life and it works brilliantly (minus my one complaint above). This really is a perfect DVD and I highly recommend it to anyone. It’s especially great if you’re one of those people who doesn’t like to read or is “too cool” to read a comic. Now you too can know the glory that is Watchmen without feeling like too much of a dork.

The thing clocks in at over five hours long so you know that Zack Snyder’s film, no matter how faithful, is going to be losing a lot of the story and things will be changed. That’s just the way movies work. Now you can get the whole story in a very entertaining and engaging way. And being released the Tuesday before the films release is perfect timing.

The episodes are presented in 1.85:1 widescreen and 5.1 surround sound. These all look and sound fantastic. They really did an amazing job bring Gibbons and Alan Moore’s book to life, although Moore’s name is still nowhere to be found on the DVD.

Wonder Woman Sneak Peak: (10 min) This is the same Wonder Woman Sneak Peak you’ve seen on every other DC animated release in the past few months.

This is pretty awesome and a must-own for any fan of Alan Moore’s Watchmen. Even if you love and buy the movie, you’ll want this too! And if you’re curious about Watchmen this is a fantastic way to spend five hours. Sadly the serious lack of special features brings down the overall score.

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Warner Bros. presents Watchmen: The Complete Motion Comic. Directed by Jake S. Hughes. Written by Alan Moore (uncredited). Running time: 325 minutes. Not Rated: however, it does contains mature content and is not suitable for young viewers. 12 episodes on 2 discs. Released on DVD: March 3, 2009. Available at Amazon.com.

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