Review: Watchmen Season 1 Episode 4

After she finds a mysterious figure wearing a silver costume staring at her from across the road, Sister Night aka Angela Abar verbalises what the audience are bound to think at various points in this episode. “The fuck?”

The protagonist continues to be as baffled by the events around her as the audience are, and Regina King’s expressions are the representation of every viewer who sticks themselves in front of their TV screen every Sunday night to be bewildered by this HBO series.

The comic book series ‘Watchmen’ had already been a distinct superhero genre in itself, creating a different world with a different breed of superheroes. If anyone was to make this already peculiar storyline even more eccentric, it would be Damon Lindelof. Right in the first episode of the series, it was made clear that despite the familiarity of the readers, this is not the world they have been to before. The meaning of masks and vigilantism was presented in a new light, along with the weird segments featuring Jeremy Irons as a reclusive aristocrat.

The second and third episode expanded on the questions that the pilot had served and new characters were introduced, acknowledging several other important characters from the comic book. The fourth episode continues with this tenor while taking a detour from the action sequences, no matter how minor, to focus on the storyline and delivering “the fuck” moments.

Watchmen Episode 4 Recap

While the third episode brings Laurie Blake into the fray, the fourth episode introduces yet another character, Lady Trieu. It opens with the Clarks trying to sell their eggs, though failing at it, and living a content and happy life, though the loneliness and sadness can be perceived in their empty house. And then, as they are about to call it a night, the doorbell rings. Out of the shadows comes out the trillionaire known for her reclusive nature. Her appearance gives the impression of a person you can’t trust, but her calm and soothing voice lures you otherwise. She comes to the Clarks with an offer they can’t refuse. They have always wanted a baby, and she has “made” one for them.

Meanwhile, we find Angela clearing up the mess that Will had left behind before he was taken away along with her car. She breaks into the Centre for Cultural Heritage and finds out more about her connection to Will as well as his history in Tulsa. A strange sound calls her outside and she finds Agent Blake laughing out loud with Angela’s battered and beaten car in front of her. The loop closes for the final scene of the third episode. She says, “it fell out of the sky”.

This sudden appearance and disappearance of the car on the days that connect to the death of Chief Crawford make Agent Blake suspicious and she launches an investigation into that. This not only leads her to Lady Trieu and her time tower but also helps her connect a very important lead to the death of Crawford.

In the middle of all of this, we also cut back to the Veidt sequence where most of “the fuck” moments are clustered. He seems to have gotten tired of eating one cake after another, and being consistent to the medieval devices, which is again in strange contrast to the scientifically advanced technology at his disposal, he conducts an experiment to see if he can fly out of his prison.

Watchmen Episode 4 Review

Even before the series premiered, Lindelof had expressed his views about the length of this story. He had said that ‘Watchmen’ had been incepted as a one-season thing, and if HBO does plan to keep it a limited series event, then there is a lot of ground that needs to be covered before its finale. The next episode will officially be the mid-season mark, which means that if there is any other mystery that they want to introduce to us, they only have so much time before they start answering all the questions that they have posed so expertly posed.

In terms of that, the fourth episode does a great job of quickly dissolving suspicions and coming straight forward with some answers. Even if they don’t directly spell it out for us, we are given enough information to comprehend what’s going on, on our own. For example, Adrian Veidt’s life, which is starkly distinct and seemingly untouched from the rest of the world, had been questioned before. Is he following the similar timeline, or is it another ‘Westworld’-ish thing that they are trying to pull off?

What had begun as a cluster of isolated events, relating to each character, is now beginning to coalesce together, even with the speed slower than we would like. This makes us more excited for the next episode and to figure out what it all amounts to in the next five episodes. The repeated references to the time slipping out- be it in the form of the sand slipping down the hourglass, or the “tick-tock” of the Kavalry, or the “big clock” that Lady Trieu is building down the road- remind us that a doomsday clock is ticking on the world of ‘Watchmen’.

Speaking of reminders, we are also referenced back to the squids falling from the sky. We are yet to see if that actually means something for the storyline, or just serves the purpose of making their world stand out from the one that we live in. The mention of “another dimension”, though in passing, is something that we should hold on, and wonder if it has already been used in the past episodes. Maybe it was always there in front of us, and we never saw it.

Though it took time for ‘Watchmen’ series to materialise on the screen, HBO has proved that not hurrying towards something always proves fruitful. With the sound of tick-tock on the screen, you can almost hear Lindelof’s machinery creaking in the background, and can’t help but anticipate what he has in store for the next week.

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