If there were ever a book one could judge by the cover, Rorschach #1 may be it. Anyone who has a concept of who or what to expect should not be disappointed from the true watcher of the Watchmen. From modern day prophet to a hard-lined hangman, Rorschach maintains gloriously true to form (yes even if your only interpretation was presented by the Zack Snyder film). From page one we are painted with the sheer inhumane brutality to which Rorschach finds deplorable (yet utilizes as his canvas), clever imagery forming blood droplets into the unmistakable test pattern of the same name, an internal monologue uniquely taking the form of Rorschach’s Journal (without which there would be no Watchmen story at all), and a city scape painted with such breathtaking beauty while simultaneously being bathed by contrasting cascades of symmetrical sickness. It is in these first few pages that we instantly recognize that this is not just focused on filling in a backstory of a particular character or a cog in a hole; but rather a noir look thru the eyes that will form the arc of Rorschach the vigilantly, Rorschach the harbinger of change, and (hints of) Rorschach the central link pin of truth around which heroes either thrive or disintegrate.
Even the streets of New York City take on a life of their own, imbued with the ability to foster ones dreams or shatter their soul. These streets are where every one of the Watchman started. To protect and serve, to make a quick buck, or whatever their impetus for fighting crime may have been, none but Rorschach realized that it wasn’t just a street sweeping job, separating the filth from the rest; but rather a purge of the city itself, saving humanity from humans deepest and most rooted base aspirations.
Continue reading »