You hear that? That collective groan of apprehension echoing across the internet in the last day or so?
That’s the sound of Watchmen fans reacting to an Instagram post by Damon Lindelof (of LOST/ The Leftovers fame) that indicates he’s hard at work on an adaptation of the popular graphic novel for HBO.
To Lindeof’s credit, it’s a somewhat cryptic post but, if you’re a fan of the original novel, not cryptic enough to know what’s up.
In the novel, that’s the trophy given to Hollis Mason (a.k.a. the original Nite Owl) in honor of his service upon his retirement. In an ironic twist, Mason is — spoiler alert on a 32-year-old graphic novel — later beaten to death with this trophy.
This teaser isn’t a surprise though — Lindelof and HBO have been chatting about bringing Watchmen to the small screen for a spell, and it seemed like an almost-done deal earlier this summer.
Nothing else — staff, stars, when it begins filming, etc. — is known, but this seems to be a pretty clear confirmation that something is going on.
And with Netflix’s continuing success with Marvel titles (as long as you don’t count Iron Fist), the marriage makes sense: Lindelof has proven he can handle the sci-fi and fantasy elements of a long, over-arching story (though your mileage on LOST may vary), while HBO is the kind of network that will let the series grow and breathe on its own.
HBO will also need to fill the void left by the departure of Game of Thrones in 2019, and if there’s a story that has a cult-like following devoted enough and also a mass appeal wide enough to make the leap to TV and be successful, it’s Watchmen (which is, for what it’s worth, a DC property).
Oh, and all the violence and nudity. HBO can show all that, too.
So fire up your Dr. Manhattan memes because they’ll be just as relevant for a little while longer.