Damon Lindelof might consider Watchmen to be the greatest piece of fiction that’s ever been written, but he’ll be damned if that gets in the way of him adapting the source material however he sees fit. Today, the prolific TV auteur took to Instagram to prove just how serious he is about the whole thing.
Back in September of last year, Variety reported that HBO had ordered a Watchmen pilot from Lindelof, along with additional scripts for subsequent episodes. His previous endeavor, The Leftovers, had just completed its three-season run on HBO. Lindelof had previously tried to adapt the series back in 2014, though that effort never materialized. In his Instagram post, Lindelof talks at great lengths about his childhood, TV career, religion, and personal history with the comic, which was created by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons back in 1984.
Watchmen did see a big-screen adaptation back in 2009, which was unfortunately helmed by director Zack Snyder. Though Snyder’s penchant for slow-motion shots of bullet shells bouncing off the ground was featured prominently throughout, he was reasonably faithful to the source material — almost to a fault. In fact, his slavish devotion to the story also made his one drastic change to the story’s end that much more perplexing. Also, on a whole, the movie just wasn’t all that enjoyable.
Lindelof’s bold, rambling declaration here will surely prompt a lot of speculation (and subsequent arguments) by fans who consider Moore’s story to be a sort of holy grail of comic book writing. Moore has also famously — oftentimes bitterly — disavowed any adaptation to his work, and this is unlikely to change for Lindelof’s serialized take on Watchmen. Still, it may prove… interesting to see exactly how Lindelof plans to shape Moore’s story into his own vision.
For those interested, you can read the entirety of Lindelof’s extremely wordy Instagram post below. Better set some time aside. The abyss has a tendency to stare back.