In the “Watchmen” recap, Angela remembers her past, the Seventh Kavalry’s true plans are revealed and a secret identity is uncovered…
By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer
For all the ghosts that haunted any potential “Watchmen” sequel, there was none bigger than the god amongst men known as Dr. Manhattan.
The man once known as Jon Osterman left Earth in 1985 after Adrian Veidt unleashed his psychic squid upon the world and decided to perhaps create new life on Mars instead. Since that time, people on Earth have been praying for Dr. Manhattan to return and save them all but their pleas have always fallen on deaf ears.
Now we know why.
If the reveal that Hooded Justice was actually a black man named Will Reeves didn’t knock you off your chair, the truth about Dr. Manhattan certainly did the job in the latest episode of the “Watchmen”.
Before we got to Dr. Manhattan, Angela first had to recount her years growing up in Vietnam without any family, Lady Trieu needed to explain how she’s out to f-cking save humanity and the Seventh Kavalry had to reveal its true plans, which leads us back to the big blue god who hasn’t been on Mars for a very long time.
Oh and Adrian Veidt let out a massive fart.
There’s lots to dig into with the latest episode of “Watchmen” so let’s get to our recap for “An Almost Religious Awe”…
This week’s episode opens with a teaser for a Dr. Manhattan documentary that ran back several years earlier that documented his origins as Jon Osterman — the son of a watchmaker, whose family fled Nazi Germany in order to start a new life in the United States — who then became an unlikely god following an accident in an intrinsic field generator. In the aftermath of that accident, Dr. Manhattan was born and he went onto create all sorts of scientific marvels and while working with the American government, he singlehandedly brought an end to the Vietnam War.
The documentary posed the question about whether what Dr. Manhattan did was for the good of mankind or to its detriment, especially now that he vacated Earth and started a new life on Mars.
As we fade out, it appears a young Angela Abar was watching this video in a store while she was growing up in Vietnam alongside her parents. Her father was an American soldier, who was stationed in Vietnam and after the war was over, he decided to raise his family there.
Angela has gone to the video store looking for something to buy for her 10th birthday and she decides on a film called “Sister Night” with a tagline that reads “a nun with a motherf-cking gun” — and thus the inspiration for her future crime fighting outfit.
Angela’s excitement about the video is soon dashed after her parents tell her to get something a little more age appropriate but as she walks away, she witnesses a mysterious man pick up a backpack, ride on his bike around the street as he circles back towards the American military vehicle parked nearby. He then shouts down the American oppressors before jumping into the jeep where his backpack explodes, killing everyone nearby including Angela’s mother and father.
When Angela wakes up as if she just felt the brunt of that blast now instead of 35 years earlier, she’s in a treatment room at Lady Trieu’s facility. It seems Laurie Blake called upon the world’s first trillionaire to help her cure Angela after she swallowed an entire bottle of Nostalgia that belonged to her grandfather.
Lady Trieu explains that she’s now trying to separate Angela’s memories from those of her grandfather in order to restore her sanity and save her life.
Over the course of the episode, Angela’s vivid flashbacks tell her story where she grew up in an orphanage after the death of her parents until one day a grandmother she never knew shows up to claim her. June, who we met in the previous episode as Will Reeves’ wife, was estranged from her son after she forbade him to join the military to fight in the Vietnam War and she vowed to never speak to him again if he left.
He joined the war and hadn’t spoken to his mother in years. She only found out about his death after finally deciding to write him a letter and it was returned to sender because he had been killed in that suicide bomb blast.
So June came to Vietnam to retrieve her granddaughter and bring her back to Tulsa where she would be raised by family. In the midst of their conversation, June even hints at her grandfather’s true identity after she tells young Angela why her father was so opposed to men with masks.
Just as they were preparing to leave Vietnam and fly back to the United States, June has a heart attack and dies right in front of Angela, leaving her alone and without family once again.
Back in the present time, Angela is trying to recover from the Nostalgia thanks to the treatment and during the stay she gets an interesting visit from Lady Trieu’s daughter Bian, who is asking her questions for a paper she’s writing. The conversation reveals a lot about Bian including her nightmares where she’s seeing visions that she’s an old woman.
Angela seeks out Lady Trieu, who then reveals the truth about her “daughter” — it’s actually a clone of her mother that she’s been feeding small doses of Nostalgia late at night so she can slowly begin to regain her memories. Lady Trieu’s greatest achievement, the Millennium Clock is about to go online and she wanted her parents there to witness her work of art. Of course, Lady Trieu adds that her father will also be in attendance but she stops short of saying who that might be.
During the conversation, Lady Trieu also brings up Angela’s husband Cal and how he suffered through some sort of accident that left him with total amnesia. Now Lady Trieu has studied human memory for several years and she notes that complete amnesia is extremely rare but Angela insists that Cal is the one in a million case where its true.
Lady Trieu then goes onto explain that it was her grandfather who told her about Cal, which adds even more curiosity to Angela’s line of questioning because there’s no way Will should know anything about her husband after spending all of 20 minutes together.
Later when Angela is finally fed up with half-truths and innuendo’s about her life, she decides to seek out her grandfather for answers. She was told that her treatment involved connecting her to something close to her as those memories were separated but when Angela finally breaks into the room where the cord attached to her arm leads, she doesn’t find her grandfather but rather a sedated elephant.
They never forget after all.
Tired of questions with no answers, Angela gets frustrated and pulls out the IV wire feeding into her vein and she starts exploring Lady Trieu’s facility for answers. What she finds changes everything.
Crimes and Misdemeanors
A brief journey is taken to Europa to catch up with Adrian Veidt, who has been engaged in a trial for his very life for the past year. It seems all of the Crookshanks and Phillips’ clones have been holding him accountable for all the misdeeds he’s carried out including dropping the giant psychic squid on New York and killing three-million people not to mention all of the various clones he’s murdered on this world as well.
We’re no closer to finding out who put Veidt on Jupiter’s moon or why they put him there, although the fact that cloning technology was used seems to point in Lady Trieu’s direction after she just revealed she had mastered that very thing to help bring her mother back to life.
Either way, the prosecution wraps up its case with a summation of all of Veidt’s crimes and the Game Warden then offers him a chance to retort after he refused to mount any sort of defense during the trial. In response, Veidt lifts his leg and lets out a gigantic fart.
The Game Warden then decides to allow a more fitting jury decide Veidt’s fate than a group of Phillips’ and Crookshanks’ in the gallery. That’s when a herd of pigs are let loose on the courtroom and the Game Warden picks one up, speaks to it and then declares that Veidt is guilty as charged.
It’s just as bizarre as it sounds and this brings us no closer to finding out what is happening with Veidt but with only two episodes remaining this season, hopefully there’s some sort of closure before this is all said and done.
It seems during Angela’s strange long trip through her grandfather’s memory, she was spouting off different parts of his histlry and Agent Laurie Blake was there to record it all. She found out that Will Reeves was Hooded Justice but more importantly she recorded the confession that he was the person who killed Judd Crawford.
Laurie then decides to pay a visit to Judd’s widow Jane to seek a few answers that might fill in a few blanks but before she arrives a call comes in from Agent Dale Petey. He’s gone to visit Wade Tillman aka Looking Glass but what he finds are a group of Seventh Kavalry members who have been slaughtered.
Remember when we last saw Looking Glass, he was arriving at his home just as a truck filled with Seventh Kavalry members came after him. It seems he knew the attack was coming and he ended up killing all of them.
Agent Petey identified them as Seventh Kavalry members because each of them was wearing a Rorschach mask — well all except one of them. That would seem to indicate that Wade killed the Seventh Kavalry members, took one of the masks and he plans to infiltrate their secret hideout where he was taken a few episodes back and told that Adrian Veidt had committed the greatest hoax in human history by orchestrating the alien attack that left three-million people in New York dead.
When Laurie arrives at Jane’s house, she begins by telling her that they’ve found Judd’s killer and his name is Will Reeves but he was actually the original Hooded Justice. She then explains how his life mission was to track down and stamp out this white supremacist sect known as Cyclops and she couldn’t help but wonder if perhaps Tulsa’s chief of police was actually a member of this same secret society that was now operating under a different name — the Seventh Kavalry.
She then wonders out loud if perhaps this was all part of a master plan to help Senator Joe Keene Jr. get elected president and Jane’s response is somewhat surprising because she confesses that was the original plan. Well that was the plan until the Seventh Kavalry decided the presidency was thinking too small.
She then opens up a trap door in her living room that sends Laurie Blake crashing down to the basement below.
When she wakes up, Laurie is in a room in that Seventh Kavalry hideout where they have painted one of the walls with the giant cyclops symbol that Will Reeves first saw back in the 1940’s. Senator Joe Keene then pays her a visit to explain his group’s plans even if she couldn’t give a shit less about what they were trying to do.
Senator Keene promises when he finishes, Laurie is one person who will be vastly interested in their plans.
It seems Senator Keene has been orchestrating this move behind the scenes for years as his Seventh Kavalry constructs a giant box in the center of the room where Laurie is being held. He explains that the Seventh Kavalry isn’t racist but rather a group that has been dedicated to returning America to the principles upon which it was founded because it’s not so easy being a white man in the United States these days.
But rather than making it easier for the white man, Senator Keene believes it might be better to try things out as a blue man instead.
Hiding in Plain Sight
Angela’s exploration around Lady Trieu’s facility until she finds a giant blue glowing globe where she discovers all of the calls that are made in those phone booths that promise a direct line to Dr. Manhattan himself. She even sees the call that Laurie Blake made a few weeks back when she told her ex-boyfriend a joke in hopes of making him laugh.
When Lady Trieu arrives, she tells Angela that the Manhattan phone booths all belong to her and she knows that the prayers being sent to the big blue god in the sky aren’t going to be answered because he’s not even listening.
In fact, Lady Trieu knows this because Dr. Manhattan isn’t on Mars — he’s in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
She then goes onto explain how Dr. Manhattan has taken on human form, which calls back to something that Will Reeves said in the second episode several weeks ago. He said to her that maybe he was Dr. Manhattan because with those god-like powers, who’s to say he couldn’t take on a human form. Just because we’ve never seen it doesn’t mean he can’t do it.
Lady Trieu then explains how Will Reeves sought out her help to deal with the Seventh Kavalry because he needed her resources to stop them.
She says in less than an hour, the Seventh Kavalry will capture Dr. Manhattan and they will destroy him. They will then grant themselves the power of Dr. Manhattan making the Seventh Kalvary the new gods on Earth. That explains how Senator Joseph Keene Jr plans on seeing how it feels to live life as a blue man rather than white.
Angela plays it off like Lady Trieu is crazy but she knows the eccentric genius already knows far more than she should at this point. Angela escapes the facility and rushes home where she finds her husband Cal.
It seems Angela needs Cal to remember something that they talked about before his “accident” that left him with no memory. They knew this day would come and she reminds him that this was always his idea to begin with. It was all a lie so they could be together, at least for a little while.
Cal is even more confused when Angela calls him “Jon” and then smacks him in the head with a hammer.
Angela strikes a few more blows before digging in and pulling out a ring that looks just like the hydrogen atom that decorates the front of Dr. Manhattan’s forehead.
As a blue glow washes over her face, Angela looks back down at the man she loves and says ‘hey baby, we’re in fucking trouble’.
Yes, Dr. Manhattan has been hiding in plain sight this entire time as Cal Abar, the husband of Angela Abar. Judging by the brief preview of next week’s penultimate episode, it seems Angela and Dr. Manhattan fell in love years earlier but the only way they could actually be together would be if he took on a human form and forgot about his incredible powers and abilities.
So for the past several years, Angela has been living with the love of her life Dr. Manhattan as a happily married couple in Tulsa, Oklahoma. But now that happy life has been shattered because there’s a car filled with Seventh Kavalry members sitting outside their house ready to come claim Dr. Manhattan in order to destroy him and imbibe his powers upon them instead.
And it seems only Angela Abar and Lady Trieu have the means to stop them.
“Watchmen” returns next week with the penultimate episode in the first season at 9 p.m. ET on HBO…