Warning: SPOILERS for DC's Doomsday Clock #11
Fans of the original Watchmen can finally rest easy, now that Doomsday Clock has answered one of hardest to resist questions about the story's ending. Because honestly, who hasn't always wondered if things worked out between Nite Owl and Silk Spectre?
The idea of Geoff Johns and Gary Frank's canonical sequel to the original graphic novel, bringing Dr. Manhattan into DC's Universe will always be a controversial decision (and anyone can guess how Alan Moore feels about Watchmen these days). But for those who don't hold the original too precious, or are simply curious to know how DC has continued--and ended--the Watchmen story, it will come as a pleasant surprise to learn that the book's two lovers really did get their happy ending. Well, as happy as anyone else's.
Even as unresolved as the deomstic life of Laurie Jupiter and Dan Dreiberg remains, it's possible fans will read through the latest Doomsday Clock #11, and skip by their final scene without even noticing. It's understandable, since it comes in the midst of Adrian Veidt's long-winded summary of his entire master plan. After Doomsday Clock #2 showed Dr. Manhattan foiling a bank robbery committed by Mime and Marionette, the blue hero's focus on her unborn child suggested even Jon Osterman had limits. But as Veidt reveals in the newest issue, that wasn't the significance of the baby at all...
Every fan will remember the image of Laurie and Dan silhouetted against the mushroom cloud of nuclear apocalypse, or stripped naked in Ozymandias's Antarctic base. But fewer will remember them from their last appearance, visiting Laurie's mother with hair dyed blonde and under the aliases 'Sam and Sandra Hollis.' Their matching hairstyles, names, and a perfectly-placed owl painting confirm that Nite Owl and Silk Spectre are the couple shown in the above panel. Effectively confirming the most optimistic reading of the ending of Watchmen--that the couple really did decide to settle down and start a family.
That family includes adopting the child of Marionette, and presumably living the life neither thought possible... for a few years. Along with the arrival of Dr. Manhattan in DC's Universe, Doomsday Clock shows the future of Watchmen's version of Earth. With Veidt escaping his home universe just as nuclear apocalypse strikes, Dan and Laurie's future was cut short along with every other person on Earth's. In which case, fans will need to take solace in the fact that even Dr. Manhattan deemed the "incredible joy" they experienced worth protecting.
This version of a Watchmen post-credits scene will need to be taken as something completely different than HBO's Watchmen TV series, which has crafted its own version of a troubled future. Since Silk Spectre will return in the Watchmen TV show, this will have to remain the canonical outcome in the comics. At least until the final issue of Doomsday Clock brings whatever conclusion Geoff Johns has in store. There's no telling when the final issue will actually end up on store shelves, considering how many delays Doomsday Clock has dealt with thus far. But until then, readers curious to pick up this "penultimate" issue for themselves can read the full credits and synopsis below:
- DOOMSDAY CLOCK #11 (2019)
- Written by: Geoff Johns
- Art by: Gary Frank, Brad Anderson
- Cover by: Gary Frank, Brad Anderson
- The critically acclaimed series by the renowned team of writer Geoff Johns and artist Gary Frank marches toward its conclusion. In this penultimate issue, the truth behind “Rebirth” is revealed as Batman searches for the one person he believes can help him save the world…Rorschach!
Doomsday Clock #11 is available now at your local comic book shop, or direct from DC Comics. Doomsday Clock #12 is still without release date.