Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 06-21-2017, 12:21 PM
Quimby is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: NJ
Posts: 8,471

A Watchmen HBO TV Series...


...may be happening. Some details here. This could be great if it happens.
  #2  
Old 06-21-2017, 01:00 PM
DrDeth is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: San Jose
Posts: 42,461
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quimby View Post
...may be happening. Some details here. This could be great if it happens.
meh. Watchmen had a interesting idea- see just how dark and gritty you could make Super heroes. Hollywood has already run with this idea. Dark and Gritty is passe.
  #3  
Old 06-21-2017, 01:24 PM
Mahaloth is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: 地球
Posts: 30,018
I know I may be insane, but I thought the film adaptation was wonderful. Nearly perfect. I see no major reason to make a show. I'd watch if the reviews were good, though.

I still would prefer that Dune be a Game of Thrones style show instead of another movie attempt. That's the universe I want to see on TV.
  #4  
Old 06-21-2017, 02:14 PM
DrDeth is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: San Jose
Posts: 42,461
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mahaloth View Post
I know I may be insane, but I thought the film adaptation was wonderful. Nearly perfect. I see no major reason to make a show. I'd watch if the reviews were good, though.
.
I thought it was quite good. But Moore makes a pretense of hating any movie made from his stuff, so of course the fanboys also hate them.
  #5  
Old 06-21-2017, 02:47 PM
Quimby is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: NJ
Posts: 8,471
I would actually, at this point, rather the show just be set in that world. It doesn't have to follow the plot of the Graphic novel.
  #6  
Old 06-21-2017, 02:58 PM
DrCube is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Caseyville, IL
Posts: 7,506
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quimby View Post
I would actually, at this point, rather the show just be set in that world. It doesn't have to follow the plot of the Graphic novel.
This is what I would prefer. The movie has been made. Let's see the characters get outside of the "Watchmen" plot. Could be a prequel or a sequel. Along the lines of Gotham, perhaps.
  #7  
Old 06-21-2017, 03:01 PM
storyteller0910 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: New Jersey (it's not as bad as they tell you)
Posts: 4,425
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrCube View Post
This is what I would prefer. The movie has been made. Let's see the characters get outside of the "Watchmen" plot. Could be a prequel or a sequel. Along the lines of Gotham, perhaps.
I would guess this is what they are doing. I'm not sure about a sequel, since some of the characters that would be most marketable would... uh... not so much be around for a sequel. But you've got decades of history that is only vaguely sketched in the original work - everybody's origins, in particular - that would make good serialized TV.
  #8  
Old 06-21-2017, 03:15 PM
Little Nemo is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Western New York
Posts: 82,868
The movie got the surface of the book right. And missed what the book was about.

Moore wrote Watchmen to address one of the central overlooked issues of the superhero genre: the unnaturalness of it. Most superhero stories, comic books and movies, treat being a superhero as if it's just another career choice - some people work in an office and some people dress up in tights and punch criminals. Moore pointed out that regular people don't choose the latter option. You've got to have some pretty severe mental issues if you want to be a superhero. And those mental issues don't disappear when you put on the costume.

But what about the superheroes with powers? They weren't driven to become superheroes by their mental problems. They simply became superheroes because they had superpowers. But then those superpowers would create mental problems. You can't pretend to be a regular guy with a normal family life and a 9-to-5 job when you're actually one of the most powerful beings on Earth. It doesn't matter how sane you were going into that situation, you're going to end up with problems.

Moore set Watchmen in as realistic a world as possible so we could see how poorly superheroes would fit in the real world. He made sure to include lots of non-superhero characters living normal lives so we could see the real world that existed outside of the small circle of superheroes.

The movie missed all that. It treated Watchmen like it was a typical superhero story. It accepted the conventions of the genre rather than questioning them.
  #9  
Old 06-21-2017, 03:24 PM
Quimby is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: NJ
Posts: 8,471
One point both the book and the movie made is that Superheroes fighting for the status quo can lead to authoritarianism which would make this story very timely I think.
  #10  
Old 06-21-2017, 03:50 PM
Mahaloth is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: 地球
Posts: 30,018
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quimby View Post
I would actually, at this point, rather the show just be set in that world. It doesn't have to follow the plot of the Graphic novel.
That I would watch.
  #11  
Old 06-21-2017, 06:31 PM
Bryan Ekers's Avatar
Bryan Ekers is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Montreal, QC
Posts: 59,366
What, the late-1980s saturday-morning cartoon wasn't good enough?
  #12  
Old 06-21-2017, 07:34 PM
Bryan Ekers's Avatar
Bryan Ekers is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Montreal, QC
Posts: 59,366
As an incidental note, there's a passing reference at the end of Chapter 2 (in a segment from Hollis Mason's Under the Hood autobio) that "[w]ithin twelve months of Hooded Justice's dramatic entrance into the public consciousness, there were at least seven other costumed vigilantes on or around America's West Coast." None of these are ever specifically named or otherwise referenced. I could picture a period piece set in late 1940's L.A., showcasing these characters and their interactions - they likely stayed relatively low-key and didn't form a memorable team (albeit a dysfunctional one) like the east-coast Minutemen.
  #13  
Old 06-21-2017, 07:45 PM
The Tooth is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Posts: 4,779
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDeth View Post
I thought it was quite good. But Moore makes a pretense of hating any movie made from his stuff, so of course the fanboys also hate them.
No. I read Watchmen and V for Vendetta when they were published. I thought both movies were great and that Moore's being an unshaven old fuddy-duddy.
  #14  
Old 06-21-2017, 09:01 PM
The Other Waldo Pepper is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 16,816
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryan Ekers View Post
As an incidental note, there's a passing reference at the end of Chapter 2 (in a segment from Hollis Mason's Under the Hood autobio) that "[w]ithin twelve months of Hooded Justice's dramatic entrance into the public consciousness, there were at least seven other costumed vigilantes on or around America's West Coast." None of these are ever specifically named or otherwise referenced. I could picture a period piece set in late 1940's L.A., showcasing these characters and their interactions - they likely stayed relatively low-key and didn't form a memorable team (albeit a dysfunctional one) like the east-coast Minutemen.
I, uh, always figured that was simply a mistake: he's just been going on and on about eight costumed adventurers that we get to know -- Hooded Justice and Nite Owl and Mothman and Dollar Bill and Captain Metropolis and the Comedian and the Silk Spectre and the Silhouette -- and, right when it would make perfect sense to sum up with a line about how all of them happened to be operating near each other on the East Coast, the Brit writing about America either slips up or throws in a complete non sequitur.

My money is on "slips up".
  #15  
Old 06-21-2017, 09:02 PM
BigT's Avatar
BigT is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: "Hicksville", Ark.
Posts: 36,709
I've not read the comic, but the movie did seem to me to illustrate that the "superheroes" all had mental problems, and that nothing they did was normal.
  #16  
Old 06-21-2017, 09:24 PM
Bryan Ekers's Avatar
Bryan Ekers is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Montreal, QC
Posts: 59,366
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Other Waldo Pepper View Post
I, uh, always figured that was simply a mistake: he's just been going on and on about eight costumed adventurers that we get to know -- Hooded Justice and Nite Owl and Mothman and Dollar Bill and Captain Metropolis and the Comedian and the Silk Spectre and the Silhouette -- and, right when it would make perfect sense to sum up with a line about how all of them happened to be operating near each other on the East Coast, the Brit writing about America either slips up or throws in a complete non sequitur.

My money is on "slips up".
Interesting take, and could be correct, though the various editors (including Dick Giordano, Len Wein and Barbara Kesel) would have had to miss it, too.
  #17  
Old 06-21-2017, 09:40 PM
The Other Waldo Pepper is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 16,816
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryan Ekers View Post
Interesting take, and could be correct, though the various editors (including Dick Giordano, Len Wein and Barbara Kesel) would have had to miss it, too.
Sure, but, again, the way you read that one sentence is possible. It's not like Moore has the guy say that New York is on the West Coast, which an editor could spot all by itself; instead, it's a line that only draws a "hey, wait a minute" in context.
  #18  
Old 06-22-2017, 06:06 AM
WordMan is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 22,458
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigT View Post
I've not read the comic, but the movie did seem to me to illustrate that the "superheroes" all had mental problems, and that nothing they did was normal.
IRL, what mental state would you expect a costumed vigilante to have? Exploring that is the whole purpose - it's Moore's objective, yes?
  #19  
Old 06-22-2017, 06:29 AM
WordMan is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 22,458
Quote:
Originally Posted by WordMan View Post
IRL, what mental state would you expect a costumed vigilante to have? Exploring that is the whole purpose - it's Moore's objective, yes?
Ah, shame on me. I misread - your point is that the movie DID have communicate that the costumed vigilante were all off a bit, except maybe Hollis Mason. I dunno - I enjoyed the movie, but went in assuming that a movie form would have to imply all of the deep Mythos-deconstructing pondering that Moore baked in the text.

I have to say, and shame on me here, too, but Moore's disdain of movies, and Zack Snyder's other failures do color my view of the movie. I kinda think "given Snyder's other heavy-handed misses, he can't have handled the complexity and subtlety that is Moore's signature very well, right?" So I am more inclined to assume that my fanboy brain fills in the gaps. Kinda like a less extreme form of Lynch's Dune .

But it really is a solid movie. Now, what that means for a series, not sure. The series shouldn't just be another version of the original though. We don't need to be Spider-Man'd.

Last edited by WordMan; 06-22-2017 at 06:31 AM.
  #20  
Old 06-22-2017, 12:08 PM
DrDeth is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: San Jose
Posts: 42,461
Quote:
Originally Posted by WordMan View Post
I have to say, and shame on me here, too, but Moore's disdain of movies, and Zack Snyder's other failures do color my view of the movie. I kinda think "given Snyder's other heavy-handed misses, he can't have handled the complexity and subtlety that is Moore's signature very well, right?"
subtlety that is Moore's? subtlety? He's about a subtle as a wrecking ball.
  #21  
Old 06-23-2017, 09:12 AM
FlyingRat is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 492
Quote:
Originally Posted by storyteller0910 View Post
I would guess this is what they are doing. I'm not sure about a sequel, since some of the characters that would be most marketable would... uh... not so much be around for a sequel. But you've got decades of history that is only vaguely sketched in the original work - everybody's origins, in particular - that would make good serialized TV.
A few years back DC came out with a comic series called "Before Watchmen" addressing the backstories of the different characters, both Crimebusters and Minutemen. Those could conceivably be rolled into a new series.

As I remember, there were different subseries, with mixed results. The Minutemen and Silk Spectre ones were fantastic; Dr. Manhattan and Nite Owl were very good; Ozymandias, Rorschach and the Comedian were awful, Ozymandias because the ham-handed storytelling couldn't offset the pretty art, and Rorschach/Comedian because they presented both characters as awesome dark antiheroes while completely mischaracterizing them and missing Moore's point that they are awful, broken people. Some panel examples: Comedian saying "IT'S TIME TO SHIT"
(prompted by an earlier use of "Shit or get off the pot") has been used to sum up most of the series.


I'd be excited if they went this route. I also wouldn't object to a miniseries of the original GN, with 12 episodes corresponding to the chapters - that would address a lot of the great little touches that got left out of the movie, and provide an alternative to Snyder's rah-rah superhero glorification and unapologetic ultraviolence. (I did greatly enjoy the movie, though.) I worry about Lindelof as I see what he did with the movie Prometheus.

Last edited by FlyingRat; 06-23-2017 at 09:15 AM.
  #22  
Old 06-23-2017, 09:18 AM
Fiveyearlurker is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 6,828
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Tooth View Post
No. I read Watchmen and V for Vendetta when they were published. I thought both movies were great and that Moore's being an unshaven old fuddy-duddy.
If anything, I thought the ending of the movie made more sense than the ending of the book.

I'll give this show a shot for sure, but recognize it could go either way.
  #23  
Old 06-23-2017, 11:50 AM
Lance Flare is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 1
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrCube View Post
This is what I would prefer. The movie has been made. Let's see the characters get outside of the "Watchmen" plot. Could be a prequel or a sequel. Along the lines of Gotham, perhaps.
Do you mean like an adaption of Before the Watchmen?
  #24  
Old 06-23-2017, 11:50 AM
Little Nemo is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Western New York
Posts: 82,868
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlyingRat View Post
I worry about Lindelof as I see what he did with the movie Prometheus.
I'm more worried by what he did on Lost. I haven't been watching The Leftovers but Lost, to me, showed Lindelof is somebody who makes big promises without knowing how to deliver on them.
  #25  
Old 06-23-2017, 12:10 PM
WordMan is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 22,458
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDeth View Post
subtlety that is Moore's? subtlety? He's about a subtle as a wrecking ball.
True I guess I am restating complexity there. Some of the emotions his writing and (in Watchmen's case) Dave Gibbons' art evoke are subtle, but no, Moore is direct and specific in what he does.
  #26  
Old 06-23-2017, 08:30 PM
iamthewalrus(:3= is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Posts: 12,109
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
The movie got the surface of the book right. And missed what the book was about.
You said the same thing a few months ago, but I don't see it.

Doctor Manhattan is clearly increasingly alienated and disconnected from his humanity. The Comedian is a corrupt nihilist. Rorschach is literally the personification of arbitrary moral relativism. Night Owl is the adrenaline junkie, so numb to the world he can't get it up until he kicks some bad-guys asses (yeah, I think the gratuitous sex scene totally works in the movie).

The characters are all broken anti-heroes.

That theme is so deeply embedded in the story that it exudes from the surface. What's missing?

Can you point to some specific choices that should have been made differently?

Last edited by iamthewalrus(:3=; 06-23-2017 at 08:30 PM.
  #27  
Old 06-23-2017, 11:32 PM
Little Nemo is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Western New York
Posts: 82,868
Quote:
Originally Posted by iamthewalrus(:3= View Post
Rorschach is literally the personification of arbitrary moral relativism.
What? Rorschach was the complete antithesis of moral relativism.

But moving beyond that (Seriously? Moral relativism?) I stand by what I wrote in March.
  #28  
Old 06-24-2017, 11:49 PM
The Other Waldo Pepper is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 16,816
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
What? Rorschach was the complete antithesis of moral relativism.
Well, there's his story about realizing that the rudderless world isn't shaped by vague metaphysical forces: "Existence is random. Has no pattern save what we imagine after staring at it for too long. No meaning save what we choose to impose ... Was reborn then, free to scrawl own design on this morally blank world."
  #29  
Old 06-24-2017, 11:51 PM
Little Nemo is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Western New York
Posts: 82,868
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Other Waldo Pepper View Post
Well, there's his story about realizing that the rudderless world isn't shaped by vague metaphysical forces: "Existence is random. Has no pattern save what we imagine after staring at it for too long. No meaning save what we choose to impose ... Was reborn then, free to scrawl own design on this morally blank world."
That's nihilism not moral relativism.
  #30  
Old 06-25-2017, 12:08 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 16,816
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
That's nihilism not moral relativism.
How do you figure? Upon concluding that there's no objective standard of right and wrong, he acts according to a strict moral code -- that an 'evildoer', who robs or rapes or murders innocents, is to be punished -- while granting that it's merely subjective, even though he champions it as if it were objectively true.

I kind of thought that could well be the position of a relativist -- even while a nihilist could be a guy who concludes that there's no objective standard of right and wrong, and so refrains from deeming anything as 'evil' instead of vigorously championing various moral principles as if they were objectively true.
  #31  
Old 06-25-2017, 12:45 AM
Elendil's Heir is offline
SDSAB
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: my Herkimer Battle Jitney
Posts: 86,279
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlyingRat View Post
A few years back DC came out with a comic series called "Before Watchmen" addressing the backstories of the different characters, both Crimebusters and Minutemen. Those could conceivably be rolled into a new series.

As I remember, there were different subseries, with mixed results. The Minutemen and Silk Spectre ones were fantastic; Dr. Manhattan and Nite Owl were very good; Ozymandias, Rorschach and the Comedian were awful, Ozymandias because the ham-handed storytelling couldn't offset the pretty art, and Rorschach/Comedian because they presented both characters as awesome dark antiheroes while completely mischaracterizing them and missing Moore's point that they are awful, broken people....
I read 'em all, and mostly agree with you. They also (esp. in the case of the Comedian) broke with Watchmen canon pretty starkly. I thought the Dr. Manhattan issue was far and away the best - some very interesting stuff about destiny, free will, causality and even Schrodinger's cat in there.

I'm a huge Watchmen fan and will likely watch this new series unless the reviews are absolutely horrible, but I have to say that Lindelof's involvement in Lost and Prometheus make me very wary of what he might do with Watchmen.
  #32  
Old 06-25-2017, 12:56 AM
Little Nemo is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Western New York
Posts: 82,868
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Other Waldo Pepper View Post
How do you figure? Upon concluding that there's no objective standard of right and wrong, he acts according to a strict moral code -- that an 'evildoer', who robs or rapes or murders innocents, is to be punished -- while granting that it's merely subjective, even though he champions it as if it were objectively true.

I kind of thought that could well be the position of a relativist -- even while a nihilist could be a guy who concludes that there's no objective standard of right and wrong, and so refrains from deeming anything as 'evil' instead of vigorously championing various moral principles as if they were objectively true.
A nihilist essentially believes that there's no external force that applies a moral standard. Rorschach didn't believe in any higher power. He didn't think God or karma or the law was going to judge people, so he took it upon himself to do so. "You see, Doctor, God didn't kill that little girl. Fate didn't butcher her and destiny didn't feed her to those dogs. If God saw what any of us did that night he didn't seem to mind. From then on I knew... God doesn't make the world this way. We do."

A moral relativist believes that there is no universal moral code. He feels that what's moral for him may be different than what's moral for other people. Other people live in different situations so they have different moral codes, which are just as valid in their situation as your moral code is in your situation. I'm not seeing any of that with Rohrschach. He had no problem judging other people by his moral code and applying it to them. He certainly did not feel that other people's moral codes were as valid as his own. "Never compromise. Not even in the face of Armageddon."
  #33  
Old 06-25-2017, 01:25 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 16,816
But that's just it: Rorschach judges them by his own moral code, which he'd freely admit is just his own moral code being imposed on a morally-blank world. And if other folks operate according to a different code, well, what is that to him? By his moral code, they're wrong -- and, if they think he's wrong, they're more than welcome to fight him over it; he's certainly glad to fight them, if they do what he sees as wrong; he champions what he sees as morally right: acting like there's an objective standard of rightness, even while granting that it's merely subjective.

Compare him to a guy who (a) would agree that there are no objective standards of right and wrong, and who (b) doesn't then propound a moral code of his own; rather, he just gives a cynical shrug and maybe goes in for sexual assault but never goes in for right-and-wrong talk as an objective matter or as a subjective one. He doesn't uncompromisingly champion what he sees as morally right; he doesn't really see anything as morally right; he merely acts like he's amoral, is all.

I'd say the second guy could be a nihilist. What would you call him?

Last edited by The Other Waldo Pepper; 06-25-2017 at 01:28 AM.
  #34  
Old 06-25-2017, 03:03 AM
Sage Rat's Avatar
Sage Rat is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Howdy
Posts: 22,030
Oh, Damon Lindelof!

Hard pass.

Even if I liked his work, this is way outside of his style. If someone actually green lights this, I'll laugh like a ghoul. It'll last three episodes before they decide they can use the same time slot for something better.
  #35  
Old 06-25-2017, 10:59 AM
Lakai is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Brooklyn, New York
Posts: 5,080
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
I'm more worried by what he did on Lost. I haven't been watching The Leftovers but Lost, to me, showed Lindelof is somebody who makes big promises without knowing how to deliver on them.
I think the problem with Lost was that the audience expected answers to the mystery and Lindelof thought that solving mystery was less important than exploring how the characters reacted to the mystery.

This is much more explicit in the Leftovers, as it explores god and the afterlife in a more realistic world where these questions don't have answers. The Leftovers is one of my favorite TV series of all time, and I would recommend watching it even if you had reservations about Lost.

I'm excited to see what Lindelof will do with the Watchmen. At the very least it give him a group of psychologically fucked up characters to explore, and he's very good at doing that.
  #36  
Old 06-25-2017, 02:24 PM
Little Nemo is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Western New York
Posts: 82,868
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Other Waldo Pepper View Post
But that's just it: Rorschach judges them by his own moral code, which he'd freely admit is just his own moral code being imposed on a morally-blank world. And if other folks operate according to a different code, well, what is that to him? By his moral code, they're wrong -- and, if they think he's wrong, they're more than welcome to fight him over it; he's certainly glad to fight them, if they do what he sees as wrong; he champions what he sees as morally right: acting like there's an objective standard of rightness, even while granting that it's merely subjective.

Compare him to a guy who (a) would agree that there are no objective standards of right and wrong, and who (b) doesn't then propound a moral code of his own; rather, he just gives a cynical shrug and maybe goes in for sexual assault but never goes in for right-and-wrong talk as an objective matter or as a subjective one. He doesn't uncompromisingly champion what he sees as morally right; he doesn't really see anything as morally right; he merely acts like he's amoral, is all.

I'd say the second guy could be a nihilist. What would you call him?
The Comedian.

Seriously, I think the contrast between the Comedian and Rorschach demonstrates my point. The Comedian didn't have a moral code; he just did what he wanted without regard for right or wrong. Rorschach did have a moral code (albeit an extreme and violent one) and he followed it.

What made Rorschach a nihilist was that it was his moral code. He didn't believe that he was doing God's work. He didn't see himself as a agent of anything outside himself. He didn't care that the legal system thought he was wrong. He wasn't answering to anyone else. That refusal to accept anyone else's views on what is moral is nihilism.

And Rorschach was willing to apply his beliefs. He believed his moral code was superior to everyone else's and he would impose it on everyone else if he could. Believing you're right and everyone who disagrees with you is wrong is not moral relativism. It's the exact opposite of moral relativism.
  #37  
Old 06-25-2017, 02:29 PM
Little Nemo is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Western New York
Posts: 82,868
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lakai View Post
I think the problem with Lost was that the audience expected answers to the mystery and Lindelof thought that solving mystery was less important than exploring how the characters reacted to the mystery.
That's an interesting interpretation I hadn't considered. Maybe I thought Lost was a failure because I misread what it was trying to do.

I'm not quite ready to go back and rewatch Lost but I will keep this in mind when I get around to watching The Leftovers.
  #38  
Old 06-25-2017, 02:44 PM
The Other Waldo Pepper is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 16,816
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
The Comedian.

Seriously, I think the contrast between the Comedian and Rorschach demonstrates my point. The Comedian didn't have a moral code; he just did what he wanted without regard for right or wrong. Rorschach did have a moral code (albeit an extreme and violent one) and he followed it.

What made Rorschach a nihilist was that it was his moral code. He didn't believe that he was doing God's work. He didn't see himself as a agent of anything outside himself. He didn't care that the legal system thought he was wrong. He wasn't answering to anyone else. That refusal to accept anyone else's views on what is moral is nihilism.

And Rorschach was willing to apply his beliefs. He believed his moral code was superior to everyone else's and he would impose it on everyone else if he could. Believing you're right and everyone who disagrees with you is wrong is not moral relativism. It's the exact opposite of moral relativism.
Well, look, you get where I'm coming from, even if you disagree: I could call the Comedian a nihilist for not having a moral code, and call Rorschach a relativist for having a moral code that he admits isn't actually true in some objective sense.

And I think I get where you're coming from: you see them both as nihilists.

But my question is: in that context, what do you think a moral relativist would look like? According to you, he (a) wouldn't be the guy who lacks a moral code, with no regard for right and wrong; and he (b) wouldn't be the guy who has a moral code that he freely grants isn't a matter of objective fact. So -- what does that leave?

Last edited by The Other Waldo Pepper; 06-25-2017 at 02:45 PM.
  #39  
Old 06-25-2017, 03:23 PM
Little Nemo is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Western New York
Posts: 82,868
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Other Waldo Pepper View Post
Well, look, you get where I'm coming from, even if you disagree: I could call the Comedian a nihilist for not having a moral code, and call Rorschach a relativist for having a moral code that he admits isn't actually true in some objective sense.

And I think I get where you're coming from: you see them both as nihilists.
Nihilists don't believe that there's any higher power that creates a moral code. Some people, like the Comedian, then figure that if there's no higher power than they're free to live their life without a moral code. Other people, like Rorschach, create a moral code to live by. But I think it would be wrong to say that Rorschach didn't believe his moral code was true just because he created it. And I think it's wrong to call him a moral relativist because he feels the moral code he created is the only right one.

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Other Waldo Pepper View Post
But my question is: in that context, what do you think a moral relativist would look like? According to you, he (a) wouldn't be the guy who lacks a moral code, with no regard for right and wrong; and he (b) wouldn't be the guy who has a moral code that he freely grants isn't a matter of objective fact. So -- what does that leave?
Hard to say. I can't imagine somebody wanted to go out and fight for a particular moral code when he believes other moral codes are equally valid.

I agree with the first thing you said. Moral relativists can have moral codes. They just don't believe that there is a universal moral code.

But I don't agree with the second thing you said. Moral relativists feel moral codes are subjective not objective. So a moral relativist would be the guy who freely grants that his personal moral code isn't a matter of objective fact.

Last edited by Little Nemo; 06-25-2017 at 03:25 PM.
  #40  
Old 06-25-2017, 03:37 PM
The Other Waldo Pepper is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 16,816
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
I agree with the first thing you said. Moral relativists can have moral codes. They just don't believe that there is a universal moral code.

But I don't agree with the second thing you said. Moral relativists feel moral codes are subjective not objective. So a moral relativist would be the guy who freely grants that his personal moral code isn't a matter of objective fact.
But that's what I think Rorschach is: a guy who *doesn't* believe there's a universal moral code -- and who *does* freely grant that his personal moral code isn't a matter of objective fact. Isn't that exactly what he spells out for the psychiatrist?
  #41  
Old 06-25-2017, 03:55 PM
Acsenray is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: U.S.A.
Posts: 36,315
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mahaloth View Post
I know I may be insane, but I thought the film adaptation was wonderful. Nearly perfect. I see no major reason to make a show. I'd watch if the reviews were good, though.
I thought the film was visually perfect, but it was emotionally dead. It somehow lost the heart of the story while trying to remain faithful.

One of the important missteps was making the "heroes" into superhuman fighters. Only Ozymandias should have been more than a humanly competent fighter. The jailbreak scene was particularly egregious showing Owlman and Silk Spectre displaying superhuman abilities.
  #42  
Old 06-25-2017, 05:59 PM
Little Nemo is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Western New York
Posts: 82,868
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Other Waldo Pepper View Post
But that's what I think Rorschach is: a guy who *doesn't* believe there's a universal moral code -- and who *does* freely grant that his personal moral code isn't a matter of objective fact. Isn't that exactly what he spells out for the psychiatrist?
No. I feel Rorschach does believe in a universal moral code - his moral code. He applies his moral beliefs to other people on a regular basis.

What makes him a nihilist is that he doesn't think some higher power made his moral code. He understands that he created the moral code he lives by.

A moral relativist is somebody who thinks that Christianity and Buddhism and Hinduism and Islam are all equally valid moral codes, even though they contradict each other in some regards. A nihilist is somebody who thinks that Christianity and Buddhism and Hinduism and Islam are all equally wrong because all religions are made up.
  #43  
Old 06-25-2017, 06:48 PM
The Other Waldo Pepper is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 16,816
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
No. I feel Rorschach does believe in a universal moral code - his moral code. He applies his moral beliefs to other people on a regular basis.

What makes him a nihilist is that he doesn't think some higher power made his moral code. He understands that he created the moral code he lives by.

A moral relativist is somebody who thinks that Christianity and Buddhism and Hinduism and Islam are all equally valid moral codes, even though they contradict each other in some regards. A nihilist is somebody who thinks that Christianity and Buddhism and Hinduism and Islam are all equally wrong because all religions are made up.
I don't follow. You say a nihilist would think those are all equally wrong because they're made up -- but you add, in that same post, that he understands that he created the moral code he lives by. If so, his problem with other moral codes isn't that they're made up; it's that they aren't his made-up code.
  #44  
Old 06-25-2017, 06:56 PM
Bryan Ekers's Avatar
Bryan Ekers is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Montreal, QC
Posts: 59,366
I gathered both the Comedian and Rorschach felt free to operate by their own codes, but the Comedian enjoyed sadism while Rorschach used sadism for specific ends, i.e. breaking a man's fingers for information.
  #45  
Old 06-25-2017, 07:04 PM
Acsenray is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: U.S.A.
Posts: 36,315
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
No. I feel Rorschach does believe in a universal moral code - his moral code. He applies his moral beliefs to other people on a regular basis.



What makes him a nihilist is that he doesn't think some higher power made his moral code. He understands that he created the moral code he lives by.



A moral relativist is somebody who thinks that Christianity and Buddhism and Hinduism and Islam are all equally valid moral codes, even though they contradict each other in some regards. A nihilist is somebody who thinks that Christianity and Buddhism and Hinduism and Islam are all equally wrong because all religions are made up.


That is emphatically NOT what nihilism is. And the definition of moral relativism is off too.

A nihilist believes that nothing matters so there's no reason to care about morality or ethics.

A moral relativist believes that morality can only be judged from your own point of view—someone else can't judge what's moral for you.

You can believe that all religions are equal and not be a moral relativist.
__________________
*I'm experimenting with E, em, and es and emself as pronouns that do not indicate any specific gender nor exclude any specific gender.
  #46  
Old 06-25-2017, 07:15 PM
The Other Waldo Pepper is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 16,816
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryan Ekers View Post
I gathered both the Comedian and Rorschach felt free to operate by their own codes, but the Comedian enjoyed sadism while Rorschach used sadism for specific ends, i.e. breaking a man's fingers for information.
Well, look, if we put it that way, then -- are we doing spoilers? -- they all pretty much "felt free to operate by their own codes," didn't they? Dan felt free to break a guy out of prison -- and Laurie shrugged, and felt free to help out -- sure as Adrian felt free to murder people; and that combination of events led to Jon deciding, on his own initiative, to calmly kill someone in cold blood.
  #47  
Old 06-25-2017, 08:36 PM
Little Nemo is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Western New York
Posts: 82,868
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Other Waldo Pepper View Post
I don't follow. You say a nihilist would think those are all equally wrong because they're made up -- but you add, in that same post, that he understands that he created the moral code he lives by. If so, his problem with other moral codes isn't that they're made up; it's that they aren't his made-up code.
No, not at all. It's not an issue of whether the moral code is made up; it's an issue of who made it up. For example, I know I'm real. So if I decide that murder is wrong then I know who made that decision. I'm not going to question the belief because it's my belief.

Now consider a person who believes murder is wrong because God says murder is wrong. Suppose you then lose your belief that God exists. Do you also lose your belief that murder is wrong? If God never existed then he couldn't have said that murder was wrong.

That's the basis of nihilism. It says you should decide for yourself what is moral and what is immoral. You shouldn't think something is wrong just because you were told that God thinks it's wrong or your parents told you it's wrong or the government tells you it's wrong.

Granted, this is the positive spin on nihilism. In reality, a lot of people abuse nihilism and use it as an excuse to abandon any moral code and just do whatever they want to do. And other people condemn nihilism because of this.
  #48  
Old 06-25-2017, 09:34 PM
Acsenray is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: U.S.A.
Posts: 36,315

A Watchmen HBO TV Series...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
No, not at all. It's not an issue of whether the moral code is made up; it's an issue of who made it up. For example, I know I'm real. So if I decide that murder is wrong then I know who made that decision. I'm not going to question the belief because it's my belief.



Now consider a person who believes murder is wrong because God says murder is wrong. Suppose you then lose your belief that God exists. Do you also lose your belief that murder is wrong? If God never existed then he couldn't have said that murder was wrong.



That's the basis of nihilism. It says you should decide for yourself what is moral and what is immoral. You shouldn't think something is wrong just because you were told that God thinks it's wrong or your parents told you it's wrong or the government tells you it's wrong.



Granted, this is the positive spin on nihilism. In reality, a lot of people abuse nihilism and use it as an excuse to abandon any moral code and just do whatever they want to do. And other people condemn nihilism because of this.


Nihilism is not based on any connection between god and morality and a loss of such a connection due to a loss of belief in god. That's just atheism and dealing with its consequences.

Nihilism might or might not result from a loss of belief, but it's something very specific. It's saying that preserving human human life—or some other value underlying all moral systems, including atheistic ones—has no intrinsic value.

Heath Ledger's Joker is a nihilist. He is willing to do any horrible thing to anyone because he believes human existence is just a joke, it has no value. He has make people suffer just to make a point, just to entertain himself. Their well being, their lives are without intrinsic value. That's nihilism.
__________________
*I'm experimenting with E, em, and es and emself as pronouns that do not indicate any specific gender nor exclude any specific gender.

Last edited by Acsenray; 06-25-2017 at 09:38 PM.
  #49  
Old 06-25-2017, 09:39 PM
The Other Waldo Pepper is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 16,816
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
No, not at all. It's not an issue of whether the moral code is made up; it's an issue of who made it up. For example, I know I'm real. So if I decide that murder is wrong then I know who made that decision. I'm not going to question the belief because it's my belief.

Now consider a person who believes murder is wrong because God says murder is wrong. Suppose you then lose your belief that God exists. Do you also lose your belief that murder is wrong? If God never existed then he couldn't have said that murder was wrong.

That's the basis of nihilism. It says you should decide for yourself what is moral and what is immoral. You shouldn't think something is wrong just because you were told that God thinks it's wrong or your parents told you it's wrong or the government tells you it's wrong.
Well, look, you define his position as nihilism -- by defining "nihilism" to mean that "you should decide for yourself what is moral and what is immoral." I define his position as moral relativism -- by which I mean, ah, "the position that moral or ethical propositions do not reflect objective and/or universal moral truths, but instead make claims relative to social, cultural, historical or personal circumstances."

At that, I suppose I'm defining nihilism as "the rejection of all moral principles."

So by my definitions, someone who lives by a personal moral code -- while granting that it doesn't reflect some objective moral truth -- could be fairly described as a relativist; by contrast, someone who doesn't live by a moral code could be fairly described as a nihilist who lacks any regard for right and wrong.

I can support my proffered definitions with cites. Can you, with yours?
  #50  
Old 06-25-2017, 09:45 PM
Elendil's Heir is offline
SDSAB
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: my Herkimer Battle Jitney
Posts: 86,279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Acsenray View Post
I thought the film was visually perfect, but it was emotionally dead. It somehow lost the heart of the story while trying to remain faithful....
Fair point.
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:57 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright 2019 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017