Watchmen creator Alan Moore isn’t a fan of the TV show, because of course he isn’t. During an interview with GQ, the legendary comic book writer revealed what he really thinks about the recent Watchmen TV show — an adaptation of his iconic graphic novel. Per usual, he has some harsh opinions.
“I would be the last person to want to sit through any adaptations of my work,” said Moore. “From what I’ve heard of them, it would be enormously punishing. It would be torturous, and for no very good reason.”
Moore famously hates all of the Hollywood adaptations of his work, including Zack Snyder’s Watchmen and the dystopian classic, V for Vendetta.
This extends to the recent Watchmen TV series, and Moore had some stern words for the television execs who dared to reach out to him about the project.
“There was an incident — probably a concluding incident, for me,” said Moore. “I received a bulky parcel, through Federal Express, that arrived here in my sedate little living room. It turned out to contain a powder blue barbecue apron with a hydrogen symbol on the front.”
The package was an attempt from a Watchmen showrunner — believed to be Damon Lindelof — to reach out to Moore for help… but it didn’t exactly go down well.
“[There was] a frank letter from the showrunner of the Watchmen television adaptation, which I hadn’t heard was a thing at that point,” said Moore. “But the letter, I think it opened with, ‘Dear Mr. Moore, I am one of the bastards currently destroying Watchmen.’ That wasn’t the best opener. It went on through a lot of, what seemed to me to be, neurotic rambling. ‘Can you at least tell us how to pronounce “Ozymandias”?’”
Obviously, Moore wasn’t impressed.
“I got back with a very abrupt and probably hostile reply telling him that I’d thought that Warner Brothers were aware that they, nor any of their employees, shouldn’t contact me again for any reason,” he explained.
Clearly not a fan of the studios, Moore wasn’t interested in helping adapt his work. But perhaps most importantly, he’s also disowned much of his own past work, including the Watchmen graphic novel.
“I explained that I had disowned the work in question, and partly that was because the film industry and the comics industry seemed to have created things that had nothing to do with my work, but which would be associated with it in the public mind,” he said. “I said, ‘Look, this is embarrassing to me. I don’t want anything to do with you or your show. Please don’t bother me again.’”
Still, Watchmen went on to critical acclaim, winning over audiences and critics as well as winning seven Emmys in 2020.
Moore, for his part, remains unimpressed.
“When I saw the television industry awards that the Watchmen television show had apparently won, I thought, ‘Oh, god, perhaps a large part of the public, this is what they think Watchmen was?’ They think that it was a dark, gritty, dystopian superhero franchise that was something to do with white supremacism,” he said. “Did they not understand Watchmen? Watchmen was nearly 40 years ago and was relatively simple in comparison with a lot of my later work. What are the chances that they broadly understood anything since? This tends to make me feel less than fond of those works. They mean a bit less in my heart.”