HBO’s Watchmen Just Got A Lot Creepier: Jeremy Irons Is Ozymandias
I don't exactly know what to think about HBO's mysterious Watchmen series.
Headed by Lost boy Damon Lindelof - who everyone loves to hate on, but whose Leftovers is also an oft-overlooked masterwork - the new episodic return to these weird superheroes and all their distinct fetishes isn't an updated adaptation of the comic (which, speaking of hated on, Zack Snyder's movie version still rules) but rather some kind of remix/sequel set in the same universe Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons originally constructed on the page.
Now, it looks like whatever Lindelof's baby ends up being, it just got a whole lot creepier, as /Film has revealed that Jeremy Irons - who joined the project a few months ago as a as an “aging and imperious lord of a British manor" - is actually playing Adrian Veidt (a/k/a Ozymandias), the brilliant industrialist who, you know, faked an invasion of squid monsters all those years ago. Of course, many younger movie fans know Irons as the new age Alfred from Snyder's ill-advised Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice* and Joss Whedon's heavily doctor Justice League movies. The rest of us mostly recognize Irons from Dead Ringers, David Cronenberg's seminal masterpiece about lecherous twin gynecologists Elliot and Beverly Mantle.
To be frank: yes please. If there was any way to get me off the fence and watch a weird, possibly recurring sequel to Watchmen, it's by giving actors like Irons meaty pulp roles to play. Granted, the Academy Award-winner hasn't had a part that really met his talents in quite some time (though last year's Red Sparrow used him quite well), it'll be great to see just how strange and otherworldly his take on Veidt turns out.
Also joining the cast is Jean Smart, the former Frasier player who's been on a roll as of late. Smart's work on both Fargo and Legion has been exemplary, and seeing her come in as FBI Agent Blake - who is tasked with tracking down masked vigilantes - is a bit of an eyebrow-raiser. As Slash's lovely man about town Jacob Hall notes:
"One of the key characters in the original Watchmen is Edward Blake, the violent and surprisingly complex vigilante turned government operative better known as The Comedian. It’s his death that kickstarts the plot of the original comic (he’s a major player in flashbacks) and he continues to be a presence from beyond the grave. It’s entirely possible that Jean Smart’s character name is a winking homage to this character. It’s also possible that she is somehow related to him, continuing his government work where he left off."
So, what do you folks think? Are you stoked about Watchmen coming to HBO? Are you also huge Jeremy Irons fans? What about the possibility of Eddie Blake's kin playing a part in this new outlawed superhero narrative? Sound off in the comments below.