Friday, 22 February 2013

What I beleive was wrong with the ending of the Watchmen movie.

Watchmen, Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons' masterpiece is my favorite graphic novel of all time. And I have read a lot of graphic novels by some truly great writers and artists. With this in mind, you might be forgiven in thinking that no matter how good the film was, that it would never be good enough for me. You'd be wrong. Going into the cinema, I was willing and happy to find that in a couple of hours time I had a new favourite film. It didn't happen. It really didn't.

Okay, now, spoiler alert. If you havn't read the graphic novel, don't read on. If you havn't seen the film, don't. Read the graphic novel instead.
In Watchmen, the world is on the brink of nuclear war. Ozymandias, the worlds most intelligent man, comes up with a plan to avert this. Along with a group of scientists and artists (who he later kills to keep the secret), he creates a giant "extra-dimensional" being which, when it materialises in New York City, kills off the city's entire population with it's psychic "death" scream. With the perceived threat of a very dangerous and powerful potential enemy from somewhere other that Earth, the planets population will hopefully unite, their previous squabbles paling in comparison.
In the movie, the psychic alien is completely written out. Instead, the threat to the world come from faked (by Ozymandias) manifestations of the ever increasing power of Dr. Manhattan, one of the former Watchmen. The problem with that ending is this. In the original, the countries of the world can unite against a common enemy. Dr. Manhattan however, is not only an American but an American soldier. His powers being an american asset have  further pushed the world toward mutually assured destruction. Seeing a greater destructive threat coming from that source would further galvanise America's allies and may even gain it new ones. The world would be even more divided that before it had happened. Somehow in the movie, the human race unites instead of being further pushed apart which is the effect that I believe the manifestations would have had on the psychology of the people of the Watchmen world.

I really don't see any reason, other than time and financial factors, why the ending was changed. Putting in the creation of the alien would have added maybe another 30 minutes to the length of the film. The arrogance of the Hollywood script writers at the belief that they could write as good a, or better ending that the great Alan Moore exasperates me.

Boycot the film. Buy the graphic novel and experience one of the greatest stories ever written.

Warhammer World.

It's only February and I've already been to four games tournaments this year!

The first, which I talked about  in my last post was a DreadBall tournament, as were the two that followed it, one at Hammerhead (a wargames convention held Kelham, Nottinghamshire), the other at Wargames Workshop in Milton Keynes. I managed to come joint 5th out of 10 at Hammerhead and 4th out of 10 in Milton Keynes.

My fourth tournament of the year saw me awaken (after only two hours sleep) at the stupidly early time of 5a.m.. It had to be this early as the coach from outside Games Workshop's Chiswick store was due to leave at 6:15. Yes, the tournament was at Warhammer World, Games Workshop's Nottingham H.Q.. The tournament was called "Invasion", was a Warhammer 40,000 event and consisted of patrons of some of London's Games Workshops. It was a doubles event with each player taking a 600 point force which must be legal as per a standard  force organisation chart. I took a force of Necrons lead by a Destroyer Lord with Sempiternal Weave, a squad of six Wraiths with whip coils, two squads of five Necron Warriors and four bases of Scarabs. My partner took Grey Knights. He had Castellan Crowe as his H.Q. choice supported by two squads of five Purifiers and a Dreadnought.

The day consisted of three games. The first saw us facing a father and son team who had a combined force consisting of Space Wolves and Chaos Space marines. We managed to beat them quite considerably. My proudest moment was when my close combat contingent (my Wraiths lead by my Destroyer Lord), after dispatching a squad of Thunderwolf Cavalry, took out a squad of Terminators lead by non-other than Logan Grimnar.
After lunch, in our second game, we fought against a two guys using Slaaneshi Deamons and Tzeenchi Daemons respectively. This pair turned out to be the overall tournament winners. They beat us too. They were good players who knew their armies well. The Tzeench player had two squads of Flamers. It is the general consensus of 40K players that for their in game points cost, these daemons are way, way over-powered (the guy they belonged to even said nearly as much). I honestly don't know that if these models had not been on the table whether my partner and I would have won or not. We certainly would have stood a much better chance and it would have been a very close game indeed. One thing that I thought was a mistake by Matt Ward (the guy that wrote Codex: Grey Knights), was that despite the Warhammer 40,000 universe fiction, The army (at least the options that my partner took) had nothing special that was particuarly effective against Daemons. In the stories, the Grey Knights are the most elite of all Space marines, a specialised chapter whose job it is to destroy daemons.
Our third and last game saw us facing off against a couple of young lads who were using Necrons and Tyranids. The Necron player took, for his force, a special character, Illuminor Szeras, plus two squads of 19 warriors. The Tyranid player took a big monstrosity the name of which I don't know plus loads, and I mean loads, of Hormagaunts. They went for strength in numbers. It didn't work. We beat them, but it was close.

They day, which included a hot meal and coach travel there and back, cost £30. I thought it was good value for money, a change to the usually inflated prices that games Workshop charge.

Now how about some pretty pictures and a bit of video?

This video is of the gaming hall at Warhammer World, to show the scale of it.

Warhammer World includes a very nice Dwarf themed pub called Bugman's.
This is a pic of the Bugman's fireplace which even has fake glowing wood.

Some of the wall art in the pub. An orc's head on a shield.

Bugman's, along with it's fake fire, even has fake stained glass on the doors to its balcony. They are just stickers but do look rather good with the sun streaming through them though. The orc head is fake too by the way.

The front of the pub is actually in the gaming hall. here's a picture of it.

Here's a closer look at the pub sign.