Superman and Doctor Manhattan Will Clash In "Doomsday Clock"
Manhattan v. Superman: Dawn of Indifference.
Watchmen is colliding with the DC Universe in Doomsday Clock, a story that writer, Geoff Johns has stated, "is the most personal and epic, utterly mind-bending project I have ever worked on in my career."
Doomsday Clock is the culmination of everything Geoff Johns started with DC Universe Rebirth.
Johns promises, "It will affect everything moving forward and everything that has come before. It will touch the thematic and literal essence of DC."
Strong words indeed.
Johns explained, "It's time. Last year the DC Universe confronted the legacy of Watchmen in Rebirth the way Watchmen confronted the legacy of superhero comics three decades ago."
The series will continue where the Flash and Batman crossover, The Button left off.
The artwork depicts Watchmen's iconic "minutes-to-midnight" clock with the Superman logo at the top.
Johns added, "Doctor Manhattan is a huge focus, and his reasons for being here, and doing what he does ultimately have to do with Superman."
So it would appear that Superman might take on Dr. Manhattan himself.
Johns said, "Thematically and metaphorically, there was no better choice than to use Dr. Manhattan.
If you're going to have a conflict between optimism and pessimism, a battle between the very forces of hope and despair, you need to have someone who personifies the cynicism that leaked into our hearts and also has the ability to affect the entire DCU.
It's all paying off this November with Doomsday Clock."
In Johns' view, Watchmen represent cynicism whereas the DCU represents hope. Doomsday Clock seems to be setting up a battle of ideals.
As Wally West foreshadowed in Rebirth #1, "There is a war coming between hope and despair."
The mysterious Mr. Oz, who totally isn't Ozymandias or anything, once noted that Superman never gives up hope.
So is it possible the Watchmen will try and kill Superman's sense of hope? The "Doomsday" in Doomsday Clock is no coincidence. (Doomsday himself will not appear in the story.)
Dr. Manhattan, who famously allowed Ozymandias to kill millions to save billions, is in many ways the black mirror reflection of the idealistic Superman.
Manhattan's tremendous power made him lose touch with humanity to the point of becoming unfeeling and distant. Superman meanwhile "embodies humanity more than most humans," as Johns says.
Doomsday Clock reunites Johns with artist, Gary Frank who says,
"DOOMSDAY CLOCK is a story for fans who love the DC Universe and Watchmen and want to see what a master of this genre creates when he puts them together."
Johns admitted Doomsday Clock is partially a reaction to the 2016 presidential election but promised it would be about more than that.
He said, "there are extremes now everywhere, extremes on all sides."
He continued, "Telling a story of two extremes and exploring what our collective zeitgeist states through these characters is what we are doing."
Doomsday Clock will be a standalone story devoid of other crossovers or tie-ins. It will focus on a handful of DC characters but Superman will receive most of the attention.
Rebirth was an attempt to restore optimism to the DC Universe.
Doomsday Clock looks to jeopardize that optimism this November.