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Doomsday Clock #2 (of 12) Review

Spoiler Free

This issue builds on the last one in a big way. We get some insight into why Marionette and the Mime are important to the story. We also get the Watchmen characters in the DC Universe. Bruce Wayne is involved a little bit in this issue. Rorschach and Ozymandias split up to meet a couple of iconic DC characters which in turn leads to a couple of interesting confrontations. There is a big cliffhanger ending that will make you want the next issue sooner rather than later.

Spoiler Filled Breakdown

A mix of flashbacks and present-day action in the Watchmen universe starts this issue off. The present-day portion sees the Marionette and the Mime getting their gear from Veidt who is expecting their cooperation. Rorschach is not a fan of this, since he believes they are warped and need to be watched closely.

The flashbacks center on a bank heist that the Marionette and Mime are on. Brilliantly, this is initially told through a black and white CCTV feed. As this moves forward and the story grows, it goes to full color. They terrorize bank employees to get to the vault, the bank manager threatens them by saying they don’t know whose bank this is and that they’re making a huge mistake. Marionette convinces a teller that Mime has threatened to let them know who can open the vault and she points out the bank manager. The manager continues to be arrogant and gets his finger cut off by Marionette, who soon finds out that the vault needs a hand scanner to be opened. Then Dr. Manhattan shows up and as he’s about to kill the Mime, Marionette jumps in the way saying he must kill them both. He pauses and stares. He hears a separate heartbeat and looks at her and then the picture of the teller’s child. This is how they end up in jail.

Back in present-day, they all hop in Nite Owl’s ship, following Dr. Manhattan’s unique intrinsic field of atoms. On the street, a nuclear weapon falls on the street, allowing Ozymandias to shift into the universe that Dr. Manhattan is in – the DC universe.

Now, we find Bruce Wayne in a psychological exam taking a Rorschach test. He leaves that test and speaks with Lucius Fox who expresses concern about Bruce’s company potentially being sold to LexCorp, despite LexCorp’s current round of bad press. Particularly that their “side jobs” could be exposed if they were bought out by LexCorp. They also briefly debate whether Gotham still needs Batman or not and Bruce leaves to chase down the Mad Hatter and the Twins.

We then see Nite Owl’s ship arriving (and crash landing) through the Bat symbol projected onto clouds in a cool visual. Ozymandias and Rorschach wake up and lock up the Mime and Marionette, so they can try to track down Dr. Manhattan. They go to the Gotham Public Library and Veidt identifies the 2 smartest men on the planet, Bruce Wayne and Lex Luthor. They split up to cover more ground.

Rorschach goes to Bruce Wayne’s house where he finds a stack of pancakes that Alfred made for Bruce. When he finds the pancakes, Rorschach smiles through the mask, another cool visual. He crumbles up the note left by Alfred and throws it on the floor. It gets blown across the floor, causing Rorschach to investigate. He finds the entrance to the Batcave, tripping an alarm, alerting Batman who is finishing up with the Mad Hatter and the Twins.

Ozymandias meets Lex Luthor and flatters his ego by calling him the smartest man on his Earth. He explains what he’s done on his Earth and Lex ridicules him. Ozymandias says that if he works with him, he can achieve everything he wants.

This is intercut with Mime and Marionette staging their escape from Nite Owl’s ship and Rorschach exploring the Batcave. Rorschach surmises that Batman must be a monster, stuck in the past for all the “trophies” he’s stored there. He notes that Batman is stuck in the past and can’t let it go, much like Veidt.

Back at LexCorp, a gunshot fires. Ozymandias dodges it and it hits Lex. A shadowy figure says that last time he was confused and drunk. Ozymandias is shocked in who he sees and says “Impossible.” He sees the Comedian holding a smoking gun, saying this time he’s ready for Veidt.

On this final page, we also see Rorschach looking over his shoulder making a face that was on one of Bruce’s prior Rorschach test images. Rorschach and Batman are face to face in front of the giant penny with a quick, tense, yet hilarious exchange. Batman says, “You ate my breakfast,” to which Rorschach replies, “Yeah. I did.” The final image is handcuffs on the floor of Nite Owl’s ship, indicating that the Mime and Marionette are now loose in the DC Universe.

Reflections, Impressions, and Predictions

  • This book has yet to disappoint. Everything about it has been stellar.

  • Interesting to see that despite Jon’s detachment, he is not willing to kill an unborn baby.

  • Mime is established as a scary individual in this issue. He’s completely unhinged

  • The Watchmen universe is now apparently in full blown nuclear war and it’s scary.

  • I love that Veidt pushes a button with Dr. Manhattan’s symbol on it to traverse universes.

  • The use of Rorschach symbols is inspired and holds relevance.

  • Why does Gotham all of a sudden not trust Batman anymore?

  • Ozymandias mentions the name ‘Reggie’ to Rorschach. Is that his name or the name of someone important to him?

  • It’s nice that Ozymandias notes that this world is ahead of theirs in some ways, yet behind in others.

  • Veidt’s condition is getting worse. I’m not sure he’ll make it all the way through the series. He may not even find Jon before it takes him out.

  • Seriously, the Rorschach mask smile as he finds pancakes is one of my favorite comic book moments of all time.

  • What was Lex working on before he met Ozymandias?

  • Is the Comedian actually alive and here in the DC universe or is it a trick?

  • Batman and Rorschach. I can’t wait.

Final Breakdown

Story – Progress is made. Answers questions, and poses more of them. We get Doc Manhattan and Batman in the same issue 9/10

Art – The art continues to be excellent. One of the best-looking books you could find. 9/10

Continuity/Character Consistency – It seems like the time differential has been addressed this issue between the 2 universes, however, we’re still a little off with where this falls in DC Continuity, since this apparently takes place a year in advance of current continuity. The characterizations are still spot on thus far. 8/10

Twist Factor – A highly anticipated meeting finally occurs in this issue, and one huge surprise during another big meeting. 9/10

Final Score – Easily the book of the week. Looking forward to the next issue. 9/10

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