Watchmen Director Breaks Down Doctor Manhattan and Ozymandias' Epic Confrontation

Watchmen just keeps dealing out fascinating stories week after week. This week’s episode features a meeting between two old friends. “A God Walks Into Abar” is directed by Nicole Kassell, and she talked to Entertainment Weekly about the central conversation. Last week’s bombshell ending introduced an entirely new dynamic for the show. Nobody would have expected that looking back would have been such a central part of the HBO drama, but it has dominated the last three hours of the show. As with most Damon Lindelof works, there are a ton of questions circling Watchmen. This week was about answering some of those questions and introducing some new ones as the others were being answered. It was a lot to process. The director was there to provide answers. *Spoilers ahead for Watchmen Episode 8*

“It wasn’t pressure so much as total delight. We still had the gift of it being (let me do my math) 2009, so time has passed,” Kassell began. “It’s not quite putting the source on screen, but yes, it was super thrilling putting actual Karnak from the book on screen. I definitely made deliberate homage to some camera angles from the source, for when Doctor Manhattan is approaching it from the exterior. It was really fun to play on that. It was a really amazing couple days of working with these actors. They’re both phenomenal.”

She continues“They met for the first time the day before shooting, but the way in which they fully play the parts as if they’re equals, comrades, frenemies…it was extremely powerful and fun to show two old friends coming together. It was really exciting to show a reunion. Veidt’s at his lowest of lows, and Doctor Manhattan’s at his highest of highs: He’s in love, in the prime of a beautiful body, while Veidt is depressed and aging and suffering all the indignities of humanity. His ego’s been brutalized, and then the only person he could be inferior to walks into the room. The set-up is so fun, and the two actors did it so beautifully. I loved bringing in the actors and saying ‘you’ve been friends for 30 years,’ and they got it. They captured the essence of their characters and how they would respond to the other person in the room.”

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Adrian Veidt will likely be on the loose again after the events of this week’s post-credits scene. Only one hour left before everything comes to an end.

Watchmen airs at 9 PM ET on HBO.