Watchmen’s Big Dr. Manhattan Reveal Changes Everything We Thought We Knew

HBO's Watchmen is a series full of mysteries. While the series thus far has largely centered on the question of who killed Tulsa police chief Judd Crawford (Don Johnson) and why, there have also been secrets to unravel about who exactly is Will Reeves, where is Adrian Veidt, what is Lady Trieu up to, and while some of those questions have gotten closer to being answered there's one mystery that fans have been trying to sort out from the beginning: where is Doctor Manhattan. Tonight that question is answered and it's one that changes everything we thought knew about Watchmen.

Spoilers for tonight's episode of Watchmen, "An Almost Religious Awe," below.

Where is Doctor Manhattan? When Watchmen debuted the answer seemed pretty direct and obvious. Doctor Manhattan is on Mars where he went after leaving Earth at the end of the Watchmen comic series. All throughout early episodes of the television series there are nods to that, with the news playing images of "Doctor Manhattan on Mars" and there even being phone booths that allow people to send their messages to the godlike blue man on the faraway planet. At the same time, though, some doubt about Doctor Manhattan's location is sewn in the series especially by Will Reeves (Louis Gossett Jr). While in Angela Abar/Sister Night's (Regina King) custody, he suggests that Doctor Manhattan can take on the form of a normal human and exist among them. It's something that is dismissed as not being among his power set.

And yet, here we are, and it would seem that that is exactly what is going on. In tonight's episode, Lady Trieu (Hong Chau) reveals to Angela that Doctor Manhattan has, in fact, been masquerading as a human being right there in Tulsa. She also reveals that the Seventh Kavalry plans to find and destroy Doctor Manhattan so that they can "become" him. Angela leaves Trieu upon being told this but doesn't ask who or where specifically in Tulsa Doctor Manhattan is and it turns out that she doesn't need to. Angela already knows.

Doctor Manhattan is her husband Cal.

This reveal is perhaps one of the most shocking of the series thus far. Angela goes home and retrieves a hammer, telling a confused Cal (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) that they have to "come out of the tunnel" and it's revealed that Cal was never in an accident that caused him to lose his memories. He forgot on purpose, so that he and Angela could be together. She calls him "Jon" and then hits him with that hammer, eventually pulling a physical version of Doctor Manhattan's atom symbol out of Cal's head. A blue light then is reflected in Angela's eyes as she greets him with an affectionate "hey baby" and then lets him know that they are in serious trouble.

It's interesting to note that while this reveal will shock many viewers, it actually proves correct a major fan theory about Cal that has been kicking around. On Reddit in particular on fan had broken down the "evidence" that Cal was actually Doctor Manhattan a few weeks ago and while we don't yet know the exact details of how Doctor Manhattan became a man named Cal Abar, we now know for sure god doesn't live on Mars.


He lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Watchmen airs Sundays at 9/8c on HBO.