Watchmen Finally Reveals Infamous Giant Squid Attack and How It Affected One Major Character

Ever since the series first began on HBO last month, fans have been wondering just how Watchmen would take from the events of the comic book and how much it would actually show on screen. While showrunner Damon Lindelof has confirmed this series takes place in the same continuity as the original comic book that released in the '80s, we've yet to see anything from that series other than a brief appearance of Ozymandias' classic superhero costume and teases of the extra-dimensional invasion via baby squid falling like raindrops. But then this week's episode takes us back to a key event from the comic that fans didn't even get in the movie adaptation.

It took nearly halfway through the season, but we finally got our first look at the actual attack of the giant squid, finally showing the hoax that Ozymandias pulled on the world to ignite peace for the first time.

The episode begins with a flashback to November 2, 1985, where a group of religious missionaries from Oklahoma travel to a carnival in Hoboken, New Jersey to spread the gospel ahead of impending doom, as the rest of the world believes nuclear war is about to break out between the United States and Russia.

Wade Tillman, the man who eventually becomes the police-sanctioned vigilante Looking Glass in the future, is among the missionaries, though he gets tricked by a young woman who seduces him. She leads Wade to a fun house where they're alone, then she convinces him to take his clothes off in an attempt to sleep with him before they inevitably die in the impending war. After he strips, she steals his clothes and abandons him, leaving him naked and alone in the fun house.

Wade begins to break down, upset with himself for succumbing to sin and being duped, until a massive shockwave occurs and temporarily deafens him, shattering many of the mirrors in the fun house, and leaving him in disarray.

He then exits the fun house to see a massive amount of dead bodies littering the street with only a handful of survivors. As he retrieves his clothes from the girl who tricked him, now dead on the street, he wonders what happened — and the camera pulls out and travels all the way across the river to Manhattan where buildings are caught on fire, sirens are blaring, and giant tentacles are draped over city blocks.

The shot then reveals the full glory of the giant squid, dead and collapsed onto a swath of skyscrapers, while chaos unfolds in the streets of New York City.

This is the first time the attack has been shown on screen, though it's been alluded to multiple times with the rain of baby squid. We also learn more about Looking Glass' own motivations, including why he wears that mask.

It turns out companies in the Watchmen universe began to monetize the scare from the psychic attack that Ozymandias faked, including one company that offers an alarm system for whenever the squid rains, or "attacks," actually takes place. They also sell a product called Reflectatine, a shiny foil-like substance that protects from psychic attacks.

This is the same substance that Looking Glass's mask is made of, and when he's not wearing that, he's usually wearing a baseball cap lined with the stuff. He's obviously very paranoid about future attacks, and his whole life has been affected by the psychological damage he suffered on 11/2.


It looks like Watchmen will continue to delve into the events of the comic books as the series continues on HBO every Sunday.