Ziggy, Milk and the Watchmen


The Darwin city cinema screening of Milk was surprisingly full – I’d not seen so many people at the movies. And the audience was appreciative although most of the laughter and murmurs were from the female portion of the audience. Watching it, I was struck by how even though the movie took place when i was between the ages of 2 and 8, it didnt feel that long ago.

Anyway, when I first heard Mickey Rourke had not won Best Actor, I felt he’d been robbed but now I could see why it had to be Sean Penn – it was like watching a gay politician and activist on screen who just happened to have a slight physical resemblance to Sean Penn. Besides, we are talking the Academy here and well – white trash steroid taking muscle man versus semi-martyred gay activist.

1972 – the period the movie was first set in was also the year Ziggy Stardust was released and having just borrowed it from the Darwin Public Library, I was listening to it again today for the first time in many years and really enjoying it. I’d been listening to Starsailor earlier in the morning and while the lyrics are quite different, the music doesnt sound like there’s a 37 year period between the two records.

Finally, I was reading John C Wright’s brilliant* if obnoxiously Christian-value laden review of the Watchmen – both the movie and the graphic novel – and it struck me that I was nowhere near as harsh about the Watchmen as I was with the Time Traveller’s Wife even though in many ways, Dr Manhattan is also as stupidly entrapped by his ability to see the future.

The reason is that Dr Manhattan’s emo fatalism is balanced out by Rorschach’s never-give-up uncompromising sieze fate by its balls attitude and in the novel (and the film), it’s really Rorschach that stands out as the main guy. Besides the Big Blue can become gigantic and blow people up so that counts for some cool points.

* for example JC Wright asks why didnt Ozymandius get Dr Manhattan to invent the FTL or even just terraform Mars, thus changing the stakes of the game entirely by bringing in a Space Race rather than an arms race. Great point.

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One thought on “Ziggy, Milk and the Watchmen

  1. coffee says:

    I kept thinking that the guy who played the Comedian was Javier Bardem (I found out later that it’s actually Jeffrey Dean Morgan), but the two actors definitely look alike

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