HBO has been very secretive about its Watchmen TV adaptation/sequel thing, with Damon Lindelof noting in a very lengthy Instagram post that it will be more of a “remixed” take than anything else, but some set photos obtained by /Film seem to have revealed a whole lot about the project. Like, so much so that it might be considered a spoiler to know what they contain. We won’t post them here, but if you’d rather wait and see what HBO wants you to see, turn back now.
Still here? Well, the big reveal in the set photos—which were apparently taken in Macon, Georgia—is that whatever was being filmed takes place after the end of the comic. We know it’s after the comic because there are multiple references to squids, a phony alien monster that “attacks” New York in the end of the book as part of a scheme to unite the world against a common enemy (Dr. Manhattan filled this role in the movie). There are signs on buildings indicating a “squid shelter,” and a newspaper headline says “Boise squid shower destroys homeless camp”—implying that the squid plan from the comic extends beyond New York in this story. The more interesting headline seen in the set photos, though, is: “Veidt officially declared dead,” a reference to Adrian Veidt, the original story’s secret villain (not that he sees it that way) and the man who orchestrated the squid incident.
All of that indicates that at least some of HBO’s Watchmen pilot will deal with a post-Watchmen world, which is particularly interesting because the end of the book includes a tease for the eventual unraveling of Veidt’s squid scheme. Perhaps the show will involve watching that unraveling take place, but based on these set photos, it seems like people are still assuming that the squid threat is very real. There’s also the possibility that some Watchmen comedian (get it?) is faking all of this down in Macon, so we’ll have to wait until HBO offers more information before we really know what’s going on.