I finished reading this a while ago, but hadn't had the opportunity to blog about it. I wanted to be able to dedicate some time and thought to it. Now, I just want to get it out of the way!
Seriously, though: the book was pretty awesome.
The comic series was written (and set) in the mid 80s and was set a bit of an alternative universe, where Richard Nixon is still president, and The Doomsday Clock is ticking towards midnight. Superheros are a fact of life, but -- with one exection -- are everyday people, more adventurers in funny costumes than anything else.
Matt ended up reading the novel as well, and both of us thought Rorschach was the most interesting character. He reminded me of a member of the military, of great integrity, but blindingly absolutist, and seemingly driven by a singular idea that isn't necessarily his.
It was a timely read, considering the state of the world and our need for something -- SOMETHING! -- to pull things back together. If something as crazy as the events of 9/11 didn't unite us for very long, I fear how dramatic it would have to be in order to work.
I don't think this will transfer well to film. One of the points of The Watchmen was to show what the medium of a graphic novel could do that other media can't emulate. For example, sandwiched between chapters are other fictional elements, like excerpts of books and letters written by the characters and the comic book within the comic book. That, and the story itself, and the pretty incredible ending, may not be accepted by a wide audience.