Making Small Talk with Rorschach – Watchmen #6

The cover to Watchmen #6
Get yer mind out of the gutter!

From Series: Watchmen

What Happened:

Rorschach (Walter Joseph Kovacs) is in jail and this is going to go GREAT.

The issue is told from the perspective of his psychiatrist, Dr. Malcolm Long, who is more interested in Rorschach on a publicity level. Hoping to make a reputation on his work with this patient, Dr. Long’s notes focus on Rorschach’s appearance and take everything he says at face value. Turns out ol’ splotch face is holding a lot back from Dr. Long at first.

While Rorshach is having flashbacks of discovering his mother prostituting herself and causing permanent bodily harm to neighborhood boys who insult him, Dr. Long is only hearing about pretty butterflies and flower. Things are going pretty good from his point of view. At home he even has sex with his wife (Gloria Long)! What a great day.

Turns out sex is an all night event (how would I know?) and Dr. Long is really sleepy when he next interviews Rorschach. During this meeting, Rorschach details where the “Rorschach” persona came from. Originally it was just a mask he made out of a dress. He hated to touch the dress because women’s clothing is for women and ghouls alone. The fabric of the dress had ink between two thin layers, creating the moving black splotches. Rorschach thought it looked pretty so he sewed it into a face and put it in his car trunk.

Look, I don’t have to explain what a person does with pretty things. We all know.

After hearing of a woman who was raped, tortured, and killed while witnesses did nothing and watched, Rorschach decided people are awful. Granted, the world is a little more complicated than that, but hard to find fault in his analysis of the situation. From here he decided he should put on a scarf and hat and beat up criminals. Dr. Long thinks that’s a little extreme but Rorschach calls him a bad person which really rains of Dr. Long’s parade.

That night they both have separate trials! Rorschach almost gets stabbed but instead horribly burns his attacker’s face with cooking fat. Meanwhile Dr. Long doesn’t have sex with his wife. What a bad day.

At their next meeting, Rorschach spills the beans about when he spilled the dog brains. This was the case which made Rorschach put away the persona of Kovac and only behaved as Rorschach. The event was when, searching for a missing girl he promised to return to her parents, Rorschach discovers she was butchered and fed to some dogs. So he kills the dogs, then waits for the man who did the butchering and kills him as well. He considers all the time spent before this as “being soft” on the criminal element.

Rorschach’s influence on Dr. Long continues to grow as he ruins a perfectly fine dinner with his wife and another couple. Now, it’s never stated anywhere in the comic, but I also assumed the other couple were swingers visiting the Long’s for a wife swap situation. This has nothing to do with Watchmen, or the quality of its story but I just wanted to get that down somewhere: Dr. Long bummed out a open marriage couple so much they decided to bounce.

Dr. Long’s wife leaves him after this and he endures a nightmarish second night without having sex with her. Never had I felt such sympathy for a character. The secret hero of the story?

What I Learned From This Comic:

Ink blots always look like either a flower, or a butterfly, or a dog’s head split open with a meat clever.

The Creators:
Writer: Alan Moore
Penciler, Inker, Letterer & Cover Artist: Dave Gibbons
Colourist: John Higgins
Executive Editor: Dick Giordano
Editors: Len Wein & Barbara Kesel

A Day in the Life of Rorschach – Watchmen #5

The cover to Watchmen #5
Everyone’s favorite neighborhood joint, the old Double R Crossbones.
From Series: Watchmen

What Happened:

Rorschach (Walter Joseph Kovacs) is busy with his investigation. He’s starting to see a pattern of heroes being removed from the board. The Comedian (Eddie Blake) was killed and Doctor Manhattan (Jonathan Osterman) has fled the planet. It would appear that a villain is at work. So his crazy, hyper paranoid/super self assured brain tells him to start attacking the only old man he knows.

Moloch The Mystic, an ex-villain, assures Rorschach he doesn’t know what is going on. Rorschach believes him and tells him to get a license for his gun because Rorschach is a moral absolutist. Rorschach also just broke into a person’s home and destroyed their property without any proof or reason of their fowl doing because Rorschach is only a moral absolutist towards others.

Rorschach goes about his day of ruining diner menus, being spooked by silhouettes of people kissing, and being wrong about how clear his gloves are. It’s a true baby’s day out.

Back in the world, Russia has the everyone worried that World War III is about to start. Two detectives start their day with a murder suicide of a father who didn’t want his kids to see the upcoming war.

Nite-Owl II (Daniel Dreiberg) and Silk Spectre II (Laurie Juspeczyk) have a nice awkward lunch together. Since Laurie no longer has money or a home provided by the government since Doctor Manhattan left, she moves in to Nite Owl’s home. Nite Owl is super bummed about this not turning into amazing sexy times right off the bat.

An attack on Ozymandias’s (Adrian Alexander Veidt) life worries Rorschach further and he visits Moloch after a note for him is left at their agreed drop off spot. The meeting is unfortunately a trap, as Rorschach finds Moloch dead and his apartment surrounded by the Police because they received an anonymous tip.

He tries to escape and injures many of the police just doing their job because Rorschach is a moral absolutist but Rorschach is captured in the end. They remove his mask to reveal he is the vagrant with the “The End Is Near” sign who has appeared in the book before.

What I Learned From This Comic:

Rorschach only knows the first and last step to cooking and eating an egg.

The Creators:
Writer: Alan Moore
Penciler, Inker, Letterer & Cover Artist: Dave Gibbons
Colourist: John Higgins
Executive Editor: Dick Giordano
Editors: Len Wein & Barbara Kesel

Astronaut Welcome Party – Y: The Last Man #14

The cover to Y: The Last Man #14
Three parachutes. Because two would have looks like a bikini top.
From Series: Y: The Last Man

What Happened:

Yorick Brown (last man on earth, no big whoop) is kidnapped by the Israelis and Agent 355‘s ONE JOB is to keep him safe. So she’s feeling a little down about her quality of work right now. No stress Agent 355, everyone’s allowed to have an off day.

Anyway, Agent 355 has a plan to get Yorick back (attah girl!). She’s going to trade for the last man on earth with the two new men coming to Earth. Agent 355, Natalya Zamyatin, Allison Mann, and the twins (Heidi/Heather) were preparing a landing site for the astronauts who have been stranded in space since the plague killed every man on earth. Now Agent 355 is going to use the knowledge of the two astronauts who are men to lure Alter Tse’elon and her troops into an ambush and rescue Yorick.

But Alter knows it is an ambush. And Alter also does not plan on making the trade. Plus the way alter sees it, she wants her country of Israel to be the only one with men left on Earth. So, if she can’t get the astronauts as well, she’ll just blow them up with a rocket launcher.

Yorick, though an escape artist, is unable to get free. So he uses his immense powers of annoyance to convince Alter’s second in command, Sadie, to stop her from killing two of the OTHER last men on Earth. Sadie fails, but Yorick manages to knock Alter over while she fires upon the landing space capsule containing the astronauts with a rocket. The capsule is still damaged and lands hard on the earth.

Yorick waits to hear over the radio from Agent 355 if the astronauts survived in a very meta cliffhanger.

What I Learned From This Comic:

When you’re identical triplets in the Israeli army, they will let you all serve in the same combat unit.

The Creators:
Writer/Co-Creator: Brian K. Vaughan
Artist/Co-Creator: Pia Guerra
Inker: Jose Marzan, Jr.
Colorist: Pam Rambo
Letterer: Clem Robins
Separations: Digital Chameleon
Editor: Heidi MacDonald
Assistant Editor: Zachary Rau
Cover Artist: J.G. Jones

Y: The Last Man #13

The cover to Y: The Last Man #13
OK, the Gun Pose-Off Championships beginnn… Now!
From Series: Y: The Last Man

The wandering trio of Yorick Brown, Agent 355, and Dr. Allison Mann have reached the hot suite with their new Russian friend Natalya Zamyatin. There they find the two remaining employees of the suite, geneticists Heidi and Heather Hartle, who are naturally very interested in seeing Yorick the last man on earth. They are so interested they spray him with foam and yell a lot. It’s how I show interest as well!

Yorick won’t be the last man on earth for long becaaause… more men are coming to earth! The four of them have arrived at the hot suite because Natalya is there to rendezvous with astronauts. The astronauts were left in space without any radio contact after the plague killed every man on earth. They’re now supposed to do a risky reentry to earth where they’ll be quickly sterilized and thrown into the hot suite. Since two of the astronauts are men, they’re hoping this will protect them from being killed by the plague.

Alter Tse’elon of the Israeli army doesn’t care about all this though. She doesn’t even like shows about space! Alter is only concerned with the safety of Israel. She has finally found Yorick after weeks of hunting him down and intends to take him back to Israel so enemies of her country can’t have the last remaining source of sperm.

Gross sentence!

Alter leads Agent 355 and Natalya away from Yorick with a distraction and then captures him. Agent 355 kills a bunch of enemy soldiers all on her own because she (again) is the only competent person in this comic. When she is able to get a radio signal back to Alter she offers a trade. If Alter returns Yorick, she can have TWO fresh-off-the-skillet astronaut men in his place.

What I Learned From This Comic:

Language 101 classes don’t prepare you for the more intimate “fighting for your life” situations one can find themselves in.

The Creators:
Writer/Co-Creator: Brian K. Vaughan
Artist/Co-Creator: Pia Guerra
Inker: Jose Marzan, Jr.
Colorist: Pam Rambo
Letterer: Clem Robins
Separations: Digital Chameleon
Editor: Heidi MacDonald
Assistant Editor: Zachary Rau
Cover Artist: J.G. Jones

Y: The Last Man #12

The cover to Y: The Last Man #12
Early Teletubbie designs were pretty dang metal. Horns up!
From Series: Y: The Last Man

What Happened:

General of the Israeli army Alter Tse’elon has finally learned the identity of her mysterious benefactor. She is Congresswoman Brown, who is trying to use Alter to retrieve her son Yorick the last man on earth. Yorick is crossing the country with the Culper Ring super spy Agent 355 and biologist Dr. Allison Mann in hopes of finding the cause of the plague which killed every male on earth.

After learning more about the dark underside of the Culper Ring, Congresswoman Brown no longer trusts Agent 355 with her son. She trusts Alter though! Just on word on mouth. Everyone says Alter’s pretty cool. That’s enough for Congresswoman Brown to risk revealing national secrets to another country for!

Alter has no intention of giving Yorick back to his mom though. She just wants to make sure he doesn’t fall into the hands of her country’s enemies.

Yorick’s busy with his own stuff. He gets to meet an astronaut! Lucky boy!

Agent 355, Dr. Mann, and Yorick are assisting a Russian agent Natalya Zamyatin who has been sent to the United States to prepare a landing area for a space shuttle which was in orbit when the plague occurred. They will be landing near a safe containment zone where they will hopefully be protected from the plague. Why do they need to be protected? Because the crew of the shuttle includes TWO LIVE MEN!

These two men (Vladimir and Joe) are freaking out on the shuttle thanks to a little cabin fever and lack of oxygen. Plus probable death! Their buddy Ciba Weber calms them down. The three of them then prepare to reenter earth’s atmosphere.

Back on earth, Alter has found Yorick. And wouldn’t you believe it? Ain’t it always the case? He is in the last place she looked! In the scope of her sniper rifle.

What I Learned From This Comic

Yorick thinks other women are to blame for him being an awful boyfriend.

The Creators:
Writer/Co-Creator: Brian K. Vaughan
Artist/Co-Creator: Pia Guerra
Inker: Jose Marzan, Jr.
Colorist: Pam Rambo
Letterer: Clem Robins
Separations: Digital Chameleon
Editor: Heidi MacDonald
Assistant Editor: Zachary Rau
Cover Artist: J.G. Jones

Y: The Last Man #11

The cover to Y: The Last Man #11
I think I see yer problem, mac. Ye see, right there? Them’s lightning bolts hittin’ yer space station. Fixing a job like that’ll probably cost yeh, hmm… twenty thousand? Minimum. I’d need to call in a specialist. I only do drywall.
From Series: Y: The Last Man

What Happened:

Yorick Brown, the last man on earth thanks to a mysterious plague, is in a mood. In. A. Mood. After seeing his own sister kill a woman he cared for in an attempt to kill him, Yorick has decided to mope on a cliff side. His personal body guard Agent 355 shows up with some cigarettes and they both smoke ’em ’cause they got ’em.

Dr. Allison Mann, the geneticist who may be responsible for the killer plague after she performed a cloning experiment on herself which every other doctor warned her against trying, yells at them for being irresponsible.

Down in the dumps Yorick is really not working hard to keep his identity/gender a secret currently and is spotted by a woman who is dressing like a man for as an escort service. They trade fake beard tips. Things are cool.

When everyone gets back on the train which had broken down, Agent 355 pursues someone who has sneaked onto their train car’s roof. After some fighting and confusion, Agent 355 discovers the stranger is Natalya Zamyatin. Natalya is the woman we’ve been seeing in the background of previous issues. She’s been treated like an insane person by everyone she meets because of her poor English and her need to talk about nothing else besides men in space. Turns out she’s a Russian agent trying to rendezvous with a space shuttle preparing to land back on earth.

Ooh–OOOoooooohhh.

Meanwhile, Alter Tse’elon is getting fed up trying to find “the last man on earth”. Her Israeli Military forces have seen no evidence of him existing besides the word of her anonymous source. She yells at her unknown contact enough for her to finally reveal her identity. She’s Yorick’s mother, Congresswoman Brown!

What I Learned From This Comic:

A spy will spill their guts to you if you just bug them enough.

The Creators:
Writer/Co-Creator: Brian K. Vaughan
Artist/Co-Creator: Pia Guerra
Inker: Jose Marzan, Jr.
Colorist: Pam Rambo
Letterer: Clem Robins
Separations: Digital Chameleon
Editor: Heidi MacDonald
Assistant Editor: Zachary Rau
Cover Artist: J.G. Jones

Y: The Last Man #10

The cover to Y: The Last Man #10
If pictures could have the ending theme to The Incredible Hulk attached to them I still wouldn’t do that here. That joke is hacky.
From Series: Y: The Last Man

What Happened:

Yorick Brown, the last man on Earth, is pointing a gun at his sister’s head. His sister, Hero Brown, a member of the fanatical anti-men group The Daughters of the Amazon, has just shot and killed Sonia, a woman Yorick was starting to have feelings for.

Now Hero is asking Yorick to pull the trigger and kill her. So, the discussion starts with a dead end topic. They move on to more typical things like who was liked better by their father. Hero believes Yorick was because he was smart and read a lot. Yorick believes Hero was because he is contradictory.

Dr. Mann convinces Yorick to not kill Hero or any of her fellow Daughters of the Amazon, and instead asks the residents of Morrisville, where Sonia was from, to lock them up in the abandoned penitentiary nearby. The residents are pretty hesitant because they are all actually the convicts who were originally locked away there until the plague killed every man on earth. But, since locking people away is always easier than dealing with problems serious, they eventually compromise and put the Daughters of the Amazons in cells to be released later.

After that’s settled Dr. Mann tries to find out why they burned down her lab in Boston, but Hero admits whoever did that it wasn’t them.

The REAL culprits of the arson are the members of the Israeli army led by Alter Tse’elon. They are on American soil and steal a blackhawk helicopter from an army base. Alter’s mysterious America contact let’s her know where Yorick Brown, the last man on earth is now, and they head off to retrieve him.

Meanwhile IN SPACE a team of three astronauts, after weeks of no communication from earth, have decided they need to try to reenter earth’s atmosphere on their own. Also, the crew? One woman… and two men! And maybe a well trained dog? No! No dog! Nuts! Oh well the men are a pretty big deal!

What I Learned From This Comic:

No one trusts a Russian accent.

The Creators:
Writer/Co-Creator: Brian K. Vaughan
Artist/Co-Creator: Pia Guerra
Inker: Jose Marzan, Jr.
Colorist: Pam Rambo
Letterer: Clem Robins
Separations: Digital Chameleon
Editor: Heidi MacDonald
Assistant Editor: Zachary Rau
Cover Artist: J.G. Jones

Y: The Last Man #9

The cover to Y: The Last Man #9
Only the fourth most brutal thing that monkey will see this week. That monkey lives a life of dark dank stuff.
From Series: Y: The Last Man

What Happened:

The brainwashed Hero Brown has found her brother Yorick, the last man on earth. Pointing a bow and arrow at his face she demands he leaves the home of the residents of Marrisville to face execution by her anti-men cult leader Victoria.

The seems like a bad deal to Yorick, so he is against this suggestion. The members of the town are also against it and refuse to give up Yorick to the Daughters of the Amazon. This is important because Yorick was just a huge boner to the women living in this town when he learned they are all prisoners who have escaped from the local penitentiary. They don’t want to see Yorick killed though, even if he totally sucks.

Sonia, the town member who Yorick has been developing a relationship with puts herself between the armed Hero and the unarmed Yorick. Hero seems pretty weirded out by all the women who don’t want to see her brother shot in the face with an arrow. Guess what works with some crowds doesn’t work for all crowds.

With Agent 355 still sleeping off a huge blow to the head, and Dr. Allison Mann leaving all her guns by the train tracks, the town in unprepared to defend themselves. Yorick doesn’t want to see the town get destroyed by the Daughters of the Amazon, so he agrees to go out. He tries to talk his sister into helping him escape, but Hero would rather hit him. A lot of people would rather hit Yorick.

Victoria makes a long winded speech and then presses a gun to Yorick’s head. An axe thrown by Sonia strikes Victoria before she can pull the trigger and kills her instantly. Hero, really pissed off that people she loves keep dying right in front of her, fires an arrow at Sonia striking her fatally.

With a gun in hand, Yorick approaches his sister who just neatly removed the girl he was cheating on his fiancé with and points the firearm at her. She begs him to kill her.

What I Learned From This Comic:

Nobody should trust Dr. Mann with making decisions about guns anymore.

The Creators:
Writer/Co-Creator: Brian K. Vaughan
Artist/Co-Creator: Pia Guerra
Inker: Jose Marzan, Jr.
Colorist: Pam Rambo
Letterer: Clem Robins
Separations: Digital Chameleon
Editor: Heidi MacDonald
Assistant Editor: Zachary Rau
Cover Artist: J.G. Jones

Y: The Last Man #8

The cover to Y: The Last Man #8
Hey you kids! Keep room for axe-maniac Jesus between you and your dance partner during the next middle school dance!
From Series: Y: The Last Man

What Happened:

Hero, the sister of the last man on earth Yorick Brown, tells her anti-man cult leader Victoria about her surviving family member. This must have been a hard thing to do since Hero had really been rising the ranks of the Daughters of the Amazon. Little things like being emotionally close to the person everyone in your group is trying to murder violently could really derail a career.

Victoria, hits Hero in the mouth and starts talking about how awful Yorick’s penis is. Ok. Fair point on the penis thing I guess. A mentally insecure Hero doesn’t get too upset about being popped in the mouth. She talks Victoria’s word for it: Yorick has to die.

Back in Morrisville, Ohio, Agent 355 is recovering from a blow to the head after jumping off a train. Her and Yorick’s travel companion Dr. Allison Mann tells everyone she’ll be fine after some rest.

Yorick and Sonia take advantage of the mandatory time off from Yorick’s traveling and head into the forest to chop some wooood… if you knooow what I meeean…

After chopping logs with an axe, Yorick and Sonia talk a little and wind up smooching, which guilts Sonia into revealing the secret of the town: they’re all convicts who were released from prison after the plague killed all the men. Yorick was ABOUT to feel guilty about kissing another woman while he has a girlfriend in Australia but this new information conveniently makes him forget having any agency in the kiss.

Meanwhile a doped up Agent 355 tells Dr. Mann she wants Yorick.

Yorick does not take the news of living with criminals well and starts yelling at everyone in the town. He’s very, very critical of these people who have created a utopian community in a near post apocalyptic future. He is very, very, very critical of these people who have saved his and Agent 355’s life after injury.

Hero cuts his self righteous ranting short by showing up and pointing a bow and arrow at his face.

What I Learned From This Comic:

Meth heads can be Martha Stuart too.

The Creators:
Writer/Co-Creator: Brian K. Vaughan
Artist/Co-Creator: Pia Guerra
Inker: Jose Marzan, Jr.
Colorist: Pam Rambo
Letterer: Clem Robins
Separations: Digital Chameleon
Editor: Heidi MacDonald
Assistant Editor: Zachary Rau
Cover Artist: J.G. Jones

Y: The Last Man #7

The cover to Y: The Last Man #7.
Grunge styles are back! And archery is IN! Stay tuned for more of the latest fashion trends!

From Series: Y: The Last Man

What Happened:

Dr. Allison Mann wakes up unharmed after being thrown from a moving train. Agent 355, who threw Mann from the train and then jumped off herself, is less unharmed. In fact she is harmed. In the head. By a rock.

Yorick also wakes up after fighting off a case of being-thrown-from-a-train (it’s been going around). Yorick does not wake up in a field like Dr. Mann and Agent 355 though. He wakes up in a snuggily bed under the watch of a pretty woman named Sonia. Yorick and Sonia connect! They flirt! Sonia likes Yorick’s pet monkey Ampersand! She sees Yorick’s butt! No reason an apocalyptic post-society should not have meet-cutes.

The town Yorick wakes up has a lot going on. It’s a small town, but it got plenty of food and electricity. Even Washington D.C. didn’t have electricity. Somehow this group of shady ragamuffins have managed to get things running after half the world’s population died. It’s a mystery! Guess we’ll never find out! Yorick and his friends will probably leave this mysterious town without any sort of revelation.

It’s nice when things are kept simple.

Townfolk are very nervous about Yorick being there. Then they learn Yorick is traveling with a government agent (Agent 355). Something about the words “government agent” makes all their poker table tells go off. Mann manages to find her way to the town and takes Yorick to where an injured Agent 355 was left. Agent 355 is taken to the town and treated for her wounds.

Back in Boston, the Daughters of the Amazon are continuing their mad hunt for the “Last Man”. Yorick’s sister Hero has joined them and risen in their ranks to a favorite of their leader Victoria. Hero turns out to be the only member of the Daughters of the Amazon worth a damn and figures out what train the last man got on and where he got off.

She also has her fears confirmed when she learns the last man on Earth, who she is supposed to kill, is her brother Yorick.

What I Learned From This Comic:

The Daughters of the Amazon refuse to ask a question without shooting you with an arrow first.

The Creators:
Writer/Co-Creator: Brian K. Vaughan
Artist/Co-Creator: Pia Guerra
Inker: Jose Marzan, Jr.
Colorist: Pam Rambo
Letterer: Clem Robins
Separations: Digital Chameleon
Editor: Heidi MacDonald
Assistant Editor: Zachary Rau
Cover Artist: J.G. Jones