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 Post subject: The Squid
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2007 12:12 am 
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Did anyone feel gypped that we didn't hear one word about the man who died and then was turned into a giant squid alien thing because that would have been a good story. Also, is anyone afraid that they are going to make a toy version of that?


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 Post subject: Re: The Squid
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2007 1:55 am 
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I just read through Chapter XI of the book. There's nothing in there to suggest that the squid was made from somebody's corpse. All it says was that it was engineered through "genetics."

Oh, and personally, I'd love to see a "New York Armageddon" playset.

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 Post subject: Re: The Squid
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2007 2:37 am 
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I believe ESPer Robert Deschaines and his stolen brain, which Veidt had cloned, amplified, and incorporated into the creature in order to produce the killer 'psychic shockwave', is the body part under discussion. Its theft and use is referenced several times.


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 Post subject: Re: The Squid
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2007 2:54 am 
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CLINT FLICKER wrote:
I believe ESPer Robert Deschaines and his stolen brain, which Veidt had cloned, amplified, and incorporated into the creature in order to produce the killer 'psychic shockwave', is the body part under discussion. Its theft and use is referenced several times.

Ah. Well, in that case, yeah. I suppose that would make an interesting story.

And no, I certainly wouldn't want to see a toy made of a lobotomy patient.

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 Post subject: Re: The Squid
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2007 2:58 am 
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If my brain and subsequently brain wave were used, you'd be lucky to get three feet of wifi coverage. :P

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2007 4:58 pm 
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I hated the whole Robert DesChaines psychic detail. It would have been far more interesting if there were some sort of psychic superhero that Veidt killed and used for this purpose rather than some barely mentioned background character.

Imagine how much richer the story would have been if Veidt had worked with a female partner with psychic powers... his lover perhaps, ala Green Arrow and Black Canary... but upon hatching the plan, he had to drug her to keep her from detecting his plan (like the tachyons worked on Jon). And then he takes her still living brain...

That's villainy.

Easy to write over Moore's shoulder 20 years later, but I really hate that Robert DesChaines part.


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 Post subject: Re: The Squid
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2007 5:07 pm 
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I'm not too crazy about it either. His whole plan is just too over the top and complicated. Although maybe that is the point? That in the end he became some comic book super villain, with some dumb James Bond style plan .

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2007 5:10 pm 
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No, don't misunderstand me. I love Veidt's plan and I love the obnoxious complexities and comic book exagerations of it.

I just hate that such a key part of it relies on some supposedly psychic unknown. It's a waste of story potential.


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 Post subject: Re: The Squid
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2007 6:20 pm 
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Personally, I just thought it was enough that the squid exploded.

Veidt established earlier that when something is teleported to a place where another object exists, the teleported object explodes. This makes sense, given the physical law stating that no two objects can exist in the exact same place. So, Veidt arranges for the squid to be teleported to the exact spot where the Institute for Extraspatial Studies exists.

As a result, the squid explodes on arrival. The explosion wipes out thousands of people, and the entire city is covered in blood and death and destruction and tentacles, with a giant, dead, unknown monster in the middle.

Do you really need a psychic's brain to make that more traumatic?

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 Post subject: Re: The Squid
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2007 7:46 pm 
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You do if you want to give people recurring nightmares of a horrifying alien world (implanted in the form of coded information comprising Shea's writing, Manish's visuals and Paley's sounds) for years to come, so keeping alive the perceived threat of possible further attack and the need for humanity to remain united in the face of a potentially ever-present foe.

The creature is fairly physically intact on arrival; I always considered its cloned brain to be the object that succumbed to explosion, so as to release its deadly psychic payload. Some flying tentacle segments and chartreuse gloop don't instantaneously wipe out three million people (several more than thousands) - for that, you need a half city-wide extra sensory shock wave of concentrated death.

The existence of actual psychics in Watchmen always somehow devalued Manhattan's status as the planet's sole super uberbeing for me. If there are humans with real powers out there, just why DID none of them (to the best of our knowledge) join in with the costumed fight against crime and oppression, leaving it instead to just a bunch of norms with nothing more going for them than various personality disorders, sexual hang ups, and a fetish for dressing up in kinky costumes to conventionally whale on scumbags? And how can Veidt be so sure that it won't be one of these very psychics who uncovers the truth courtesy of their talent, either by design or accident, and so blows the whole gig wide open anyway? Are they all part of his 'lethal pyramid'? (but somehow haven't forseen their own demise and taken evasive action accordingly - some psychics.)


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 Post subject: Coax the hoax
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2007 8:06 pm 
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Curiosity Inc. wrote:
Personally, I just thought it was enough that the squid exploded.


Not by a long shot. That's going to kill maybe a few hundred people. Barely enough to push Paris Hilton off the front page. Unless she's going commando again, in which case our squid is buried under the fold.
Curiosity Inc. wrote:
So, Veidt arranges for the squid to be teleported to the exact spot where the Institute for Extraspatial Studies exists.


I've always speculated that the Institute which is funded by Dimensional Developments which is funded by Pyramid Deliveries (as is Nova Express) was set up with a sort of transporter reception equipment designed to receive the squid and make it look like it came from another dimension. That's part of the plan. It has to look like the scientists at the Institute created a portal that the aliens might potentially spew out through.

Curiosity Inc. wrote:
As a result, the squid explodes on arrival. The explosion wipes out thousands of people, and the entire city is covered in blood and death and destruction and tentacles, with a giant, dead, unknown monster in the middle.


I think the squid looks relatively intact. It didn't explode in the conventional sense, but many portions of its body appeared in places where there were other objects, like buildings, streets, signs, people, etc. and those portions obviously exploded. Not the entire squid.
Curiosity Inc. wrote:
Do you really need a psychic's brain to make that more traumatic?


Well, you need something. Max Shea was hired to write the sequences of alien life. Hira Manish was hired to create images of Shea's sequences. Lynette Paley was hired to provide sounds. All those artists were hired to create an alien world where the young eat their way out of their mother's wombs and all sorts of alien horrors occur. This information was coded onto a wave that the massive brain broadcast as it died. The resulting shockwave killed about 3 million. But people all over the world received the broadcast... "sensitives the world over" I believe. They had nightmares... nightmares that were all the same. This created a common story that convince everyone that the creature's projection was legitimate. That the invasion was real. That there were more and that they wanted to invade our dimension and eat us all up.

This mass proliferation of fear was necessary to convince the world that they needed to band together in one accord to prevent alien attack.

Read the scenes with Max and Hira again. Read the reports of the alien invasion. Read the stray newspaper articles after the invasion.

It's a very elaborate plan.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2007 8:11 pm 
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CLINT FLICKER wrote:
The existence of actual psychics in Watchmen always somehow devalued Manhattan's status as the planet's sole super uberbeing for me.

I concur.
CLINT FLICKER wrote:
...just a bunch of norms with nothing more going for them than various personality disorders, sexual hang ups, and a fetish for dressing up in kinky costumes...

Yep, that pretty much describes my life.


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 Post subject: Re: The Squid
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2007 8:16 pm 
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You don't have to be psychic to predict another inbound accusation of sideswiping our gracious mod with a CLINT/Vynson "one-two" punch. Heh.


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 Post subject: Squid poo
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2007 8:29 pm 
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When I clicked the submit button, I got a little pop up informing me that at least one message had been posted since I began writing my own and that I should read it before deciding to post.

So I read your post CLINT and saw that you had beat me to the point.

But I had spent so much time and thought writing the damned thing, there was no way I wasn't going to post it.

So I'll have to settle for being number two in that one/two punch.

And I don't frequently refer to myself as number two for obvious reasons.


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 Post subject: Re: The Squid
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2007 8:30 pm 
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Ha, can I do a topic sluggfest or what.

After reading most of your points I've formed this.

Robbie was a clone. It would have been nice to know more about him...but thats for us to guess at.

I'm guessing it wasn't cool to go all hero if you even had powers. I am guessing that the people like guardian angels didn't start up either. I kind of like that police are the real heroes.


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 Post subject: Re: The Squid
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2007 10:31 pm 
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UCONNgirl wrote:
Ha, can I do a topic sluggfest or what.

After reading most of your points I've formed this.

Robbie was a clone. It would have been nice to know more about him...but thats for us to guess at.

I'm guessing it wasn't cool to go all hero if you even had powers. I am guessing that the people like guardian angels didn't start up either. I kind of like that police are the real heroes.

In my opinion, this is way off-base.

Where is it even implied that Deschaines was a clone? I can't imagine that Veidt would complicate matters further by lobotomizing a clone rather than the psychic himself.

Also, while Deschaines may have been a powerful psychic, I don't see how that makes him any more a superhero than Nostradamus.

Who are the "guardian angels" and how did you come to the conclusion that the police are the "real heroes"?

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2007 11:17 pm 
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Curiosity Inc. wrote:
Where is it even implied that Deschaines was a clone? I can't imagine that Veidt would complicate matters further by lobotomizing a clone rather than the psychic himself.

Deschaines was not a clone. Veidt (or rather one of his underlings) stole Deschacines' head from the mortuary and cloned it (making appropriate alterations) for use in the alien thingermabob. Deschaines himself was, alas, not a clone. I say "alas" because being a clone has just got to be ubercool.
Curiosity Inc. wrote:
Also, while Deschaines may have been a powerful psychic, I don't see how that makes him any more a superhero than Nostradamus.

I always got the impression that Deschaines was practically retarded and had these savant psychic powers that Veidt reverse engineered to send out his "wave." Just my impression. He was young and died of a stroke. We don't know if Veidt was behind the stroke. We do know Veidt was behind the theft of his head and cloning a psychic resonator (whatever the hell that is) from his brain.

Curiosity Inc. wrote:
Who are the "guardian angels" and how did you come to the conclusion that the police are the "real heroes"?

The Guardian Angels are a real life "soft vigilante" group that patrols the subways of NYC. The group was begun by Curtis Sliwa and has done a lot of good in their decades of operation. There was a pretty cool movie based on the Angels made in the early 80s called "We're Fighting Back."


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 Post subject: Re: The Squid
PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 4:43 am 
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Curiosity Inc. wrote:
Also, while Deschaines may have been a powerful psychic, I don't see how that makes him any more a superhero than Nostradamus.



Well, in the comic I assume psychics actually had the ability to see the future or other places solely with their minds while Nostradamus was just a guy who wrote a lot of vague poetry that people have been pouring through for hundreds of years and are then amazed when some of it can be applied just as vaguely to something that actually happened.

The first ability would make a good super hero. The second one, not so much.


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 Post subject: Re: The Squid
PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 10:27 am 
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I always got the impression that Deschaines was practically retarded


I got the same impression as well. What's interesting is there's a real condition called Duchene Muscular Dystrophy in which survival is rare beyond the early '30s. Those who suffer from these diseases have progressive motor impairment (including speech) and are often assumed to be retarded even though their intelligence is unaffected.

Maybe Moore was trying to a "legitimate sounding" or "near to real" name for his psychic brain??

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 Post subject: Re: The Squid
PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 10:31 am 
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Interesting. Especially if pronounced in French. (no "s"). Cool.

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