Friday, September 24, 2010

Favorite Super Hero: Dr. Manhattan

Authored by Rickey Combs

Every time I watch Watchmen in full HD I ordered at on my satellite TV, I am reminded of how much I love Dr. Manhattan and his storyline. Dr. Manhattan is by far my favorite superhero. Not only are his origins a nod of the head to classic and stereotypical "mutation" backstory of many superheroes and supervillains in the comics of the 1950's and 60's, but he is a genuinely interesting character who almost seems like an anachronism in the world of Watchmen. He's the odd one out because he is the only protagonist or character alone in the series with any sort of superhuman abilities. While Rorschach, Ozymandias and the Comedian all are strong men, Dr. Manhattan has the ability to teleport to Mars and obliterate the greater part of Earth in a split second.

Dr. Manhattan as a godlike character in the Watchmen series creates an interesting moral conflict in an already morally complex universe. While the other characters have visible flaws, Dr. Manhattan appears to be losing a grip on his humanity and his human flaws. He is ascendant to pure godhood, with the power to alter the course of a war, the history of the world, or the state of the universe. His mind is unbound and he is able to create and destroy anything he pleases. Since he has so much power as a resource, he is able to spend this power in whatever way he wishes. Since Dr. Manhattan remains on a morally neutral ground for the greater part of the comic book series, he is admirable for restraining his power.