These are the key details about the plot and setting of the new Watchmen series, as revealed during the Television Critics Association press tour on Wednesday (and reported by Den of Geek and the LA Times):
- The show will take place in Tulsa, Oklahoma in the year 2019.
- The original 12 issues of Alan Moore’s Watchmen are canon—meaning that this alternate 2019 is shaped by world and the events of the comic. As Lindelof noted [via Den of Geek], “It is definitely not supposed to be a world you recognize.”
- In the late 1980s (after the events of the comic) President Richard Nixon died in office and was replaced by Vice President Gerald Ford, who subsequently lost the 1992 election to Robert Redford. Redford has been president ever since, and the nature of his seemingly endless presidency has resulted in a slowdown, or stymie-ing, in the development of communications technology. The world of Watchmen has no smartphones or Internet. (Although we wonder if Veidt has something to do with this, as well.)
- Those Rorschach-mask-wearing vigilantes we keep seeing in the teasers are members of a white supremacist group called the Seventh Cavalry, who are at odds with Tulsa’s majority-black police force. The LA Times reported that white supremacy will be a core theme of the series, citing Lindelof: “In a traditional superhero movie, superheros fight the aliens. There’s no defeating white supremacy. It’s not going away.”
- The Times added that Regina King’s character, Angela Abar, is “a baker who secretly moonlights as a lead detective in the Tulsa Police Force.”
Curiously, there was little about Veidt or Dr. Manhattan. The show is scheduled to debut this October.