Watchmen appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.78:1 on these Blu-ray Discs. The shows offered good visuals.
Overall definition appeared positive. Occasional signs of softness materialized, but infrequently, as the episodes generally seemed accurate and well-defined.
I noticed no jaggies or shimmering, and I witnessed no edge haloes. Source flaws created no distractions.
In terms of palette, Watchmen veered a bit toward orange and teal, though not to an extreme, and the colors mostly felt fairly subdued. The hues came across well within stylistic choices.
Blacks looked dark and tight, while low-light shots offered nice delineation. Despite light softness, the image usually seemed strong.
As for the series’ DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack, it worked reasonably well. The soundscape opened up the material in a decent manner, though the mix never became terribly involving.
Still, various elements fleshed out the spectrum, and a few action beats featured the surrounds in a pleasing way. More of a thriller than a traditional superhero tale, Watchmen lacked the whiz-bang one might expect from its basic genre, but the soundscapes felt well-rendered nonetheless, and they kicked into higher gear when necessary.
Audio quality satisfied. Speech was distinctive and concise, without edginess or other issues.
Music appeared lively and full, while effects showed nice clarity and accuracy. The track wasn’t as good as one would get from a theatrical release, but for a TV series, it seemed positive.
A mix of extras spread across this package’s three Blu-rays, and on Disc One, we open with Character Trailers. These fill a total of three minutes, six seconds and we get these for Sister Night, Blonde Man and Looking Glass.
The “Trailers” include notes from actors Regina King, Jeremy Irons and Tim Blake Nelson. They provide basic promo material and nothing more.
It’s Raining Squids goes for one minute, 58 seconds and involves Nelson, VFX supervisor Erik Henry, series creator Damon Lindelof, and director Nicole Kassell.
This show offers some minor thoughts about the series’ falling squid. It’s more informative than “Trailers” but remains intended to advertise the show.
Next comes Masked and Dangerous, a two-minute, 20-second reel that features Lindelof, King, Irons and Kassell. “Masked” covers some themes and story points. Like its predecessors, it seems superficial.
A 2019 NY Comic Con Panel spans 36 minutes, 49 seconds and involves Lindelof, Kassell, King, Irons, Nelson, graphic novel artist Dave Gibbons and actors Hong Chau, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Louis Gossett, Jr. and Jean Smart.
Along with host Jen Chaney, they discuss the source and choices for this expansion, cast and performances, characters and themes. Because the panel took place before the series ran, it lacks many specifics. Still, it seems breezy and offers some decent nuggets.
Becoming Sister Night runs one minute, three seconds and provides comments from King, Kassell and Lindelof as they discuss King’s character. Expect a promo piece.
Disc One concludes with Altermate History, a two-minute, four-second clip that includes Lindelof, Kassell, Nelson, production designer Kristian Milsted and set dresser Edward McLoughlin. They offer hints of the ways the series expands upon the graphic novel’s “history” and becomes a short but interesting overview.
One Disc Two, Unmasked lasts 16 minutes, 33 seconds and provides material with Lindelof, King, supervising producers Lila Byock and Christal Henry, executive story editor Cord Jefferson, and story editor Jeff Jensen.
“Unmasked” looks at connections between the original novel and the limited series as well as themes, characters and social issues. Deeper than most of the set’s other components, “Unmasked” comes with some intriguing insights.
Andrij Parekh on Directing goes for one minute, three seconds and delivers info from director Parekh. He tells us a little about his life and work on Watchmen in this brief piece.
Up next, we get the two-minute, 31-second Squid Shelter with Tim Blake Nelson. The actor shows us one of the series’ sets in this short but fun examination.
Finally, Disc Two ends with Anatomy of a Fight Scene, a two-minute, 32-second piece that involves Lindelof, stunt coordinator Justin Riemer, stunt double Dan Carter and camera operator Chris Cuevas. They analyze one particular physical sequence in this tight little show.
Disc Three opens with Immortal Vigilante, an 11-minute, 47-second program that includes notes from Lindelof, Jensen, Kassell, Byock, Jefferson, Henry, director Stephen Williams, and actor Jovan Adepo.
With an emphasis on Hooded Justice, we get some character and thematic notes. “Vigilante” explores the subjects reasonably well.
The Colossal King goes for 12 minutes, 36 seconds and brings comments from Lindelof, Irons, Jensen and Kassell.
“King” covers a character from the graphic novel who returns for the Limited Series. Like “Vigilante”, it comes with some useful insights.
Next comes Glimpses, a three-minute, four-second reel that boasts material that offers a look at visual effects, as we see scenes in their before/after states. This seems fun, but it’d work better with commentary.
Notes from Watchmen Graphic Novel Artist Dave Gibbons fills one minute, 49 seconds with remarks from Gibbons. He chats about various character and art-related areas in this fairly promotional piece.
With Rorschach, we get a one-minute, 40-second piece that features Lindelof, Kassell,
and costume designer Megan Kasperlik. They offer hints of the way the graphic novel character manifests during the new version. We don’t get much substance.
Finally, Sadiqua Bynum Runs, Jumps and Falls for Sister Night lasts one minute, three seconds and provides remarks from stunt double Sadiqua Bynum. She tells us she’s happy to play the stunt double for King and that’s about it.
As an expansion of the original graphic novel, the Limited Series of Watchmen offers a satisfying effort. It mixes old and new in a compelling way to turn into top-notch entertainment. The Blu-rays bring positive picture and audio along with a mix of bonus materials. Fans should enjoy this fine mini-series.