TV: Watchmen - S01 E05 - Little Fear of Lightning - Reviewed

Each week of Damon Lindelof's new Watchmen series on HBO sees new parts of the mystery unfurling. 

This latest episode, Little Fear of Lightning drastically shifts focus to the sad and violent origins of Tim Blake Nelson's lead character Looking Glass as audiences are finally able to feast on a massive platter of back story that really throws a wrench into what we've seen so far. Just as you think this show is getting weird, it goes an extra step and becomes even stranger than ever before. With only a few episodes behind us, the Watchmen mythology continues to grow, week by week. And the connections to the original content become much more clear. 

Taking a small break from the action of the first four chapters, episode five starts to break down more of the past that's defining the alternate future that the characters are experiencing. Much like the original graphic novel, this continuation takes constant jabs at our political system, police ideologies, and systematic racism that's fueled by programmed fear. This episode also revels in its unique look at PTSD and how the world has been forever changed by the arrival of an intergalactic organism. 

Episode five really starts to take a cold, hard look at the formation of Looking Glass and why he is the way he is. Unlike many shows, we're given a charged background that feeds much of the narrative we've seen so far. Taking a small breather from Sister Knight's story for one episode finally allows for other characters to shine. 

In the background, Veidt continues to work feverishly on his experiments. Per usual, Jeremy Irons takes the cake by literally slipping into the skin of a totally unhinged, older Ozymandias. As his plans become  clearer, the mystery of his imprisonment finally sees the light of day. And it's basically what we've been expecting all along. When he's finally set free, a truly sinister plan will be unleashed on Earth that will most likely change the trajectory of this expansion story forever. 

If you're not watching the Watchmen on HBO, you're really missing out. This is exactly what the television medium is for. If you've never read the Watchmen, we suggest getting on it, then get caught up on this series. It's one of the best, most creative things out there right now. 

-Chris George