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"There are people who believe this world is fair and good. That it's all lollipops and rainbows. I remember what happened to my parents. You remember what happened to your parents. You and me, Topher, we don't do lollipops an rainbows because we know those are just pretty colors that just hide what the world is really is. Black and white."

—Angela to Topher in trying to explain Judd's death


"Martial Feats of Comanche Horsemanship" is the second episode in the first season of HBO's Watchmen, and second episode overall. It aired on October 27, 2019.

PremiseEdit

As Angela relives haunting memories of an attack on her family, she detains a mysterious man who claims responsibility for Tulsa's most recent murder. Elsewhere, an original play is performed for an audience of one.

PlotEdit

During World War I, a German kommandant recruits an English-fluent woman referred to as Fraulein Mueller from a typing pool. In his office, the kommandant dictates a propaganda message aimed at disaffected African-American troops, encouraging them to defect to the German side. The message is made into a leaflet distributed by airdrop over Obie Williams's army unit. This message strikes a chord with O.B., who keeps the leaflet after the war. A century later, his aged son Will holds the leaflet -- with the message "WATCH OVER THIS BOY" written on the back -- as he sits next to Judd's hanging body and is approached by Angela.

In present day, Angela takes Will from the crime scene and brings him to her bakery, where she handcuffs him to a railing in the kitchen. She changes into her Sister Night costume in the basement, but not before she vents her anger and sadness over Judd's death. Under Angela's questioning, Will claims that he killed and strung up Judd, stating that he has psychic powers. He further claims that Judd had "skeletons in his closet" and was part of an "insidious conspiracy" in Tulsa. When Angela demands to know Will's name, he initially claims to be Doctor Manhattan before admitting that his name is Will. Angela manages to disprove Will's claims of being psychic when she challenges him to use his powers to move his bottle of pills. She receives a phone call telling her what she already knows about Judd. She bags a coffee mug Will has been drinking from for DNA testing. Will is left in the bakery while Angela drives back to the crime scene. Outside the bakery, a news vendor talks about the recent squidfall with a delivery man and trades a large stack of newspapers with a young customer.

At the crime scene, Angela finds herself being questioned by Looking Glass, who asks about her and Judd's movements the previous night. Angela asks him if Judd suffered and, he says rather bluntly that he did. He goes onto say that an intramuscular hemorrhage, fractured skeleton, and ligature marks are all consistent with violent asphyxiation. Both of his palms had rope burns, and he had fibers in his fingernails. In short, he was alive the whole time... Until he wasn't. Angela calls Looking Glass a cold, to which he replies by saying "then why am I crying under here?". As they are bringing down the Chief's body, Angela hugs onto Judd's body tightly, and her thoughts go back to Christmas Eve of 2016, when she and Cal were attacked in their home by a Seventh Kavalry gunman. Angela managed to fatally stab the gunman, only to be shot by another Kavalryman and fallen into unconsciousness. Angela came to in the hospital with a bandaged Judd at her bedside, who informed her that her partner Doyle and his wife Ginny were murdered in what the press has dubbed the "White Night". Their children -- Topher, Emma, and Rosie -- survived the attack because Christopher heard the gunshots, and took his sister, and the baby and hid them all in the closet. She says that whoever is left needs to round up those racist, Judd tells her that there's nobody left. He goes onto to say that the entire force knows that the Kavalry had their names and addresses. So they're all resigning. Angela says she is not quitting. So Judd tells her he won't quit either.

Back in the present, a pair of paparazzi wearing mechanical wings are shot down and restrained by the cops. An angry Red Scare assumes that the Kavalry is responsible for Judd's murder and commandeers a group of masked cops to confront the residents of Nixonville, threatening to tear down the encampment's statue of President Nixon unless they give up the killer. The scene descends into chaos as the cops beat and round up Nixonville residents. Despite thinking that Red Scare's tactics are excessive, Angela protects Looking Glass from an attack and beats the assailant to a bloody pulp.

To have Will's DNA tested outside official channels, Angela goes to the Greenwood Center for Cultural Heritage, where testing machines have been set up to determine reparation eligibility for descendants of victims of the 1921 Tulsa race riot. She takes a swab of Will's DNA from the coffee mug and submits it to the machine. When she returns home, she finds a man named Andy -- a blood relative of her adopted children -- sitting on her porch, demanding to see them. Angela hands Andy a check to make him go away. Inside, Cal, who has been playing with Emma and Rosie, asks Angela if their family is safe in the wake of Judd's murder. Upstairs, Angela breaks the bad news to Topher, who volunteers to inform his sisters himself. Later that night, as Angela leaves the house, Topher and Cal are watching the premiere of the second season of the TV series American Hero Story, which dramatizes the Minutemen and the life of the first costumed adventurer, Hooded Justice. The first episode starts off by saying that The Federal Communications Commission has determined that the following content may be emotionally harmful. The announcer advises the viewers that young children should not view this content under any circumstances, even if they are being supervised by a parent or guardian. Moreover, the views and opinions expressed, including the depictions of persons of color, and members of the LGBTQA+ community do not reflect any official policy or position of the U.S. government. In addition, that this aforementioned program contains graphic language, violence, nudity, misogyny, racism, antisemitism, hate crimes, and depictions of sexual assault.

On American Hero Story, Hooded Justice says that the body of Rolf Müller isn't his. In the following recreation, masked men rob a grocery store, and they tell the cashier to blow the safe or they'll kill a hostage. Hooded Justice jumps in through the window and kills the robbers.

Angela drives to the Crawford residence, where a wake for Judd is being held. There, Angela greets Judd's widow Jane and meets Joe Keene, a conservative U.S. senator who is running for president to succeed President Redford. Keene breaks protocol and publicly addresses Angela as a cop. She feigns a fainting spell so that she can be moved to the Crawfords' bedroom upstairs. She assures Jane that she will work diligently to find Judd's killers. Once she is left alone, Angela uses a pair of X-ray goggles to examine the bedroom. She finds a hidden room in Judd's closet and is shocked to discover that it contains a white Klansman's robe. Angela takes the robe and discreetly leaves the house.

At Veidt's castle, Adrian Veidt rides his horse and eats from a tomato grown on a tree. Inside, he rushes through the customary "anniversary" party, eager to prepare for the first performance of his play "The Watchmaker's Son." Mr. Phillips asks for Adrian's watch, needing it as a prop. The first act of the play is a reenactment of Dr. Jon Osterman's accident, with Mr. Phillips playing Osterman and Mrs. Crookshanks playing Janey Slater. When Mr. Phillips is locked in a chamber that represents the intrinsic field generator, Adrian triggers a plunger detonator which incinerates Mr. Phillips inside the chamber. A naked performer wearing full-body makeup, playing Manhattan, is lowered onto the stage and repeats the line, "Nothing ever ends." After the performance concludes, Adrian climbs onstage and commends Mrs. Crookshanks and his stagehands, who are all revealed to be identical male and female clones. Before Mr. Phillips's body is taken elsewhere, Adrian removes the damages watch from his hands and promotes one of the male stagehand clones as the new "Mr. Phillips."

Angela returns to the bakery and confronts Will, who has somehow gotten out of his handcuffs and is cooking hard-boiled eggs. Will expressed surprise when Angela shows him Judd's Klan robe. Angela prepares to arrest him, but Will tells her that he has "friends in high places." Angela receives an automated phone call delivering the results of the DNA test: not only is Will a victim of the Tulsa Race Riot, but he also has two living descendants -- including Angela herself, his granddaughter. After Angela wheels Will out to her car and places him inside, an unidentified aircraft uses a large industrial magnet to take it -- and him -- away.

CastEdit

Main CastEdit

Guest StarringEdit

Co-StarringEdit

  • Danny Boyd, Jr. as Young Will
  • Dr. Henry Louie Gates as Skip Gates
  • Steven G. Norfleet as O.B. Williams
  • Miles Doleac as German Officer
  • Annika Pampel as Fraulein Mueller
  • Christian Robinson as Delivery Guy
  • Jim Braswell as Singer
  • Brian Stapf as Tattooed Man
  • Luke David Blumm as Newspaper Boy
  • Ryan Czerwonko as Ringleader
  • Vince Pisani as Cashier
  • Tevin Marbeth as Soldier
  • Kate Kovach as Dame
  • Faye Yvette McQueen as Fashionable Lady
  • Moses J. Moseley as Usher


GalleryEdit

Promotional stillsEdit

ScreenshotsEdit

PeteypediaEdit

BTSEdit

VideosEdit

Trivia Edit

  • The episode title “Martial Feats of Comanche Horsemanship” refers to an 1834 painting by George Catlin originally called "Comanche Feats of Horsemanship" that’s seen in Judd Crawford's home. It’s all about the craft a young rider displays in avoiding an attack by an opposing force by sliding down the side of his horse, effectively outmaneuvering a fatal blow. However, the words have been mixed around.
  • The reenactment of Doctor Manhattan's origin featured the song "Ride of the Valkyries" that previously appeared in the film adaptation during the Vietnam War flashback sequence.
  • In an interview with TVLine, Tom Mison revealed that the penis from one of Phillips' clones, who plays Doctor Manhattan, belonged to a body double. He also wore a t-shirt with a picture of it to alert his neighbors in case they watched the episode.[1]
  • The flying news reporters appeared to be using a version of Mothman’s wings, one of the original Minutemen. Mothman was: “A playboy adventurer who donned a splendidy bizarre Moth Suit to fight crime, lending him the ability to glide for short distance,” per Moore and Gibbons.
  • Angela Abar’s investigation in the Crawford residence recalls Rorschach’s process of discovering Eddie Blake’s Comedian costume after his death.
  • There is a continued use of Nite Owl-like tech as police-based tools.
  • According to Peteypedia, Rorschach’s journal at the end of the comic was largely ignored by the public, as it was published in the far-right publication The New Frontiersman; Laurie Juspeczyk would join the FBI, eventually forgoing not only the Silk Spectre moniker but her last name too, instead taking up the name Laurie Blake and the title “The Comedienne” in honor of her late father; and after the events of the comic, Dan Dreiberg (Nite Owl) is in federal custody, where he refuses to speak about the events that transpired in Antarctica.

ReferencesEdit

  1. - Watchmen's Tom Mison on His Extremely Revealing Scene in Ep 2: 'That Is Not My Penis' - TVLine

External linksEdit

NavigationEdit

ve Watchmen (TV series)
Season 1
01. It's Summer and We're Running Out of Ice • 02. Martial Feats of Comanche Horsemanship • 03. She Was Killed by Space Junk • 04. If You Don't Like My Story, Write Your Own • 05. Little Fear of Lightning • 06. This Extraordinary Being • 07. An Almost Religious Awe • 08. A God Walks into Abar • 09. See How They Fly
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