kaffypants replied to your post: (slight Watchmen spoiler if you somehow still…
Who is he?
(more Watchmen spoilers)
In the book there is a recurring character that walks around in the background (often foreground) on the streets holding a sign that says “The End is Nigh.” I can’t remember if they put him in the movie, but that’s Rorschach out of costume. In the first half or so of the book he appears several times, and each time there is something to imply that he is Rorschach. Examples:
- The first chapter starts off with panels showing where The Comedian died with excerpts from Rorschach’s journal layed over the tops of the panels, as the perspective moves up and up with each panel. The red headed man walks through the scene holding his sign. At this point, we haven’t seen Rorschach before, and if you’re the kind who reads comics really closely, it’s framed in such a way that might make you think that the red headed man with the sign is the person writing the journal, but the perspective keeps pulling back until you’ve forgotten about him and the scene moves on to the detectives investigating the murder.
- Later in the same chapter, the two detectives are walking down the street talking. As soon as the topic jumps to Rorschach, the red headed man appears in the background of the panel. As they walk by him, one of the detectives shivers. He says “Nothing, it was just a chill…” or something like that in a panel that prominently features the red headed man’s face in the foreground.
- In the second chapter, the red headed man with the sign can be seen standing in the rain outside of the Comedian’s funeral. There is a panel of him watching Moloch walk away from the funeral by himself. A page or two later, Rorschach shows up unannounced at Moloch’s house and says he “heard” he had been at Comedian’s funeral.
There are tons of moments like this. Not to mention there are several panels that feature Rorschach with his mask pulled up so he can eat beans or whatever, and you can see half the dude’s face and it’s clear who he is if you’ve been paying attention. But the red-headed sign guy is really just a background character who never actually DOES anything, and the first time I read it I assumed he had more of a symbolic significance than an actual role in the story. When you go back and read it a second or third time, you obviously notice him more since you know who he’s supposed to be, and then all of these clues become painfully obvious. They’re probably obvious to a lot of people on the first time too, but I don’t think I was doing a very detailed read the first time.