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Franchise / Watchmen

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Although originally conceived by its writer-artist team Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons as a finite story and standalone entry, DC Comics' Watchmen has seen a number of adaptations into different mediums and follow-ups.

With a single exception, neither Moore nor Gibbons consider the later entries to be canonical and see them primarily as adaptations and derivative works (if they don't outright disown them, Moore in particular).


Comic Books

  • Watchmen, the original 1986-1987 comic book maxiseries.
  • In 2012, DC Comics inaugurated a series of projects that ultimately set the stage for a proper follow-up to Watchmen tied to the wider DC Comics Universe:
  • Before Watchmen: A 2012-2013 prequel comic series focusing on the elaborate backstory of the original series. Neither Gibbons or Moore consider this to be canonical and it was left incomplete after weak sales. Notable for being the first follow-up to the original series by DC Comics after nearly 30 years of treating the original as a standalone work.
  • The 2015-2016 Continuity Reboot DC Rebirth one-shot revealed that some aspects of Watchmen would be incorporated into the mainstream DC universe with a Myth Arc and meta-narrative dealing with the comic and its legacy, one which was teased out in the Batman / Flash crossover The Button.
  • Doomsday Clock by Geoff Johns, Gary Frank and colorist Brad Anderson is the sequel series to the original Watchmen, that ultimately sees the characters cross-over with the main DC Universe.
  • Rorschach, a comic book sequel published under the DC Black Label imprint. Set in 2020, the series follows the mysterious return of the titular detective as he is part of an attempted assassination of a presidential candidate.


  • Watchmen (2009): The film adaptation of the original comic book directed by Zack Snyder, unrelated to the Hamm-Gilliam project mentioned below.
  • Under The Hood (2009): An In-Universe documentary about the previous generation of superheroes.
  • Watchmen, a 9-episode 2019 HBO limited series with an original story, set years after the events of the comic book. It's a Broad Strokes sequel of sorts, and it is unrelated to the 2009 film. Damon Lindelof (Lost, The Leftovers) is its showrunner, and Dave Gibbons served as a creative consultant.

Tabletop Games

  • In 1986, Mayfair Games ran a series of RPG supplements for DC Heroes based on Watchmen : "Who Watches the Watchmen," "Taking Out the Trash" and "The Watchmen Sourcebook." This is the only adaptation of Watchmen to have the full support and co-operation of both Moore and Gibbons, and the only one which they consider to have canonical status, albeit as Expanded Universe.


  • Watchmen: Motion Comic: An abridged Motion Comic version of the graphic novel released to promote the 2009 live-action movie.
  • Tales of the Black Freighter: An animated short of the comic within a comic that was originally intended to part of the 2009 movie's theatrical version. The Ultimate Edition of the movie has the short woven in, in short bits in-between scenes.

Video Games


  • Watchmen: A planned script of the film adaptation by Sam Hamm that was made with Alan Moore's feedback for a project that was originally going to be directed by Terry Gilliam.