The more we see of HBO’s forthcoming Watchmen adaptation, the more intriguing the Damon Lindelof-led crime drama becomes. The pay-cable network has shared another new trailer for the series ahead of its October premiere, ushering us further into the world originated in Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ legendary late-’80s graphic novel.
Lindelof has described his series as not quite a sequel to the original story, nor an adaptation of it, characterizing his Watchmen instead as a “remix” set in a contemporary world, rather than the original’s mid-’80s temporality. The question in the lead-up to Lindelof’s version is just how much DNA it will actually share with the original, an overlap we can continue to find the shape of as HBO pulls back the curtain on its much-anticipated new series. Each promo for the show thus far has been packed with clues and details for fans to pick apart, and today’s trailer is no exception.
The clip opens on Jean Smart’s FBI Agent Laurie Blake and Regina King’s Angela Abar, a Tulsa Police Force lead detective, and wife and mother of three. Blake offers her take on masks, who are “driven by trauma … obsessed with justice because of some injustice they suffered. Ergo, the mask. It hides the pain.” We soon learn a domestic terrorist organization known as the Seventh Kavalry has been inflicting plenty of pain from behind their black-and-white, Rorschach-esque masks, threatening to spark a large-scale clash between cops and criminals. So far, so Watchmen.
Joining Angela on the side of law and order are Don Johnson’s Tulsa Police Chief Judd Crawford and, seemingly, Tim Blake Nelson’s Detective Looking Glass, at whom we get our first good look as he unnervingly interrogates a Kavalry member. The Kavalry’s agenda is one question mark; another is the nature of Jeremy Irons’ character. Described by HBO only as the “aging and imperious Lord of a British Manor,” Irons has all the makings of an elder Adrian Veidt, aka Ozymandias, the primary antagonist of Moore and Gibbons’ original story. Though later in the trailer, we see him riding a white horse—which, subtle—most of Irons’ screen time is spent on him uttering the one line he gets in all these promos: “It’s only just begun.” We’ll let you unpack the rest of the trailer for yourself.
Between its Oscar- and Emmy-riddled cast, and the decades-spanning resonance of its source material, Watchmen sure is shaping up to be one to … well, watch.
Watchmen premieres on HBO Sunday, Oct. 20, at 9 p.m. ET. Watch the latest trailer below and revisit a previous teaser for the series here.