It feels strange writing about the movie adaptation of Watchmen in 2021, but I’ve never had a blog before so I’M WRITING ABOUT IT NOW. Also, I promise not all my posts will be about movie adaptations.

I’m reminded of it because I recently watched Justice League Snyder Cut. I hated it. (Just because it’s better than the previous version, doesn’t mean it’s good.) To preface, and completely discredit myself, I’m not an avid comic book reader. I’ve really only watched the movies, which I usually enjoy. Whats wrong with a good blockbuster!? Stay tuned for my love of movies that range from Dogtooth to Hobbs and Shaw. I see excellence in both (to discredit myself again).  

I admit, I owe it to the movie adaptation for even introducing me to the graphic novel. The superheroes are severely flawed. The world they live in is often sinister and cruel. Like real life! I was hooked on the premise. I wasn’t sure why I was so disappointed with the movie. But then I watched this video. And then I read the book, and I totally understood.

Allow me to completely over-simplify: it’s a hierarchy, pacing and juxtaposition issue for me. The graphic novel has moments that are subtle then bold, symmetrical and unbalanced, for the good of the story. 

As designers know, if everything is important, nothing is important. Clear space is everything, because you need to take a breath every now and then. Texture is necessary. Every module can’t be big. The user won’t know where to look and what an overwhelming experience that would be. Sure, sometimes it can be appropriate. But more often than not, when you’re not creating a unique small scale experience, the design system can’t withstand it.

Yes, I went there. I related a superhero comic to digital design. If Ian Spalter can compare a comedy routine to building the ui for Instagram, I can do this too.