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Monday, December 05, 2005

Watchmen: An Oral History

Citizen Kane. Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. The Sopranos. Watchmen. Of this list, the following can be said: (1) Each is a masterwork representing the apex of artistry in its respective medium; (2) you might have no idea what Watchmen is.

Except that in our superhero-saturated, cult-pop moment, Watchmen's fingerprints are everywhere. On Lost. On author Neil Gaiman and Buffy the Vampire Slayer auteur Joss Whedon. On almost every comic book published since 1986. Yes, Watchmen is a comic book. But for many honest-to-God not-crazy people, it is much more. ''Watchmen,'' declares Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof, ''is the greatest piece of popular fiction ever produced.''

Or, at least, just plain great.

It has also been dubbed as one of the 100 Greatest English-Language Novels written since 1923 by Time critics.

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