'Watchmen' Episode 8 'A God Walks Into Abar' tweaks Doctor Manhattan's powers and traps Angela in a time loop

'Watchmen' Episode 8 'A God Walks Into Abar' tweaks Doctor Manhattan's powers and traps Angela in a time loop
Regina King (Source : IMDb)

When was the last time we got a story involving time travel that didn't have a paradox? Well, the 'Watchmen' HBO series doesn't actually involve traveling in time but it still managed to sneak in a time loop/paradox in Episode 8 'A God Walks Into Abar'.

Of all the weird and wonderful things we've been given by the show, Episode 8 was by far the weirdest and most wonderful of all.

This mindbogglingly non-linear story involves a lot of messing around with time, thanks to Doctor Manhattan's uncanny ability to see the entirety of his own timeline simultaneously, and the episode even managed to add a new twist to the big blue guy's relationship with time. 

Spoilers ahead for 'Watchmen' Episode 8 'A God Walks Into Abar'


In the episode, we see Doctor Manhattan (Yahya Abdul Mateen II) talking simultaneously to two people across 10 years. Because that's just the sort of thing Doctor Manhattan does.

When Angela Abar (Regina King) realizes that Doctor Manhattan met her grandfather Will Reeves (Louis Gossett Jr) 10 years before the show's present-day, she asks him to relay some questions to the old man.

Unfortunately, her grandfather hadn't even begun to consider coming to Tulsa yet and her questions about Judd Crawford (Don Johnson) and his connections to Cyclops are what set Reeves on the path to killing the police chief at the beginning of the show. 

This whole time loop creates yet another headache for people trying to keep track of Doctor Manhattan's abilities. If he can communicate with his past from his present, does that mean he can alter his own timeline?

Well, the short answer is no. The long answer is also no but it involves a little more explanation of Doctor Manhattan's powers, which you can find over here


Essentially, Doctor Manhattan can't change the way time happens, it's just that he simultaneously exists across time. Relaying a message from our present to his past is as simple as turning from one person to the other for him. 

Does this create a time loop? In a manner of speaking, yes. If Angela hadn't asked her grandfather about Crawford he wouldn't have killed him, which means she wouldn't have asked about it.

But the point is that she has no choice in the matter because she already did ask him and he already did kill Crawford. As the Doctor (Who, not Manhattan) would say, "wibbly-wobbly timey-wimey".

'Watchmen' Episode 9 'See How They Fly' will air on HBO on December 15.


Share this article:

 watchmen episode 8 a god walks into abar time loop paradox doctor manhattan angela abar