Jeremy Irons as Adrian Veidt on Watchmen

We Need To Talk About That Big Reveal On 'Watchmen' Season 1, Episode 3

by Ani Bundel

When Watchmen premiered, it introduced people who had nothing to do with the original story. Characters like Angela Abar were born too late and too far from New York to have been involved with the comic's events. Only one man seemed the right age to be someone, the "Lord of the Manor," played by Jeremy Irons. But his identity was kept under wraps, until Episode 3, "She Was Killed by Space Junk," when he said his name was Adrian Veidt. But who is Adrian Veidt in Watchmen? Warning: Spoilers for Watchmen follow.

Veidt is one of the main characters from the 1985 comic. A boy genius, he grew up to become a masked vigilante superhero. At 19, he christened himself Ozymandias, with dreams of becoming the next Alexander the Great. He was invited to join up with the Crimebusters, the second wave group of superheroes to follow in the Minutemen's footsteps, but it never got off the ground. Instead, Veidt turned inward.

When he saw the writing on the wall with the upcoming Keene Act banning superheroes, he revealed his secret identity. He cashed in on marketing, making himself extraordinarily rich in the process.

One can tell he is still wealthy, from the castle he lives in, and the clone servants he keeps making. But Veidt has another secret, one that could tear the world apart.

Warning: Spoilers for the Watchmen comic are after the photo.


Veidt's choice to go it alone in the 1970s and 80s drove him a little mad. Without anyone to check his ego, he became convinced only he could save the world from itself.

On Nov. 2, 1985, a giant alien creature in the shape of a one-eyed squid appeared in the sky over New York City, and fell to Earth, impaling itself on the Empire State Building. As it died, it let off a psychic pulse that killed millions instantly throughout the tristate area. Rumors were it was transported via interdimensional portal experiments. It was also proof humans were not alone.

Shocked by the tragedy, the US and the USSR made peace. The world laid down their arms and joined together to work to defend the planet against the alien threat.

Except there wasn't one.

Veidt made the squid and set off the pulse. It was all a hoax he made up, killing millions to save billions. It worked, but to keep working, the secret had to be maintained. His fellow superheroes, from Laurie Blake to Doctor Manhattan, all agreed to stay silent. Only Rorschach did not, so Manhattan killed him.


One would think Veidt has the run of the world now, especially since he's been declared dead. (Very freeing, faking your own death.) The squid shower in the premiere episode suggests he's still trying to remind people another alien could come at any time if they don't behave.

But the letter and visit from the masked "Game Warden" suggest something else is going on. "We agreed upon the terms of your captivity," is not something one writes to a man running the world.

Is Veidt in prison? Where? Who locked him up? Does this have anything to do with his crimes against humanity?

If so, why does it still rain squids?