When I first read Watchmen, I was introduced to the concept of morally ambiguous superheroes who were just as crazy and twisted as the villains they fight. No character embodied this concept more than the Comedian AKA Edward Blake. When the Comedian started his superhero career, he was 16 years old and was more of a thug than a hero. He spent time with the Minutemen for a while before being kicked out of the team after he attempted to rape the first Silk Spectre. The Comedian then went solo as a vigilante and started attacking sleeper agents of the Japanese government. In 1942 when Blake was 18, his activities caught the attention and interest of the United States government and he was recruited to be the enforcer of the United States. Throughout his time working for the government, the Comedian fought in World War II, the Vietnam War, and the proxy wars of the Cold War. Compared to his fellow superheroes, the Comedian was well aware of just how high the stakes were to saving the world and believed it could not be saved by the likes of them. Despite his attempt to rape her, the first Silk Spectre AKA Sally Jupiter fell in love with Blake and they had a daughter, Laurie, together who would succeed her mother as the Silk Spectre. In his own twisted way, the Comedian was being a protective father watching over Laurie. He played a role in convincing Laurie to return to her mother after she ran away from home to join the Hippies and afterwards tried to bond with her after the Crimebuster meeting. The Comedian’s superhero career came to a violent end when he was 61 years old. After discovering a conspiracy that shattered his cynical worldview, the Comedian was brutally beaten and murdered in his own apartment before being thrown out his own window. It was Blake’s death that set the story of Watchmen in motion. I like the Comedian because he demonstrated that even a superhero can be as flawed and human.

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