Beyond Birthday wrote:
Take out the part where Laurie neckstabs the thug, it makes her seem to violent.
^ No. A crucial part of the film is that it acknowledges that what superheroes do is violance, not a dance. It's supposed to make you seriously question if superheroes would be such a good thing for the world if they existed. Real life isn't the world portrayed in Spider-Man where the bad guys just fall over and...well, we never really see what happens to them after that. They just kinda magically fall out of the story.
What Laurie does is extremely violant. She's out of control. She's made herself a Watchman. But if she is a watchman, who watches her? That's the whole point of the story.
The reality is that Spider-Man kicks the crap out of people. He's a vigilante doing things he has no right to do. That's the truth, but Spidey comics and movies just won't admit it.
Now, I understand that Spider-Man is not meant to be read that way. He, like most superheroes, is an idealized fantasy. But I think it's interesting to point out that in the real world, someone doing that would be sick.
Yeah, and we have have Rorschach to show that. We had the Comedian to show that. And, in a different way, Dr. Manhattan.
Rorschach, who lost his mind facing the badness of humanity manifested in the brutal slaughter of a little girl, decides that lethal force is an appropriate way to punish the criminals and to prevent recidivisms.
The Comedian, who early in his life realized that the world is a stinking bog full of perverted lunatics, just tried to flow with the shit and get some laughs out of it.
Dr. Manhattan, who couldn't care less about a bunch of dead mobsters or a hundred dead vietcong, does what he's told: 'fighting crime'. The morality of his activities escapes him.
But Dan and Laurie? Of course, what they do is violent. They beat up thugs, that’s what they’re trained for. But do they kill them? And if they do (in self-defence), don’t they care about what they’ve done? Dan is pretty much as peaceful as a thug slogging vigilante can be. It takes the brutal murder of his mentor and friend to almost drive him over the edge. And Laurie ‘shoots’ Adrian after learning he is responsible for mass-murdering half of New York (or multiple cities).
I really think having Laurie casually killing this thug is not the right way to approach the whole ‘vigilantism is violence is problematic’ complex. We have more than enough better examples for that.
This is one of the things that still bother me about the movie. Nevertheless, I really like it by now! It just could have been even better.