Release Date: August 1987
As Rorschach and Nite-Owl approach Veidt’s Antarctic retreat, they discuss whether or not their old crime fighting partner would actually want the world destroyed.
Inside, Ozymandias gets up from his bank of television monitors and heads into a control room. A time gauge reads “Eastern Standard Time: 11:25” He pushes a button on the console, then communicates to his associates that his work is done and to meet him in his vivarium to celebrate.
Veidt then recounts, to his friends, his life story. He talks of giving away his vast inheritance, after his parents death, to prove what someone could accomplish from nothing.
He traveled throughout The Middle East, Africa and Asia, retracing the steps of his hero Alexander the Great. On his return, he adopts the name Ozymandias, the Greek name for Pharaoh Ramses II, and starts his career as a costumed hero to fight all the evils of the world. He turns to his associates, which he has apparently poisoned, then opens the vivarium dome letting a blizzard of snow into its tropical enclosure.
Rorschach and Nite-Owl enter the retreat. A brief melee ensues, but Veidt subdues both of his attackers with precision. When they ask him what he’s trying to do, he explains that he realized fighting crime could never rid the world of evil. Then at the ill fated Crimebusters meeting, he realized that The Comedian was right when he said it was pointless to form a crime fighting team when nuclear war was inevitable.
With the Cold War escalating and the proliferation of more arms, he realized the military deadlock would eventually lead to one final conflict. It was then he began to formulate his plan to solve this dilemma — a grand hoax to get the world to believe there was a threat of alien invasion. This would stop all governments from figthing each other, and unite them against one common greater ememy.
First, he would need Dr. Manhattan out of the way. He would give all of Osterman’s closest associates cancer forcing him to go into exile. With the new technology Osterman’s super-human intelligence had brought about, Veidt began to research advancements in the fields of genetics and teleportation on his private island.
When The Comedian accidentally spotted Veidt’s uncharted island by air, he went to investigate and found the world’s missing artists working on a “monstrous new life form.” But Blake was afraid to expose the plot. He only told Moloch, who he knew wouldn’t understand, and since Veidt had Moloch’s apartment bugged, he found out that Blake knew and killed him before he could tell anyone else.
Then in order to throw Rorschach’s suspicion off of himself, Veidt orchestrated his own assassination attempt. Pushing a cyanide capsule into the attackers mouth after subduing him to prevent him from talking as well.
Veidt’s master stroke would be to teleport his life form, whose brain was cloned from a powerful psychic, into New York City. Since teleporting technology was limited, anything living that is transported would die of shock and explode. The ensuing psychic shockwave would kill half of the city’s populace.
When a disbelieving Nite-Owl asks when Veidt had planned on perpetrating this outlandish scheme, Ozymandias replies “thirty-five minutes ago.”
Closing Quotation: “My name is Ozymandias, king of kings; look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!” - Ozymandias by Percy Bysshe Shelley.