"Not Victory Nor Defeat": Back in 1985, in the Watchmen Universe, Adrian Veidt throws Edward Blake off the window of his apartment, seemingly killing him and starting Rorschach's investigation. Actually,
Synopsis for "Not Victory Nor Defeat"
Back in 1985, in the Watchmen Universe, Adrian Veidt throws Edward Blake off the window of his apartment, seemingly killing him and starting Rorschach's investigation. Actually, Blake wakes up as he falls into the sea in another reality, and when he reaches the shore he's greeted by Dr. Manhattan, as he drops The Comedian's button on the sand.
Now, The Comedian is fighting Veidt in Lex Luthor's study and he tries to return the favor by kicking his enemy against the window, which doesn't break, though. Veidt kills the lights and the two superhumans fight in the dark; when Veidt finds himself cornered, he resolves to voluntarily break the window glass and jump off it. He reaches the ground unconscious, but managing to escape his enemy.
At the Batcave, Batman confronts the "new" Rorschach, who was able to break in easily. As the latter finds it hard to explain everything to the Caped Crusader, he lends him Rorschach's Journal, where he can find the complete account of what happened on their world. As Batman accepts to read it, he advises the stranger to take a shower. Rorschach II agrees he needs one, as his hands are as dirty as Veidt's.
At a nursing home, an old man and an old woman quarrel over the channel that should be on TV, as they continuously switch from news reports to Carver Colman's last movie, "The Adjournment", before he was murdered. Meanwhile, John Thunder looks at the window hoping for his family to pick him up for a dinner out. That doesn't happen, and it saddens him deeply. On the news, it is reported that in Gotham City the Law Enforcement has joined the crowd protesting against the so-called "Supermen Theory", which attempts to answer the question about how is it possible that 97% of the world's superhumans are American. The answer seems to be that the US Government has experimented on humans through a "Department of Metahuman Affairs", as revealed by Rex Mason (a.k.a. Metamorpho), Kirk Langstrom (a.k.a. Man-Bat) and, recently, a Sondra Fuller, a.k.a. Lady Clayface. Around the world, a number of nations is trying to replicate the US's success with superhumans, carrying out an actual "metahuman arms race", while LexCorp's metahumans detectors are installed all over the world. Luthor, by the way, is in surgery at Metropolis General Hospital, while "his attacker remains in serious but stable conditions".
"The Adjourment" tells the story of a private investigator, Nathaniel Dusk (played by Colman), who is asked by Lt. Murray Abrahams to look into a case of double murder of two people who had been playing chess. As Dusk makes it clear that he won't work for free, he decides that the first thing to do is to understand who of the two neighbours was the intended victim and who was the innocent bystander. Dusk then drops in his late apartment, where he had been living with his ex-wife and kids before she was killed. In the apartment, he finds a present from her to him. Eventually, Dusk decides to help Abrahams for 24 hours, through Christmas Day.
At Wayne Manor, Alfred sees Rorschach to his room and promises him some more of his delicious pancakes. Rorschach, alone, takes off his mask and takes a shower, washing off his "dirt" (literal and metaphorical) so hard that he makes his head bleed.
Mime and Marionette enter a bar filled with Joker thugs. As the girl asks who the Joker is, they get angry and one of them threatens her to cut a deep "smile" on her face with a knife. Mime immediately points his invisible gun at the man's head: he's made fun of, but only until he pulls the trigger, blowing the thug's head. Mime and Marionette easily kill all the foes and eventually decide to meet this famous Joker.
Rorschach II dreams about the night Ozymandias unleashed an otherworldly monster on New York City. As he wakes up screaming, he's calmed by Bruce, who also says he has finished reading the journal and knows Dr. Manhattan's whereabouts: Arkham Asylum. The two break into the asylum and Batman tells Rorschach to enter a cell where he'll find his man. That was actually a plan to lock Rorschach where Batman thinks he belongs: amongst madmen. As Rorschach shouts to let him out, Batman leaves.
Appearing in "Not Victory Nor Defeat"
- Doctor Manhattan (Flashback only)
- Lady Clayface (On a TV or computer screen)
- Man-Bat (On a TV or computer screen)
- Metamorpho (On a TV or computer screen)
- Dr. Helga Jace (Mentioned only)
- Joker (Mentioned only)
- Mad Hatter (Mentioned only)
- Rorschach (Walter Kovacs) (Mentioned only)
- Sayeh (On a TV or computer screen)
- Superman (On a TV or computer screen)
- Carver Colman (On a TV or computer screen)
- Richard Nixon (Mentioned only)
- John Law (In a photograph only)
- Teddy Roosevelt (Mentioned only)
- Sgt. Rock (In a photograph only)
- Wild Huntsman (Mentioned only)
- Norma Desmond (Mentioned only)
- Rita Farr (as an infant) (In a photograph only)
- Rachel Drake (In a photograph only)
- Frank Farr (In a photograph only)
- Jackie Johnson (In a photograph only)
- Verner Bros. Studios
- Albert Verner (Mentioned only)
- Karl Verner (Mentioned only)
- Detective Bruce Nelson (Mentioned only)
- William Taylor (Mentioned only)
- Jacques Tourneur (Mentioned only)
- Elizabeth Short (Mentioned only)
- Charlotte Colman (Mentioned only)
- Robert Siodmak (Mentioned only)
- Otto Preminger (Mentioned only)
- Jules Dassin (Mentioned only)
- Don McGregor (Mentioned only)
- Jean Gillie (Mentioned only)
- Hedy Lamarr (Mentioned only)
- Frank Turtle (Mentioned only)
- Easy Company
- Tin Soldier
- Ted Grant (Mentioned only)
- Libby Lawrence (Mentioned only)
- Barbara Stanwyck (Mentioned only)
- Prime Earth
- Gotham City
- Arkham Asylum
- Wayne Manor
- Las Vegas (Mentioned only)
- Philadelphia (Mentioned only)
- Merillville, Indiana (Mentioned only)
- San Francisco (Mentioned only)
- San Francisco Police Department (Mentioned only)
- Beverly Hills (Mentioned only)
- Beverly Hills Police Department (Mentioned only)
- Hollywood (Mentioned only)
- Germany (Mentioned only)
- Pakistan (On a TV or computer screen)
- Israel (Mentioned only)
- Russia (Mentioned only)
- Qurac (Mentioned only)
- Gotham City
- Watchmen Universe (Flashback only)
- New York City (Flashback only)
- The supplemental information section (in the form of an issue of Screenland Secrets) goes over the career and death of Carver Colman. It is revealed that Elasti-girl was born from an affair her father had.
- The Adjournment was made by Verner Brothers which uses a logo nearly identical to the one used by Warner Brothers.
- In our world "Screenland Secrets" was a piece by John Holt that appeared in The Queenslander in the 1930s. The Queenslander magazine was discontinued in 1939.
- The meta-narration of The Adjournment recalls that of the Tales of the Black Freighter from Watchmen.
- The "metahuman arms race" recalls the nuclear arms race, a main theme in the Watchmen comics.
- During Rorschach II's dream sequence, a small Bubastis car decoration can be seen, presumably meaning he was a fan of Veidt's before the attack.
- In the Screenland Secrets we learn that Carver Colman was a collector of clocks, which are a main theme in the comic.