- I used to be a masked avenger too, remember... I mean, I'm used to going out at three in the morning and doing something stupid.
- — Laurie Juspeczyk src
Laurel "Laurie" Juspeczyk is the second Silk Spectre, succeeding her mother. Spunky and angry, she disliked being a crimefighter, and after failing to stop Ozymandias' deadly plot to save mankind, she settled down with Dan Dreiberg and tried to have a normal life.
Laurie Juspeczyk was born in 1949. Sally Jupiter pushed her daughter into the "family business" of crime fighting. Laurie never held much interest in becoming her mother's successor, but went along with Sally's wishes anyway; growing up, the brunette Laurie knew Laurence Schexnayder was not her real father, and always believed, incorrectly, that she was the daughter of Hooded Justice.
Driven by the memories of her own experience, Sally tried to keep Laurie from knowing some of the harsher realities of life; despite this, Sally acted like an agent for her daughter, picking out her revealing costume, bringing her to the meeting of the ill-fated "Crimebusters" in a limousine and waiting outside for her to finish. After the meeting broke up, Laurie met the Comedian outside, who commented and complimented her for being the spitting image of her mother, but their conversation was broken up quickly by an angry Sally. Laurie noted that the Comedian looked sad as he watched them drive away, and she felt sorry for him.
The following car ride home was when Sally told her daughter of her history with the Comedian (but did not tell her that the Comedian was her father). Disgusted and deeply saddened for her mother's pain, Laurie never forgave the Comedian for his actions, though it seems that as time passed, and in a complicated way, Sally was able to come to terms with it, even to the point that she was willing to defend the Comedian from Laurie's derogatory remarks after he was murdered.
Shortly after the meeting of the Crimebusters, Laurie met and became involved with Doctor Manhattan, something her mother did not approve of, likening Laurie's relationship with Manhattan to being the equivalent of sleeping with an H-bomb. Drawn to him from the moment she first saw him, Laurie worked with Manhattan in some of his various domestic assignments, including the suppression of riots during the police strike of 1977. Never exactly happy being a vigilante and not happy with the government taking advantage with her relationship with the superhuman Manhattan, Laurie was more than pleased to quit being a superhero when the Keene Act of 1977 forced all but government-sponsored superheroes to retire.
After retiring, Laurie lived with Dr. Manhattan for a number of years, but their relationship became strained, owing to Manhattan's growing disconnection with humanity. Rorschach came to see the two one evening, warning them of a potential masked hero killer and asking for their help in stopping him. Both turn him down, with Manhattan teleporting him out of the facility.
Laurie eventually left Manhattan and began living with Dan Dreiberg and the two soon became romantically involved. One night, Dreiberg and Laurie decided to don their old costumes and take Dreiberg's airship "Archie" out. During their flight, they found a building on fire and rescued the inhabitants. Excited by returning to being heroes, the two make love, afterwards deciding that Rorschach may have been right about his masked killer theory and break him out of prison.
Saving the World
Soon after, Laurie was brought to Mars by Manhattan, where she attempted to convince him to save humanity from impending nuclear war. During their conversation, Laurie finally came to the realization that, to her horror, her father was really the Comedian. Moved by the sheer unlikelihood of two people as different as Sally Jupiter and the Comedian producing a child, and the child being Laurie, Dr. Manhattan realized the miracle and value of human life and agreed to save the planet. The pair returned to Earth, only to find half of New York City destroyed by Ozymandias' creature. They teleported to Ozymandias' lair in Antarctica, where Laurie attempted to shoot Ozymandias, only to be thwarted by his ability to catch bullets. After realizing that Ozymandias' plan had worked, and that, despite the loss of several million lives, nuclear war had been averted while also uniting the nations of the world, the heroes (with the exception of Rorschach) decided that Ozymandias' plan should be kept secret to serve the greater good. Veidt offers Dan and herself hospitality, to which they accept.
In Hiding as Hollis
Shortly after these events, Laurie and Dan Dreiberg adopted new appearances and identities, now calling themselves Sandra and Sam Hollis, and sporting blonde hair. They visited Sally Jupiter - now living in a retirement home - and Laurie told her mother that she had realized the truth about her father. Coming to terms with the knowledge, Sam and Sandra left soon afterwards, indicating that they would continue to adventure, although Laurie expressed the wish for a better superhero identity, a more protective leather outfit, a mask, and a firearm.
By 1992, Laurie and Dan had given up adventuring entirely, settling down in a quiet house and neighborhood, still under the Hollis names. They even had a daughter they named after Laurie's mother, who died sometime prior to that year. After Doctor Manhattan destroyed all nuclear devices and reset the Doomsday Clock, he sent the Hollis family something special: a boy named Clark, for them to adopt as their own.
Powers and Abilities
- Hand-to-Hand Combat (Advanced): She is one of the most skilled martial artists on the planet. She has also been trained by her mother, the original Silk Spectre, and other teachers.
- Firearms: Juspeczyk is able to use firearms, as she shot a bullet at Adrian, which would have hit his chest had he not moved his hand in the bullet's path and had it lodged into his palm.
- Like the other Watchmen protagonists, Silk Spectre was originally based on a Charlton Comics hero, in her case the company's main female character, Nightshade. However, her link with the original character is more tenuous. In the early stages of the project's development, Alan Moore was not very familiar with Nightshade and did not have precise ideas about what he could do with her. When the idea of using Charlton superheroes was abandoned, Moore also abandoned the idea of using Nightshade as a model as he did not find the character very interesting. According to the writer, aside from the fact that both characters were the only girls in each of their respective groups, there is no connection beyond that. Moore was influenced by Black Canary and Phantom Lady in creating Silk Spectre.
- 27 Appearances of Laurel Juspeczyk (Watchmen)
- 17 Images featuring Laurel Juspeczyk (Watchmen)
- 2 Quotations by or about Laurel Juspeczyk (Watchmen)
- Character Gallery: Laurel Juspeczyk (Watchmen)