‘Watchmen’: All the Smiley Face Easter Eggs You May Have Missed

HBO took the world by storm with their continuation of the Watchmen comic book. The show is heavily packed with references and nods to the source material. Those who’ve read the book first have a higher knowledge of what goes on than anyone who watched the show only.

Watchmen contains various hidden references and Easter eggs in the first season that will have any fan screaming with joy. With that said, here are all the smiley faces Easter eggs you may have missed on the show.

Synopsis of ‘Watchmen’

The show is set three decades after the events in 1985. This was the same period when the graphic DC comic by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons ended. During that year, one vigilante Adrian Veidt made a fake attack that ended with millions of lives lost.

Though crude, the fake attack coerced nations to work together to help prevent a nuclear holocaust. Veidt’s previous allies found his techniques abhorrent, and Rorschach planned to expose him to the world. However, Doctor Manhattan vaporized him before he could make good of his threats.

Before Rorschach died, he had submitted his journal for publication. Thirty-four years after the incidents in the comics, a white supremacist group called the Seventh Kavalry, which got their hands on the publications, used the information to attack minority groups.

The Kavalry attacked the police officers of the Tulsa Police Department. Of the 40 homes the group attacked, only two officers survived, Angela Abar and Chief Judd Crawford. As a result, a law was passed that mandated officers to wear masks while on the job to hide their identity.

As the police force works on cracking down the Seventh Kavalry, Angela finds herself working to stop two plots to kidnap Dr. Manhattan, a survivor of the Tulsa riot events and the original masked hero.

The smiley face Easter eggs on the show

Regina King
Regina King | Rodin Eckenroth/FilmMagic

Watchmen is full of symbolism that requires a detailed prior understanding of the events in the comic book. Throughout the series, viewers see various smiley faces that even the keenest of eyes can miss, starting with Angela’s breakfast. In the pilot, Angela, while making a demonstration during her son’s career day, cracks five eggs in a bowl.

When the camera shifts to the underside of the plate, one can see a clear smiley face formed by the eggs in the bowl. Angela’s breakfast consisting of strategically cracked egg yolks lays the foundation for more smiley faces to come throughout the show.

Another case of symbolism as highlighted by Mental Floss, is the comedian’s most famous motif. Watchmen has a motif that forms the basis of the story. The graphic comic begins off with the comedian’s death. At the time of his demise, the comedian was wearing a yellow smiley face button.

The face also appeared in Zack Snyder’s 2009 movie of the same name. The show continues with its thematic smiley face elements. It creates subtle reimaginations of the smiley faces, including one scene featuring an overhead shot of a dining room that looks like the hands on a clock.

Watchmen also features many actual eggs, both in conversation or in actuality. However, many of the eggs in the series are symbolic and have hidden meanings that also act as a reference to the comic. A good example is when Angela smashes a tray of eggs in the finale. However, she finds one unbroken egg, which she consumes. Doctor Manhattan left the egg behind to transfer his powers.

The blood on the smiley faces

The comedian’s button had blood spatter from his demise in the comics. The series’ attention to detail with every smiley face Easter egg is highly remarkable. When Angela creates the smiley face breakfast demonstration, there is a small string of blood in one of the yolks that stands for the left eye.

Another subtle, easy-to-miss reference to the iconic smiley faces is the drop of Chief Crawford’s blood on his police badge after his hanging. The blood splatter is similar to the one on the comedian’s button.

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