Damon Lindelof has remixed Alan Moore, and David Gibbons classic graphic novel and the action has been transported to 2019 Tulsa, Oklahoma. The main character is the African-American Detective Angela Abar AKA Sister Night (Regina King), who has learned her grandfather Will Reeves (Louis Gossett, Jr.) was Hooded Justice- meaning the original superhero in Watchmen‘s world was a black man.
DC has woven the series in the influence of its two greatest heroes Batman and Superhero. The Man of Steel existed as a comic book creation; in 1938, NYPD Officer Will Reeves read Action Comic, the first appearance of Superman. Snyder’s film is set in a different Watchmen universe, and Batman hasn’t been explicitly mentioned in HBO’s series.
Petey did some digging into the entire “Black Mask” movie subgenre; Sister Night is a blacksploitation spoof on Silhouette of the Minutemen. Other Black Mask parodies include Black Superman, Tarantula, and Batman, which is a blacksploitation spin on Nite Owl. This is an unexpected but still strangely fitting way for Batman to exist in HBO’s Watchmen.
It’s a clever inversion that in Watchmen, Batman was “inspired” by Nite Owl – but with the added twist of social commentary wherein, a black Batman spoofs the white Nite Owl. Meanwhile, the truth all along is Hooded Justice, the first masked avenger who has ties to Batman’s pulpy and violent vigilante origins, was secretly a black man.
Ultimately, Batman is simply too good of an idea not to rise eventually but, in Watchmen, it was the black culture that ‘created’ the Dark Knight to mock Nite Owl.