Watchmen, the HBO comic adaptation that hit the world like a blue and naked punch to the gut when it debuted, has scored the top honor it qualified for at the 2020 Emmys. After winning a handful earlier in the night for writing and acting, Watchmen blew away its competitors like Doctor Manhattan smoking Rorschach in the snow.
The limited series from Damon Lindelof explicitly kept itself contained to its riveting nine episodes, meaning that it won Outstanding Limited Series rather than Drama. The show's combination of an incredible acting ensemble, intense genre VFX, bold racial commentary, and startling twists made it a must-watch for fans and a critical favorite.
The series' writing won earlier in the night for the Hooded Justice origin story “This Extraordinary Being” and its leads, Regina King and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II. Lindelof touched on topics meaningful to the show during his acceptance speech, including the unpleasant and brushed-under-the-rug aspects of history that often have racist components.
Dedicating the win to the victims of the Tulsa Massacre that Watchmen covered as its inciting incident during its run, the showrunner was clear on the show's themes: "History is mystery. It is broken into a million puzzle pieces and many are missing. We know where those pieces are, but we don't seek them out because we know finding them will hurt. Sometimes we cause that hurt. Maybe we even benefited from it. But we have to name it before we can repair it."
Watchmen led all series in nominations when they were announced, scoring 26 nominations. The limited series already brought in seven Creative Emmys earlier in the week: Cinematography for a Limited Series or Movie; Fantasy/Sci-fi Costumes; Single-Camera Picture Editing for a Limited Series or Movie; Sound Mixing for a Limited Series or Movie; Musical Composition for a Limited Series, Movie, or Special (Original Dramatic Score); Casting for a Limited Series, Movie, or Special; and Sound Editing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Special.