Warning: Spoilers ahead for episode 3 of HBO’s Watchmen, and also maybe for the next wave of trendy sex toys.
On Sunday’s episode of Watchmen, viewers were introduced (or, depending on your familiarity with the original 1980s comic series, reintroduced) to Laurie Blake, formerly known as Laurie Juspeczyk, the second Silk Spectre. In the show, which takes place 30 years after the end of comics, she’s a former masked vigilante turned FBI agent. Also, she’s the owner of an enormous metal vibrator modeled after her ex’s hog, which she carries around with her in a locked briefcase.
The massive blue sex toy is inspired by Dr. Manhattan, the huge, radioactive, all-powerful, all-knowing, blue superbeing Laurie dated for 15 years in her youth, and who later hightailed it to Mars. It has detachable balls, and is — conservatively — the size of a small, Midwestern grain silo.
Watching Jean Smart fondle the foot-long dildo, my first thought was, “Is that a Maglite?” My second thought was, “That doesn’t seem very pleasant.”
In the Watchmen universe, humanity has made some technological strides. There is the flying Owlship we see crash in the pilot, Tim Blake Nelson’s interrogation pod, whatever Jeremy Irons’s human cloning program is. And yet, sex-toy technology seems to have stalled. Laurie’s supervibrator, while indeed huge, and beautiful in a sort of harsh, industrial way — as Watchmen supervising producer and the co-writer of this episode, Lila Byock, told Slate, “When you see it up close, it really kind of looks like a Jeff Koons” — it doesn’t seem like it would provide a particularly enjoyable nostalgia wank.
Using the Dr. Manhattan dildo would be like sitting on a stainless steel bollard. The metal seems like it would take a while to warm up, and the rod’s sheer size would probably make it difficult to maneuver. Should one attempt to take it in its entirety, the safety and integrity of one’s internal organs would likely be threatened.
Perhaps I am the one living in the past, though. Admittedly, as far as I know, I have never copulated with a being who can bend time and space. Maybe to Laurie, a woman who has effectively had sex with a God, our small, cutesy, pastel-colored vibrators of today would look ridiculous, ineffective.
In the end, Laurie puts the gargantuan dildo back in its briefcase, and goes to hook up with her FBI underling. Still, as the episode ended, I kept wondering, are the detachable balls the battery pack? Does the briefcase recharge them, like a sexy Away suitcase? Was the vibrator mass-produced, or custom-made? Is there a sort of warming gel that comes with it? Maybe some of these questions will be answered as the season goes on. Or, probably, some sex-toy company will re-create the Dr. Manhattan dildo, and we can all see for ourselves.