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Doctor Arthur Watts is an antagonist in RWBY who was introduced in "The Next Step" of Volume 4. He is an associate of Salem and part of her inner circle. He is also a disgraced former scientist from Atlas who had faked his own death in the Paladin Incident. He serves as the main antagonist of Volume 7 alongside Tyrian Callows.
Watts is a tall middle-aged man with a slim build and slightly tanned skin. He has short black and gray hair as well as a thick mustache and eyebrows, and green eyes. Originally, Arthur wears a grayish-blue overcoat with yellow linings, a yellow dress shirt, and a black necktie. His pants are the same color as his overcoat. His yellow-buttoned undercoat and fingerless gloves match his cordovan shoes, under which he wears yellow socks.
Following his arrival in Atlas, Watts began to wear a large, symmetrical purple and pink coat with fur lining along its hood. Additionally, he wore four rings on each hand, which he could use to hack Atlesian technology.
After his battle with James Ironwood, the right side of Arthur's face is left with friction burns after being dragged across the floor by Ironwood, where he is defeated. His right eye appears to be somewhat damaged by this.
In "Worst Case Scenario", it is revealed that when Watts had worked with Pietro Polendina, he wore a yellow turtleneck sweater underneath a white lab coat along with light gray pants and black shoes. His mustache was thinner at the time.
Watts is formal and sophisticated. He speaks in a refined accent, yet he can be arrogant and condescending, even to his allies. However, he is humble enough to admit not to take credit for things he did not achieve by himself, for when Salem initially thinks he found out where the Spring Maiden is, he reveals it was Qrow Branwen when he spoke to Leonardo Lionheart.
Watts states that he has a very low opinion of failure, which extends to Cinder Fall after she was defeated by Ruby Rose. He criticizes and belittles Cinder and enjoys provoking her every chance he gets, especially since she cannot talk back. He also looks down upon her underlings, Emerald Sustrai and Mercury Black. However, Salem chastises him for his needless "malignance" and he avoids speaking out of line in her presence.
Arthur also has a tendency to become overly excited about new topics of study. Case in point, when he and Lionheart report to Salem about the location of the Spring Maiden, Arthur shows immense interest in the Seer.
Even before his apparent fall from grace in his field, Arthur had a self-serving and strategic mindset, creating a backdoor in Mantle's security network for his own personal use and potential exploitation. He is shown to be spiteful and vengeful, with his apparent motive behind joining Salem being rage against Ironwood and Pietro Polendina, claiming Ironwood never appreciated his genius and making an effort to spite James after getting Jacques Schnee on his side.
This grudge against Ironwood and Pietro also heavily emphasizes that Watts, similar to his associate Cinder, possess a massive ego and intense pride in his abilities and talents, and took great offense when Ironwood refused to acknowledge the greatness of his genius and felt a severe blow to his pride when the General selected Pietro's work over his own.
Watts is rather sadistic, as shown in his evident satisfaction in trapping James Ironwood's organic left arm during their fight within Amity Tower. In "The Enemy of Trust", Watts contently smiled when he saw Salem and her incoming army have finally arrived in Atlas; knowing that the kingdom is now about to get what's coming. However, he does not relish in the pain and fear of his enemies to the same extent as his colleagues, Cinder Fall and Tyrian Callows.
Powers and AbilitiesEdit
As a well-respected member of Salem's inner circle, Arthur Watts is a dangerous and incredibly intelligent individual. He is a masterful scientist, specializing in the fields of computer engineering, mechanical engineering, anatomical engineering, espionage, guerrilla warfare, and security systems. He is held in high regard by Salem, who typically addresses him by his title of "Doctor", which indicates her respect for his capabilities.
Watts' fighting style is very methodical, keeping track of the number of shots fired by himself and his opponents. He is also somewhat agile for his age, moving deftly using his rings to create hard-light Dust projections to create platforms across vast distances. He even is able to use his projections similarly to bear traps, serving to pin his targets' limbs in place at the risk of burning off a great deal of flesh if they attempt to flee. In addition, he displays some skill in close quarters fighting, briefly defending himself against Ironwood's attacks while landing a few blows in return.
Programming & HackingEdit
It made clear in Volume 7 that he was the one who developed the virus Cinder used to hack into the CCT tower and rig the tournament in "Dance Dance Infiltration", as his signature W can be seen on Cinder's Scroll when she uses the virus to choose Coco Adel and Yatsuhashi Daichi's tournament match.
Watts' acumen in technology and computer systems, along with rings on almost every finger, allows him to synchronize an array of scrolls to hack into the Atlesian security systems. In "A Night Off", the use of multiple, small scrolls to make up the processing power of a single, centralized system permits Watts to remain mobile and difficult to locate, playing into his pragmatic and strategic mindset.
He is also able to give Tyrian Callows a new stinger after his old one got cut off by Ruby, displaying prowess in biomechanical engineering. The new stinger and tail that he constructed do not appear to inhibit Tyrian's production of venom, but rather use it, with the addition of making the actual stinger itself retractable, while the segments to the tail seamlessly mesh with the organic base's flexibility and range of motion.
Watt's eight rings also possess the ability to create hexagonal hard light dust shields to protect him from bullets and even utilize the shields themselves as platforms to travel around mid-air, granting him additional mobility. The Shields themselves are powerful enough to protect himself from several shots of Ironwood's Guns. Additionally, the Rings also possess a trap function, where by placing the Rings in four corners to shape box-like magnets and activating them, Watts can handcuff a person by literally trapping one of his opponent's limbs in a Hard Light shield that, if attempted to forcibly remove by sliding past it, will severely burn and even permanently damage their limb.
- Arthur Watts alludes to John Watson, from the Sherlock Holmes stories, if he had connected with James Moriarty instead of Sherlock Holmes. The name Arthur likely alludes to the author of the original Sherlock Holmes stories, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
- The name Arthur comes from the Roman clan name Artorius, meaning noble, courageous. Noble brings dark and royal colors to mind, while courageous brings red colors to mind.
- A "watt" is a unit of power used to express the rate of energy transfer which is generally correlated to electricity in modernized society. As a result, it invokes the colors associated with electricity especially shades of yellow, blue, and white seen in lightning.
- The same "W" symbol that is present when Cinder is rigging the Vytal Festival tournament rounds appears on his customized personal Scroll and as a hologram in "Welcome to Haven" when Watts speaks to Lionheart.
- Watts, like Roman Torchwick, and Mercury Black, are notable for being some of the rare active fighters that succeeded without ever discovering their Semblance.
- He is jokingly referred to as "Daddy Long Legs" by Kerry Shawcross.
- ↑ RWBY Volume 7 Crew Commentary – Chapter 10
- ↑ "Gravity"
- ↑ RWBY Panel | RTX 2020
- ↑ RWBY: Amity Arena character bio
- ↑ Kerry Shawcross' Tweet
- ↑ The World of RWBY: The Official Companion
- ↑ RWBY Panel | RTX 2020
- ↑ Rooster Teeth Tumblr Q&A October 5, 2017
- ↑ RWBY: Volume 7 Director's Commentary – Chapter 2