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When our streets were overrun with crime, we thought the best way of stopping it was to arrest the criminals. Lock them up. Punish them. But in the end, the solution to the problem was control.

Lord Vetinari to Captain Sam Vimes, "Twilight Canyons"

Havelock Vetinari is a character who appears in the BBC America TV show, The Watch. The character is based off the character of the same name in Terry Pratchett's hit Discworld novels.


Approximately twenty years ago, Lord Vetinari resurrected the ancient crime guilds in the city of Ankh-Morpork following a major crime wave. As such, crime has been legalized within the city, provided it is carried out under the regulations that have been laid down.

Twenty years later, Lord Vetinari summons Captain Sam Vimes and Sergeant Detritus of the City Watch and sets them a task: to recover a book stolen from the Unseen University's library.

Later, as a creature called the Noble Dragon begins terrorizing the residents of Ankh-Morpork, Vetinari learns of the Watch's efforts to investigate it and the activities of Carcer Dun, the man who summoned it. They subtly order Sam Vimes to continue the investigation, while making it seem outwardly as if they are ordering the exact opposite. The Watch is successful in locating the sword Gawain, which can control the Noble Dragon, and Vetinari congratulates Vimes on a job well-done, saying that perhaps they should take him off-duty more often. They order him to interrogate the sword, a sentient artifact, despite his urging to keep it locked away. They then show him a case with bloodied remains of bounty hunters who tried to solve their problem, saying "you can't kill a beast by feeding it." Vimes realizes that Vetinari intends to try to control the dragon themself and they warn Vimes that failure to comply with their orders can only be fatal.


  • Whereas the Havelock Vetinari of the Discworld novels is a man, Lord Vetinari on The Watch presents feminine, and on posters is depicted with a beard. Characters sometimes refer to them using male pronouns, supporting the character as non-binary.
  • Their full name is revealed as "Havelock Vetinari" in the episode "Not on My Watch."

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