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icon_uk ([personal profile] icon_uk) wrote in [community profile] scans_daily2012-02-01 03:37 pm

DC finally confirm Watchmen prequels (Updated with a pithy JMS comment)

From DC's blog "The Source"

This summer, DC Entertainment will publish all-new stories expanding on the acclaimed WATCHMEN universe. As highly anticipated as they are controversial, the seven inter-connected prequel mini-series will build on the foundation of the original WATCHMEN, the bestselling graphic novel of all time. BEFORE WATCHMEN will be the collective banner for all seven titles, from DC Comics.
“It’s our responsibility as publishers to find new ways to keep all of our characters relevant,” said DC Entertainment Co-Publishers Dan DiDio and Jim Lee. “After twenty five years, the Watchmen are classic characters whose time has come for new stories to be told. We sought out the best writers and artists in the industry to build on the complex mythology of the original.”

A few covers...

  • RORSCHACH (4 issues) – Writer: Brian Azzarello. Artist: Lee Bermejo
  • MINUTEMEN (6 issues) – Writer/Artist: Darwyn Cooke
  • COMEDIAN (6 issues) – Writer: Brian Azzarello. Artist: J.G. Jones
  • DR. MANHATTAN (4 issues) – Writer: J. Michael Straczynski. Artist: Adam Hughes
  • NITE OWL (4 issues) – Writer: J. Michael Straczynski. Artists: Andy and Joe Kubert
  • OZYMANDIAS (6 issues) – Writer: Len Wein. Artist: Jae Lee
  • SILK SPECTRE (4 issues) – Writer: Darwyn Cooke. Artist: Amanda Conner

Each week, a new issue will be released, and will feature a two-page back-up story called CURSE OF THE CRIMSON CORSAIR, written by original series editor Len Wein and with art by original series colorist John Higgins. There will also be a single issue, BEFORE WATCHMEN: EPILOGUE, featuring the work of various writers and artists, and a CRIMSON CORSAIR story by Wein and Higgins.

“The original series of WATCHMEN is the complete story that Alan Moore and I wanted to tell. However, I appreciate DC’s reasons for this initiative and the wish of the artists and writers involved to pay tribute to our work. May these new additions have the success they desire,” said Dave Gibbons, WATCHMEN co-creator and original series artist.

However, for another POV, try The New York Times, which has a less flattering few comments from Alan Moore

Mr. Moore, who has disassociated himself from DC Comics and the industry at large, called the new venture “completely shameless.”

Speaking by telephone from his home in Northampton, England, Mr. Moore said, “I tend to take this latest development as a kind of eager confirmation that they are still apparently dependent on ideas that I had 25 years ago.

So your thoughts? Have to say, they ARE bringing some a-listers to this, all people who COULD have said "No".

This from Newsarama

J. Michael Straczynski, who's writing Nite Owl and Dr. Manhattan mini-series as part of the line, told the Hollywood Reporter that "The first time all of us got together in New York to solidify the storyline, we each had copies of Watchmen in hand and whenever a question was raised about what happened to whom and when, we’d flip through looking for the slightest clue. I joked at the time that it looked a lot like Saturday afternoon Bible Study."

Most Bible Study groups don't gather to write a Bible prequel, however. But Straczynski also calls the argument that the Watchmen characters should remain sealed in the original series forever and never be touched again, "absolutely understandable and deeply flawed":

"Leaving aside the fact that the Watchmen characters were variations on pre-existing characters created for the Charleton Comics universe, Straczynski continued, “it should be pointed out that Alan has spent most of the last decade writing very good stories about characters created by other writers, including Alice (from Alice in Wonderland), Dorothy (from Wizard of Oz), Wendy (from Peter Pan), as well as Captain Nemo, the Invisible Man, Jekyll and Hyde, and Professor Moriarty (used in the successful League of Extraordinary Gentlemen). I think one loses a little of the moral high ground to say, ‘I can write characters created by Jules Verne, H.G. Wells, Robert Louis Stevenson, Arthur Conan Doyle and Frank Baum, but it’s wrong for anyone else to write my characters.’”

Does he have a point?
golden_orange: trust me, i'm wearing a vegetable. (Default)

[personal profile] golden_orange 2012-02-02 12:48 am (UTC)(link)
To be ENTIRELY fair, it's not just DC -- Moore himself kind of frames the debate on this subject in the 'sealed box' artistic fashion, at least according to the news article (which does tend to focus on his quote about ideas he had twenty-five years ago rather than his legitimate gripe about creator's rights).

DC, of course, have a reason to frame the debate in those terms as you've mentioned and brush over the political / ethical aspects, but it's not as if Moore doesn't kind of make it easy for them to do so.
citygod: (Default)

[personal profile] citygod 2012-02-02 12:53 am (UTC)(link)
Totally agree - Moore can be an ass but that doesn't make him wrong. (Which is known as the Chris Hitchens Conundrum, I believe).