DC ENTERTAINMENT OFFICIALLY ANNOUNCES “BEFORE WATCHMEN” SERIES

Havent been following the comic scene all that well recently it seems, since this announcement came completely as surprise for me..

Today, DC ENTERTAINMENT announced it’s plans to expand on the best selling graphic novel of all time, Watchmen (originally penned by the incredible Alan Moore, and illustrated by the equally talented Dave Gibbons), by producing a collection of stories set as a prequel to the original, titled ‘Before Watchmen’.

For those who are unaware of the critically acclaimed graphic novel, which is listed as one of TIME’S Top 100 novels, and of it’s (impressive) big budget Hollywood film adaption by Zack Snyder, you’re missing out on a great piece of fiction. Alan Moore has a way of tapping into the areas not commonly explored by writers at the time and has created a chilling and interesting story which explores an ‘alternate real world’ occupied by wanna-be super heros, freak accidents of nature, and a political world crisis. 

It was an original story, created by Moore, which had a definite beginning and a definite end, and that was his vision. Though out of his hands, Moore even refused to have any part in the Hollywood film adaption, as it went beyond his original vision of his story.

So it’s now a bit of a shock, to me at least, to see DC wanting to expand the series Moore created, without Moore’s consent. DC have assembled a whole new group of writers and illustrators that will take the prequel series into a ‘relevant and new direction’. It will be an ‘inter-connected’ prequel mini-series that promises to build up the foundation to the original story.

Don’t get me wrong. The teams that DC have organised for the effort are impressive and will no doubt do a good job, but I just feel that one should respect the original series creator and his original vision of his story and universe that he created.

So I approach this with some unease. I’m a fan of the story, and would love to see the characters explored more in some way or another, though I believe that if Alan Moore himself isn’t guiding the project with his creative input, then it goes against everything which made the orginal so great. But with that said though, I would more than most likely buy the series, as I’m truthfully interested to see the new set’s of creative vision the new writers and artists have for the characters and universe. 

But let me put my negativity aside for a second, and let me admit that more Watchmen, while might not be needed, certainly ain’t all THAT bad!

Anyways, so enough about my opinion on the matter, I wanna hear yours. Do you support the new series and will you read them? Or do you feel that this prequel series without Moore is not worth your time and interest?

Let us know!

Head over the break to read the media release about the series supplied by DC..

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.”

Stepping up to the challenge is a group of the comic book industry’s most iconoclastic writers and artists – including Brian Azzarello (100 BULLETS), Lee Bermejo (JOKER), Amanda Conner (POWER GIRL), Darwyn Cooke (JUSTICE LEAGUE: NEW FRONTIER), John Higgins (WATCHMEN), Adam Hughes (CATWOMAN), J.G. Jones (FINAL CRISIS), Andy Kubert (FLASHPOINT), Joe Kubert (SGT. ROCK), Jae Lee (BATMAN: JEKYLL AND HYDE), J. Michael Straczynski (SUPERMAN: EARTH ONE) and Len Wein (SWAMP THING).

BEFORE WATCHMEN includes:

  • 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.

“Comic books are perhaps the largest and longest running form of collaborative fiction,” said DiDio and Lee. “Collaborative storytelling is what keeps these fictional universes current and relevant.”

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