So DC finally went and did it — announced a follow-up to Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ “The Watchmen.”
And it’s not a measly sequel. It’s a series of seven miniseries, dubbed “Before Watchmen,” by some of the bigger names in comics these days. They will be followed by the one-shot “Before Watchmen: Epilogue.”
I’m surprised it’s taken this long. The groundbreaking, 12-issue series debuted in 1986, playing with heroic archetypes in a way that helped push comics into a more literary and scholarly realm.
Unsurprisingly, Moore isn’t too keen on the idea, telling the New York Times the move is “completely shameless. … 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.”
Moore and Gibbons aren’t involved, but colorist John Higgins is drawing “Curse of the Crimson Corsair,” a pirate back-up that will appear in all seven books, a nod to the “Tales of the Black Freighter” pages that appeared in the original.
In an interesting PR move, DC gave eight media outlets exclusive interviews and cover art from the books, one each. Alas, Geek Watch was not included.
So for more details, read each of the interviews at their home pages (from the DC blog):
• USA Today: RORSCHACH – Interview with writer Brian Azzarello (artist Lee Bermejo)
• LA Times Hero Complex: MINUTEMEN – Interview with writer/artist Darwyn Cooke
• The New York Times: THE COMEDIAN – Interview with writer Brian Azzarello (artist J.G. Jones)
• Entertainment Weekly: SILK SPECTRE – Interview with writer Darwyn Cooke (artist Amanda Conner)
• The Hollywood Reporter: NITE OWL – Interview with writer J. Michael Straczynski (artists Joe and Andy Kubert)
• Wired: OZYMANDIAS – Interview with writer Len Wein (artist Jae Lee)
• Comic Book Resources: DR. MANHATTAN – Interview with writer J. Michael Straczynski (artist J.G. Jones)
• Associated Press: CURSE OF THE CRIMSON CORSAIR – Interview with writer Len Wein and artist John Higgins
I actually didn’t read “The Watchmen” when it first came out. It looked too grim and gritty for my tastes. But I did read it later and found it quite the compelling read.
But I’m not so enamored of it I cringe at the thought of this new project. It will all depend on the execution. I’m most curious about what Darwyn Cooke will do with his book. I loved “The New Frontier,” among other works.
Good luck, DC.
What do you think, readers?