Before Watchmen has finally arrived! Now…is it any good so far? LETS FIND OUT!
Hello everyone! Its your friendly neighborhood nerd, Richard, here! A while ago, DC Comics announced they would be releasing a prequel comic book event titled: Before Watchmen. Each series under the Before Watchmen banner would follow the characters from the original graphic novel, and what they were up to…Before Watchmen…yea. ANYWAYS! As an avid fan of the original comic, and the film adaptation, I was very excited about these books. I even expressed my excitement, much to Dan’s surprise, on an episode of The Director’s Cut. I can admit, I didn’t think a prequel, as usual, was a good idea. I mean, Watchmen is a classic in the world of comics! To many, Its the Citizen Kane of the comic book world! To create a prequel should be considered a slight against the comic book gods! However, When DC announced whom they hired to bring this event to life…I knew they weren’t playing around. It didn’t seem, to me, that they were just attempting to milk an old cash cow. When you drop names like Brian Azzarello, Darwyn Cooke, Adam Hughes, Len Wein, Amanda Conner, and Andy Kubert you can’t help but expect quality work. As of today, 4 of the 7 series have started: Minutemen, Silk Spectre, Comedian, and Nite Owl. And this is what I thought of them. ENJOY!
Written and Drawn by: Darwyn Cooke
So, Minutemen tells the tale of the Watchmen before the Watchmen. The golden age of the Watchmen world, if you will. The first issue introduces each member of Minutemen, and how the team came to be. This was one of the titles I was most excited for. Darwyn Cooke has always been known for his classic, retro style comic books. The best examples of this is his Justice League story, New Frontier, and his run on The Spirit. As expected, his work on Minutemen doesn’t disappoint at all! This is a beautiful comic, and the perfect example of what this entire event should be. Cooke’s artwork is more then a perfect fit for this series. The retro style, the color scheme, everything is perfect. I also really dug the tale being told here. I loved the way Cooke used the Under the Hood book Hollis Mason authored to introduce each character. Admittedly, It does get a bit wordy at times, but It doesn’t take away from the books magic.
Silk Spectre #1
Written by: Darwyn Cooke and Amanda Conner
Drawn by: Amanda Conner
One of the key aspects of the story of Silk Spectre II, Laurie Juspeczyk, is her estranged relationship with her mother, the first Silk Spectre, Sally Jupiter. That story is on full display in this first issue. The story plays out like an R-rated Teen High School chick flick. It’s not the strongest story, and it’s kind of predictable, but it’s a nice fit for Laurie, regardless. However, the best aspect of this book is the artwork. OMG! Amanda Conner is an amazing artist! I found her artwork to be very faithful to the original comic, but with a nice addition of her own style and flare. Overall, I’m interested to see what happens next, but I didn’t find it the strongest title from Before Watchmen so far.
Written by: Brian Azzarello
Drawn by: J.G. Jones
The Comedian is one of the most despicable, vile, hateful, and messed up characters ever created in comics! And I couldn’t have been more excited to see how Brian Azzarello was going to write him! That being said, I was kind of disappointed by this issue. The story being told wasn’t bad, but…I wasn’t reading about The Comedian. More like his innocent twin brother. The majority of the time, we see Eddie Blake, The Comedian, playing ball and chit chatting with The Kennedy family. Then he gets verbally man handled by Jackie Kennedy! This is not the Comedian I know! However, There has always been a hidden heart to the character. A kinder side that’s never really been brought to the surface 100%. So, I can’t help but be equally intrigued by this issue. The best aspect is the artwork, again! J.G. Jones does a fantastic Job bringing the book to life. Especially during the action scene towards the end. I’ll still read more, but not really from excitement anymore. Mainly just from curiosity.
Nite Owl #1
Written by: J. Michael Straczynski
Drawn by: Andy Kubert
When I mentioned earlier that I was excited for Before Watchmen because of the creative teams DC hired, This series was the exception…sort of. Nite Owl has always been a favorite character of mine. When I first heard about Before Watchmen, I instantly wanted to know who would be tackling Dan Dreibergs’s story. When I saw Andy Kubert was doing the art, I got very excited! He has always been like a modern day Neal Adams, and I could totally see his style doing Dan justice! However, When I saw JMS was writing…I cried on the inside. And, sadly as expected, Nite Owl #1 was the weakest of all the books so far. The story isn’t exciting, nor is it terrible. Its just…there. It doesn’t feel like it needs to exist. The comic just speeds through Dan’s transformation into Nite Owl. It basically read like a rushed re-telling of the origin of Tim Drake, the 3rd Robin. Because of this, The art had no room to shine. Though, there are some amazing bits of artwork on display. However, Its not often those bits show up. I really hope this series proves me wrong come issue two, but Its exactly was I expected it to be…a big summer bummer.
Anyways,This is what I thought of Before Watchmen so far. Its not great, but its not terrible either. Each comic features amazing artwork, but the stories are a mixed bag. I’m still excited for the rest of the issues, and Can’t wait for them to come out! In the comments below, What are your thoughts on Before Watchmen so far? TELL ME NOW!! Anyways, Stay tuned for my thoughts on the next batch of Before Watchmen Books, coming soon, and don’t forget to visit www.youtube.com/channel23hahaha to checkout new videos and episodes of my awesome show: COMICS!