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DC Comics Announces "Before Watchmen" 130

Posted by samzenpus
from the watchmen-kids dept.
eldavojohn writes "Currently DC Comics' site has a banner announcing a new series called "Before Watchmen." Unfortunately the blog pages for this new series appear to be experiencing high traffic and are unreachable. But a number of sites are breaking down these new endeavors that will be giving backstories to the seven characters and who will be creating each of those series. There's also speculation ranging from how much this must upset Alan Moore (egg frying on his forehead seems to be the popular guess) to the theory that this is simply for more movie material. There's an abundance of information from interviews released today."
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DC Comics Announces "Before Watchmen"

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  • Before. (Score:4, Funny)

    by grub (11606) <slashdot@grub.net> on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @02:50PM (#38894193) Homepage Journal

    I heard rumour that before Big Blue Wang there was Massive Pink Vag. Unfortunately the site is down and this can't be confirmed.
  • the nightmares of the blue wang come flooding back
    • Re:And... (Score:5, Funny)

      by jmac_the_man (1612215) on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @02:57PM (#38894291)
      I came to this movie because it was Watchmen, not because I wanted to, you know, watch men.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      The sight of a male member causes you nightmares? Fair enough, it's blue, but have you considered getting professional help?

      • Re:And... (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @06:59PM (#38897311)

        That's what I was thinking. It just goes to show just how hyper-prudish North America is. It was depicted in an entirely non-sexual way, but still everyone screams bloody murder that this is absolutely unacceptable. On the other hand, depictions of a dog with its head axed open, or someone exploding into a fine mist, or hell... even the idea of millions of people murdered by a blast of energy... all of this is fine. But a penis. OH HOLY MOTHER OF GOD, WE'RE ALL GOING TO HELL FOR SEEING IT! But seeing cold-blooded murder? Eh, whatever, it's a Tuesday.

        It's just as bad as that girl during the oscars a few years ago (I think it was Mariah Carey?) where their breast was every so slightly exposed for like... 1/4 of a second. HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF COMPLAINTS. I mean sweet christ, what the hell is wrong with this situation?!? The perfectly natural human body (well, in Watchmen it was blue, but you get the idea) is reviled, and considered disgusting to show, but murder, dismemberment, and any and all forms of violence are perfectly fine?

        Holy fuck, society, you have no idea just how fucked up you are. Keep walking down this path, and we might as well be Iran. It makes me very sad to be alive in these times, and is one of the many reasons why I actively hate society here as a whole. If only countries that didn't have these fucked up priorities didn't have their own severe problems.

        I've heard Iceland isn't that bad...

  • by binarylarry (1338699) on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @02:53PM (#38894239)

    I can't wait to have Alan Moore sign my copy of Watchman Babies: V for Vacation!

  • What are you waiting for... do it.. DO IT!
  • Greed (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sjpadbury (169729) on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @02:54PM (#38894263) Homepage

    Meanwhile, DC continues to show there is no move too desperate that they won't risk alienating their fans in the quest for the dollar.

    (Note: Not multiple dollars, they'll do it for just 1....)

    • b-b-but think of all the opportunities (revenue) for the ensuing movies! I'm sure they'll be amazing too! The big studios sure know what fans want.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Pft. No matter what, some fan will be unhappy, some will be happy. That's the way of things. For everybody wanting MOARHS SUPERMANS there is another who wants BAZTZMEN!

      Oh sure, there's stuff they can do that's universally panned, but that's the exception more than the rule. And there are folks at DC who recognize that, just want the final episode of Brave and the Bold.

    • Re:Greed (Score:5, Insightful)

      by localman57 (1340533) on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @03:04PM (#38894415)

      Meanwhile, DC continues to show there is no move too desperate that they won't risk alienating their fans in the quest for the dollar.

      (Note: Not multiple dollars, they'll do it for just 1....)

      What dollars? Wasn't the original Watchmen a huge financial bust? Along the lines of the studio guys saying they'd never do an R-Rated Comic movie again?

      • by jbolden (176878)

        The movie lost money, mainly because special effects are expensive and R cuts the audience. The comic was a huge money maker.

        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by 0123456 (636235)

          "The movie lost money, mainly because special effects are expensive and R cuts the audience."

          And because it was stupid and intensely boring.

          One of the few regrets in my life is that I actually sat through the entire sixteen hours of the movie to see whether it would improve, whereas my girlfriend was smart enough to give up after half an hour.

          • by jbolden (176878)

            If you didn't like the movie you wouldn't have liked the comic. The movie was fun for fans of the comics and the sorts of people who would have liked the comic a generation later. That ain't nearly enough to make a major blockbuster special effects movie a financial success.

            • by 0123456 (636235)

              I read the comic and found it boring too. Sure, it may have been a step above most comics of its era, but that doesn't make it good when compared to other forms of fiction.

              I'd agree that the movie was only going to appeal to fans of the comic, which is why it was a silly idea in the first place.

            • Counter data point: I really liked the comic (though I didn't read it until 2004? maybe 2005?), which was why I put the movie in my Netflix queue. The movie bored me: the pacing was terrible, the acting was wooden. It was a pretty movie, sure. But pretty alone does not a good movie make.

              • by jbolden (176878)

                Interesting. Agreed you are a counter point. Though having read it almost 20 years after (and given you /. # I'm assuming you were born around 1990)... there might be something generational.

                • And I found the movie to be lacking too. It was beautiful, some shots were right out of the comic book, amazing.

                  But it just wasn't all that good.

                  Face it, art is a matter of taste. Intelligent minds can disagree, one person doesn't have to be deficient to disagree with another on things like this.

                  Honestly, what did you expect from Zach Snyder? He makes big, dumb, pretty movies. This movie was about all you could expect from him and them maybe some. But it just didn't make the grade. Some stories just don't f

                • Interesting. Agreed you are a counter point. Though having read it almost 20 years after (and given you /. # I'm assuming you were born around 1990)... there might be something generational.

                  I'm actually a decade older than you suspected—which means I was six when Watchmen first came out, which obviously would be a little young for it. But during early adolescence when most people who read comics start doing so, I never did—no real reason (and certainly no animus against them), except maybe that my friends also didn't. So I dunno.

                  • by jbolden (176878)

                    OK.... now I'm not sure. 10 years doesn't seem long enough to not relate.

                    Oh well.

      • Re:Greed (Score:4, Informative)

        by Fned (43219) on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @03:15PM (#38894503) Journal

        What dollars? Wasn't the original Watchmen a huge financial bust?

        What are you talking about? it did quite well, especially for a high-priced format with no established characters. [comichron.com]

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        According to typical Hollywood accounting practices no movie has ever made money

      • by ZipK (1051658)

        What dollars? Wasn't the original Watchmen a huge financial bust? Along the lines of the studio guys saying they'd never do an R-Rated Comic movie again?

        As noted by others, the movie wasn't a blockbuster, but the graphic novel is a perennial that's sold 2 million copies and counting.

      • by Ransak (548582)
        The movie made money. Not a truckload, but it did make a profit in theaters [boxofficemojo.com]. Factor in DVD sales and they did alright.
    • Don't be absurd! Nothing sells better to a changing, increasingly diverse market than taking your old formula and pushing it to extremes that no one has asked for! It works for celebrities and reality television!
      • by ackthpt (218170)

        Don't be absurd! Nothing sells better to a changing, increasingly diverse market than taking your old formula and pushing it to extremes that no one has asked for! It works for celebrities and reality television!

        Television viewers, for the most part, are not buying individual issues - they are tuned into a show and either watch it or not, or the network drops it due to ratings.

        Comics have been becoming a parody unto themselves. All this seriousness... geez. It's like Soap Opera in graphical format. I expect even Comic Book Guy has to be wondering at some point where the magic went when it left comics.

    • Re:Greed (Score:5, Funny)

      by elrous0 (869638) * on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @03:14PM (#38894491)

      I can't believe DC or Marvel would compromise artistic integrity for a buck.

      • I can't believe DC or Marvel would compromise artistic integrity for a buck.

        They're businesses. That's written into the Mission Statement.

        • by ackthpt (218170)

          I can't believe DC or Marvel would compromise artistic integrity for a buck.

          They're businesses. That's written into the Mission Statement.

          Right under where it says, "Will sell out for money"

          I kinda wonder if this is going to be like Lucas did with Star Wars .. in a few years another line will begin with the After Watchmen and then the Pre-Before Watchmen and like that there, culminating with factions of fans split between which was better before or after reimaginings of everything.

      • by spidercoz (947220)
        Seriously, what's next? Kill off their big characters and then bring them back a year later?
      • by ackthpt (218170)

        I can't believe DC or Marvel would compromise artistic integrity for a buck.

        Well done. Great use of sarcasm.

        When I look at my two cartons of classic comic books which are worth about nil, thanks to their reprinting of comics, I realize you can never again look at them as something which could be considered 'investment' ever again. Buy 'em if you like them, but don't expect to get anything for Issue #1 or the Special Series or even the one where ____ kills off _____. Because they'll have them all re-printed and bound for people who want to just buy the whole collection in one vol

        • by Toonol (1057698)
          When I look at my two cartons of classic comic books which are worth about nil, thanks to their reprinting of comics, I realize you can never again look at them as something which could be considered 'investment' ever again

          ...and that's a good thing.. The popular perception as comics as an investment back in the 90's coincided with a huge decline of the quality of comics. Buy comics if you want to read them, not as a potential investment. Why should they be treated any differently than any other form
          • What, you mean my stack of shrink-wrapped foil-cover never-read limited-edition collector's-issue Issue #0 of "Like Conan but with Machine Guns" aren't worth ANYTHING?
        • Re:Greed (Score:5, Interesting)

          by Chris Burke (6130) on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @04:31PM (#38895511) Homepage

          There's a simple lesson here: Never treat something as an "investment" when the value is based entirely on artificial scarcity when the organization controlling the scarcity has no financial incentive to maintain the scarcity!

          Money or stocks can be good investments because even though governments or corporations can issue new money/stock, it is detrimental to their own finances to do so without limit because they use that money and stock. So they have to balance reducing the scarcity with the resulting loss of value.

          Marvel doesn't buy things with copies of Amazing Spiderman #1, the value of that comic has no direct effect on the company, so why would anyone assume they'd never do anything to tank its value?

          Because publishers love secondary markets where they themselves don't see any of the profit, am I right?

          I saw the same thing in Magic: The Gathering. Someone would pay hundreds of dollars for a rare first-print power card, and would rationalize it as an investment. Ha! Then -- to the surprise of only a few morons -- WotC reprinted most of these cards and made the originals next to worthless.

          So, yeah, thinking of them as a long-term investment was kinda silly to begin with. And as the ACs pointed out, this has nothing to do with "artistic integrity" (it's about their money-grubbing vs yours), and is in fact better for the community at large because they get to enjoy the thing that before only a few did.

          So yeah, thanks comic companies for spreading enjoyment and teaching people valuable economic lessons!

          • by luke923 (778953)

            So, yeah, thinking of them as a long-term investment was kinda silly to begin with. And as the ACs pointed out, this has nothing to do with "artistic integrity" (it's about their money-grubbing vs yours), and is in fact better for the community at large because they get to enjoy the thing that before only a few did.

            Maybe they should have called it Occupy Magic the Gathering.

        • by _Shad0w_ (127912)

          Except it doesn't change the fact that your Issue #1 is a first edition Issue #1 and theirs isn't, it should still hold value to other collectors. And collectors are the only people it had special value to anyway.

    • Re:Greed (Score:4, Interesting)

      by alexander_686 (957440) on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @03:32PM (#38894735)

      Meanwhile, DC continues to show there is no move too desperate that they won't risk alienating their fans in the quest for the dollar.

      Actually, DC & Moore’s original plan was to write a prequel – so it’s not like it a total violation of Moore’s idea. (That being said, what’s the chance that the writer will be able to match Moore’s original script?)

      • by TellarHK (159748)

        Pretty solid, actually. DC really put some good writers on this project. J. Michael Stracyznski, Darwyn Cooke, Brian Azzarello, Len Wein. All great creators with the capacity for writing extremely well. The same thing can be said for the artistic side of the books involved. Every single book has A-list artistic talent on it.

        And as Peter David said in his comments published by newsarama.com today, it's rather funny for Alan Moore to be all defensive about this considering that the characters he based Watchme

    • Re: (Score:2, Offtopic)

      by houghi (78078)

      Take a stand. You can do this now or any other event that would allow this.

      Set up camp for weeks to be the first to buy tickets, a new phone, whatever. See that there are a LOT of people and that there is a LOT of news coverage to see the hype when the store opens.

      Then you and your few hundred friends go in one by one and clearly state why you DON'T want to buy a ticket. (SOPA/Copyrights/...) Have a clear statement ready for the press who will be there. And be sure you do this to a company who deserves it.

      T

    • Yea, I won't be buying this crap. When I first heard of it, I thought Alan Moore was writing it and I was interested. Once I found out that this was just DC being dicks and tarnishing his work, I lost interest.
  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @02:57PM (#38894287) Journal
    Rorschach's Journal. October First, 2013: Intellectual property carcass in alley this morning, tire tread on burst stomach. This company is milking me. I have seen its true face. The sequels are extended gutters and the gutters are full of blood and when the drains finally scrape bottom, all the vermin will drown. The accumulated filth of all their exploitation and mediocrity will foam up about their waists and all the producers and hacks will look up and shout "Save us!"... and I'll whisper "no."
    • by jbolden (176878)

      Darn I have mod points but didn't read this one until I'd already commented above. Well done!

    • by c0d3g33k (102699)

      What would Rorschach's journal read if it turns out to be really good?

      • Probably pretty similar. There was just no pleasing that guy. If he couldn't turn his frown upside down at the prospect of not nuclear war, I doubt that a franchise cash-in not sucking would even register.
    • by Canazza (1428553)

      That should read "Moores Journal" surely

  • by lrnj (1986582) on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @03:06PM (#38894421) Homepage

    A skeleton appears in a flock of penguins, and meows for 7 minutes.

    A circulatory system stalks a walrus.

  • by Lashat (1041424) on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @03:14PM (#38894493)

    Having collected the original 12 issues of Watchmen in my youth I certainly loved it. It expanded my own ability to digest a story with moral and societal issues in the forefront and still be entertained.

    No one can write better than Moore when he is on his game.

    I have mad respect for Alan Moore's genius and for the story he created with Dave Gibbons in the Watchmen, but have you seen him lately? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alan_Moore [wikipedia.org] Looks like Rasputin's cousin.

    That said,

    Please forgive us o' Lord of the Comic Book medium. Some of us want to enjoy the characters you have brought into our imaginations further than you would like us too. We *know* you could have done better than these other talented writers and aritsts. We will treat these pre-quels and the movie and all other non-Moore Watchmen writings as apocrypha, outside of the true Watchmen canon.
    'nuff said

    • by Dan667 (564390)
      he has looked like rasputin's cousin for a very very long time. His stories are problem better because of it.
      • by Lashat (1041424)

        No doubt. Mad hermits always have useful dialog. They are just so hard to find.

        • by ackthpt (218170)

          No doubt. Mad hermits always have useful dialog. They are just so hard to find.

          I think every character Alan Moore writes is autobiographical, in a Walter Mitty-esque way.

          and if I were Superman when Superman gets old I'll be like this ...

    • by Pope (17780)

      Wild hair notwithstanding, Moore's been at the top of his game these past 10+ years IMO. Dunno if I'm that interested in this one, although I did enjoy the movie.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        The original Watchmen series is a testament to Moore's genius, that series is an enigmatic milestone in graphic novel story telling. Its a study of the "Superhero" with their vulnerabilities and strengths, and how, ultimately, if they existed, would be ultimately human with human failings, and human virtues. The film was a faithful retelling of the story, right down to its look, and for that I really enjoyed it. Its a long film though, and I think it kind of lost its way with audiences unfamiliar with Watc

        • While I haven't read the graphic novel (comic, whatever), I rather enjoyed the V for Vendetta and Watchmen movies. Of course, I also enjoyed the Constantine movie, so YMMV.
    • You're seriously going to pass judgement on someone for how they look? In this day and age? ON SLASHDOT? Come onnnnn.
      • by Lashat (1041424)

        Judgement, yes. But not in a negative way really. It's also not an insult. Moore knows what he looks like and he want to look like this for a reason. I was just pointing out the obvious difference between him and us masses. This man lives in his head and spends much less time on our "plane of existence" than I. (Many genius people do.) Or compare him to Gandalf to the rest of the inhabitants of Middle-Earth, if you can do without a nerdgasm.

        My question of "have you seen him lately" was light-hearted

        • There are obvious differences between EVERY one of us and "us masses". No man IS the average. We're all abnormal, really.

          Speak for yourself, I live in my head as much as I can. Jersey Shore just doesn't hold the appeal that epistemology does.

          Lol, he does look like Theodin. But... so what? Like you said yourself, he looks that way ON PURPOSE.
          Its a barrier to keep the fools away who might be put off by things like the length of your hair or beard. Which is very silly, when things like morality and char
  • The comic lies in the trash; falls from my fingers, is in my hand.
  • Didn't really care much for Watchmen - I felt it didn't live up to expectations. Sounds like DC is thrashing around trying to find a new readership/revenue stream.

  • So it's going to be called Sundialmen?
  • ...like a giant, psionic squid exploding my brain.
  • Marvel and DC are both struggling to retain a dwindling comic book fan-base, thrashing about with the 52 (though I am enjoying a few of those titles) and whatever Marvel has come up with when they are not busy republishing old material as e-comics or making half-assed movies. Maybe they should try and rein in their ambitions a bit - both of them.

    Watchmen? Enjoyed the comics, enjoyed the movie adaptation, but I don't think it was popular enough to warrant any form of sequel or prequel...?

    • by Anonymous Coward

      If Superman, Batman and to a lesser degree Marvel properties like Spider-Man were nearing the end of their copyright existence, rather than being in a sort of perpetual copyright, they'd be could let their characters age, and possibly even die, as they near the end of their exclusivity. They'd also be more likely to develop new flagship characters to take their place. But the current copyright regime allows the characters to just continue existing, as they are, without any new creativity.

    • by Culture20 (968837)

      and whatever Marvel has come up with when they are not busy republishing old material as e-comics or making half-assed movies

      Actually, Marvel's been pretty good lately what with their New Avengers / House of M / Civil War / Secret Invasion / Dark Reign / Siege stories. Notable exceptions being the "death" of Captain America and Spiderman betraying his morals to make a deal with Mephisto (Spiderman is the moral compass of the Marvel Universe).

  • Watchman seems very overrated. Since when is "everyone just plays along and pretends nothing happened" a good ending? The movie was better because the behavior of the characters and the rest of the world was less inexplicably weird. If someone seems to be acting strangely, the readers deserve an explanation other than "the writer wrote it that way".

    • by Chris Burke (6130)

      Huh? I remember the movie and comic endings being nearly identical, especially in that regard -- everyone but Rorschach plays along, because only Rorschach was completely sure he was doing the right thing in the first place. Everyone else is like "Oh, hey, maybe this was worth avoiding nuclear war."

      I think I may be misunderstanding your point.

      • by nomadic (141991)
        I think the other characters didn't think it was justified, they just figured that now that it's done at least reap the benefit. They still wish they'd prevented it in the first place.
        • by Chris Burke (6130)

          No, you're right, it wasn't that the act itself was justified. It was that them keeping quiet about it and going along was justified.

  • by JoshDM (741866) on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @03:56PM (#38895087) Homepage Journal
    Back in the 80's, Mayfair Games licensed the DC characters to create the DC Heroes RPG. There were three Watchmen products made (the direct contents of which I am paraphrasing and cannot recall exactly offhand): Watchmen Sourcebook, Who Watches the Watchmen, and Taking out the Trash. Here is an interview with the authors [comicbookresources.com].
  • that is all.
  • Thats all I can say. If they're seriously doing this, and it has nothing to do with him, then all artistic integrity is gone, and this is an obvious media whoring.

    Sucks to be a writer, I guess.
  • I watched the film, but was totally disapointed and bored. I'm no fan of the comic, in fact I only knew about the comic when I saw the trailer for the film. There was too many characters in the film and I didn't really care about them. The film don't introduce them to me so if you don't know them you don't care. Also there were too many characters and the film was always jumping between them with no real connection.

    I think it was totally overrated and really just not a good film.

    • by Ksevio (865461)
      I'd never heard of the comic before seeing the movie, but I learned everything I needed to know about the characters in the first few minutes. Did you get to the theater late and miss the starting montage?
  • I do love watchmen, dont get me wrong here. it's a good story and all. But for the love of [enter god name here], can we just go forward with a story...not backwards. I hate this. Seriously, I want to know what happens next or just give me something about the story that is not in their passed. It seems to be the thing to do now a days. Do a movie and then go in the past.
  • by Dr. Jest (10116) on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @05:28PM (#38896283)

    To everyone who sees nothing wrong with this, please remember the DC was supposed to return the rights to Watchmen back to Moore when the collection went out of print. Moore was the victim of the story's popularity, though, as it was one of the first graphic novels to sell enough to remain in print for a long time. I imaging Warner and DC have no intention of allowing it to be out of print at all now, following the letter of the contact but violating the spirit of the agreement.

  • by Culture20 (968837) on Wednesday February 01, 2012 @07:34PM (#38897625)
    More than half of Watchmen is flashbacks. How are they going to add more material for a prequel without diluting the original?
  • When will they have the cute plush toys in the stores to go with this? I look forward to the cuddly Plush Rorschach (tm), the inevitable animal companion dolls (Nite Owlette, Comedian Parrot) and the Kid Manhattan doll (with Kung Fu grip). Also the Silk Spectre blowup doll (over 21 purchase only). Ah Warner, don't miss a golden opportunity to tarnish something good. Actually, my original word there wasn't the seven-letter 'tarnish'.

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