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TOPIC: Before Watchmen

Re: Before Watchmen 5 years 5 months ago #23811

  • 600WPMPO
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This week, we get Nite Owl #1.



I couldn't resist the temptation to wait for the scans, and bought the issue from Comixology as soon as it was released. Was great reading it with the panel layout style on the new iPad.



While it was a good read, there was more reminiscing the Watchmen days than exploring new grounds. The first half, however, gives us quite a glimpse into Nite Owl's troubled past. From there, instead of exploring a lot of interesting opportunities, we fast forward into the second half, which we have already read in a much better version by Moore. So, this is the first 'Before Watchmen' book that ceases to be a prologue, and enters bang into the Watchmen universe.

Original:



JMS' version from the Nite Owl #1:



Despite having good art, the story felt lacking, and I'll give it at most a 2.5 out of 5.

p.s. If it were not having that 'Before Watchmen' tag, I could even give it 3.5. So, take that, DC! :P
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Last Edit: 5 years 5 months ago by 600WPMPO.
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Re: Before Watchmen 5 years 5 months ago #23856

  • JaceSimian2099
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Before Before Watchmen: Watchmen #1

Bwahahahaha, okay, I admit the beginning had me. Any comic that can begin seriously with the phrase "dog carcass" definitely has my attention. And this Rorschatz guy is a trip, love his dialogue. "Hmm." "Hurmh." and of course the captions. Could have done without the naked blue guy later on, but I digress.

Seems okay, very dated. Presidents Truman and Ford? And good lord the things they're wearing and the hairstyles..but anyways...storywise, very solid. And if I read it in the 80's, probably would have been awesome.

I guess I'll keep going and hoping it picks up the pace then. (No offense to anyone who's mad that I didn't absolutely love it, sorry guys. Maybe it'll catch me!)
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Re: Before Watchmen 5 years 5 months ago #23862

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Keep reading on young Jace... we are all here waiting to watch your jaw drop with awe! :-)
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Re: Before Watchmen 5 years 5 months ago #23865

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Yes Jace, the fun times have only just begun.
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Re: Before Watchmen 5 years 5 months ago #24032

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This week, we get Ozymandias #1



This is the first book in the Before Watchmen series that really serves as a prequel in any interesting way. Earlier, Comedian meddled with the original Watchmen interpretation, Nite Owl marched right in the established scenes, while Silk Spectre did nothing at all to deserve the Watchmen tag. Only, Minutemen #1 was a vignette-esque prequel. But, Ozymandias #1 hits all the correct notes, and gives us the origin story of Adrian Veidt.

The story is a stand-alone tale, that could well have been a one-shot (instead of a 6-issue mini, yes you read correct: 5 more issues in the Oz mini after this!). It focuses more on exploring the personality and motives of Ozymandias, and less on how Veidt became the Oz. Infact, I found the reason for him donning the vigilante costume a bit forced. The story is mostly in form of a narrative, that drags a bit down in the middle, but is largely enjoyable. We come to know Veidt as a cold, almost mechanical, genius. His story is the least explored in the original Watchmen books, and here the write (Len Wein) doesn't disappoint at all.

Jae Lee (of the 'dark tower' fame) draws in his inimitable style, providing a very arty/classical look to the book that looks great, save for the action scenes that lack the needed dynamic. Most of the book, however, is a pleasure to look at. Most panels use a circular panel style, that perhaps depicts the meticulous workings of the genius Ozymandias. Here is a sampler to look at the unique panel design:



Verdict: One of the better 'Before Watchmen' books till date. Enjoyable, but nowhere near excellent or ground-breaking. I give this (again) a 3.5 (albeit somewhat leaning close to somewhere between a 3.5 & a 4). ;)
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Re: Before Watchmen 5 years 5 months ago #24128

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Best quote ever.

(Watchmen #2)
"Was offered Swedish love and French love but not American love. Like Coke in glass bottles, they don't make it any more."

I hope it picks up though, it's kind of slow atm.

Issue was pretty good, a little..depressing really. It's a very pessimistic society obviously, but also ultra-realistic. The people aren't "heroes" and "villains", rather they're just people. Kind of interesting. And Rorscasch is always entertaining.

I am so glad you guys suggested this. We should have a thread that's just like a reading club, one person each week can suggest something to read, we can all take turns. B)

On to issue 3.

*edit

Okay, wow. Issue 3 didn't hit me, but man #4 is fantastic. I was starting to think it was this blue guy Manhattan that killed Comedian, but I think the Comedian would be kind of small fry to him. This issue showed a man with his senses and body expanded so that he no longer related to humans; a human changed by having his humanity removed.

Very sad in a way, and the way the issue was spontaneous and mishmashed was perfect for the style of the story itself. In the same way Manhattan sees all time as one, the issue tried to convey everything happening all at once and yet in sequence also. Absolutely astounding.
Last Edit: 5 years 5 months ago by JaceSimian2099.
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Re: Before Watchmen 5 years 5 months ago #24141

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We should have a thread that's just like a reading club, one person each week can suggest something to read, we can all take turns

What a good idea!
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Re: Before Watchmen 5 years 5 months ago #24143

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That would be cool!

But I doubt that we would have more than a handful of interested users. I think I'll post a poll in the general section and if we get reasonable positives, I'll create & moderate the reading club... :-)

Edit: i have posted the poll here: comicrack.cyolito.com/forum/7-general/24144-poll-reading-club

My vote is a big yes!


@Jace: now that you are enjoying Watchmen, I think you must have noticed that the chapters alternate between storyline & a character study. So, you just got 'the blue guy's character study, in the next chapter, the story will be dealt with. But, one thing I must tell you, it is a slow read. The plot-progression has been kept deliberately slow. Just don't rush through. You can even search for watchmen annotations on the net & enjoy them after you finish one chapter. They will tell you a lot more than what could be appreciated with the first reading!
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Re: Before Watchmen 5 years 5 months ago #24145

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JaceSimian2099 wrote:
Very sad in a way, and the way the issue was spontaneous and mishmashed was perfect for the style of the story itself. In the same way Manhattan sees all time as one, the issue tried to convey everything happening all at once and yet in sequence also. Absolutely astounding.

This is part of what made Watchmen pure comic book History. This particular issue, how storytelling flows and is at the same time broken in many pieces... but then it is not just a showing off of the authors of what they can do: they can do it, and they do it to show you something, to put you inside Manhattan's mind. And man, oh, man, it works. I love the whole Watchmen series, the plot, the density, the atmosphere, the risks, the storytelling, the creative choices. But I loved #4 above them all.

For me, reading during the same summer back in the 80s Watchmen #4, The Dark Knight #1 and Batman:Year One #1, was the best experience I have ever got from comics.

PS: The Dark Knight #1 flashback scene is another masterpiece on its own; it has been recreated many times since, but never works... why? People (and comic artists) tend to keep in their minds only the slow mo recall of the parents shooting... but the whole original sequence starts earlier, with Bruce sitting watching TV with Alfred insulting comments, the heat in the air, the ansiety building up, the fast channel switching on TV, faster pace, than then breaks into the memories and slow motion. Slow motion, though great as it was, works only a little, compared to the whoooooole long sequence...

Sorry, I got carried away :blush:
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Re: Before Watchmen 5 years 5 months ago #24146

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PS: 600 I loved your reviews!
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