Jan. 31, 2012 -- The Associated Press released a photo today of the cover to the WatchmenTPB with the following information:

 

"In this image released by DC Entertainment, the cover of "Watchmen," a graphic novel, is shown. DC Entertainment is launching seven miniseries this summer that will focus on the characters made famous by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons in their 1986-987 12-issue maxi-series "Watchmen," which has gone on to become one of DC's best-selling graphic novels. (AP Photo/DC Entertainment)"

 

The Associated Press wire service has no stories attached to this photo as of 5:15 EST. I'll post more when I know more.

 

Views: 1091

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Bald and naked.  Now that is a combination that will sweep the nation! 

Rob Staeger said:

Very cool, Cap!

I just looked on wikiquote and found this from Dr. Manhattan: "I am tired of Earth, these people. I'm tired of being caught in the tangle of their lives."

Substituent "The Pacific Princess" for Earth, and you've got a jaded Captain Stubing! He's even bald!

The Baron said:

My understanding of Alan's Moore's deal with DC vis a vis Watchmen is that the rights revert to him if the book goes out of print -- and part of his disgruntlement with DC is that it has never gone out of print, which he sees as acting in bad faith.

 

How is this "bad faith"? Are they keeping it in print and/or selling it at a loss just to tick him off?

I don't get it, either. 

According to Amazon, "Watchmen" has been in the top 100 best selling graphic novels for over six years.  DC does not have to keep it in print to keep Alan Moore placated.  It stays in print because it sells. 

ClarkKent_DC said:

The Baron said:

My understanding of Alan's Moore's deal with DC vis a vis Watchmen is that the rights revert to him if the book goes out of print -- and part of his disgruntlement with DC is that it has never gone out of print, which he sees as acting in bad faith.

 

How is this "bad faith"? Are they keeping it in print and/or selling it at a loss just to tick him off?

I don't get it, either. 

Clark, I believe your understanding is correct. 

 

I want to add, and if I'm wrong, someone please correct me:  at the time, keeping a book like Watchmen continually in print was unheard of.  Everything eventually went out of print, so Moore's expectation was that the rights would revert back him and Dave Gibbons at some point.  Perfectly reasonable.

 

However, DC has kept it in print, all these years, and my understanding is that this course of action has been fueled by demand for the book itself.  It sells, year after year, in comic shops and bookstores worldwide.  I see nothing nefarious in DC meeting the demands of consumers.

 

To Alan Moore, this is DC acting in bad faith, as Clark said.  His take on it - that DC is spitefully keeping it in print just to deny him the rights, seems unreasonable to me.

ClarkKent_DC said:

DneColt said:

Is there anything magical about 25 years in terms of copyrights? Like if they don't publish something new with the characters, the rights revert to Alan and Dave?

 

My understanding of Alan's Moore's deal with DC vis a vis Watchmen is that the rights revert to him if the book goes out of print -- and part of his disgruntlement with DC is that it has never gone out of print, which he sees as acting in bad faith.

Actually, when Moore and Gibbons signed their contract, it said that the rights would revert to them when Watchmen went out of print, which everyone expected it to do after a printing or two. But DC kept it in print specifically in order to keep the rights, probably at a loss, which Moore (rightly) considered a dirty trick. Then the book became a phenomenon, and is an evergreen seller, so DC can now keep it in print indefinitely and make oodles of money in the process. Money which, had DC not kept Watchmen in print artificially at the start, in a betrayal of the spirit of the contract, would now be going to Moore and Gibbons.

Moore says he will never work for DC again, and I believe him.

I would have thought that for many reasons, mainly the critical acclaim for the series, Watchmen would have sold like gangbusters (crimebusters?) from the start.  That's quite the foresight or gamble on DC's part, to keep something in print at a loss, just to deny the rights and hoping to recoup your money later.  Maybe I'm naive, confused, or a little slow, but that doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me.

 

Captain Comics said:

Actually, when Moore and Gibbons signed their contract, it said that the rights would revert to them when Watchmen went out of print, which everyone expected it to do after a printing or two. But DC kept it in print specifically in order to keep the rights, probably at a loss, which Moore (rightly) considered a dirty trick. Then the book became a phenomenon, and is an evergreen seller, so DC can now keep it in print indefinitely and make oodles of money in the process. Money which, had DC not kept Watchmen in print artificially at the start, in a betrayal of the spirit of the contract, would now be going to Moore and Gibbons.

Moore says he will never work for DC again, and I believe him.

John Dunbar said:

I would have thought that for many reasons, mainly the critical acclaim for the series, Watchmen would have sold like gangbusters (crimebusters?) from the start.  That's quite the foresight or gamble on DC's part, to keep something in print at a loss, just to deny the rights and hoping to recoup your money later.  Maybe I'm naive, confused, or a little slow, but that doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me.

 

Hey, that's the operating principle for syndicated television! (For a lovely threadjack on that subject, start here, on the thread "Essential Fantastic Four, Volume 5").

As for keeping Watchmen in print, the prospect of a future big-budget movie -- and the riches that come from such -- might have been in the back of some bean counter's mind way back when. Losing a few thousand dollars for a few years is a puny risk when you can potentially make hundreds of millions of dollars down the road.

On the other hand, I've gleaned this from Alan Moore interviews, and don't really know DC's side of it.

Just the same, I don't expect Moore to work for DC again no matter what they do or don't do. He's made that very clear.

It's an unusual contract and sounds like one for creator owned work, really.

 

As Cap says, a GN staying in print for years was totally unheard of then.  No doubt Moore felt that allowing a few print runs in the contract was to give DC their due in helping develop the book. When DC kept it in print, Moore felt he was being punished, rather than rewarded, for producing a book that reflected so well on DC and the superhero genre.  I think he and Gibbons put much more into the book than they needed to because they felt that ownership of it.

 

DC couldn't pay people today to produce an original book of that richness and density.  It's clear they wouldn't, or they wouldn't be employing people to produce work-for-hire ancillary pieces for a book that was cutting edge in 1986.  I'll be very surprised if any of these minis approach Watchmen in its forensic detail, world-building text pieces, and mathematically formal construction. 

 

The list of creators looks great.  I'm tempted to give them a look myself.  But I'm betting many of these will be standard comicbooks in the often lacking and undemanding style of Big Two comics of 2011.  When you compare the work that went into Watchmen with the 3 minute reads that have comprised most of the Nu52 books, you have to ask how DC got that standard of work out of Gibbons and Moore in the 80s.  It looks to me as if Gibbons and Moore were expecting to actually own that work one day, and do more with it, perhaps.

 

But we are now living in the comics world that followed Watchmen, where comics creators have seen how the creators of that great success for DC were treated.  They are now very careful to only give comics companies the pound of flesh specified in the contracts and not an iota more.

Do more with it? How? The two most interesting characters were dead at the end. Ozymandias cannot be heroic anymore. Doctor Manhatten has no drama and frankly, the adventures of the middle-aged Nite Owl and Silk Spectre have little appeal.

As I understand it, from reading Peter David's "But I Digress..." column from Comic Buyer's Guide, Moore has refused ANY monetary compensation for the movies based on his work. Not denied, refused. This is not a man thinking clearly nor considering the future. The money that he would have gotten would probably been more than if he self-produced further Watchmen tales.

Considering the Watchmen characters were offshoots of the Charlton action-heroes and League of Extraordinary Gentlemen's cast are public domain, what rights did Moore expect to get?

Do more with it? How?

 

That'd be up to them.  That's what ownership means.  I was thinking more in terms of spin-ofs like the game he was happy to develop materials for, and other licensed stuff.

 

This is not a man thinking clearly nor considering the future.

 

Or someone who puts his money where his principles are. It would seem that it's principles more than anything else that he is kicking up the fuss about.

 

When you argue principles with a corporation, of course, their reply is always "but..But .. there's all this MONEY!"

 

Considering the Watchmen characters were offshoots of the Charlton action-heroes and League of Extraordinary Gentlemen's cast are public domain...

 

Eh? By that logic Rob Liefield doesn't own Supreme!

They are all original characters, created by Moore and Gibbons.

 

what rights did Moore expect to get?

 

He expected to get them all, which is why we are having this conversation.

I was thinking about yesterday’s conversation on the way into work today and determined that The Watchmen really couldn’t have a sequel. Not for the reasons outlined by Philip above (althought those are reasons enough), but simply by virtue of the way the story ended, with the fate of the entire world resting on the actions of, well… a moron. What that copy boy did with Rorschach’s journal is left up to the reader, and the story cannot move beyond that point without revealing what action he took, thus spoiling the ending of the original work.

But I guess that’s a straw man argument because we’re talking about prequels here.

Reply to Discussion

RSS

Welcome!

No flame wars. No trolls. But a lot of really smart people.The Captain Comics Round Table tries to be the friendliest and most accurate comics website on the Internet.

SOME ESSENTIALS:

RULES OF THE ROUND TABLE

MODERATORS

SMILIES FOLDER

TIPS ON USING THE BOARD

FOLLOW US:

OUR COLUMNISTS:

Groups

© 2020   Captain Comics, board content ©2013 Andrew Smith   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service