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.

 

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Moore created this world to have an "ending". I doubt that he had a sequel in mind. Unless it was Tales of a Stupid Copyboy! ;-)

DC was not surprised by Watchmen's success. They promoted it very agressively and far differently then their usual fare and Alan Moore was their #1 writer. The accolades came in very quickly. I read them when they first came out. It was amazing and groundbreaking. The text pieces alone were masterpieces. Everyone was talking about it as a watershed moment in the industry, far beyond its closest contemporary: Camelot 3000.

The trade paperback soon followed, then the deluxe hardcover which I have. In it, Moore himself speaks of using the Charlton heroes originally and his extensive and detailed notes are about Captain Atom, Blue Beetle and the rest. Afterwards, when it became clear that he would render them unusable with his story, they were tweaked and converted into Doctor Manhatten, Nite Owl, etc.

He even gave Doc some obvious Superman imagery and themes.

Anyway, DC always considered Watchmen a prestige piece. That it remained in print is no shock but if Moore wanted limited print runs, he should have had that in his contract! And I still believe that, even with DC's tactics, he would have been better served just accepting it.

Siegel, Schuster, Kane, Lee, Kirby, Simon and the rest never truly wanted ownership of their creations. They wanted acknowledgement, respect and fair compensation. And Moore had the potential for all three.

Actually, I think that's the opposite of Moore's view, given his dislike of adaptations of his work. Which is ironic since his best known stories are based on other people's characters. Which he interprets as he sees fit.

ClarkKent_DC said:

Jeff of Earth-J said:

See Bill Beechler's comments a couple of posts back about the work of Charles Dickens and Arthur Conan Doyle. Some works of fiction stand alone and just fine as they are, thank-you-very-much. For another writer to try to tell "what happened next" somehow lessens the effect of the original work, as if the original writer left something unsaid, or as if the work needed a sequel. I don't think this line of thought is "conceivably true of every story," but I do think it applies to The Watchmen. Having said that, I already said yesterday that I would give these new comics a look.

Regarding the work of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, you could fill a library with Sherlock Holmes books written by other hands, not to mention films and TV shows that do -- and don't -- follow the tales told in the original novels and short stories (from Wikipedia: Related and derivative worksAdaptations of Sherlock Holmes).

 

Which is exactly the point: None of those have damaged, limited, lessened, weakened or undermined the Holmes canon. It is what it is and they are what they are. As Alan Moore often said, other work doesn't "ruin" my book; it's still there on the shelf, exactly as I wrote it.

Um...I guess my sarcasm didn't translate well. 

Sorry, Doc!

Doc Beechler (mod-MD) said:

Um...I guess my sarcasm didn't translate well. 

One of the things I find really interesting, (and largely ignored), about this announcement is the weekly schedule; DC's trying out another form of weekly comic.  Instead of an anthology comic with multiple characters, they're doing interlocking mini-series' each focusing on a specific character.  Each series sounds like it can be self contained, however, they'll be coming out weekly, they'll have complementary trade dress, an overarching theme, a related epilogue, and a backup that continues through each series.  Obviously, some parts of it are going to perform better than others but a boatload of people, even those who don't initially intend to, will be along for the entire ride.

Gotta say, if you're going to try out a new paradigm and you want it to succeed, going with top creators and a highly visible property or gimmick is the way to do it.  Everyone is focused on how this will compare to Watchmen, I'm just as interested in how it will stack up against 52.

On the matter of whether Moore should have taken the money or not, I don't see why there's even a discussion. He acted according to his principles, and you cannot argue with a man's principles -- they are, by definition, up to him and not up to you. And he lived his principles moreso than anyone I can think of. As the expression goes, "a principle is only words until it costs you money." Whether you agree with Moore's principles or not, he stuck to them, and it cost him a great deal of money. I find that admirable, especially since in the same situation I'm sure I'd have gone for the money.

Having said that, DC owns the material and it can do what it wants with the characters. I'll probably read them, at least those by creators whose work I like, but they won't affect the original work for me any more than post-Crisis stories changed pre-Crisis stories for me. In the words of Mr. Spock, "the only constant in the universe is change," and that's true of comics more than most fields. Earth-2 comes and goes in the "canon," but nothing will ever take away how I felt when I read the first JLA-JSA crossover.

Same with Watchmen. I can't speak for later generations, for whom the prequels will always be part of the experience, but for me, the way I felt the first time I read it will always stay with me no matter what DC does.

Border Mutt said:

One of the things I find really interesting, (and largely ignored), about this announcement is the weekly schedule; DC's trying out another form of weekly comic.  Instead of an anthology comic with multiple characters, they're doing interlocking mini-series' each focusing on a specific character.  Each series sounds like it can be self contained, however, they'll be coming out weekly, they'll have complementary trade dress, an overarching theme, a related epilogue, and a backup that continues through each series.  Obviously, some parts of it are going to perform better than others but a boatload of people, even those who don't initially intend to, will be along for the entire ride.

 

Gotta say, if you're going to try out a new paradigm and you want it to succeed, going with top creators and a highly visible property or gimmick is the way to do it.  Everyone is focused on how this will compare to Watchmen, I'm just as interested in how it will stack up against 52.

Well said!

"Um...I guess my sarcasm didn't translate well. "

I thought you were being post-ironic.

More later... maybe. I just wrote a lengthy rebuttal to Kelvin, but I'm not happy with it.

I'm a Gen-Xer...there is nothing post irony for me.

I'd heard Moore has asked DC to send his royalties to his collaborators. I think I'd heard it about David Lloyd, particularly, but it would make sense to handle things that way for his other works, too. Is that the case? (I haven't seen this mentioned at all int he last few days, so it might not be.)

Take your time with the rebuttal, Jeff; I'd like to see it. 

Be clear that I'm not beating up on you, Jeff; I just have an honest disagreement over a few things. One is whether a story "needs" a sequel is even relevant to whether a sequel should be created, or not. I accept the view that some stories are meant to end with the last word and are satisfying as they are, but I'm coming from the view that it isn't a bad thing to satisfy that itch to want to know what happens after the ending .. or, in this case, what happened before the beginning. 

Likewise, I'm not beating up on you, Philip; I just have an honest disagreement that Alan Moore is in the wrong for refusing DC/Time Warner's payments. You wouldn't be grateful to the embezzeler who seized control of your assets but then pays you an allowance, would you? 



Doc Beechler (mod-MD) said:

I'm a Gen-Xer...there is nothing post irony for me.

You young punk, stay off of my lawn!

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