DC comics has made a few big decisions in the last year. The biggest to reboot the entire DC Universe back to issue #1 and the next to create seven series to prequel Watchmen.
For most fans and the author the great Alan Moore it's not gone down too well. Watchmen was a self contained series which is almost a holy book to comic book fans. It's one of the most celebrated graphic novels of all time and doesn't need any additional comics to complete the story.
Both Dave Gibbons and Alan Moore have spoken out about the announcement.Alan Moore
"I don’t want money," he said. "What I want is for this not to happen."
"The original series of Watchmen is the complete story that Alan Moore and I wanted to tell.
In most cases when a spin off series comes out you have the choice to either buy it or not. It's up to the reader and DC are just giving those fans who want it a chance to get more of the Watchmen.
This does leave a slight moral dilemma to many. If the original creators don't want there work to be continued should they have a say? It reminds me a lot of the whole Superman reboot due to film rights and a legal battle with the estate of the original creators. When art unfortunately crossed the legal line. The comics industry is brutal and a business at the end of the day and that's why writers today like Mark Millar invest so much in creator owned projects.
And when it comes to other writers and artists using Moore's and Gibbons work too make a new series we have to remember where most of Alan Moore's books came from. V for Vendetta and League of Extraordinary Gentlemen all came from other authors works.
The line up for the prequels as follows.
- Rorschach (4 issues) – Writer: Brian Azzarello. Artist: Lee Bermejo
- Minutemen (6 issues) – Writer/Artist: Darwyn Cooke
- Comedian (6 issues) – Writer: Brian Azzarello. Artist: J.G. Jones
- DR. Manhattan (4 issues) – Writer: J. Michael Straczynski. Artist: Adam Hughes
- Nite Owl (4 issues) – Writer: J. Michael Straczynski. Artists: Andy and Joe Kubert
- Ozymandias (6 issues) – Writer: Len Wein. Artist: Jae Lee
- Silk Spectre (4 issues) – Writer: Darwyn Cooke. Artist: Amanda Conner
Overall I think the idea of a prequel series is a good idea. I probably wont buy it myself just due to the quality of DC comics 52 recently. I hope they make the prequels with the original art and writing style with the same intent as Alan Moore. I have a feeling these will be more about new writers wanting to make there own mark on a classic.