Sunday, August 5, 2012

Before Watchmen: Nite Owl #2 (of 4)

It's easy to forget that the Before Watchmen series are for "Mature Readers" - after all, each issue looks like any other comic book.

Only the most observant would note the tiny, sideways "Rated M Mature" note in the lower left-hand corner.

But if someone picked up this Nite Owl issue not knowing about its content, they'd quickly figure it out. That naked girl on the third page is a dead giveaway.

The issue focuses on the unlikely team of Nite Owl (II) and Rorschach, as they venture into a seamier side of the underworld.

Aside from the lurid story (expertly crafted by J. Michael Straczynski), the real draw for this issue is the outstanding artwork by the son / father team of Andy and Joe Kubert. They create a world of grit and soot - it feels real, populated with actual human beings, flesh and blood and emotions and frailties.

So far, the Before Watchmen series has been loaded with excellent stories and terrific art. This issue keeps that string alive - even if it's not recommended for kids (but then, the same is true of Watchmen).

Grade; A-


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