Thursday, November 23, 2017

Doomsday Clock #1 (of 12)

   It's funny that I didn't have (much of) a problem with the Before Watchmen series DC created without the input of original writer Alan Moore, but I feel a bit squishy about Doomsday Clock, which brings those characters (or that alternate reality - Earth-W?) into direct contact with the mainstream DC Universe.

   The original series works so well as a standalone book, I can't help but wonder / worry what effect this series will have.

   This first issue is actually a direct followup to the original series, as it checks in with the present state of affairs on that world following the massive events at the end of the original series.

   It also features the return of a character you wouldn't expect to see again, since he was killed in spectacular (and definitive) fashion by the godlike Dr. Manhattan.

   You'll only find a few pages of DC content as the focus is on machinations in the Watchmen-verse.

   The writing by Geoff Johns evokes the classic Moore series, though it remains to be seen if it can match the complexity of the original work.

   The art by Gary Frank, with colors by Brad Anderson, is impressive as always, evoking a grim reality and done in the style of Dave Gibbons' original art, mostly imitating the nine panels to a page format.

   So why am I squishy about this? Well, it seems wrong to do a sequel without the involvement (or agreement) of the original creators. I know DC has every legal right to do this, but I'm not so clear on the moral rights.

   The Before Watchman prequel was tolerable because it was placed in the original world and didn't change anything about the work of the creators. But this series is already introducing new characters, making changes (possibly drastic ones) to existing characters, and potentially changing everything about Watchmen. By making this just another alternant reality Earth to be visited on a whim, it somehow diminishes the concept.

   We'll see how it plays out - and yes, despite my reservations, I'll be reading along - but I'm not convinced that this is a good idea.

Grade: B+



Kevin Findley said...

As long as we don't find out Dr. Manhattan created the DCU to replace the Watchman universe, I'm fine with this.

Chuck said...

I'm just hoping we'll see Dr. Manhattan meet Captain Atom.