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June 15, 2016

Go, Read: Ed Brubaker On The Very Specific Sadness Of DC’s Current Use Of Watchmen Characters

imageNear the end of the second edition of his new newsletter, the writer Ed Brubaker launches into several paragraphs on the DC's current use of Watchmen characters and concepts within their "Rebirth" editorial initiative. Although god only knows how the use of the characters will progress, right now it seems like characters like Dr. Manhattan are being set up as possible direct antagonists within the series and their general narrative thrust as the thematic opposite of a proposed more hopeful and upbeat line-wide narrative.

Brubaker was a critic of Before Watchmen as well, and his point of view remains the same with this even more direct assumption of full control over the characters and concepts created by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons. Brubaker points out that the original series was once held up as a paragon of creators' rights and it's the fact that it is so far from that now that is specifically galling. He goes into some detail.

I agree with everything Ed says, including his disdain to the point of being unable to directly engage with those who angrily assert the rights and duties of corporations even when no one is talking about that. I might go a bit further than Brubaker to point out that DC's last decade of managing the property has been arguably shitty, too, starting with a movie that is definitely not considered a one-of-a-kind classic the way the book is and didn't seem to have any possible chance of being such a film such was its blunt and rudimentary take. The Before Watchmen material doesn't seem well-remembered at all a scant few years after it was announced. And now there's this. Under the old regime we might at least have taken in the work's 30th birthday with some of the reverence people once held for that work. Not so much now.

As always, particularly for those of you that don't remember the status Alan Moore enjoyed at that time or weren't there to see it: if big media corporations are going to screw people like Jack Kirby and Alan Moore, it's hard to imagine they'd pass up a shot at screwing you.
posted 6:15 pm PST | Permalink

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