2012’s Most OMG Moments In Geek #4: ‘Before Watchmen’

There’s the good, the great, and then there’s the BEST. Welcome to MTV Geek’s Best of 2012 — what we thought were the cream of the crop this year in the world of GEEK!

MTV Geek’s look at the most OMG moments in pop-culture this year continues with a spotlight on the most controversial prequel since the second “Star Wars” trilogy…

To some fans, it was the Unthinkable, the patently INCONCEIVABLE—an Alan Mooreless prequel to the classic, bestselling “Watchmen” graphic novel. And yet in February of this year, it really happened: DC Comics announced a series of mini-series starring such “Watchmen” luminaries as Comedian, Rorschach, Silk Spectre, and Dr. Manhattan, written and drawn by some of the biggest names in the business.

The news hit like a shockwave across the entire comics community, splitting fans into three camps: 1) Such a move was bollocks, 2) It might be relevant to their reading interests, and 3) LOLwhut?

Then, of course, there was the reaction of Alan Moore himself, which was nothing less than volcanically opposed to the venture, his most pointed jabs directed towards the talent on the project, who he described as “scab labor,” “possibly halfway-decent writers and artists,” and that “…I can understand why they took on Before Watchmen. It will probably be the only opportunity they get in their careers to actually be attached to a project that anybody outside of comics has ever heard of” (presumably Moore had never heard of J. Michael Straczynski’s “Babylon 5”).

The defensiveness of the pro-Moore camp began to take on an almost cult-like aspect, with a “you are either with us or indefensible scum” approach; one blogger even compared a recently-deceased contributor to “Before Watchmen” to disgraced Penn State coach Joe Paterno, arguing that working on a prequel to Moore’s book was equal to facilitating child molestation (because such a correlation is…rational). Yours truly was called a whole host of lovely names for even daring to suggest that “BW” might be an interesting, though somewhat dicey, project—because nothing says “I’m the biggest fan!” like a slew of hostile ad hominem attacks on people you don’t know (more on that in the #2 most OMG Geek Moment).

Such schadenfreude by, and on behalf of, Moore didn’t really square away with the fact that the writer had built a career off writing other people’s characters:

Others called into question matters relating to Moore’s contract with DC. Larger issues concerning Creator’s Rights came to the fore, with DC writer Chris Roberson publicly announcing that he quit working for the publisher in part based on their decision to publish “BW.”

In the end, the outcome was one amazing mini-series, several good mini-series, and a couple of weaker efforts—pretty much the bell curve for any comics event. What was left unclear was the future of “Watchmen.” Would we see an “After Watchmen”?

We’ll see in 2013.

Hurm.

Related Posts:
2012’s Most OMG Moments In Geek #5: Zombiemania
2012’s Most OMG Moments In Geek #6: Marceline And Ice King Have A Past

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