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[Bitching Thread VI] A Brand New Day (for bitching)

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Posts

  • MunchMunch Registered User regular
    Oh come on, like every single one of you won't purchase Before Watchmen stories if they turn out good...

    Nope. Aside from thinking the whole endeavor is creatively bankrupt, I just have no interest in it. There's plenty of other stuff out there, more deserving of my time, attention, and money.

    On the topic of Moore's contract; I think it's disingenuous of Lee to state that Moore didn't read it. To my knowledge, that's never been Moore's contention.

    The issue has always been that Moore and Gibbons negotiated a contract which meant they would receive the rights to Watchmen, after it had been out of print for a certain amount of time. At the time Watchmen was published, trade paperbacks basically didn't exist, in the American comics marketplace. But, because of books like Watchmen (and DKR, etc.) the TPB market was born, ensuring that Watchmen would never go out of print again.

    DC opted to uphold the letter of the contract, rather than the spirit, and that has always been Moore's problem with them.

    He and Gibbons negotiated a contract that, at the time, was seen as a huge blow in favor of creators' rights. Moore's only failure was to see a future where he'd help to bring about an entirely new way of selling and distributing comics.

  • JyrenBJyrenB Registered User regular
    There's also the fact that, ignoring all the ethical stuff, Before Watchmen seems completely unnecessary as a story at all, seeing as a huge amount of Watchmen itself IS backstory.

    I still don't fault the creators working on it, and I expect they'll do pretty good jobs, considering, but it still won't get my money. I really despise the "But you'll all just buy it anyway!" claim these days.

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  • durandal4532durandal4532 Registered User regular
    Man I find it weird and upsetting that it probably will sell okay

    like are we really that insulated and incestual a fanbase?

  • AriviaArivia Registered User
    Man I find it weird and upsetting that it probably will sell okay

    like are we really that insulated and incestual a fanbase?

    A fair portion of comics fans are twelve-year old boys in decidedly non-twelve-year old bodies.

    Sad, but true.

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  • SolarSolar Registered User regular
    Antimatter wrote: »
    Munch is the best of us, god bless him.

    Truth!

  • LuxLux Registered User regular
    The only way I'll be buying/reading Before Watchmen is if it turns out to be The Greatest Comic Of Our Generation and the new standard which we compare to all comics to come after it.

    If it's pretty good, which I suspect it will be, well, there are a ton of pretty good comics out there i can read and none of them will make me feel like I care more about characters than people.

  • Harry DresdenHarry Dresden Registered User regular
    edited April 2012
    Munch wrote: »
    Oh come on, like every single one of you won't purchase Before Watchmen stories if they turn out good...

    Nope. Aside from thinking the whole endeavor is creatively bankrupt, I just have no interest in it. There's plenty of other stuff out there, more deserving of my time, attention, and money.

    On the topic of Moore's contract; I think it's disingenuous of Lee to state that Moore didn't read it. To my knowledge, that's never been Moore's contention.

    The issue has always been that Moore and Gibbons negotiated a contract which meant they would receive the rights to Watchmen, after it had been out of print for a certain amount of time. At the time Watchmen was published, trade paperbacks basically didn't exist, in the American comics marketplace. But, because of books like Watchmen (and DKR, etc.) the TPB market was born, ensuring that Watchmen would never go out of print again.

    DC opted to uphold the letter of the contract, rather than the spirit, and that has always been Moore's problem with them.

    He and Gibbons negotiated a contract that, at the time, was seen as a huge blow in favor of creators' rights. Moore's only failure was to see a future where he'd help to bring about an entirely new way of selling and distributing comics.

    Lee has no credibility dealing with Moore. IIRC the only reason Moore discovered WildStorm being sold to DC was on the news or a third party, the WildStorm staff didn't even warn him a few months or weeks before it was bought. Or gave Moore the opportunity to alter his contract to leave the company with his projects before DC gobbled them up. That said, Lee was never going to support Moore in public under any circumstance. Not when he has so much to lose by pissing off his WB/DCE superiors.

    Harry Dresden on
  • Harry DresdenHarry Dresden Registered User regular
    Arivia wrote: »
    Man I find it weird and upsetting that it probably will sell okay

    like are we really that insulated and incestual a fanbase?

    A fair portion of comics fans are twelve-year old boys in decidedly non-twelve-year old bodies.

    Sad, but true.

    Yup, this is correct.

  • David_TDavid_T Registered User regular
    Jim Lee wrote:
    For everything that’s been done for Watchmen from the books to the movie, money has gone his way. The right amount that he deserves based on the contract. So we have honored that part of the agreement.

    Isn't he fairly outright stating that there are parts of the agreement that they haven't honored? Or am I reading too much into it?

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  • Centipede DamascusCentipede Damascus ha ha just kidding I'm Frog ManRegistered User regular
    edited April 2012
    Arivia wrote: »
    Man I find it weird and upsetting that it probably will sell okay

    like are we really that insulated and incestual a fanbase?

    A fair portion of comics fans are twelve-year old boys in decidedly non-twelve-year old bodies.

    Sad, but true.

    this guy is the incarnation of the average comics fan:

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    Centipede Damascus on
  • MunchMunch Registered User regular
    Lee's argument that Moore received all money owed to him, is also bullshit.

    One of Moore's first disputes with DC, was due to them selling Watchmen merchandise, and calling it promotional material, to avoid paying Moore royalties.

    Plus, fixating on the money seems to be missing the point. Moore stopped caring about the money, around the same time he started ordering DC to give his artistic collaborators his share of the movie-money owed to him.

    Really, I don't think he even cares about having the rights to his work, anymore. I'm sure he'd be happy to have them back, but the guy seems pretty content to just write for himself, and avoid all contact with whatever entertainment industries would seek his attention.

    Also, here's something that bugs me.
    Likening comic properties to a baseball team, DiDio explained why, from DC's perspective, it doesn't make good business sense to leave your best players on the bench. "There's so much entertainment and there's so much media out there that you have to go out with your best foot forward for the things that are most recognizable -- that people want to see," he said. "I explained that to them, and -- you've got to remember that most of the folks -- a lot of the folks -- who work at DC Comics are fans, so you know, there's that fan that kicks in every once in a while."

    This kind of thinking, that nothing is sacred, that artistic integrity should give way to financial interests, makes my blood boil. Entertainment can be both profitable and good. It's not like Moore used some arcane, alchemical formula to produce Watchmen. He just wrote a good fucking story, at the right time.

    Additionally, if you're going to abandon all artistic integrity, why not go all out? Mark Millar, what've you got?
    I pitched this to DC for a laugh years back. The idea was that, like Death of Superman, we had Rape of Wonder Woman; a twenty-two page rape scene that opened up into a gatefold at the end just like Superman did.

    Sold.

    I mean, it doesn't make financial sense for DC not to do it. Can you imagine how many copies that'd sell? Who cares if it's devoid of any kind of integrity or creative merit? Leave that stuff to independent comics, DC's running a business, dammit.

  • SolarSolar Registered User regular
    Good point well made Munch. Creative worthiness shouldn't always bow down to business endeavours. That's just shit.

  • Harry DresdenHarry Dresden Registered User regular
    edited April 2012
    Munch wrote: »
    Likening comic properties to a baseball team, DiDio explained why, from DC's perspective, it doesn't make good business sense to leave your best players on the bench. "There's so much entertainment and there's so much media out there that you have to go out with your best foot forward for the things that are most recognizable -- that people want to see," he said. "I explained that to them, and -- you've got to remember that most of the folks -- a lot of the folks -- who work at DC Comics are fans, so you know, there's that fan that kicks in every once in a while."

    This kind of thinking, that nothing is sacred, that artistic integrity should give way to financial interests, makes my blood boil. Entertainment can be both profitable and good. It's not like Moore used some arcane, alchemical formula to produce Watchmen. He just wrote a good fucking story, at the right time.

    Something is sacred to Didio alright his favorite characters, the Silver Age in particular. He never mentions that DC isn't limited by the so-called "iconic" representations. There's nothing stopping DC/WB putting new legacy characters in other media. In fact, they've done it already with Kaldur 'Ahm's Aqualad, Ryan Choi's Atom, Wally West's Flash & Jaime Reyes' Blue Beetle.

    Harry Dresden on
  • CrimsondudeCrimsondude Registered User regular
    edited April 2012
    Man I find it weird and upsetting that it probably will sell okay

    like are we really that insulated and incestual a fanbase?
    Yes.

    And Arivia is right, but of course the self-loathing part of the community can be pretty myopically self-righteous at times. The owner of my main LCS buys into that more than I do, for crying out loud.

    Anyway, this is not one of those times. The majority of fans will buy this shit sandwich between two pieces of fancy bread and they will love DC for it.

    Crimsondude on
  • Linespider5Linespider5 I told her on Alderaan nothing else was going on.Registered User regular
    Most comic success stories are victims of awareness.

    DC just looks at all the hullabaloo around the Watchmen and all the movie merch and DVD sales and is looking at the fact that, bottom line, Watchmen is kind of their number 2 property after Batman in terms of People Who Bought Shit We Made That Wasn't The Comic Itself. DC was able to appraise that they did a pretty damn good of cramming the various media orifices with Watchmen junk and making lots of different bank off it. So drill baby drill. There's still blood left in this dead horse.

    Maybe it would be a different story if Green Lantern hadn't been a weak fart in Iron Man drag.

    Maybe that's also the reason they're letting Zach Snyder direct the new Superman movie.

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  • Harry DresdenHarry Dresden Registered User regular
    Man I find it weird and upsetting that it probably will sell okay

    like are we really that insulated and incestual a fanbase?
    Yes.

    And Arivia is right, but of course the self-loathing part of the community can be pretty myopically self-righteous at times. The owner of my main LCS buys into that more than I do, for crying out loud.

    Anyway, this is not one of those times. The majority of fans will buy this shit sandwich between two pieces of fancy bread and they will love DC for it.

    There are also fans who are buying out of habit. I did that for a few years. God, I'm glad I don't do that anymore.

  • CrimsondudeCrimsondude Registered User regular
    True. I feel bad dropping titles sometimes.

  • AriviaArivia Registered User
    True. I feel bad dropping titles sometimes.

    I do too! Especially as someone who knows the amounts books sell and stuff, just uuuuuugh. it's going to have to happen at some point, though, probably after Hickman gets off FF.

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  • HenslerHensler Registered User regular
    Man, I've been saying for years that Marc Millar should write Wonder-Woman. Years I say!

  • Harry DresdenHarry Dresden Registered User regular
    Hensler wrote: »
    Man, I've been saying for years that Marc Millar should write Wonder-Woman. Years I say!

    Ultimates Mark Millar? I disagree. Superman Adventures Mark Millar might have had a good run, though.

  • cshadow42cshadow42 Registered User regular
    I've got more Loeb bitching. I know, I know...but the man cannot be stopped.

    Loeb explains his involvement with Ultimate Spider-man, and the new Nova.

    Now that I think about it, Ultimate Spider-man does seem a bit....Loebish...

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  • SatanIsMyMotorSatanIsMyMotor Registered User regular
    Regarding Before Watchmen. I largely agree with everything that's been said and I do think that Moore has gotten pretty screwed over the years.

    That being said, I'm not sure I agree that the whole concept behind the series is creatively bankrupt. I just struggle with prejudging something to that extent. I'd prefer to reserve judgement until we see the final product.

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  • CrimsondudeCrimsondude Registered User regular
    edited April 2012
    Well, it's on a spectrum along with something David Brothers noted in his CA editorial that I have been bothered by for a long time. That is that while Stan and especially Jack were creative geniuses, Marvel is still stuck focusing on characters that are fifty or more years older with one or two exceptions (Wolverine). Wolverine may only be from the seventies, as opposed to Batman, but a lot of their focus really is just rearranging other peoples' old furniture. It's safe, and it's profitable, but flat-out one of the legacies of Moore and his relationship with DC often feels like creators are keeping their best material to be published by other arrangements where they keep ownership and DC and Marvel don't seem that interested in promoting the original creations that are appearing in their comics, e.g. Red Hulk and his rogues gallery of new villains.

    Crimsondude on
  • SatanIsMyMotorSatanIsMyMotor Registered User regular
    But it's the content not the subject that makes something truly interesting is it not? The fact of the matter is that for every good writer there are 30 mediocre writers. Look at something like Fantastic Four, one of the oldest comic book properties around, and what Hickman did with them. He didn't go in and rearrange furniture. He took all of the furniture apart and made something completely new out of it.

    Of course, eventually someone will come along and put all of that furniture back but isn't that on the writer and not the publisher?

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  • The Lovely BastardThe Lovely Bastard Registered User regular
    See, I gotta disagree with everything from all sides here. Putting aside anything you think about DC or Alan Moore, there is no real reason not to do Before Watchmen. In other media, if something does super well, more is produced. Comics shouldn't be the exception. The only way to survive is to make money. If you want your little books like Blue Beetle or Captain Britain and MI:13 to even be feasible, enough money has to be there to absorb whatever losses they could, and most likely would, incur.

    Artistic doesn't neccessarily sell, doggies. Need to accept the Clooney method. Big, dumb things exist to make enough money to pay for really cool, small things. Much like Clooney would do big, bad movies to get funding for movies he wanted to do.

    Now to the nitty gritty.

    First of all, there is no inherent artistic integrity in writing any character you don't own. Watchmen is not special in this regard. Using characters and a world already in place is not new. Unless you want every comic series to end when their creator leaves it, you can't hold Watchmen to a different standard, just because you like the story a lot. Shit don't work that way. Bad contract or no, DC OWNS Watchmen, not Alan Moore.

    Secondly, yeah Alan Moore got screwed by a contract. So did lots and lots of creators. With the whole Jack Kirby thing, did you stop reading Marvel forever? How about Bill Finger, the other creator of Batman who never gets credit? How can you open a Superman comic without shame? I am not saying any of these situations are the same, nor are they right. Just that saying it is shameful to do a Watchmen prequel because Alan Moore got screwed, meanwhile seeing The Avengers (think the Kirby family gets a piece of this?) is a tad bit hypocritical.

    Thirdly, a good story is a good story is a good story. I don't care if it's written by a child murdering nun. Sure I can abhor who wrote it, but it doesn't make the work bad all of a sudden. It'd suck to have to admit the serial killing sister wrote a good thing, and I don't gotta agree with her life choices, but that doesn't distract from what's laid out before me.

    Fourthly, I believe leaving anything sacred or off limits or anything like that is far more creatively bankrupt and stifling than telling a creator "do anything" because doing so is exactly what leads to editorial mandated clusterfucks. I'd rather have a shitty Mark Millar Wonder Woman rape story than have an entire run on Justice League by Dwayne McDuffie neutered and mandated into what it was. In a perfect world, I'd want neither, but since that'd never exist, I tend to side more with unlimited freedom. "Sure, make a prequel to Watchmen" is about as crazy as "hey, let's give starman an ongoing series" any way you slice it. The creators at the big two already have zero ownership over the characters they are writing. Giving them a list of things they can't do and characters they can't touch and worlds they can't visit is incredibly wrong.

    All that said, will I buy before Watchmen? Maybe The Comedian stuff, but that's it. I don't need or want to see sane Rorshach or whatever the other cats were up to beforehand. Other people might.

  • SatanIsMyMotorSatanIsMyMotor Registered User regular
    I think TLB hit the nail on the head with the idea that the status quo needs to be there in order to drive innovation. That's exactly how every business operates and comics can't really be any different. Risk requires investment and the only way to build the capacity for investment is by continuing to do what you know works for your business.

    The moral quandary behind the Moore/DC debate is a completely different subject. I don't think there's any question that DC could have treated Moore a bit better but that being said, if they had (and knowing Moore's history), do we really think any of this would have been different if they had? Moore is a dickhead and has a strong history of "Nobody else should be able to play with my stuff".

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  • MunchMunch Registered User regular
    edited April 2012
    I really don't even want to waste my time rebutting this bullshit, but here we go.
    See, I gotta disagree with everything from all sides here. Putting aside anything you think about DC or Alan Moore, there is no real reason not to do Before Watchmen. In other media, if something does super well, more is produced. Comics shouldn't be the exception. The only way to survive is to make money. If you want your little books like Blue Beetle or Captain Britain and MI:13 to even be feasible, enough money has to be there to absorb whatever losses they could, and most likely would, incur.

    Nobody's arguing that's not how the entertainment industry works, most are arguing that's not how it should work. Is it really that hard to shit out some cash-grab that doesn't exploit some classic work? Do we really want to live in a world where the sequel to Se7en is about a magical Morgan Freeman?

    If publishing houses/studios/comic publishers are so desperate for money (they're not), it's not like they have to do Watchmen. Churn out some more bullshit David Finch/Michael Bay/harlequin romance crap, and be done with it.
    Artistic doesn't neccessarily sell, doggies. Need to accept the Clooney method. Big, dumb things exist to make enough money to pay for really cool, small things. Much like Clooney would do big, bad movies to get funding for movies he wanted to do.

    Artistic doesn't necessarily not sell either, doggie. Predator's a genuinely good movie, that was also successful. Predator 2 is a steaming pile of cash-grab. See also: Ghostbusters 2, Animal House: Delta House, Caddyshack 2, etc. You'll note that these aren't exactly sequels to art-house films. The originals were just clever, competently made works.

    You're acting like the options are to only do Chris Ware's Superman, or Jim Lee and Geoff Johns' Superman and Big Barda Porno Spectacular. They're not. There's a big ol' space in between those two extremes, where you can do fun, engaging corporate comics, that also make money.

    Additionally, this isn't Clooney doing Ocean's 12 or 13, bad movies that basically seemed like an excuse for a bunch of actors to get together and put on funny clothes and fake noses. This is Ocean's 14, where Bernie Mac has been replaced by Eddie Murphy in a fat-suit.
    First of all, there is no inherent artistic integrity in writing any character you don't own. Watchmen is not special in this regard. Using characters and a world already in place is not new. Unless you want every comic series to end when their creator leaves it, you can't hold Watchmen to a different standard, just because you like the story a lot. Shit don't work that way. Bad contract or no, DC OWNS Watchmen, not Alan Moore.

    Secondly, yeah Alan Moore got screwed by a contract. So did lots and lots of creators. With the whole Jack Kirby thing, did you stop reading Marvel forever? How about Bill Finger, the other creator of Batman who never gets credit? How can you open a Superman comic without shame? I am not saying any of these situations are the same, nor are they right. Just that saying it is shameful to do a Watchmen prequel because Alan Moore got screwed, meanwhile seeing The Avengers (think the Kirby family gets a piece of this?) is a tad bit hypocritical.

    Jesus Christ. Okay, on your first points; yes, if I had to say that working on Firestorm the Nuclear Man either A) was an action possessing creative integrity or B) an action not possessing creative integrity, I'd say the answer was clearly B. But again, there's a big, wide spectrum between those two points.

    For instance, Gerry Conway and Al Milgrom have never said, "Hey, if you guys could maybe not do Firestorm, that'd be awesome." They were never promised that they'd regain the rights to Firestorm, after they ate a sandwich, only to discover they were deceived, and the sandwich was made of lead, and the size of Rhode Island.

    Rather, they created the character at a time and understanding that they would not own or control the character.

    Can you see the disparity between those two, when you're the hypothetical creator asked to contribute to Firestorm or Before Watchmen?

    I'm not even going to touch the contract stuff, because seriously?

    Also, as I've gotten older, I have stopped supporting material that came from the exploitation of other creators. Go check my posts in the New Comics threads over the past few months, and you'll note that I'm pulling a whopping one DC book now, which will probably be canned with the next round of solicitations.
    Thirdly, a good story is a good story is a good story. I don't care if it's written by a child murdering nun. Sure I can abhor who wrote it, but it doesn't make the work bad all of a sudden. It'd suck to have to admit the serial killing sister wrote a good thing, and I don't gotta agree with her life choices, but that doesn't distract from what's laid out before me.

    Yes, a good story can arise from a creator, or creative circumstances, that I don't agree with. That's obvious.

    But, I say that knowing about the creator, or the circumstances that led to the work's creation, can and will color my perception of said work. If the making of 101 Dalmatians required 101 Dalmatian puppies to be fed into a meat-grinder, their fluids processed to make animation cels, and I learned of that prior to screening of the movie, I'd be morally bankrupt to support it in any way.

    Same with Before Watchmen. It's a work arising from circumstances I disagree with, and I'd be an asshole to support it, and in doing so tell DC, "Why yes, please fuck other creators out of their work through the use of bad contracts. Say, I'd really like an Ampersand plush toy. See if you can twist Brian Vaughan's arm, and make that happen!"
    Fourthly, I believe leaving anything sacred or off limits or anything like that is far more creatively bankrupt and stifling than telling a creator "do anything" because doing so is exactly what leads to editorial mandated clusterfucks. I'd rather have a shitty Mark Millar Wonder Woman rape story than have an entire run on Justice League by Dwayne McDuffie neutered and mandated into what it was. In a perfect world, I'd want neither, but since that'd never exist, I tend to side more with unlimited freedom. "Sure, make a prequel to Watchmen" is about as crazy as "hey, let's give starman an ongoing series" any way you slice it. The creators at the big two already have zero ownership over the characters they are writing. Giving them a list of things they can't do and characters they can't touch and worlds they can't visit is incredibly wrong.

    Do you really think these books are going to be the ones that don't have editorial riding the creators throughout? The super-high-profile, radioactive Holy Grail of superhero comics?

    Also, are you comparing the dancing-between-raindrops routine that is Before Watchmen, to James Robinson and Tony Harris (and others) creating a new world and character, reinvigorating concepts that had laid fallow for years? Because again, I don't think there's any comparison to be made.

    Before Watchmen isn't Starman. It isn't Wicked, or Grendel. It's not an artist's genuine attempt to create a new work, using old concepts. It's Scarlett, a shameless, inferior cash-grab, that's going to try really hard not to contradict the original, and that's about it.

    Munch on
  • AntimatterAntimatter if you want to talk to me look elsewhere.Registered User regular
  • durandal4532durandal4532 Registered User regular
    Yeah I mean

    Shit

    I don't have so much money I gotta pick up everything man. I think I can skip some things. Acting as though there is no opportunity cost to this is silly.

    I'm hoping to have enough to regularly purchase like 4 books, this shit doesn't need to be on the radar.

  • BlankzillaBlankzilla The Year 198X Being Xtreme to the MaxxRegistered User regular
    Honestly I gotta say I am with TLB on this one

  • wirehead26wirehead26 Registered User regular
    Yeah I mean

    Shit

    I don't have so much money I gotta pick up everything man. I think I can skip some things. Acting as though there is no opportunity cost to this is silly.

    I'm hoping to have enough to regularly purchase like 4 books, this shit doesn't need to be on the radar.

    Yeah I'm already forcing myself not to get any new books or trades and just stick with what I have. Right now I'm getting all the Avengers vs. X-men stuff but after that I'm sticking to a dozen or less core books and maybe the random trade here and there.

    What is best in life?
  • CorporateLogoCorporateLogo The toilet knows how I feelRegistered User regular
    Will this be the rift that slays the chupacomic

    Stay tuned

    Do not have a cow, mortal.

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  • BlankzillaBlankzilla The Year 198X Being Xtreme to the MaxxRegistered User regular
    You say that like the Chupacomic was actually going to happen

  • DelduwathDelduwath Registered User regular
    I'm not sure that there's a one-size-fits-all answer. For some people, if the contract says X and X is being honored, everything is on the level. Whether or not X is fair is tangential. Whether or not the spirit of the contract is being honored is immaterial - in many cases, what the spirit of the contract is is open to debate (although I don't think this is one of those cases), and the best we can do is look at what is set down on paper, which is what every party agreed to.

    For other people, the contract is immaterial. The legal situation takes a back seat to what can be considered an artistic, humanistic, or ethical issue. They would rather support the artist than the entity pulling the artist's reins.

    I don't think either is inherently wrong.

    I'm wary of the idea of obeying the spirit of the contract rather than the letter of it. In many cases, one can look at a contract and get a pretty good idea of what the parties want, but I don't know if we can reverse-engineer full intent from that. The only thing that I know for sure is what's written down on that piece of paper; I can make educated guesses about what is unsaid, but I don't think that should take precedence over what IS said.

    Moore has a contract that turned out to be shitty. I'm not familiar with the history of the medium enough, but a lot of people are saying that at the time, it would have been pretty inconceivable that Watchmen would remain in print indefinitely; from that point of view, that contract wasn't so bad, right? A loophole opened up and DC jumped into it with both feet. That sucks. It still seems pretty legit to me. A lot of the other shit they've pulled on Moore over the years is obnoxious-to-reprehensible, but I'm not sure the original contract - or even the exploitation of it - falls under the same banner.

    From an artistic point of view, I understand the argument about mainstream capes comics being a stagnant pool where the same characters are mined again and again, but I just can't get worked up over it. I'll be honest: I like reading a Batman or Superman story every now and then, even though the characters are four to five times older than me and have gone through narrative treadmills over and over. I think there's a place for Batman and there's a place for Jack Knight. Sure, the big companies tend towards the conservative, guaranteed-to-be-profitable side. It's unfortunate, but kind of inevitable with large enterprise. They're far from being completely devoid of fresh creators, concepts, or characters (although sure, I'd love to see more). I don't think that telling a story about a pre-existing character is inherently bad, or uninteresting, or unoriginal. I mean, they can still turn out to be bad or uninteresting or unoriginal, but it won't be just because it's using a pre-existing character; it will be because the plot is dumb, or the dialogue is flat, or any number of reasons.

    In this specific case, I'm kind of conflicted. I can understand the people who are saying that Watchmen is a completely piece with a planned beginning and end. I think that in terms of craft, it's one of the best comics I've ever read, with attention and intent seen in every dot of ink on the page. I can understand the irritation at DC attempting to bolt on more content to the story. At the same time, I understand the people who are excited about the new content. I like everything about the Rorschach/Nite Owl relationship - it's probably my favorite thing in the whole book - and I can understand wanting to see what they were like in their younger days.

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  • wirehead26wirehead26 Registered User regular
    I'm seriously considering dropping most mainstream superhero books and sticking with brands like Icon, Image, Vertigo and the like. Oh sure I'll still read at least one Avengers book and as long as Scott Snyder writes Batman I'll keep reading it but after Avengers vs. X-men is over I really need to drop some books anyway.

    What is best in life?
  • The Lovely BastardThe Lovely Bastard Registered User regular
    munch, I love you and I know we're never gonna agree, but I gotta say more.

    You're letting your feelings on the subject of Alan Moore vs DC take over and it is clouding your judgement and how you're reading what I wrote. I admit I am completely amoral and that taints my viewpoint a smidge, but I also think that you can't make exceptions for one thing and not every thing. if before watchmen is evil, so is a lot of other shit. alan moore is not special, no matter how good he wrote.

    The entertainment inudstry is just that, an industry. And you know what sells quickest? Things with brand recognition. Even if they aren't, as you say, hurting for money is that a reason to stop making it? And even if the sequels and spin-offs don't sell well, they were still much less risky than something without a proven track record. Before Watchmen is not anything special in this regard, it's the same damn thing because, at the end of the day, DC does still own Watchmen, circumstances be damned. They are not doing anything any other company would not do. You don't have to like it, you have to be realistic about it.

    Especially with entertainment on a whole. You can't take a risk without a safety net. You completely missed my point with the ocean's stuff. I never said there were only two types of comics. I said that you need the big dumb events and superstar extravaganzas and the like to keep your pockets lined up enough to take risks. That never implies they are bad, just big and flashy. Identity Crisis is big and flashy, but so is All Star Superman. Quality was never the issue, and it never will be, as quality is highly subjective.

    I could expand on more but I am at work and can't waste phone battery on anything more other than

    CHUPACOMICS WILL HAPPEN

  • BlankzillaBlankzilla The Year 198X Being Xtreme to the MaxxRegistered User regular
    TLB you were working on Juan Chupacabra when we were emailing eachother like 6 years ago

  • SatanIsMyMotorSatanIsMyMotor Registered User regular
    One particular thing I think I keep getting hung up on is this concept of "the spirit of the contract". There's no such thing. It's a very nebulous idea that is up to interpretation. You put a legally binding contract in place in order to get away from exactly that. It sucks, but it is what it is.

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  • DelduwathDelduwath Registered User regular
    Chupacomics will be the next Watchmen. You gotta put a lot of love and care into it. Six years is nothing.

    Also, I look forward to seeing how TLB writes a bad contract for himself to sign, and then tries to bilk himself of the royalties.

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  • MunchMunch Registered User regular
    You're letting your feelings on the subject of Alan Moore vs DC take over and it is clouding your judgement and how you're reading what I wrote. I admit I am completely amoral and that taints my viewpoint a smidge, but I also think that you can't make exceptions for one thing and not every thing. if before watchmen is evil, so is a lot of other shit. alan moore is not special, no matter how good he wrote.

    And you're ascribing feelings to me that don't exist, and trying to dismiss my points by saying my judgement is clouded. And you insistence that everything is all-or-nothing, that if an exception can be made for one thing, it must be made for all things, is tiring, and already addressed in my previous post.

    Before Watchmen is a blatant and transparent cash-grab, predicated on a bad contract, and I refuse to support it.

    That is the sum total of my opinion on the project. I don't know Alan Moore, I don't know anyone at DC. I have no investment in anyone's success or failure.

    TLB wrote:
    The entertainment inudstry is just that, an industry. And you know what sells quickest? Things with brand recognition. Even if they aren't, as you say, hurting for money is that a reason to stop making it? And even if the sequels and spin-offs don't sell well, they were still much less risky than something without a proven track record. Before Watchmen is not anything special in this regard, it's the same damn thing because, at the end of the day, DC does still own Watchmen, circumstances be damned. They are not doing anything any other company would not do. You don't have to like it, you have to be realistic about it.

    And anyone who's familiar with the entertainment industry, should be familiar with the idea of diminishing returns. Do you think Before Watchmen is going to be anywhere near as successful as the work it's based on? Or is it going to be Aladdin: The Return of Jafar?

    Also, in what way have I not been realistic? I recognize that this is happening, and I recognize that DC has financial motivations for doing it. I just think it's lazy and stupid.

    TLB wrote:
    Especially with entertainment on a whole. You can't take a risk without a safety net. You completely missed my point with the ocean's stuff. I never said there were only two types of comics. I said that you need the big dumb events and superstar extravaganzas and the like to keep your pockets lined up enough to take risks. That never implies they are bad, just big and flashy. Identity Crisis is big and flashy, but so is All Star Superman. Quality was never the issue, and it never will be, as quality is highly subjective.

    And you missed my point about the Ocean's series. It's fine to make a big, dumb blockbuster. Ocean's 11 is a good flick, based off some old property. Whatever, that's cool. It made a bunch of money, good for them. Ocean's 12 is alright, a blatant cash-grab, and stupider than its predecessor, and netted less money than the frist film. Whatever, good for them. Ocean's 13 is another cash-grab, and a steaming pile of cinematic garbage, that made less money than the first sequel. Whatever, good for them.

    My theoretical Ocean's 14, where Bernie Mac is composited from clips of Bad Santa and Transformers, using Avatar-level CGI, with fat-suit Eddie Murphy filling in the gaps, is a shameless cash-grab, that also manages to be in poor taste, as well as just a little sad.

    Sight unseen, that's how I'd describe Before Watchmen.

    DC can do all the dumb, blockbuster-style horseshit they want to. I think the majority of what they publish is garbage, but who cares? It's not bothering me, or anyone else, really. Siegel, Shuster, Finger, and King are all in the ground.

    Alan Moore meanwhile, is actively saying, "I want this not to happen," while Jim Lee toes the company line, and lies about Alan Moore not reading his contract.

    I think that makes it a bit scummier than the situation with the Avengers, or Superman, or Batman, but only just.

    And let me clarify something, here. I don't even love Watchmen all that much. I think it's a good comic, but it's not in my Top 10.

    But, I think that in exploiting it in such a crass, commercial way, it reveals just how creatively bankrupt DC is. If they wanted a big, stupid blockbuster to generate some cash, they could have done The Death of Composite Superman, and not chosen to take one of the few mainstream comics held up as proof of comics' artistic merit, and rendered it Just Another Superhero Book, published by Detective Comics Comics.

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