WEFOUNDBefore Watchmen Nite Owl #2 "David Finch Variant"


Before Watchmen is a series of comic books published by DC Comics in 2012. Acting as a prequel to the 1986 12-issue Watchmen limited series by writer Alan Moore and artist Dave Gibbons , the project consists of eight limited series and one one-shot (though two were initially planned) for a total of 37 issues.

The original series of Watchmen is the complete story that Alan Moore and I wanted to tell. However, I appreciate DC's reasons for this initiative and the wish of the artists and writers involved to pay tribute to our work. May these new additions have the success they desire. [5]

Moore criticized the project, calling it "completely shameless", and stated he was not interested in monetary compensation, but rather “What I want is for this not to happen.” [6] Moore elaborated,

With rumors of a possible Watchmen project for months prior, DC Comics officially announced the Before Watchmen project in February 2012. Bringing in some of the biggest names in the comic industry to work on the series, the project would consist of seven 4 to 6 issue mini series, each starring a specfic character(s) from the original Watchmen series, taking place prior to the original. Along with the seven mini series, a two page back up story called "Curse of the Crimson Corsair" would run in each issue, and the project would conclude with a single epilogue one-shot.

After the initial announcement of the project, months later in late August at the Toronto Fan Expo, DC made two Before Watchmen related announcements. Starting in November, a two issue series starring Moloch written by Straczynski, with art by Eduardo Risso. Finally, to replace the recently deceased Joe Kubert, Bill Sienkiewicz would ink Before Watchmen: Nite Owl. Then, in November 2012, a one shot starring the former Minutemen member Dollar Bill , was announced.

With the release of Before Watchmen: Dr. Manhattan #1 , writer Len Wein stepped down from writing duties of the Crimson Corsair back up to focus on his Ozymandias series. In his place, artist John Higgins began to write the back up strip, as well as illustrate it.

One place that could have been an opening for some creative freedom is the buddy relationship of Nite Owl and Rorschach.  We get to see a glimpse of that toward the end of this first issue, but perhaps an entire issue showing us why Nite Owl and Rorschach make the best team-up is worth pursuing.

The first four issues of Before Watchmen have certainly been interesting, with first issues of Azzarello’s Rorschach , Straczynski’s Dr. Manhattan , and Len Wein’s Ozymandias remaining to be published over the next few weeks.  With artists Adam Hughes, Lee Bermejo, and Jae Lee drawing those series, we’ve got a lot more to look forward to.

Before Watchmen is a series of comic books published by DC Comics in 2012. Acting as a prequel to the 1986 12-issue Watchmen limited series by writer Alan Moore and artist Dave Gibbons , the project consists of eight limited series and one one-shot (though two were initially planned) for a total of 37 issues.

The original series of Watchmen is the complete story that Alan Moore and I wanted to tell. However, I appreciate DC's reasons for this initiative and the wish of the artists and writers involved to pay tribute to our work. May these new additions have the success they desire. [5]

Moore criticized the project, calling it "completely shameless", and stated he was not interested in monetary compensation, but rather “What I want is for this not to happen.” [6] Moore elaborated,

With rumors of a possible Watchmen project for months prior, DC Comics officially announced the Before Watchmen project in February 2012. Bringing in some of the biggest names in the comic industry to work on the series, the project would consist of seven 4 to 6 issue mini series, each starring a specfic character(s) from the original Watchmen series, taking place prior to the original. Along with the seven mini series, a two page back up story called "Curse of the Crimson Corsair" would run in each issue, and the project would conclude with a single epilogue one-shot.

After the initial announcement of the project, months later in late August at the Toronto Fan Expo, DC made two Before Watchmen related announcements. Starting in November, a two issue series starring Moloch written by Straczynski, with art by Eduardo Risso. Finally, to replace the recently deceased Joe Kubert, Bill Sienkiewicz would ink Before Watchmen: Nite Owl. Then, in November 2012, a one shot starring the former Minutemen member Dollar Bill , was announced.

With the release of Before Watchmen: Dr. Manhattan #1 , writer Len Wein stepped down from writing duties of the Crimson Corsair back up to focus on his Ozymandias series. In his place, artist John Higgins began to write the back up strip, as well as illustrate it.

Before Watchmen is a series of comic books published by DC Comics in 2012. Acting as a prequel to the 1986 12-issue Watchmen limited series by writer Alan Moore and artist Dave Gibbons , the project consists of eight limited series and one one-shot (though two were initially planned) for a total of 37 issues.

The original series of Watchmen is the complete story that Alan Moore and I wanted to tell. However, I appreciate DC's reasons for this initiative and the wish of the artists and writers involved to pay tribute to our work. May these new additions have the success they desire. [5]

Moore criticized the project, calling it "completely shameless", and stated he was not interested in monetary compensation, but rather “What I want is for this not to happen.” [6] Moore elaborated,

Before Watchmen is a series of comic books published by DC Comics in 2012. Acting as a prequel to the 1986 12-issue Watchmen limited series by writer Alan Moore and artist Dave Gibbons , the project consists of eight limited series and one one-shot (though two were initially planned) for a total of 37 issues.

The original series of Watchmen is the complete story that Alan Moore and I wanted to tell. However, I appreciate DC's reasons for this initiative and the wish of the artists and writers involved to pay tribute to our work. May these new additions have the success they desire. [5]

Moore criticized the project, calling it "completely shameless", and stated he was not interested in monetary compensation, but rather “What I want is for this not to happen.” [6] Moore elaborated,

With rumors of a possible Watchmen project for months prior, DC Comics officially announced the Before Watchmen project in February 2012. Bringing in some of the biggest names in the comic industry to work on the series, the project would consist of seven 4 to 6 issue mini series, each starring a specfic character(s) from the original Watchmen series, taking place prior to the original. Along with the seven mini series, a two page back up story called "Curse of the Crimson Corsair" would run in each issue, and the project would conclude with a single epilogue one-shot.

After the initial announcement of the project, months later in late August at the Toronto Fan Expo, DC made two Before Watchmen related announcements. Starting in November, a two issue series starring Moloch written by Straczynski, with art by Eduardo Risso. Finally, to replace the recently deceased Joe Kubert, Bill Sienkiewicz would ink Before Watchmen: Nite Owl. Then, in November 2012, a one shot starring the former Minutemen member Dollar Bill , was announced.

With the release of Before Watchmen: Dr. Manhattan #1 , writer Len Wein stepped down from writing duties of the Crimson Corsair back up to focus on his Ozymandias series. In his place, artist John Higgins began to write the back up strip, as well as illustrate it.

One place that could have been an opening for some creative freedom is the buddy relationship of Nite Owl and Rorschach.  We get to see a glimpse of that toward the end of this first issue, but perhaps an entire issue showing us why Nite Owl and Rorschach make the best team-up is worth pursuing.

The first four issues of Before Watchmen have certainly been interesting, with first issues of Azzarello’s Rorschach , Straczynski’s Dr. Manhattan , and Len Wein’s Ozymandias remaining to be published over the next few weeks.  With artists Adam Hughes, Lee Bermejo, and Jae Lee drawing those series, we’ve got a lot more to look forward to.

While I see both sides of the argument being made against the “Before Watchmen” movement, there’s simply no denying that the line has done a decent job of attracting some great comic book talent. In this case, that talent makes “Before Watchmen: Nite Owl” #1 a straightforward, by-the-numbers origin story.

The story looks timeless, thanks largely to the incomparable linework that Joe Kubert puts down atop his son Andy’s layouts. Although he is credited as an inker in this issue, the elder Kubert really takes over artistically. The longer, curved lines defining texture and shape that are the trademark work of Joe Kubert are evident here and help to pull this story out of any contemporary foundation, playing instead to the era as defined in the pages.

As the analog character for the Ted Kord incarnation of the Blue Beetle, Dan Dreiberg makes his case for aiding the current Nite Owl, Hollis Mason, and, like Kord, eventually replacing his mentor to continue the legacy. DC has always had the ability to use legacy as a plot device. J. Michael Straczynski does so with great flair here, making me more than a bit nostalgic for an appearance of Dan Garrett and Ted Kord. Alas, this story isn’t about Garrett and Kord, but rather about Dreiberg and Mason.


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