DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

The place to talk about your favorite novels, comic books and web comics.
Darrin Kelley
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:47 pm

DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by Darrin Kelley » Tue Dec 19, 2017 10:16 pm

DC merging Watchmen into the main DC Universe only elicits one response from me. That I will take my money and spend it elsewhere.

I do not like Watchmen. I never have. It is not the type of story I find entertaining. And its influence has become ever-present in modern comics. To the point that it is very hard to escape it.

I do not find it to be a great modern work. I find it to be the archetype of a trend that has become ever-present. A grim-dark pessimistic view of superhero fiction that concentrates on exploiting shock value. One I was completely over after reading it.

By pushing it into the main DC Universe. They have repulsed me completely. So much that I doubt I will ever pick up anything else produced by DC. They made their choice. To pander exclusively to a single type of reader. A type that is not me.

MacynSnow
Posts: 3185
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2016 2:56 pm

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by MacynSnow » Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:58 am

I can see where a large number of people dislike it,h-e-double hockeysticks i even understand why they do,but i will play this much of a Devil's Advocate for DC; their at least trying to make it an intresting story instead of just dumping them in already established like Marvel would've.....

Darrin Kelley
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:47 pm

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by Darrin Kelley » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:26 am

MacynSnow wrote:
Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:58 am
I can see where a large number of people dislike it,h-e-double hockeysticks i even understand why they do,but i will play this much of a Devil's Advocate for DC; their at least trying to make it an intresting story instead of just dumping them in already established like Marvel would've.....
New52 was throwing everything out. And giving the readers no alternatives to read. So they have been there, done that.

Trying to turn everything into Watchmen isn't new. It isn't inventive. It isn't creative. Or even remotely interesting. It's the height of laziness.

User avatar
Ares
Site Admin
Posts: 1944
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:40 am

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by Ares » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:40 am

I think that, on its own, Watchmen is a solid story, but it was designed to basically be self-contained. Having stuff take place before and after it, as well as integrating it into the larger DC universe, contradicts the whole notion of it.

I also didn't like it when people started trying to make heroes like Capt. Atom and the Question more like their Watchmen counterparts.

At the same time, I understand that the Watchmen IP is popular and DC wants to do something with it to make money. And given how Watchmen played a role in creating the Dark Age of Comics, I can actually get behind the notion of using Dr. Manhattan as the reason behind the Nu-52, and thus the darkening of the DCU in the wake of Flashpoint. Dealing with that could lead to the return of more elements from the Pre-Flashpoint setting, which would be appreciated.

I will also say that while Watchmen works, it only works in the particular setting made for it. I don't really consider it anymore "realistic" than other comic settings, and it was one of the books that started the idea of "realistic settings = everyone is a psychologically damaged asshole". I also never saw any moral ambiguity in Adrian Veidt's character and his decision to "save the world through mass murder". Because no, Adrian is a villain in the Dr. Doom sense. Because he could have EASILY saved the world without resorting to the actions he took. He's a brilliant man, supremely wealthy, with resources to spare and a connection to Dr. Manhattan. He could have come up with a way to save the world without doing what he did. But that would have meant asking other people for help, working with others, to not be able to be solely responsible for saving the day. For all his talk about how tortured he was in his actions, the fact of the matter is that Adrian's ego demanded he save the world by TRICKING IT.

Adrian Veidt is very much like Dr. Victor Frankenstein, an amazing genius who makes everything about himself and his own suffering.

User avatar
Davies
Posts: 1170
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:37 pm
Location: Edmonton, AB

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by Davies » Wed Dec 20, 2017 5:42 am

Ares wrote:
Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:40 am
He could have come up with a way to save the world without doing what he did. But that would have meant asking other people for help, working with others, to not be able to be solely responsible for saving the day. For all his talk about how tortured he was in his actions, the fact of the matter is that Adrian's ego demanded he save the world by TRICKING IT.
It's even worse than that. He didn't even come up with an original idea, as the last scene with Dan, Laurie and Sally makes clear -- the Outer Limits episode that inspired that aspect of the storyline, here on Earth Prime, exists on their world too.

Jabroniville
Posts: 9101
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:05 pm

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by Jabroniville » Wed Dec 20, 2017 7:09 am

I think Veidt saved the world the only way he knew how- his plan was elaborate, and he didn't overly trust John- his plan was based around STOPPING him, as John's existence exacerbated global political problems.

Though the book makes it quite clear that Adrian is a bit of a monster (that's the point of the "Pirate" comic that the kid is reading- it's a man who's done so many awful things to survive, that he fears he's become a monster at the end of it). And it's pretty clear that his plan WON'T WORK in the long run- John just smirks and says "nothing ever ends, Adrian" when Veidt begs to know if his plan will work out in the end, and that fat kid picks up Rorschach's diary and might unravel the entire thing by publishing it.

It's... well, a tragedy.

But yeah, I think DC needs to let things lie. Let Watchmen be its own thing. We don't have sequels to EVERY major work of fiction, and Watchmen was insanely self-contained , so this seems like bald corporate profiteering. "HEY, WE OWN THE RIGHTS TO THIS! LET'S MAKE SOME MONIES!" Every spin-off endangers the original property in a way that isn't true if you write, like, a bad SPIDER-MAN story. We KNOW those are ongoings, vulnerable to the march of time. Watchmen was so self-contained that it's like doing sequels to J.D. Salinger's stuff.

MacynSnow
Posts: 3185
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2016 2:56 pm

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by MacynSnow » Fri Dec 22, 2017 5:00 am

Personally,i'd perfer it if DC gave this type of attention to their Carlton characters that Watchmen was supposedly modeled on.....

User avatar
Ares
Site Admin
Posts: 1944
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:40 am

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by Ares » Fri Dec 22, 2017 6:25 am

Jabroniville wrote:
Wed Dec 20, 2017 7:09 am
I think Veidt saved the world the only way he knew how- his plan was elaborate, and he didn't overly trust John- his plan was based around STOPPING him, as John's existence exacerbated global political problems.
Well that's the thing: Adrian was WORKING with John. The work he'd done with John was the only way he was able to replicate John's teleportation powers. Furthermore, he could read John's emotional state despite the latter's apparent lack of emotion. He was completely capable of working with John and figuring out how to manipulate him the way he wanted.

I don't disagree that Adrian's plan to save the world was done in the only way he knew how . . . because at his core, Adrian is an egotistical narcissist. His plan took over a decade to make happen. He had time and resources on his side, political contacts, wealth, advanced scientists, he had every resource at his disposal to come up with alternatives. But to save the world in a way that didn't involve murder, blackmail and manipulation would have involved being part of a group effort to do so, asking people for help, treating people as equals, and that's something he, as the self-proclaimed "smartest man in the world" was incapable of doing.

So instead he helped push the world to the tipping point, murdered innocent people, all because he felt the need to "trick" the world, to prove he was smarter than everyone else, and even arrange things so that he had an audience he could explain it all to, so someone could appreciate what he'd done. He gets to save the world, satisfy his ego by doing so on his own and through trickery, gets to have some of the few people he respects to some degree there so he can explain it all to them, and even gets to put a living god into a position where he has to do what Adrian wants, and in the end claim that he's made him feel the pain and suffering of the people he killed, tortured himself about it, because it's really all about how bad this makes him feel.

So it is a tragedy that someone with his abilities decided to save the world the way he did, and in a flawed way that will ultimately be all for nothing. I just disagree with the people that try to make Adrian into some kind of tragic hero or a guy who did the best with what he had, rather than a monster who thinks himself a hero.

User avatar
Ares
Site Admin
Posts: 1944
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:40 am

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by Ares » Fri Dec 22, 2017 7:17 am

MacynSnow wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 5:00 am
Personally,i'd perfer it if DC gave this type of attention to their Carlton characters that Watchmen was supposedly modeled on.....
I know, right? Bring back Capt. Atom as a legit military minded flying blaster/brick rather than the quasi-Dr. Manhattan they tried to turn him into several times, have Ted Kord back in some capacity, the Question, Peacemaker, Judomaster, Peter Cannon, Nightshade, etc.

Honestly, I think if I was going to use Re-Birth was a way to "fix" the DCU, I'd bring Ted back as Blue Beetle, but keep Jaime bonded with his scarab as an active hero. The solution? Have something cause the blue on the scarab's armor to turn to silver (possibly by absorbing Nth metal) and give Jaime Hector Hall's old Silver Scarab name. Someone actually did an art reference of the look (which I tweaked), and I think it looks pretty solid.

It lets Ted and Booster be the fun bromance of the DCU while still letting Jaime exist as his own kickass hero, tying him to other aspects of the DCU. And it lets him and Ted serve as a big/little brother mentor.

While we're at it, lets do something with the actual Fawcet heroes, like the real Marvel Family and not the horrible SJW Shazam Clan from "Curse of Shazam". While we're at it, bring back Bulletman and Bulletgirl (maybe make their helmets some variant of Nth metal as well), Ibis the Invincible (another Dr. Fate-type but in the Mandrake the Magician fashion), Phantom Eagle (now a literal ghost flying a phantom WWII plane), Mr. Scarlet (the original Mr. Scarlet's sidekick, "Pinky", now an adult swashbuckling masked adventurer), etc. Maybe introduce new versions of Minuteman (maybe a patriotic superspeedster?), Spy Smasher (a heroic counter-terrorist badass), Commando Yank (now just "Commando"), Captain Midnight (grandson of the original), etc.

MacynSnow
Posts: 3185
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2016 2:56 pm

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by MacynSnow » Fri Dec 22, 2017 9:15 pm

Ares wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 6:25 am
Jabroniville wrote:
Wed Dec 20, 2017 7:09 am
I think Veidt saved the world the only way he knew how- his plan was elaborate, and he didn't overly trust John- his plan was based around STOPPING him, as John's existence exacerbated global political problems.
Well that's the thing: Adrian was WORKING with John. The work he'd done with John was the only way he was able to replicate John's teleportation powers. Furthermore, he could read John's emotional state despite the latter's apparent lack of emotion. He was completely capable of working with John and figuring out how to manipulate him the way he wanted.

I don't disagree that Adrian's plan to save the world was done in the only way he knew how . . . because at his core, Adrian is an egotistical narcissist. His plan took over a decade to make happen. He had time and resources on his side, political contacts, wealth, advanced scientists, he had every resource at his disposal to come up with alternatives. But to save the world in a way that didn't involve murder, blackmail and manipulation would have involved being part of a group effort to do so, asking people for help, treating people as equals, and that's something he, as the self-proclaimed "smartest man in the world" was incapable of doing.

So instead he helped push the world to the tipping point, murdered innocent people, all because he felt the need to "trick" the world, to prove he was smarter than everyone else, and even arrange things so that he had an audience he could explain it all to, so someone could appreciate what he'd done. He gets to save the world, satisfy his ego by doing so on his own and through trickery, gets to have some of the few people he respects to some degree there so he can explain it all to them, and even gets to put a living god into a position where he has to do what Adrian wants, and in the end claim that he's made him feel the pain and suffering of the people he killed, tortured himself about it, because it's really all about how bad this makes him feel.

So it is a tragedy that someone with his abilities decided to save the world the way he did, and in a flawed way that will ultimately be all for nothing. I just disagree with the people that try to make Adrian into some kind of tragic hero or a guy who did the best with what he had, rather than a monster who thinks himself a hero.
See,jab,this is where you an i have to respectfully disagree:I'm of the personal mind that Veidt IS just as much a tragic hero as john was....Just picture this in your head for a minute:your the smartest person on the planet,so you've seen the signs and KNOW the human race will kill itself if something isn't done but the few peers you have refuse to help out of (what you think of,at least)some selfish desire of solitude or independence......Now you tell me what options you'd see......

MacynSnow
Posts: 3185
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2016 2:56 pm

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by MacynSnow » Fri Dec 22, 2017 9:26 pm

Ares wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 7:17 am
MacynSnow wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 5:00 am
Personally,i'd perfer it if DC gave this type of attention to their Carlton characters that Watchmen was supposedly modeled on.....
I know, right? Bring back Capt. Atom as a legit military minded flying blaster/brick rather than the quasi-Dr. Manhattan they tried to turn him into several times, have Ted Kord back in some capacity, the Question, Peacemaker, Judomaster, Peter Cannon, Nightshade, etc.

Honestly, I think if I was going to use Re-Birth was a way to "fix" the DCU, I'd bring Ted back as Blue Beetle, but keep Jaime bonded with his scarab as an active hero. The solution? Have something cause the blue on the scarab's armor to turn to silver (possibly by absorbing Nth metal) and give Jaime Hector Hall's old Silver Scarab name. Someone actually did an art reference of the look (which I tweaked), and I think it looks pretty solid.

It lets Ted and Booster be the fun bromance of the DCU while still letting Jaime exist as his own kickass hero, tying him to other aspects of the DCU. And it lets him and Ted serve as a big/little brother mentor.

While we're at it, lets do something with the actual Fawcet heroes, like the real Marvel Family and not the horrible SJW Shazam Clan from "Curse of Shazam". While we're at it, bring back Bulletman and Bulletgirl (maybe make their helmets some variant of Nth metal as well), Ibis the Invincible (another Dr. Fate-type but in the Mandrake the Magician fashion), Phantom Eagle (now a literal ghost flying a phantom WWII plane), Mr. Scarlet (the original Mr. Scarlet's sidekick, "Pinky", now an adult swashbuckling masked adventurer), etc. Maybe introduce new versions of Minuteman (maybe a patriotic superspeedster?), Spy Smasher (a heroic counter-terrorist badass), Commando Yank (now just "Commando"), Captain Midnight (grandson of the original), etc.
I was never really a fan of any of the Fawcet characters myself(thought their origins were all a little to "out there" for my personal tastes),but i was(and forevermore will be)a mega-fan of the Carlton heros(and in all honesty Booster Gold always struck me as a Carlton hero,anyway)
And as a side-note:Niel Gainman(?) himself originally had The Watchmen wrote for the Carlton heros but DC said no,so he had to make his own&rewite the original story.........

Ken
Posts: 1937
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2016 10:40 pm
Location: DeKamore, IL, Earth-Two

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by Ken » Fri Dec 22, 2017 9:49 pm

MacynSnow wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 9:26 pm
I was never really a fan of any of the Fawcet characters myself(thought their origins were all a little to "out there" for my personal tastes),but i was(and forevermore will be)a mega-fan of the Carlton heros(and in all honesty Booster Gold always struck me as a Carlton hero,anyway)
And as a side-note:Niel Gainman(?) himself originally had The Watchmen wrote for the Carlton heros but DC said no,so he had to make his own&rewite the original story.........
How is Bulletman's origin more out there than, say Hawkman's? Or Hourman's?

How is Spy Smasher's origin any less plausible than Batman's?

And Mister Scarlet? I mean, a crusading attorney, donning red tights to fight crime in his city with a vaguely devilish appearance. Yeah, that would never work in today's comics. Or on Netflix.

Booster Gold was never published by Charlton, so how did Booster strike you as being a Charlton character? I will grant you that he was introduced when DC was giving the Charlton heroes the big push, but that was just timing.

It was Alan Moore. There's a rumour that the Moore had outlined Watchmen for use with Archie's MLJ heroes.

Dick Giordano had been the Executive Editor at Charlton during the height of their Action Heroes days in the 1960s. In the 1980s, he was the Executive Editor at DC. Because of his fondness for the characters, and the fact that Charlton wasn't doing anything with them, Giordano engineered DC's purchase of most of the Charlton heroes. And he immediately started asking for submissions on what to do with them. Alan Moore than handed in an outline for Watchmen using the Charlton characters.

The story goes that Giordano read it and came away with two distinct thoughts. He wanted the Charlton heroes to be an ONGOING part of the DC Universe, and he recognised that the heroes in Moore's story were pretty much done at the end of it. So, he rejected it for the Charlton heroes. But he liked the actual story idea, so he greenlit the project provided Moore change the heroes to new characters.
Last edited by Ken on Sat Dec 23, 2017 12:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
Does a Winnie poo in the 100-acre wood?

Darrin Kelley
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:47 pm

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by Darrin Kelley » Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:09 pm

The other obsession that DC has that is annoying to the extreme is: Jack Kirby's Fourth World characters.

There is no time in which they are not ever-present. They are always seeing use somewhere in DC's books. It's a nonstop onslaught. The writers act like they have no other characters to write stories about. And instead just beat those into the ground.

DC has a huge history. But they don't seem to actually make use of it.

User avatar
Ares
Site Admin
Posts: 1944
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:40 am

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by Ares » Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:17 pm

Ken wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 9:49 pm
MacynSnow wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 9:26 pm
I was never really a fan of any of the Fawcet characters myself(thought their origins were all a little to "out there" for my personal tastes),but i was(and forevermore will be)a mega-fan of the Carlton heros(and in all honesty Booster Gold always struck me as a Carlton hero,anyway)
And as a side-note:Niel Gainman(?) himself originally had The Watchmen wrote for the Carlton heros but DC said no,so he had to make his own&rewite the original story.........
How is Bulletman's origin more out there than, say Hawkman's? Or Hourman's?

How is Spy Smasher's origin any less plausible than Batman's?

And Mister Scarlet? I mean, a crusading attorney, donning red tights to fight crime in his city with a vaguely devilish appearance. Yeah, that would never work in today's comics.
Jab introduced me to a line Dan Jurgens had said during an interview regarding how he'd been forced to include Capt. Marvel Jr. onto his Teen Titans run, and how the Marvel Family just didn't fit into the DCU due to being inherently silly and out-there, specifically citing things like "the talking tiger" and "evil alien worm".

Which always makes me roll my eyes, since Dan apparently forgot that the DCU, even Post-Crisis, was home to a secret city of super-intelligent sentient gorillas, the Green Lanterns included a talking chipmunk, one of Superman's enemies was a little imp from another dimension wearing a purple derby, and if you go past the "top tier" villains of any DC hero, you get guys like Calendar Man, Crazy Quilt, Zebra Man, Kite-Man, Ten-Eyed Man, etc. Claiming the Marvel Family are any weirder or sillier than Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, the Flash or even Batman and Superman, is in and of itself silly.

User avatar
Ares
Site Admin
Posts: 1944
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:40 am

Re: DC's unhealthy Watchmen obsession.

Post by Ares » Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:25 pm

MacynSnow wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 9:15 pm
Ares wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 6:25 am
Jabroniville wrote:
Wed Dec 20, 2017 7:09 am
I think Veidt saved the world the only way he knew how- his plan was elaborate, and he didn't overly trust John- his plan was based around STOPPING him, as John's existence exacerbated global political problems.
Well that's the thing: Adrian was WORKING with John. The work he'd done with John was the only way he was able to replicate John's teleportation powers. Furthermore, he could read John's emotional state despite the latter's apparent lack of emotion. He was completely capable of working with John and figuring out how to manipulate him the way he wanted.

I don't disagree that Adrian's plan to save the world was done in the only way he knew how . . . because at his core, Adrian is an egotistical narcissist. His plan took over a decade to make happen. He had time and resources on his side, political contacts, wealth, advanced scientists, he had every resource at his disposal to come up with alternatives. But to save the world in a way that didn't involve murder, blackmail and manipulation would have involved being part of a group effort to do so, asking people for help, treating people as equals, and that's something he, as the self-proclaimed "smartest man in the world" was incapable of doing.

So instead he helped push the world to the tipping point, murdered innocent people, all because he felt the need to "trick" the world, to prove he was smarter than everyone else, and even arrange things so that he had an audience he could explain it all to, so someone could appreciate what he'd done. He gets to save the world, satisfy his ego by doing so on his own and through trickery, gets to have some of the few people he respects to some degree there so he can explain it all to them, and even gets to put a living god into a position where he has to do what Adrian wants, and in the end claim that he's made him feel the pain and suffering of the people he killed, tortured himself about it, because it's really all about how bad this makes him feel.

So it is a tragedy that someone with his abilities decided to save the world the way he did, and in a flawed way that will ultimately be all for nothing. I just disagree with the people that try to make Adrian into some kind of tragic hero or a guy who did the best with what he had, rather than a monster who thinks himself a hero.
See,jab,this is where you an i have to respectfully disagree:I'm of the personal mind that Veidt IS just as much a tragic hero as john was....Just picture this in your head for a minute:your the smartest person on the planet,so you've seen the signs and KNOW the human race will kill itself if something isn't done but the few peers you have refuse to help out of (what you think of,at least)some selfish desire of solitude or independence......Now you tell me what options you'd see......
Well, I was the one making those assertions, not Jab. And if you want to view Adrian as a tragic hero, that's certainly a route to take. The story certainly makes it clear Adrian considers himself thus. I just can't agree with that take because of the means Adrian uses when he clearly had time and alternatives. I've already gone on about my reasoning for that view ad nauseam, but to me, it's telling that the allegedly smartest guy around could only see one possibility to save the world, one that just happens to involve him proving that he's smarter than everyone and gets rid of the only person he's legit inferior to.

Post Reply