Tag Archives: watchmen

HBO’s Watchmen Get Its First Cast Members

The new Watchmen television series has cast some of its first actors. Damon Lindelof who is heading up the series has said it’ll explore other aspects of the world and isn’t an adaptation of the modern classic comic series. It will air on HBO.

Cast in unknown roles are Regina King, Don Johnson, Tim Blake Nelson, Louis Gossett Jr., Adelaide Clemens, and Andrew Howard. King will have the lead role.

Lindelof has said that some of the characters for the series will be unknown. There’ll be new faces, new masks to uncover, and there’ll be an exploration of the world.

King and Johnson have yet to be attached to a comic property in their careers. Tim Blake Nelson played Dr. Allen in Fantastic Four and Samuel Sterns in The Incredible Hulk. Louis Gossett Jr. was the voice of Lucious Fox in The Batman and Jake Berkowitz in The Punisher. Adelaide Clemens appeared in X-Men Origins: Wolverine as Carnival Girl. Andrew Howard was Luther Banks in multiple episodes of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

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It’s new comic book day! What’s everyone getting? What are you excite for? Sound off in the comments below. While you wait for comic shops to open, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web.

Los Angeles Times – Comic book valued at $500 among those reportedly taken by thief at Burbank store – Booo. If anyone knows anything, please help out.

CBR – Damon Lindelof Says ‘Sacred’ Watchmen Comics Will Be Remixed, Not Retread – Interesting.

ICv2 – Lionsgate Wins Bidding War to Adapt Gerry Duggan’s ‘Analog’ – What comics aren’t being adapted?

The Outhouse – Diamond Estimates 1.5 Million Free Comic Book Day Attendees – That’s a solid amount of people.

 

Reviews

Comic Attack – New Challengers #1

Newsarama – Skyward #2

Talking Comics – The Mighty Thor: Gates of Valhalla

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It’s new comic book day! What’s everyone excited for? What do you plan on getting? Sound off in the comments below! While you wait for shops to open, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web.

IGN – Watchmen TV Pilot to Be Helmed by Leftovers‘ Nicole Kassell – This could be interesting.

 

Reviews

Comic Attack – Abbott #1

ICv2 – Fire Punch Vol. 1

Nothing But Comics – Hungry Ghosts #1

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How was folks’ long weekend (for those that had one) and how was your Black Friday? Any cool geeky things on sale? Sound off with links for Cyber Monday below! While you wait for the deals to roll out, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web in our morning roundup.

Polygon – DC Entertainment owns Watchmen, and here’s why that’s controversial – If you want to know some of the history.

Flickering Myth – Comic book adaptation Stryx coming to the small screen – Is anything not coming to the big or small screen from comics at this point?

 

Reviews

Talking Comics – Doomsday Clock #1

Atomic Junk Shop – Lost Planet

Review: Doomsday Clock #1

And so here we are — the “big event” that all of DC Rebirth has been leading up to, Geoff Johns and Gary Frank’s eagerly anticipated/thoroughly dreaded (depending on your point of view) DCU/Watchmen mash-up, Doomsday Clock. The lines between the two formerly-separate fictitious universes were blurred, of course, in last year’s DC Universe Rebirth Special, and here they’re completely wiped out. We’ve known it was coming, now it’s arrived — and it wants five bucks a month from you for the next year as it plays out over the course of 12 issues. Should you do what it (and, specifically, DC) wants?

Lots of critics are answering that question with an emphatic “yes,” some no doubt charmed by the free pancake mix and maple syrup that preview copies of the book came packaged with (DC shrewdly, but wisely, calculating that many comics critics — like many comics creators — are fucking starving), while others seem to genuinely like the fruits of Johns’ and Frank’s “imaginations.” Allow me, then, to do what I’m best at and piss on everyone’s Corn Fla — err, pancake breakfast.

Granted, to say I wasn’t expecting much from Doomsday Clock would be putting things mildly, but I was genuinely taken aback by just how much I despised this thing. Frank’s art is certainly competent enough, I suppose, highly detailed but utterly devoid of personality, a triumph of style over substance, and Brad Anderson‘s colors are a reasonable enough computerized approximation of original Watchmen colorist John Higgins‘ singular palette, albeit with more gradations in regards to shade and hue, but hey, you know what they say about lipstick and pigs — and this story is one hell of an oinker.

Johns has clearly read Watchmen dozens, if not hundreds, of times over the years — but the entire point (hell, points) of Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons‘ seminal, transformative classic was just as clearly lost on him. Every page — in fact very nearly every panel — of Watchmen was layered with thematic, conceptual, even allegorical meaning, but if you’re a facile, “surface-level” reader? Hey, it’s just a clever super-hero “whodunit” with a decidedly dark tone. Issue one of Doomsday Clock makes it abundantly clear what sort of reader Johns is.

It makes it abundantly clear what sort of writer he is, as well — one whose abilities are dramatically limited by his reading skills. Nobody apart from the most continuity-obsessed, intellectually adolescent fanboys have ever even wondered  how you could cross over the DC and Watchmen “universes,” never mind what would happen once you did so, and for that reason I really can’t fathom how anyone apart from a continuity-obsessed, intellectually adolescent fanboy would find what’s going on in these pages remotely interesting : it’s 1992 (a 1992 where variations of the term “deplorables” are in common use, where a Brexit-type event has triggered to the collapse of the EU, and where there’s a wall along the US/Mexico border — even though President Goldenshower isn’t in office, Robert Redford is? Does anyone even edit Johns’ scripts for such basics as logical plausibility?) on “Earth-Watchmen,” and things are a mess with Adrian Veidt’s scheme exposed and the purported “world’s smartest man” the subject of a global manhunt. Rorschach is on the case, but they make it clear pretty quickly that this Rorschach isn’t that Rorschach (special points for tone-deafness on Johns’ part for putting a black guy in the costume made infamous by a racist, civil-rights-trampling, vigilante lunatic — again, where’s an editor when you need one?), and that his part in whatever the hell’s going on global meltdown-wise isn’t what it seems. In fact, he’s working for —- fuck it, spoilers and all that — who’s very much alive but — fuck it, spoilers and all that again — and they’ve got a plan to — by this point you already know I’m not really going to give any “big” details away. Then we wrap up with a scene of Clark Kent on “Earth-0” (or whatever it’s called these days) having a dream about his parents’ death that doesn’t jibe with what we’ve known before.

Now, plot twists were a key component of Watchmen, of course, but they were the icing on a damn deep and rich cake. Here, though, those twists are all that Johns and Frank are serving up. This is a cheap, “flashy” story dependent on “wowing” you with one surprise after the next — but again, those surprises will only be effective if you give a shit about this cash-grab premise in the first place, and no reason for the skeptical, or even merely curious, to “buy in” is ever offered by these low-rent “creators.”

Hell, truth be told, they’re like Trump in that I don’t think they know how to reach beyond a hard-core base. Watchmen was the comic you could give to people who don’t read comics, but in order to begin to understand Doomsday Clock you need to have been deeply invested in the intricate minutiae of DC product (let’s just call it what it is) for a couple of decades or more. If nine-panel grids and grumbled “hrrrmmm”s are enough to convince you that Johns and Frank are “honoring” the legacy of Moore and Gibbons, then I guess this’ll do in a pinch, but for anyone else? Say, somebody with a modestly-developed sense of discernment? This comic is as insulting to you as it is to Watchmen‘s creators, neither of whom were even given so much as a courtesy call to let them know this toxic sludge was about to slide down the pipeline.

Johns has made some public statements clearly designed to mollify concerned parties, saying that this series won’t be saddled with any “tie-ins” to other books because he doesn’t want to “dilute the Watchmen brand” (as if its very existence doesn’t do precisely that), and that he doesn’t intend to wrap things up with a Superman vs. Doctor Manhattan fight but, rather, with a “conversation” between the two of them — but that presupposes that he has anything worth saying about either character. Based on the evidence offered by Doomsday Clock #1, I’d say it’s painfully obvious that he doesn’t. I won’t be sticking around to find out, of course — and neither should you. So enjoy those pancakes, everybody — they sure taste better than the shit sandwich that came with them.

Story: Geoff Johns Art: Gary Frank Colors: Brad Anderson
Story: 0  Art: 4 Overall: 2 Recommendation: Pass

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Doomsday Clock #1

To put it bluntly, Doomsday Clock #1 is what many comic book fans (And Alan Moore wherever he is.) have feared: a direct sequel to Watchmen. The story is set in an alternate version of 1992 about five years after the events of the original series. An actor (Robert Redford) is president, the world is on the brink of nuclear war, Ozymandias is a fugitive and pariah, Dr. Manhattan is missing, Nite Owl and Silk Spectre are still happily retired and don’t appeared, and the book focuses on the new Rorschach in town. With the exception of the final scene, Doomsday Clock #1 isn’t so much a crossover, but Watchmen II. It takes its times and gives readers a flavor of Moore and Dave Gibbons’ even more dystopian universe and kicks the plot into gear in a way similar to the back half of the original series than the initial investigation into the Comedian’s death. (Edward Blake would probably appreciate the opening riot scene though.)

Writer Geoff Johns does a pretty fair impression of the smelly, ink blot mask wearing vigilante and adds a few wrinkles of his own like his willingness to compromise and throw his lot in with criminals “in the face of Armageddon”. Having a writer, who is mostly known for writing straightforward superheroes and space cops, go into a twisted not-so-Randian psyche, is a little awkward though, and seems like a kid in his father’s clothes than the ruthless prose of crime writer Brian Azzarello in Before Watchmen: Rorschach. This clumsiness fits into the story as Rorschach II has some of the same abilities as the original character like the ability to pull off a pretty decent prison escape, a prodigious stench, and paranoia (He’s one of the few characters in this universe who uses a “gas guzzling” car.), but he “breaks character” a lot and acts like an empathetic human being even to murderers. His secret identity is pretty obvious too thanks to a diversity deficiency in the original Watchmen

Artist Gary Frank’s pencils are incredibly detailed, and he doesn’t use a nine panel grid every page although he sticks to the three row setup of panels with the exception of the title. However, he creates the occasional symphony of juxtaposition like when the US government finally goes nuclear, and Rorschach does his prison break thing. Frank’s work is strong and unwavering, like the original Rorschach’s conventions, and for the most part, colorist Brad Anderson stays out of his way and lets his pencils shine. Anderson does have a couple tricks up his sleeve like color coding some panels to different characters, such as brown for Rorschach, gold for Ozymandias, and alarm red any time there’s a nuclear threat.

Johns’ use of alternate history elements in Doomsday Clock #1 are fairly on-the-nose as he turns President Redford into President Trump of the early 90s with his incessant golfing, ties to Russia and North Korea, obsession with a single news network, and polarization of political discourse in the United States. His sheer ineptitude (and invisibility) turns Ozymandias into a sort of sympathetic character even though he was responsible for so many deaths in the original Watchmen. Ironically, Ozymandias has the same mission: saving the world.

Gary Frank’s super close-ups of frightened human faces in the opening montage of Doomsday Clock #1 do a much better job at showing world that was already hell plunging into a deeper, darker circle of that hell than any faux Rorschach voiceovers and tacked on worldbuilding from Geoff Johns. You can see the slobber in the mouth of a rioter as he goes at a police officer with a broken bottle and shatters the glass in one of Ozymandias’ old buildings. In a clever twist, the bank of TVs with endless channels in Ozymandias’ lair is turned to one showing that his actions didn’t lead to a utopia, but a dictatorship. Frank is one of the rare photorealistic artists that doesn’t have any stiffness to his work finding a sweet spot on Scott McCloud’s “picture plane” and bringing humanity to characters that would be action figures or distant gods in other artists’ hands. This skill comes in handy when a certain character appears in the last several pages. He’s also fantastic with gestures, and Johns realizes this by including a mime themed supervillain in the story that is fairly grounded and very violent in the Watchmen tradition.

Doomsday Clock #1 shows that for better or worse, Geoff Johns, Gary Frank, and Brad Anderson are taking their time with their DC Rebirth/Watchmen crossover and spend time reestablishing and tearing down the world of Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ comic before having Superman punch Dr. Manhattan or having Ozymandias and Lex Luthor swap plans for world domination over vodka sodas. Johns’ writing is awkward, but his plotting is focused and gets the proverbial clock ticking while Gibbons’ art is a real treat. Some parts of Doomsday Clock are pretty groanworthy, but others are pretty damn cool.

Story: Geoff Johns Art: Gary Frank Colors: Brad Anderson
Story: 7.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 7.8 Recommendation: Read 

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

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It’s new comic book day tomorrow. What are folks getting? What are you excited for? Sound off in the comments below!

Hollywood Reporter – ‘Watchmen’: Why Damon Lindelof Wanted to Tackle Alan Moore’s Graphic Novel – A good question.

ComicMix – Ed Catto: Fighting the Trend, a Retailer Expands – Great to see someone expanding.

 

Review

The Beat – Doomsday Clock #1

Newsarama – Doomsday Clock #1

CBR – Doomsday Clock #1

Atomic Junk Shop – The Egyptian Princesses

CBR – Hawkeye #12

The Beat – Mis(h)adra

Vinimates are Invading the DC Universe!

The Vinimates figure line has been taking the world by storm, with dozens of licenses making the jump into the 4-inch vinyl figure format. Inspired by Minimates mini-figures, the block-shaped posed figures have already captured the worlds of the Watchmen movie and the cinematic incarnation of Wonder Woman, and now they are capturing the world of DC Comics, television and video games!

The first series of DC Comics Vinimates is in stores now, with Batman and Harley Quinn at comic shops, Walgreens and Toys”R”Us, with exclusive figures at all locations. Walgreens has an exclusive Black Lantern Hal Jordan figure, while comic shops and Toys”R”Us will get Green Lantern Hal Jordan. Additionally, Toys”R”Us will get exclusive Vinimates of Blackfire and Flashback Starfire from the Cartoon Network series Teen Titans Go!

Series 2 brings Superman, Wonder Woman and the Joker, which will be available at all locations. Exclusively at Walgreens, the Black Lantern series will continue with Black Lantern Batman, while Toys”R”Us will get an exclusive Vinimate of Nibor, the reverse-Robin from Teen Titans Go!

In between Series 1 and Series 2, all locations will get Vinimates based on the Justice League movie. Series 1, which hits comic shops November 2, will include Batman, Wonder Woman and an exclusive figure of the Flash. At Walgreens, Batman and Wonder Woman will ship with an exclusive Battle-Damaged Batman figure.

Series 2 of Justice League Vinimates will include Superman, Cyborg and Aquaman, available at comic shops and Toys”R”Us. Toys”R”Us will also offer Batman with those figures.

Future releases will include sets of Vinimates based on the Flash TV series, the Supergirl TV series and the Arkham Asylum video game.

 

Diamond Select Toys On Sale Now: Gotham, Harley Quinn, Watchmen and More!

It’s a DC-tastic week at comic shops, as Diamond Select Toys ships items from Gotham, Watchmen, Wonder Woman and Batman: The Animated Series! Plus, there’s a new assortment of Nightmare Before Christmas Minimates, but most of them could probably double as obscure members of Batman’s Rogue’s Gallery in a pinch.

A trio of new products from Batman: The Animated Series are arriving in time for the show’s 25th anniversary! First up, a special 25th anniversary edition Harley Quinn bust, to celebrate the character’s debut on the show 25 years ago! With an interchangeable head to represent her first episode, and a removable silver frame for her base, she’s the perfect anniversary present for any Harley Quinn fan! Plus, Mr. Freeze makes his debut in in the Batman bust line, based on his classic cartoon appearance, and Batgirl is back in black as a new 10-inch PVC diorama (co-starring Clayface) based on her New Batman Adventures outfit! All three sculpted by Varner Studios!

Batman The Animated Series Harley Quinn 25th Ann. Bust (Item #MAR172722, SRP: $59.99)

Batman The Animated Series Mr. Freeze Resin Bust (Item #MAR172721, SRP: $59.99)

DC Gallery New Batman Adventures Batgirl PVC Diorama (Item # FEB172601, SRP: $45.00)

Just when you thought it was safe to go back to Gotham! The critically acclaimed action figure line based on the hit Fox TV series serves up the Wrath of the Villains, with three new 7” scale figures of Gotham’s most dangerous men! Azrael, Mr. Freeze and Professor Hugo Strange each feature up to 16 points of articulation as well as character-appropriate accessories, and each comes with an awesome diorama piece inspired by the show! Hugo Strange comes with the conditioning chair from Arkham Asylum, and Freeze and Azrael each come with part of an alleyway, with Joker grafitti and political posters! Collect them both to build the diorama! Packaged in the display-ready Select packaging with side panel artwork for shelf reference. Sculpted by Gentle Giant!

Gotham TV Select Series 4 Azrael Action Figure (Item #SEP168901, SRP: $24.99)

Gotham TV Select Series 4 Hugo Strange Action Figure (Item #SEP168900, SRP: $24.99)

Gotham TV Select Series 4 Mr. Freeze Action Figure (Item #SEP168899, SRP: $24.99)


It’s a new series of Nightmare Before Christmas Minimates and they’re a dream come true! The cast of creepy characters expands with three new 2-packs: Snowman Jack with glow-in-the-dark Oogie Boogie, the specialty-exclusive Devil and Corpse Boy, and the also-exclusive Saxophonist with Undersea Gal! Each 2-inch Minimates mini-figure features up to 14 points of articulation with fully interchangeable parts, including a removable snowman costume! Each 2-pack comes packaged on a full-color blister card.

Nightmare Before Christmas Minimates Series 4 2-Packs Asst. (Item #APR172631, SRP: $9.99)/ea.

The Vinimates vinyl figure line explodes into the DC Comics cinematic universe with three more vinyl figures based on the Watchmen movie and our first-ever Vinimate based on Wonder Woman! Dr. Manhattan, Silk Spectre and Ozymandias join Nite Owl, Rorschach and the Comedian, and Diana in her training gear heralds the coming of the entire Justice League! Each 4-inch vinyl figure is sculpted in a pose straight from the movies, and each comes packaged in a full-color window box. The Watchmen Vinimates also have articulated necks.

Watchmen Vinimates Silk Spectre Vinyl Figure (Item #MAR172734, SRP: $9.99)

Watchmen Vinimates Dr. Manhattan Vinyl Figure (Item #MAR172735, SRP: $9.99)

Watchmen Vinimates Ozymandias Vinyl Figure (Item #MAR17272236, SRP: $9.99)

Wonder Woman Movie Vinimates Wonder Woman Training Gear Vinyl Figure (Item #APR172647, SRP: $9.99)

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The weekend’s almost here and we’re heading to Baltimore Comic Con! What are folks doing? Sound off in the comments below! While you wait for work to end and weekend begin, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web in our morning roundup.

Around the Tubes

Kotaku – Here’s A $900 Batman: Arkham Knight Statue – Let us check our couch cushions.

Polygon – Spider-Man #1, X-Men #1 stolen from friendly neighborhood doorstep, say cops – Grrrrr.

Capeless Crusaders – Riverdale Star KJ Apa in Late Night Car Crash Leaving Set – Here’s hoping for a speedy recovery.

ICv2 – ‘Watchmen’ Greenlit for Pilot – Anyone excited for this?

The Outhouser – AMC Visionaries: Robert Kirkman’s Secret History of Comics Will Debut In November – Actually looking forward to seeing what this is about.

 

Around the Tubes Reviews

CBR – Batman: The Red Death #1

Comic Attack – Catalyst Prime: The Incidentals #1

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