Saturday, September 11, 2010

Moore Drama

And while we're on the subject, Watchmen writer Alan Moore has been feuding with DC Comics for so long and so vociferously that it's long since taken on the air of legend in circles of nerd-dom.  In a new interview with Bleeding Cool, the famously iconoclastic Moore, who's never been shy about his opinions, reiterates his litany of complaints against the publisher, and also offers his thoughts on the Watchmen movie as well as DC's continuing overtures to have him agree to comic book follow-ups and add-ons:
It revitalized a moribund industry. It changed the face of Comics. And so I would imagine that given our understanding of the industry standards during that time, and given the fact that, as I say, DC’s contractual stuff sometimes seems to be a bit shaky. So there may be… I mean, it’s occurred to me that I could possibly get a lawyer to look into this. There may be some problem with the contract, or some potential problem that may require my actual signature saying it’s okay to go ahead with these prequels and sequels. It might be that they can’t just do this. It may be that… it would seem that if they had gone out of their way to try and tempt me with worn-out rights to a property that was mine anyway, or sums of money… they’re offering me a million or two million, then I would imagine that what was potentially on offer to them would be higher by a couple of factors, maybe two or three factors, who knows? It could be a huge amount. So this would seem to explain their apparent desperate need to get me to put my signature upon something, which I’m not inclined to do. This is because I actually felt that the work we did on Watchmen was somehow special. I have got a great deal of respect for that work. I do not want to see it prostituted. This has always been my position. I don’t want to see it prostituted and made into a run of cheap books that are nothing like the original Watchmen which, anyway, wouldn’t work if it was dismantled. Those characters only work as an ensemble. A comic book about Doctor Manhattan would be really obtuse and boring. A comic book about Rorscharch would be really miserable. They only work together in Watchmen, although I’m sure there are perhaps people out there in the industry who would like to be the artist or writer on some Watchmen prequel or sequel simply to have their name attached to a successful property for once. When Dave Gibbons phoned me up, he assured me that these prequels and sequels would be handled by ‘the industry’s top-flight talents’. Now, I don’t think that the contemporary industry actually has a ‘top-flight’ of talent. I don’t think it’s even got a middle-flight or a bottom-flight of talent. I mean, like I say, there may be people out there who would still be eager to have their name attached to Watchmen even if it was in terms of “Yes, these are the people who murdered Watchmen”. I don’t want to see that happen.
Now, whether you agree with him or disagree, the one thing you can't say about Moore is that once he takes a principled stance, he doesn't stick to it interminably.  Much more from the always-entertaining author at the link.

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