Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Why "Before Watchmen: Dollar Bill" Just Might NOT Suck

Some, such as J. Caleb Mozzocco in his first post of the year at Everyday Is Like Wednesday, may mock, to me, Before Watchmen: Dollar Bill sounds more promising than any of the other BW mini-series or one-shots published or announced so far.  Unlike some of the previous efforts, it won't, in fact it can't, be a mere rehash of what Alan Moore did with the character in Watchmen, because there's really nothing there to rehash.  In Moore's original graphic novel, Dollar Bill is a mere cypher. He's little more than a name and a costume.  That's not a knock on Moore, though.  Watchmen is bursting with fully realized, three dimensional characters.  Dollar Bill just doesn't happen to be one of them.  He's not so much a character in Moore's tale as an object lesson.  He's the Minuteman who gets killed while stopping a robbery thus causing the others, especially Nite Owl, our point of view character in the 40's super group, to realize that crime fighting isn't a game and that they can get seriously hurt or even die.
Therefore, Dollar Bill writer Len Wein, together with artist Steve Rude, has a unique opportunity not afforded the other Before Watchmen writers to create a mostly original character and craft a tale that truly expands and enriches the world of Watchmen in a way that they wouldn't be able to in stories about Rorshach or the Comedian or any of the other major characters in Watchmen
Whether Dollar Bill, and Wein, can live up to that promise is something we'll have to wait until February to find out, and I think that I might just go ahead and pick this book up.  If nothing else, with Steve Rude drawing it, it will at least look good.

1 comment:

  1. I will buy multiple copies of anything drawn by Steve Rude. He could do an illustrated version of, say, Mein Kampf and that ish would be on pre-order chez vollsticks!
    I really hope that this gives Rude's career a well-deserved boost. And Len Wein is nothing if not a solid writer. This is the ONLY Before Watchmen comic I will pay money for, I don't care what Alan Moore thinks of me, IT'S STEVE RUDE!