Watch This: "Before" BEFORE WATCHMEN Spoof

Taking its ques from Liam Neeson's Taken films the Cult of Smack sketch show imagines how DC Comic's attempt to wrangle Alan Moore for Before Watchmen went down.

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By Mark Julian - 12/12/2012





About CULT OF SMACK
The Cult of Smack is a sketch show for 'us' - the comic book geeks, fanboys, nerds, musos, film buffs, gamers, redditors, twitterers, Whedonites, the tech savvy, and the cult smart.

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Saintsinnister - 12/12/2012, 10:23 PM
That was alot of work for such a retarded video.
FlixMentallo21 - 12/12/2012, 11:14 PM
@Froggy
SLIGHTLY based on--the looks maybe, but not the background stories hinted at in the original book.
Niuhll - 12/13/2012, 2:24 AM
Ahaha, good ol' Northampton.
KeithM - 12/13/2012, 3:18 AM
@Froggy: Only because DC were sneaky with their contract - they promised Moore & Gibbons would get the copyright once the book went out of print (and it was even written in their contract).

They didn't know then that DC intended publishing the book in collected form effectively forever, therefore denying them the clause in their contract which would grant them the rights.

Naive on Moore & Gibbons' part and 'smart' business dealing on DC's you might say, but still, to say Moore NEVER owned Watchmen, while essentially true as things stand, is not the WHOLE truth. They SHOULD own it now if DC hadn't been so underhanded and Moore & Gibbons had been less trusting. Not sure whether Moore has now officially relinquished all claims to it, but it still might one day become his and Gibbons if DC ever do let it go 'out of print' (unlikely). It wouldn't surprise me if this Before series has something to do with keeping those rights too. Just in case.

You can take the 'contracts is contracts' stance all you want, and you wouldn't be entirely wrong (they should have had a lawyer on hand). But on a personal, artistic and business practice level, what DC did was scummy and Moore is right to be pissed at them. I think Moore is a pig-headed, stubborn old grouch a lot of the time, but on this one I see exactly what his problem is and sympathise completely.
KeithM - 12/13/2012, 3:21 AM
@Froggy: Oh and don't put words in his mouth - if you're going to badmouth him, at least use his own words to hang him with (it isn't hard). He's never said they 'stole' it from him and fully admits his own naivety in the matter. But he still feels 'betrayed', let down or 'swindled' by DC and you'd have to be pretty cold not to see why.
KeithM - 12/13/2012, 3:47 AM
@Froggy (again): And to say they're 'based on DC characters' is stretching the point a little. They were based on the Charlton characters that DC had just bought, more accurately, most of whom they didn't even want - they just came with the purchase (they later changed their minds when they saw what Moore wanted to do with them and made him use 'original' characters instead - so he changed them enough to fit that bill). And they were changed so much from the characters they were based on that I doubt any court would uphold any case that might have been brought if it hadn't been published by DC. I mean, how many heroes published by other companies are 'based on' Batman or Superman? And DC can't do squat unless the similarities are so close as to be obvious. And that isn't the case for Watchmen. None of the character bear more than the most superficial resemblance to their Charlton counterparts.

Your posts seem to be mostly based on an irrational dislike of Alan Moore (although he's not exactly likeable it has to be said) and/or a love of corporate DC and contract law, rather than a genuine comment on the actual merits of the disagreement Moore has with DC.
stevenv - 12/13/2012, 7:21 AM
Northampton doesn't look anything like that
sameoldthing - 12/13/2012, 10:40 AM
Before Watchmen does nothing to affect the original Watchmen comics.

Its so very simple people...read the spin off material if you want or dont read them if it bothers you.
norseman79 - 12/13/2012, 6:39 PM
Alan Moore is a great writer and a pompous, pretentious ass.

The former doesn't entitle you to be the latter. I don't care how good you are.
KeithM - 12/13/2012, 11:36 PM
@Froggy@: To gain? I'm not sure what you mean. Discussing the rights and wrongs of something has nothing to do with what I might or might not gain from it. Is that how you think? You take the side from which you might gain the most? Interesting. Not sure I'd want to know you.

Where have I said, once, that I'm "clamoring for him to get the rights"? I just clarified the situation when you were making it out to be something it wasn't. That's all. And I commented on how they were treated from my personal perspective. I see no clamoring whatsoever.


DC took advantage of a couple of naive artists. It's that simple. It's not about who gains, who gets hurt or what the legal situation is. It's as simple as "was that a nice thing to do?" It wasn't.

It's like you say, DC have the rights and they're utilising them. That's not up for debate. Nor is there any real debate in trying to 'win them back' for Moore & Gibbons. That's done and dusted too.

There's plenty of debate as to the artistic merits of the thing, whether it works, whether it should have been left alone, and so on, but this isn't about any of that.

This is just a matter of having sympathy for some creative guys just off the boat who created something timeless and were made certain assurances and promises and then got royally screwed. That's shitty and if you can't see that, then you're a pretty heartless bastard.

Look what Watchmen did and is still doing for DC. And the artists got screwed (not necessarily out of money, but out of what they were led to believe was the deal - read up on it - that is the reality of the situation). As have many others in the industry over the years. Noting that, commenting on it and clarifying the issues surrounding how it happened is NOT the same as 'clamoring' for anything.

What Marvel did to Kirby, for example, was just as shitty, but I don't hold that against Marvel today, nor am I clamoring for the Kirby estate to get all the rights (quite the opposite). It's just what it was and that's that. Doesn't matter how much I like or dislike either party or what I might have to 'gain' from either side. Kirby was not treated as he should have been. But Marvel have the rights and should keep them. Does that confuse you?

I guess I've probably made the mistake of forgetting where I am. You can't see past your own gain, you can't distinguish between right and wrong and legal and the fact that something can be perfectly legal and yet still be morally wrong, you put words into other people's mouths to make the world fit your view of it... And the worst thing is that you seem to have lost any sense of empathy for other people, regardless of which side of the debate you're on.

But then this is here and this is what people are like.
KeithM - 12/13/2012, 11:48 PM
Actually I retract the Kirby comparison. Although Kirby probably did more for Marvel than Moore did for DC (arguable, but probably true on balance), Kirby kinda knew what the deal was and chose to live with it - he wasn't actively 'duped' like Moore and Gibbons were. So I have, if anything, more sympathy for M&G than I do for Kirby.

It's still tough shit either way, but there's nothing wrong with saying it sucks, because it does.
KeithM - 12/13/2012, 11:54 PM
@Froggy: He doesn't want the rights NOW. He was promised the rights THEN. But being naive, they didn't realise the 'out of print' clause was NEVER going to be enacted, whereas DC knew when they offered the contract that they planned to collect the book and keep it in print forever.

It's not like the deal was just made and we're waiting to see what happens. We know. It happened.

See it for what it is, not for what you want it to be.
KeithM - 12/14/2012, 12:04 AM
Btw - I do understand why Moore's attitude can make him less than endearing and almost make you want to side against him, but forget the personality of the man and think of it just in terms of a couple of guys doing something in good faith and trust and then getting shafted by their employers.

It would suck if it happened to me, it would suck if it happened to you. It sucked it happened to them too...
Happy11 - 12/14/2012, 5:15 AM
Moore pretends he is anti establishment to be cool he wasn't complaining at the time when DC published and paid him for his work. As someone else said I would feel proud if my work was published then made into a movie. Moore is becoming a parody of himself its his own fault he didn't have the brains to negotiate a better deal for the rights. Get over it.
FlixMentallo21 - 12/14/2012, 9:30 PM
THAT'S IT!!!! I've had it with this slag-crusted debate!!! All those in favor of petitioning DC to stop printing Watchmen, say "ay"!

For the record, I wouldn't be sad to see Watchmen finally go out of print--I hate that cynical excuse for a comic book anyway.

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