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Before Watchmen: Ozymandias / Crimson Corsair HC Hardcover – 11 Jul 2013

4.1 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: DC Comics; 01 edition (11 July 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401238955
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401238957
  • Product Dimensions: 18.6 x 1.7 x 28.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 328,294 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"The real star here, perhaps more than any of the other [BEFORE WATCHMEN] books, is Jae Lee's stunning art.... " "Mtv Geek" "Granted, those pictures are breathtaking, and Jae Lee's artwork makes Ozymandias the most visually distinct of the Before Watchmen titles." "Onion AV Club""

About the Author

Len Wein co-created SWAMP THING early in a writing career that has included work on every major hero and villain at both DC Comics and Marvel Comics. As a writer, Wein is also credited with co-creating Wolverine for Marvel and Lucius Fox for DC. Wein was one of the editors on WATCHMEN, and has also been Editor-in-Chief at both Marvel Comics and Disney Comics before settling in to a successful career writing comic books and animation.


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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Alan Moore has said that anyone who buys this shouldn't read anything writen by him. I tend to agree. I'm afraid I have read this. It is totally redundant: anything good in it has already appeared in the original WATCHMEN (The Ozymandias is a slightly longer version of the story told in the original - what on earth is the point of that?), the Crimson Corsair story is a perfectly adequate horror-pirate story, but not a patch on the Tales of the Black Freighter story in the orginal WATCHMEN; the Dollar Bill story is a slightly longer version of the story told in the BEFORE WATCHMEN Minutemen story (again - what the hell?). There is literally nothing original here. The only ones in this series that are worth reading are The Nite Owl (quite fun), Dr Manhattan (interesting take, worth doing as it uses the original character lends himself to an exploration of Quantum Psychology - though you'd be better off reading anything by Robert Anton Wilson), The Minutemen (fun, in a silly way) and Silk Spectre (shows how Laurie became a hero). Rorshach and the Comedian add noting to the story, and the Moloch story is a total waste of time. If they have nothing original to say, why do they bother? Don't buy this watse of money.
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By S P Mead TOP 500 REVIEWER on 13 Jun. 2016
Format: Hardcover
This is the “Before Watchmen: Ozymandias / Crimson Corsair” collection. It's part of DC Comics 'New 52' saga, and serves as a follow-up project to the phenomenally successful “Watchmen” mini-series (later published as a graphic novel) by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons from the 1980’s. “Before Watchmen” is, for the most part, concerned with prequel stories involving both central and secondary characters of “Watchmen”.

The “Before Watchmen” project consists of several mini-series, and includes:

‘Minutemen’ (six issues) - Writer/Artist: Darwyn Cooke
‘Silk Spectre’ (four issues) - Writers: Darwyn Cooke and Amanda Conner. Artist: Amanda Conner
‘Comedian’ (six issues) - Writer: Brian Azzarello. Artist: J. G. Jones
‘Nite Owl’ (four issues) - Writer: J. Michael Straczynski. Artists: Andy and Joe Kubert
‘Ozymandias’ (six issues) - Writer: Len Wein. Artist: Jae Lee
‘Rorschach’ (four issues) - Writer: Brian Azzarello. Artist: Lee Bermejo
‘Dr. Manhattan’ (four issues) - Writer: J. Michael Straczynski. Artist: Adam Hughes
‘Moloch’ (two issues) - Writer: J. Michael Straczynski. Artist: Eduardo Risso
‘Dollar Bill’ (one-shot) - Writer: Len Wein. Artist: Steve Rude

These 37 issues draw on the classic “Watchmen” publication in many important ways, seeking to expend, enrich and deepen that fictional universe. While “Before Watchmen” lacks both the originality and genius that defined Moore and Gibbins’ work, it’s nonetheless a serious and substantial contribution to the saga (and is amongst the better of the instalments of ‘The New 52’ franchise).
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Format: Hardcover
The stories from the mini-series Ozymandias (6 issues) and Dollar Bill (1 issue) are collected, along with the Crimson Corsair back-ups from the various mini-series, as Before Watchmen: Ozymandias / Crimson Corsair HC. These stories, set (obviously) before the events of the 25 year-old Watchmen TP International Edition mini-series slot flawlessly into the continuity. I have now read all of the collected editions so far, and though two of the three volumes have contained superbly scripted stories, with excellent artwork, this collection somehow didn't work for me at all. However, all the stories have managed to capture the feel of the original, add depth to the back-stories, and contribute their own twists to the overall plot, while being excellent, occasionally brilliant, stories in their own right.

OZYMANDIAS
This is a straightforward life story of Adrian Veidt, from birth to the moment he kicks in the [spoiler]'s apartment door... [just in case you haven't read the original story]. The artwork appears [to me] to be in the style of the 1930s magazine and Sunday-page illustrators, giving it a strange [in a good way] distanced feel from the original series and retro-stories. However, the character is not quite there - or is, and I'm not getting it. Veidt is not a hero. He may be the world's smartest man, but he is not fighting crime for any moral purpose, it appears to just be for exercise. I have to say, after reading the Doctor Manhattan series, I was hoping for an in-depth study of his plotting, but it just drifts past as just part of the background.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This edition doesn't have quite the impact of 'Minutemen' or 'Nite Owl', but is still an interesting read for fans of Watchmen. 'Ozymandias' is basically told in autobiographical form and - disappointingly - doesn't really add much to what we already know about the character from 'Watchmen', mainly because Veidt generously expands on his past in the original story. This story just fills in a few blanks, mostly incidental, although it emphasises much more just how ruthless the man is, and how much of himself he is sacrificing, and there's some interesting subtext to look for in repeat readings.
The story itself - a linear recount - leaves little room for suspense, however, and most damningly is the decision to (twice) recycle scenes from Moore's original wholesale, without any additional internal dialogue or narration, or even much deviation from the original art.

'Crimson Corsair' is a tribute to the 'Tales from the black freighter' sub-story from the original Watchmen. However, whilst the original was intercut with the main story, emphasising it's use in the subtext of the story, reading Crimson Corsair as a standalone story has less impact. However it's a well illustrated tale of what happens when the good intentions of a hero lead to damnation, but what was jarring was the faux-antique prose of the narration and the spoken dialogue, which might as well have been straight out of the mouth of a modern action-hero.

Overall this book is not essential reading, but a worthwhile curiosity for fans.
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