One of the more popular panels of this year’s SDCC was the Before Watchmen panel, which featured DC Entertainment co-publisher Dan DiDio, VP of Art Direction and Design Mark Chiarello, Senior Editor Will Dennis, Darwyn Cooke (Before Watchmen: Minutemen), Amanda Conner (Before Watchmen: Silk Spectre), Len Wein (Before Watchmen: Ozymandias) and J. Michael Straczynski (Before Watchmen: Nite Owl). Together the panel discussed some of the intrinsic workings of the Before Watchmen series as well as upcoming issues.
The first thing discussed was Nite Owl #4, which, according to Straczynsky, will feature Nite Owl working with Rorschach as Nite Owl develops his career as a crime fighter. We’ll also see some serious action from Rorschach in this upcoming issue, though what was not specified.
Next to be discussed was Ozymandias, whose story covers the hero-villain’s life entirely up to the start of Watchmen. Len Wein says that the making of Before Watchmen: Ozymandias has been a “breathtaking” collaboration of writing and art.
Rorschach’s series was then discussed only briefly before the panel conversation reached Dr. Manhattan’s, which Straczynski described as an adventure of “quantum mechanics and free will.” The next topic was the Minutemen series, which according to DiDio, starts picking up a lot after the second issue.
Following this was Silk Specter. Amanda Connor has been researching San Francisco in the ‘60s recently to add a more historical and cultural feel to the series. Darwyn Cooke also talked about collaborating with Connor on the series, as so much of it is not absolute and could use tweaking.
The discussion finally closed with a talk about the Comedian series. Dennis told about bringing the character through the ‘60s and forming the Comedian’s identity. Altogether, the series has met with a lot of positive feedback so far, and fans can be sure to see a lot more of the fun later on.
For more information, you can view the original transcript of the panel discussion here.