?Yesterday, Rich Johnston of Bleeding Cool reported that DC was considering making a sequel to Watchmen — the graphic novel, not the movie. More specifically, he said that Dan Didio was trying to start the project now that Paul Levitz had stepped down as President of DC, because Levitz had always prevented such an idea, and also so Didio could impress his new Warner Bros. overlords by making a sequel to DC’s bestselling graphic novel of last year.
I was really hoping to avoid posting about this, but enough of you have emailed me in concern, and certainly, other nerd sites have picked up the rumor. Is Johnston’s theory plausible? Unfortunately, yes — like every company, DC/Warner Bros. exists to make money, and Watchmen was a major revenue stream for them in 2009, one any company would hate to see dry up. But is it probable? I don’t think so. First of all, Johnston doesn’t even mention any sources for his “news,” unnamed or otherwise. It’s more a theory than even a rumor.
More importantly, the one bit of “proof” he does offer up — mainly, Rorschach fighting Dark Knight Returns Batman in the art for a 2007 article in Wizard magazine — is totally absurd. My pal Sean Collins explains it in far better detail in a post over at Robot 6, but the short version is that the article was always intended to be a “What If?”-type article, much like Wizard‘s regular “Last Man Standing” feature, but the text clarifying that got edited out. Moreover, common sense should tell you that DC doesn’t drop major DC Universe story hints in non-official art commissioned by and for non-DC-owned publications… especially not three years in advance. That’s stupid.
Again, I can’t say it’s totally impossible that Didio isn’t trying to think of a way to make more money of Watchmen, but let’s not freak out that there might be a sequel when there’s absolutely zero proof of it. And think about this, too — what comics writer or artist would ever, ever agree to work on a Watchmen sequel? They’d be pariahs of the industry, hated by their peers and comics fans alike. They’d also probably have their hearts ripped out while still beating by Alan Moore, and possibly eaten. So let’s just forget about this nonsense until we have something to actually worry about, okay?