DC Debuts ‘Before Watchmen’ TV Commercial [Video]
In case you’ve somehow forgotten that this Wednesday sees the release of the first of DC’s new Watchmen prequel comics, Darwyn Cooke’s Before Watchmen: Minutemen #1, don’t worry: Starting this week DC Entertainment will be running televised ads to remind you — and the rest of the world of Before Watchmen’s arrival — complete with limited animation and seriously serious narration.The ad, released today, features semi-animated artwork from the covers and promotional artwork promoting the controversial line of prequels to the 1987 Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons classic while an appropriately gravelly-voiced actor (who viewers are meant to understand is Rorschach?) asks “What made you this way?” and then answers, “You did… and do. All of you” before an announcer declares the “comic book prequels of the best-selling graphic novel of all time” that are “available at comic shops everywhere, and digitally at DCComics.com.”
Neither original Watchmen writer Alan Moore — who has explicitly rejected the prequels and has spoken at length about his problems with DC Comics — nor artist Dave Gibbons are mentioned at any point in the ad.
Talking about the ad campaign at Fast Co-Create, DC’s VP of Marketing John Cunningham said that “Our goal all along has been to focus on the books and material themselves. When fans read these books, they’ll understand why we were excited about them.”
The ad was created by the New York-based agency Motherland, who also worked with DC on their New 52 ad campaign. According to creative director Lance Sells, “The ad uses the imagery as a teaser to promote those books — it’s not a narrative. It’s pretty much the same technique as the New 52 commercial, but with less flash and swooping cameras. This is darker, more toned down, and more noir.”
The ad will be aired on G4, IFC and BBC America starting later this week.