A few months ago, DC Comics announced Before Watchmen, a series of prequels to the classic graphic novel created by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons. This sparked a number of debates, mainly around whether or not Watchmen actually needs this sort of follow-up, but also about creator rights (I blogged about it here, but long story short – I think Watchmen is a complete work in itself and so prequels are unnecessary, but if Moore can remix Dracula and The War of the Worlds into The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, then DC can play with Watchmen).
But if that wasn’t enough debate about the commercialisation of art, today has seen the announcement of the only kitchen appliance on earth powerful enough to make Alan Moore spontaneously combust. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, they’re making a Watchmen toaster.
Obviously it’s the very definition of selling out your artistic integrity, but it’s just so ridiculous that it actually becomes hilarious. In some ways it’s a scathing commentary on culture. I’d half be tempted to belief that it was done to deliberately wind up the sort of comic book fans who take things a little too seriously…
So, who’s up for clubbing together and buying Alan Moore a Watchmen toaster for his birthday?