Brian Azzarello is one of the few writers to get inside the head of a character and make it feel like Alan Moore’s writing. This issue sells the point that Rorschach is just as dangerous injured as he is healthy. Azzarello writes perfectly for Lee Bermejo, giving him plenty of dirty, gritty scenes to convey. But much like the rest of these series, the book doesn’t seem like it needs to be told….yet. It’s entertaining, and one of the better written of the series, but it’s hard to see this series including a necessary character development. This series should have been like Minutemen, where it tells necessary stories, further exploring the characters. But the book is still work your money,
One aspect of the story I’m not sure is working is the love story. It’s still on the fringes, but if it makes it way into the main plot we have a problem. Rorschach isn’t the “love story” kind of character. But there are two issues left, so this could turn around. Then again, wasn’t the point of Before Watchmen to tell stories like this? Even if the risks fail, it’s good for writers to take chances. Azzarello’s writing of this New York is the only series to show how horrible this city actually is. Many of the cities infer that this world has quite a few more criminals, but Azzarello SHOWS us, which goes farther than just saying.
The main attraction for this series has been Lee Bermejo’s artwork. It’s amazingly detailed. While Azzarello makes this version of New York an unattractive place to live, it’s Bermejo’s pencils that make it feel like a horrible place to live. It feels real and lived in, and vaguely familiar. Considering that was one of the point of the original Watchmen, kudos to Bermejo. Every punch that Rorschach throws feels like a bone crunching hit. Special mention should be given too Rob Leigh, the letterer. The small drops of blood on Rorschach’s journal is an inspired thing to do, and helps convey that he’s actually writing this stuff down. To often, when someone is doing a monologue, the letterer gives them written dialogue. But at no point in the story do we see the character writing down
As I look back on many of the reviews I have written for Before Watchmen, my complaints seem to be the same for each series. The writing could be better, but the art is great. And when this is all said and done, I’m sure that’s all everyone will remember. But we still have a few months left of Before Watchmen so we shall see.
Before Watchmen Rorschach #2 gets 4/5.
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