Watchmen Absolute Edition

Script Alan Moore, art Dave Gibbons, re-colored by John Higgins. © DC Comics. For a complete list of all books reviewed in this blog, please visit the index page.

This beautiful mat oversized slipcase (8.5 x 12.8 inches, 21.5 x 32.5 cm) designed by Dave Gibbons was published in 2005 by DC Comics (ISBN: 1-4012-0713-8, cover price 75$, my copy is a first print).

The main book inside comes with a fully illustrated dust jacket. It contains the collected 12 issues of Watchmen printed on mat thick white quality paper (464 pages).

Back dust jacket cover
The inner faux leather cover of the book displays the smiley and clock icons. Second and third of cover show different illustrations forming the word 'Watchmen'. Below there is also a picture for size comparison purpose (with the original first issue of the original series).

This edition is very similar to the previous 1988 Graphitti Designs edition (described here) in the fact that each original comic book is reprinted here with its cover, back cover and additional contextual document (Under The Hood ..). Apart the slipcase and dust jacket presentation,  there are 3 notable differences: the size of the book (obviously), the use of white thick pages in the absolute edition, and the fact that this edition features an additional coloring and digital finishing by John Higgins.

The end of the book shared the exact same 47 pages of extra material previously published in the Graphitti Designs edition, also separated in two parts, 'minutes' (introduced by Alan Moore) and 'seconds' (post-face by Dave Gibbons). So I have copy/paste below my previous comments regarding the Graphitti Designs edition, but I have tried to take different pictures to illustrate them.

 'Minutes' started with Alan Moore's original proposal for the story first with the Charlton characters, then with the Watchmen character revisions illustrated by Dave Gibbons early visuals (21 pages overall).

The four following pages display excerpts form the original script alongside pencils thumbnails. Then 'minutes' ends with promotional artwork and cover sketches (2 pages).

Seconds is only 6 pages long displaying extra material like one of Zenda exclusive cover and portfolio. The books ends with a picture of the smiley face on Mars (NASA).

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