Before going into this week's edition of Back-Issue Spotlight, I wanted show off yesterday's swag.
Again, you can't beat 10 comics for a dollar out of the 10 cent bin. You just really can't.
Here they are:
Just in case you can't make out the titles, they are:
Spider-Man#15, Uncanny Avengers#3, Secret Avengers#37(Vol.1), Dial H#15(Criminally underrated btw)
Harbinger Wars#1(Valiant comics represent, right Dan?) Astro City: Dark Ages Book One#'s 1 and 2; Book Two#4, Saga#12(Just now getting to these series, which is another critically acclaimed title I've been hearing about), and finally the Before Watchemen: Dollar Bill one-shot.
Speaking of Dollar Bill, judging from today's title, I don't have to ask you who's being spotlighted today, do I?
Before Watchmen: Dollar Bill One-Shot (Mar 2013) "I Want To Be In Pictures" by Len Wein and Steve Rude.
Well here's his story, and how he came into that unfortunate circumstance that day.
Ol' Bill wasn't much of a stand out in life, until his high school and college years as a star athlete in a lot of sports, particularly football, where he'd earn an athletic scholarship.
With all that skill, he was planning on going pro. And then this happened, as can sometimes be the case for aspiring pros:
With that dream effectively dead, Bill sets out to find his place in the world anyways.....
Poor guy just cannot catch a fucking break can he?
Wondering what to do next, he finally sees an ad in the newspaper that'll change his life forever.
The National Bank wants in the growing hero business with a hero of their very own protecting the bank.
Enter our man Bill:
Understandably like all the others who showed up, Bill's hesitant to go through with this idea. He thinks he'll look like a fool too, but he needs the job, and desperately needs the money. So Bill's fate is changed that very day as he indeed becomes Dollar Bill.
Bill does the Dollar Bill things, and does it pretty well. Enough to remain gainfully employed and become famous through it all. So popular and famous, that his bosses, Misters Abie, Howe, Cheatem, and Dewey(Gotta' love those names right?) decide he should try out for the Minutemen.
He reluctantly agrees, and despite the whole team knowing he's a fake, he's accepted into the team.
Things go good at first, especially since the Minutemen seem to be just about as fake as Bill with staged fights and all. Until a disastrous fight with Italian 5th Columnists turns out to be a major mistake. This event's covered in the other Before Watchmen books, but yeah, it's a royal fuck up that the Minutemen cover up.
Then awhile later, a real bank robbery forces Bill to step it up, and earn his costume the hard way.
Much like Stella before him, Dollar Bill's finally got his groove back, and kicking ass.
But such as is life sometimes, that's when things suddenly go to shit, and sometimes you die.
Dollar Bill goes out trying to protect the same bank responsible for getting him in this situation in the first place.
Not a bad ending I think. Definitely a big difference than the original material, with Wein choosing to end on a high note.
Overall it's not a bad story. I know initially I shit on the whole Before Watchmen project Dildo and Co. rolled out. I, like most, considered it a poor attempt on DC's part to cash in on Moore's work, especially considering the long years of bad blood between the two. Well mostly on Moore's part, but who can blame him really?
That being said, I regret joining the hysteria generated by the internet mob, and not giving creators like the legendary Len Wein, Amanda Conner, and Darwyn Cooke the benefit of a doubt. Trust me, I own all but the Moloch mini, and they're all really respectful of the original Watchmen maxi-series. They really are, and are well worth picking up on the cheap by now.