Before Watchmen Review: Rorschach #3 by Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo

Before Watchmen Review:  Rorschach #3

Published by DC Comics

Written by Brian Azzarello

Art by Lee Bermejo

Coloured by Barbara Ciardo

The Plot

Rorschach is fighting against some thugs trying to rescue Joe (the pimp).  He manages to get the best of them and escape at the same time.  He then meets a cab driver who supports what Rorschach is doing.  Meanwhile another body is found and it is obviously a victim of the Bard due to the words cut into her.  Rorschach then goes to see Nancy (the waitress) and wants to take her out to dinner as a thank you gesture for getting him to the hospital.  He even reveals his name to her.  She agrees and asks him to meet her at 11pm.  He then goes to do some recon on Rawhead and he still thinks about the Bard and his overconfidence.  At the same time, Rawhead and his gang are discussing their plan for tracking down Rorschach.  They attempt to bait him, but he doesn’t fall for it.  Some men mistake him for the Bard and he is ready to deal with them as the power goes out.  He leaves them and proceeds to take out Rawhead.  After a brief battle, he finds Rawhead who is setting Rorschach up for another surprise.  Nancy is waiting for Rorschach at the diner only to be met by someone that she knows, but is unaware that he is the Bard.

The Breakdown

I enjoyed seeing Rorschach in action and I like how he wasn’t too brash in his actions.  He’s harsh and determined, but calculating at the same time.  I really want to see how he handles himself with Rawhead’s surprise.  I also can’t wait to see what he does when he finally encounters Rawhead in a fair fight because neither are pushovers.  Seeing him reach out to Nancy was a great scene because he was genuinely trying to be nice, but was so socially awkward in how he went about it.  It was uplifting to see him actually trying to connect with someone for a change; however, I fear that this might end up being the catalyst that makes him even harder and colder by the time Watchmen rolls around.  This series is giving attention to both his Rorschach persona as well as his regular…well non-Rorschach persona (his regular persona isn’t necessarily his non-hero identity).  I like how the Bard storyline has been on the sidelines because it wasn’t forced upon the reader and it naturally made its way into Rorschach’s own story.  The interaction that Rorschach had with the cab driver was good because it provided some perspective from regular people on the street.  This is something that hasn’t really been explored in the Watchmen-verse.  I also liked how he is a really good fighter, yet he has to rely upon escaping in order to live sometimes.  He’s not Batman and he doesn’t have the resources to overcome every situation.  I still enjoy the typewritten narrative and the art is gorgeous.  The art and colours work together so well to create so much depth in the book.  The work and effort is evident in every single panel.  I love the covers for this series as they are so original.  Damn I wish this was a six issue miniseries.


Or maybe I don’t because then who knows how long it would take to come out.  The delay between issues has been significant, but at the same time, the visual results are great.  I wasn’t the biggest Crimson Corsair fan back in the original Watchmen series and this hasn’t changed.  In all of the Before Watchmen books I don’t think I’ve read any of them.  Also, these two pages that I don’t bother reading take away from potential pages in the main storyline.  As much as I like this series I’m not loving the fact that I’m shelling out four bucks for essentially twenty pages of story (twenty two pages if you count the Crimson Corsair ones, which I’m not).

Buy It, Borrow It, Shelf Read It, or Ignore It?

Buy It.  This comic was really something to look at and the story itself was very enjoyable.  Rorschach was always my favorite part of the Watchmen series and this book has not disappointed in giving me a good Rorschach fix.  This comic seems so realistic and it actually feels like it’s happening in a regular world.  Of all the characters he is the most heroic because he has given up everything in order to fight crime as this facet of his life provides him with the most satisfaction.

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