Anyone who’s read Watchmen knows that Adrian Veidt is not only the Watchmen Universe’s smartest man; he is the proponent of the tales climatic ending. In Before Watchmen: Ozymandias #1 though, legendary comics writer Len Wein starts at the beginning of the tale of how Veidt became Ozymandias by relating the early history of why he ended up donning the Egyptian influenced costume and title. Even if the final reason for his becoming a superhero feels a little forced, a look into the mind of Veidt, and the chronicling of his journey to the Far East to retrace the steps of his own personal hero Alexander the Great, is quite an interesting and illuminating story. Veidt's character is well developed and meshes well with the characterization of him by Moore in the original series.
Series artist Jae Lee, who’s art I’ve not always been a huge fan of, wins me over with his uniquely and beautifully laid out panels and recreations of nearly every environmental condition as well as of some of the ancient and modern world’s most architecturally interesting sties and regions. His further images of Veidt’s hashish trip, where he encounters the Pharaohs of old and realizes that his goal in life is to recreate the glory of the ancient world, are stunning and beautiful.
Overall, Before Watchmen: Ozymandias gets off to a great start and does nothing to debase the original character and story. Along with Before Watchmen: Nite Owl, this book looks to be one of the best of the series.