Welcome to Comic Book Legends Revealed! This is the six hundred and eleventh week of examinations of comic book legends and whether they are true or false.
Alan Moore and Brian Bolland almost did a “Batman/Judge Dredd” comic book.
In 1984, Alan Moore was already a rising star in the United States, but he was not yet “ALAN MOORE” as we later came to think of him.
Brian Bolland, similarly, was well known for his “Judge Dredd” work, both for “2000 A.D.”…
but also for the striking covers he did for the reprints of “Judge Dredd” in the United States for Eagle Comics.
By 1984, Bolland had broken into the American industry in a big way with the miniseries he did with Mike W. Barr called “Camelot 3000,” which took a long time to come out because Bolland was not the fastest artist in the world.
So the comics world wanted to see more from these two rising stars, and for a moment, that next thing was going to be a “Batman”/”Judge Dredd” crossover!
Bolland, of course, would later draw “The Killing Joke,” but by this point, his only Batman work was for fanzines…
ads and a short story in “Justice League of America” #200 (which my pal Graeme B. reminded me of the other day)…
In October 1984, Bolland remarked on the project:
The whole premise would have been that Judge Dredd is an organ of the law whereas Batman represents justice, and the story revolved around the conflict between those two, and the misunderstandings that would arise from the two completely different ways of looking at how society is run.
Bit oddly, enough, it was the then-publisher of “2000 A.D.,” IPC Magazines, who ultimately balked, feeling that Batman was not a viable character to team Judge Dredd up with.
Moore and Bolland moved on to other projects, but obviously came back together later to do what ultimately became “The Killing Joke.”
IPC sold off their comics line in 1987 and the new owners obviously had other ideas about Batman, so in 1992, the first of four “Batman”/”Judge Dredd” comics was published.
It would be amazing to see the script pages that Moore allegedly completed before the project fell apart! Has anyone ever seen them before? Let me know!
Thanks to Lance Parkin’s “Magic Words: The Extraordinary Life of Alan Moore” for the Bolland quote!
Check out my latest TV Legends Revealed at CBR: How Sexism Named the Bionic Woman
OK, that’s it for this week!
Feel free (heck, I implore you!) to write in with your suggestions for future installments! My e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org. And my Twitter feed is http://twitter.com/brian_cronin, so you can ask me legends there, as well!
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The cover is by artist Mickey Duzyj. He did a great job on it…
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See you all next week!