At 2000 AD’s Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo panel, the publisher announced that “Scalped” artist RM Guerra is penciling Mega-City One’s infamous lawman for the first time in “Judge Dredd Megazine” #338 in a story written by fan-favorite “Judge Dredd: Closet” writer Rob Williams. Also announced at the panel was Glen Fabry’s return to 2000 AD, illustrating the cover to “2000 AD” prog 1833 and handling full interior art for Pat Mills’ “Slaine: The Book of Scars” later this year.
“I tend to say that the foremost action in any comic are the characters, much less violence,” Guerra told CBR News. “But I do like drawing both, and that’s why [I’m drawing] ‘Judge Dredd.’ The connection of these. Without violence, you wouldn’t understand who his character is. Great, I’m in.”
Michael Molcher, PR coordinator for 2000 AD parent company Rebellion, spoke with CBR News about the RM Guerra and Glen Fabry announcements, while also giving details about the upcoming “Slaine” 30th anniversary series, a new series by Rob Williams and Alec Worley, the “DREDD 3D” comic book sequel and more.
CBR News: What’s coming up with “2000 AD” and the “Judge Dredd Megazine?”
Michael Molcher: Well, we are very pleased to be welcoming back one of our biggest artists, Glen Fabry. He’s going to be returning with a cover to “2000 AD” prog 1833 on May 22 for a “Cadet Anderson” story called “One in Ten.” The “Cadet Anderson” stories are by Alan Grant and show when she was in training as a psi-judge. They’ve gone down pretty well so far. It’s a nice series for people who were intrigued by Anderson’s character in the movie because she’s a rookie here, too. The cover by Glen is absolutely gorgeous. We are very pleased to have him back he’s one of our most popular artists. The confluence of character and violence in “Judge Dredd” is quite appealing to him. It should be a great series; the actual script is being drawn by Carlos Ezquerra.
We’ve also got RM Guerra of “Scalped” fame drawing his very first “Judge Dredd” story called “The Man Comes Around.” That’ll run in the “Judge Dredd Megazine” #338. It goes on sale digitally and in-print the week of Comic-Con International in San Diego. I don’t know if you’ve seen the picture RM did of Judge Anderson a few years ago, but it’s absolutely gorgeous.
The script is being written by Rob Williams who’s got quite a good track record of encouraging big American artists coming over to “2000 AD” and the “Megazine” to draw Dredd. He’s had Guy Davis and James Harren draw his scripts, too. This will be an absolutely awesome strip. I’ve seen the first page and he’s bringing the “Scalped” sensibility to the world of Judge Dredd. Expect grittiness and a nice bit of violence.
“The Ten Seconders” is coming back for one final series in “2000 AD” prog 1839. This is being written by Rob Williams, too. It’s his series about alien superheroes coming to Earth and deciding that they like it here, but they’re gonna rule us as Gods rather than the slightly more utopian ideals Americans have about superheroes. That was collected earlier this year on both sides of the Atlantic and it went down very well. This will be the final series. Rob is bringing his typical, slightly cynical but very British viewpoint on superheroes back to “2000 AD,” so we’re all looking forward to that one.
Then the following week we have the final series for “Age of the Wolf,” which is Alec Worley’s post-apocalyptic werewolf series with Rowan, who is one of our strongest female characters of the last few years. It’s a really nice series filled with a lot of violence, but also prophesies and one or two tropes turned on their heads. It’s not what you’d expect from werewolves, really. Jon Davis-Hunt will be returning on artwork for that one.
Glen Fabry’s also doing the “Slaine” 30th anniversary special, correct?
It’s the 30th anniversary of “Slaine” this year, that’s right! He’s one of our most popular characters, so to celebrate in “2000 AD,” this August we’re starting a new series in which artists from the past of “Slaine” return for one-off stories. It’s called “The Book of Scars.” We have Mick McMahon, Glen Fabry, Simon Bisley and Clint Langley on it, Clint being the most recent artist to work on “Slaine” before this. Clint is going to frame the stories that are drawn by the others, and it’s all written by Pat Mills.
It’s absolutely fantastic to get Mick, Glen and Simon drawing “Slaine” again. “Sky Chariots,” which was Mick’s magnum opus back in the 80s, was a defining moment in “Slaine’s” history. Glen’s work on “Slaine” was just exquisite, too. And, of course, you’ve got Simon Bisley’s “The Horned God,” which is not only one of the greatest moments in “2000 AD” history, it’s also the story that changed comic books forever. It completely revolutionized the way that comics were drawn. It sparked the fully painted crazy and the impact of “Slaine: The Horned God” continues to this day. So for him to come back and draw for “2000 AD,” to draw “Slaine” again, is a real special moment. To celebrate 30 years of “Slaine” is great. I think “Slaine” is Pat Mills’ greatest creation.
In terms of other interesting stuff coming up, John Wagner is returning to “Judge Dredd” for his first series since “Day of Chaos” ended in “2000 AD.” That’s prog 1837 in June.
How long ago did “Day of Chaos” end?
“Day of Chaos” ended last August, I think.
So it’ll have been almost a year since Wagner last wrote “Judge Dredd” when this new strip starts. Is that the longest gap without a Wagner “Dredd” in “2000 AD” since Garth Ennis took over for a while in the early ’90s?
Possibly. It’s certainly one of the longest stretches he’s gone since returning after Garth’s period. It’s nice to have him back. He’s still been writing for “2000 AD” on “Strontium Dog” and strips like that. To have him back on “Dredd,” though, is great. He’s gonna be working with Dave Taylor, who is the guy who did “Batman: Death By Design.” It’s a five-parter and — I mean, it’s Dave Taylor! Absolutely exquisite artwork. Massive Judge Dredd fan, too! That’ll be a nice little return for them both.
What’s going on with the “DREDD 3D” sequel happening in the “Judge Dredd Megazine” later this year?
That’s gonna begin in September. We’re not revealing the creative line-up for a little while yet, but I just saw some of the artwork today and it’s really very lovely. Hopefully people who enjoyed the movie are going to be able to plug in to this quite nicely.
It’s taking place directly after the events of the movie and it’ll be the same characters you saw in the movie. Hopefully it’ll bring people into “2000 AD” and they’ll be able to see, alongside that, a normal “Judge Dredd” series and see how the two fit nicely together.
The great thing about the “DREDD 3D” movie is you can walk in to any comic book store and ask for a copy of “Judge Dredd” or “2000 AD” and you’ll be reading the same character. It’s not like how “Iron Man” with Robert Downey Jr isn’t necessarily Iron Man from the comic books. Dredd’s the same in both. Hopefully all the people that got introduced to the world of Judge Dredd in the movie will see this, read it and enjoy it.
Will the story be approved by writer Alex Garland or any of the other members of the film’s creative team?
We have talked to DNA Films [“DREDD 3D’s” production company] about this, and it’s got their backing.
So, this is an official sequel to the film?
Do you have Karl Urban signed on for the motion comic adaptation yet?
Unfortunately, no. [Laughs]
“2000 AD” featuring “Judge Dredd,” “Cadet Anderson” and “Slaine” is available weekly in stores and digitally on the App store.