BORAG Thung, Earthlings, are you ready to party? 2000AD, “The Galaxy’s Greatest Comic” will celebrate its 45th anniversary this month. A new book, The 2000AD Encyclopedia, has just been published to commemorate the event and a special anniversary issue of the comic will be released soon.
It is indeed. And it’s now one of Britain’s oldest comic strips. Only the Beano and Commando Image Library can claim to have existed longer on newsstands.
Is Judge Dredd still in?
Of course he is. First appearing in the second issue, he remains the most popular character, although there are many others including Rogue Trooper, Slaine, and Proteus Vex. An exhibit on Dredd is currently on display at the Cartoon Museum in London.
Why should we celebrate a comic?
Because it’s a hugely influential publication that shaped British pop culture. It inspired movies and pop songs (The Human League as well as Madness’ Suggs and Chas Smash recorded comic book-inspired songs) and 2000AD writers and artists continued to work for Marvel and DC and for studios Hollywood and others. Netflix. The V&A even held an exhibit dedicated to 2000 AD at the turn of the century.
And that’s before we talk about the Scottish connection.
The Scottish connection?
Yes, the Scots were hugely influential in the history of 2000 AD. John Wagner, born in the United States but raised in Greenock since the age of 12, is the creator of Judge Dredd with artist Carlos Ezquerra. Wagner later teamed up with fellow Scottish author Alan Grant, and they worked together on the 2000AD tapes Robo-Hunter and Strontium Dog as well as Dredd.
Other Scottish writers who have worked for 2000AD include Grant Morrison (now best known for his work for Marvel and DC), Mark Millar (who works with Netflix) and Robbie Morrison, whose debut novel Edge of the Grave won the Bloody Scotland Crime Debut. of the year in 2021.
The comic also hosted the work of Scottish artists such as Frank Quitely, Jim Baikie, Colin MacNeil and the late Ian Kennedy, who sadly passed away on February 5.
How will 2000AD celebrate?
Comic book publisher Rebellion has a number of books planned for this year celebrating the best in 2000AD history. The Best of John Wagner will be published next month.