2000 AD Prog Slog

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Prog 244

What I believe to be Brian Bolland’s last full Judge Dredd episode appears this prog. It’s the final part of Block Mania where Dredd has a finely crafted fist fight with Orlok the Assassin in the pouring rain.

The brain drain from 2000 AD to DC comics in America starts here. Earlier this year (it’s Christmas 1981, right now) Bolland drew the cover to Tales of the Green Lantern Corps number one. Early next year, he draws five pages of the super-sized Justice League of America issue 200 where Bat Man makes finely crafted fools out of Green Arrow and Black Canary before moving on to pencil the twelve part maxi series (that’s what we called long mini serials in those days) Camelot 3000.

To my mind, Bolland is the first creator of my era to transfer successfully from the UK to the American comic industry. Prior to this, making the move had been unthinkable, despite Barry Windsor Smith’s work for Marvel from ten years before. (He doesn’t count in my mind as he had to physically move over there and work illegally to establish himself). Bolland made the move as part of DC’s New Talent Search. This initiative didn’t result in X-Factor style raw talent being snatched from obscurity for comic book super stardom, as I had imagined it would, but instead involved a DC editor walking around the London Comic Mart asking if anyone had Brian Bolland’s telephone number.

This isn’t the end of Bolland’s association with Judge Dredd, by any means, thanks mainly to the upcoming Titan Book collections and the American styled repackages. In fact, it all becomes something of an issue over the next few years which I am sure to elaborate on in later posts.

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  • JLA # 200 was the first time I ever saw Bolland's work. I was a huge JLA fanboy - I had an almost complete run from # 135 to that point - and I wrote the editor asking that Bolland be made the new regular artist. I *loved* his Green Arrow and Black Canary, and his were my favorite pages in the book. Unfortunately, we instead got a past-his-prime Don Heck, if I recall rightly...

    By Blogger Grant, at 8:50 pm  

  • Grant, Bolland did make all the other contributors look rubbish in comparison.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 7:22 pm  

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