Carlos Ezquerra’s cover for the 40th Anniversary Edition of 2000AD has been revealed, with the artist wryly commenting online “It’s been hard, but I managed to survive…”
The cover features two of his best-known characters: Judge Dredd and Johnny Alpha, otherwise known as Strontium Dog (who first appeared in the short-lived Starlord).
One of the longest-running serialized comic books in the world ,2000AD debuted in February 1977. It was named 2000AD as a joke, as no one expected the magazine to actually manage to reach the year 2000 (or run for more than 2,000 editions).
For this, its 40th anniversary, the publisher is going for a “ruby” theme, as evidenced by Ezquerra’s cover.
Ezquerra is the credited co-creator of both Judge Dredd and Johnny Alpha, with writer John Wagner, who jokingly denied ever knowing Carlos in response to his social media post of the cover art and demanded he stop tagging him.
“Judge Dredd” was their first work together, with the character debuting in the second 2000AD prog in 1977 — making him the magazine’s longest-running character.
“Strontium Dog” debuted in Starlord in 1978, one character surviving the title’s merger with 2000AD – and both proving to be popular characters.
Arriving in February, the prog will feature the stories “Judge Dredd: Blood” by Wagner and Peter Doherty; “Nikolai Dante: Devil May Care” by Robbie Morrison and Simon Fraser; “Sláine: Red Branch” by Pat Mills and Simon Davis; “Ro-Busters: Seeing Red” by Mills and Clint Langley; “Zombo” by Al Ewing and Henry Flint; and “Durham Red: Judas Strain” by Lauren Beukes, Dale Halvorsen and Ezquerra.
Comic Book Resources reports work from Jock, Dave Gibbons and Bryan Talbot will also feature in the issue.
The 40th anniversary of 2000AD will arrive in February 2017, with a special celebration event held in London to commemorate the milestone.