Brian Bolland Gets An Apex Edition And More Specials Announced To Celebrate 2000AD’s 45th Anniversary

by Olly MacNamee

While not many of us would push out the boat for a 45t birthday, I see no problem with 2000 AD doing this throughout 2022. After all, it is the self-proclaimed “Galaxy’s Greatest Comic” and something of a milestone for this British weekly.

It’s also a great excuse to publish some amazing looking collections including the headline grabbing The Brian Bolland Apex Edition. Like the IDW Artist Edition books, this will feature high quality, over-sized reproductions of Bolland’s original art pages for his early Judge Dredd work which any fan would want to  own. This one included. Not only will be be getting this all-new Apex Edition treatment, but later on in the year we’ll be getting a Mick Mahon one too. So get saving now thrill-seekers.

“First arriving on newsstands in the middle of February 1977, 2000 AD was never expected to outlast all of its stablemates and rivals, but its difference and quality ensured it very quickly it became a cultural force far beyond its pages, its anarchic tone established by Pat Mills, John Wagner and a host of groundbreaking talent. As well as being the home of future lawman Judge Dredd, it has been a proving ground for comic book creators who have gone on to change the industry forever, from Alan Moore to Grant Morrison, from Simon Bisley to Jock.”

The celebrations begin with The 2000 AD Encyclopedia (published in February):

“The first ever comprehensive and definitive encyclopedia of the worlds of 2000 AD, this weighty tome will bring together synopses and details of every series published in the weekly anthology and its sister comic, the Judge Dredd Megazine, as well as popular and distinctive characters from major series such as Judge Dredd. Written by writer and journalist Scott Montgomery, The 2000 AD Encyclopedia promises to become the definitive, go-to resource for the hundreds of creations that have appeared in the Galaxy’s Greatest Comics over the past four decades including comprehensive sections on Sláine, Nemesis the Warlock, A.B.C Warriors and many more.”

Then it’s the turn of The Brian Bolland Apex Edition (published in February) which…

“will showcase the Judge Dredd work of one of 2000 AD’s greatest creators. This deluxe, over-sized facsimile edition will feature new high-resolution scans of Bolland’s original art from 2000 AD, showing his delicate inking brushwork in unprecedented detail. As one of the first creators in the ‘British Invasion’ of the American comic book industry in the 1980s, Bolland’s work on series such as Camelot 3000 and Batman: The Killing Joke, and covers for Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Batman, and many more, have made him one of the most distinctive and famous artists in comics. This Apex Edition, which will be available in an exclusive edition through the 2000 AD webshop and a standard edition through comic stores via Diamond Distribution, will provide fans with unprecedented insights into his original art in an edition befitting such a landmark talent.”

In March we get The Best of John Wagner, Judge Dredd: Blaze of Glory and in May The Best of Carlos Ezquerra :

“The mainstay of 2000 AD since its second issue, Judge Dredd is one of the world’s most famous comic book characters, not only spawning two major movie adaptations but becoming a cultural icon and  a breeding ground for generations of creators who have helped transform comics as we know them. To mark Dredd’s 45th anniversary, 2000 AD will honour his co-creators, writer John Wagner and artist Carlos Ezquerra, with two collections that bring together some of their best work for the Galaxy’s Greatest Comic. The Best of John Wagner (published in March) and The Best of Carlos Ezquerra(published in May) will give long-time fans and those new to the work of these two giants of British comics the opportunity to enjoy and savour some of the highlights from two talents that helped seal 2000 AD as a cultural trailblazer, with Wagner’s action-packed, terse, and often blackly comical writing paired with the gritty and dynamic art of Ezquerra, who sadly passed away in 2018.”

Here’s the full line-up of special collections that will be scheduled through the year after these first few:

45 Years of 2000 AD

The Best of Gerry Finley-Day

Judge Dredd: Legends of the Law

Mick McMahon Apex Edition

There will some items on this list that will sell out pretty quickly. So as one of the few websites that report on 2000 AD, we hope we can keep you all up to date on release dates and pre-ordering information.

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