The publishers of 2000 AD are following a blistering 2014 with a series of ‘firsts’ amidst their major tent pole graphic novel releases for the UK over 2015!
This year’s schedule includes the first ever ‘artist’s edition’-style book 2000 AD has ever produced – featuring one of its greatest ever stories – as well as a special hardback first edition of the bestselling Judge Dredd: The Complete Case Files, the collected return of the wildly popular Dark Judges, and the first ever reprint of the 2000 AD stories of legendary character Dan Dare.
Zenith Phase One: The Apex Edition will reproduce at full size the original artwork from Grant Morrison and Steve Yeowell’s seminal superhero story from the late 1980s. Carefully hidden away by Yeowell for almost 30 years and curated by 2000 AD’s design team, July’s Apex Edition will be the closest readers can get to holding the original artwork in your hands – right down to seeing faded speech balloons pasted to the surface, editorial and design marks, and Yeowell’s brush and pen strokes.
Also in hardcover this July is the eagerly-anticipated Judge Dredd: Dark Justice. Two years in the making and one of the most hotly anticipated 2000 AD series ever, Dark Justice not only features the return of Dredd’s greatest foes – The Dark Judges – but also incredible fully-painted art by Greg Staples that is, without question, some of the greatest work of his career. This magnum opus from Dredd co-creator John Wagner sees Judge Dredd and Judge Anderson again have to face the quartet of undead alien superfiends from a twisted dimension where life itself was declared a crime – Judge Death, Judge Fear, Judge Fire, and Judge Mortis!
For the past decade, the Judge Dredd: The Complete Case Files series has been a best-seller in the UK – collecting together the Judge Dredd stories, in order, from almost four decades of 2000 AD and the Judge Dredd Megazine. To celebrate this ten-year milestone, this August 2000 AD will be publishing a hardcover edition of the first volume of the Case Files. It will include the addition of the famous colour centre spreads, restored to their former glory for the first time in a prestigious must-have for any comics collector.
As he celebrates his 65th birthday this year, in November 2000 AD will publish the first of a two-volume series presenting the never-before-collected stories of Dan Dare from its pages. Presented in a beautiful hardcover edition, this will include extensive rare and hard-to-find art by UK Comics Laureate and Watchmen co-creator Dave Gibbons as well as art by cult Italian artist and 2000 AD legend Massimo Bellardinelli. This is the last, great un-reprinted story from 2000 AD’s first issue and will present the entire story re-scanned from the original film, in full colour (where the strip wasn’t black and white), digitally restored by 2000 AD’s reprographics specialists.
Keith Richardson, graphic novels editor, said: “2015 will be a seminal year for the 2000 AD trade line. The word ‘epic’ seems so overused these days, but when you have such quality collections as the Dark Justice and the truly gorgeous Apex Edition of Zenith Phase One to name but two of our titles this year, no other expression will do.”
Jason Kingsley, CEO of Rebellion, said: “We’ve been getting better and better as a publishing company over many years now, and I’m proud to see that the team has hit the afterburners with these editions. I get books given to me in the office, and I’m particularly looking forward to the day they land with a thump on my desk.”
Ben Smith, Head of Book and Comics Publishing, said: “That there are so many firsts in our output this year is a measure of the ongoing riches to be found within the 2000 AD catalogue. It’s a privilege to be collecting such watershed moments in British comics history, and doing them justice in the sumptuous hardback editions that are bringing so many new fans to our graphic novel list.”
Full UK & Ireland graphic novels schedule for 2015
Tales of Telguth
Zenith: Phase Three
Judge Dredd: Luna-1 (digest format)
ABC Warriors: Return to Mars
Devlin Waugh: Red Tide
The VCs: Hell in the Heavens (digest format)
Judge Dredd: Dark Justice
Zenith Phase 4
Zenith: Apex Edition
Judge Dredd: Case Files 01: 10th Anniversary Edition
Judge Dredd: Day of Chaos: Fourth Faction
The Complete Ro-Busters: Nuts and Bolts Vol. I
Dan Dare: Vol. 1
Judge Dredd: Trifecta (paperback)
The Grievous Journey of Ichabod Azrael (And The Dead Left In His Wake)
ABC Warriors: Mek Files 03