Sad news from the world of British comics with the death of legendary Spanish artist Carlos Ezquerra, mainstay artist of 2000AD for over 40 years. He was best known for co-creating Dredd and establishing a look for the strip and character which has altered little in 40 years, but he also created Strontium Dog and any number of other strips: the guy was astoundingly prolific, and probably drew more pages than any other artist on the comic. He could turn his hand to anything, from grim and moody WWII strips like Major Eazy - Fiends of the Eastern Front wasn’t great art, but few artists could sell you a concept like Wehrmacht grunts battling Romanian vampires in the ruins of Stalingrad like Ezquerra could - to lightweight SF romps like his fun, freewheeling adaptation of The Stainless Steel Rat. Everything he drew had a quality which was both enormously cinematic - he loved to draw on actors for his character archetypes - yet completely grounded in a world you believed existed: look at his work on El Mestizo, for Battle: it’s a Tarantino Spaghetti Western, 30 years early. His was a gigantic talent, and comics are a much smaller place without him. Rest in peace, Carlos.
I thoroughly enjoyed watching Future Shock! The Story of 2000AD because it gave me faces and names and histories for artists and writers I’d been reading since about 1980 but knew nothing about, unlike my favorite Marvel, underground and Heavy Metal-contributing artists that I grew up with.
Mr. Ezquerra was indeed a rare and wonderful talent. I’ve been re-reading The Best of Judge Dredd for the past few evenings before I go to sleep, actually. The stories are still top notch and the art is phenomenal.
Plus: Johnny Alpha rules.
RIP Mr. Ezquerra; you done good. Thank you!
Garth Ennis’ “Judgement Day” crossover story with Dredd and Alpha teaming up to fight zombies never quite worked as a story, but everyone remembers Ezquerra’s iconic final panel: who the hell’s gonna mess with us?
I read 2000AD from its inception to the mid 1990s (prog 900) and barely an issue went by that didn’t have an Ezquerra strip in it. He was so deeply tied to the comic, his style was almost its signature. His legacy will live on.
One of the greats.
Ezquerra’s take on *The Stainless Steel Rat *was exactly how I imagined it when I read the books.
I remember as a teen being excited to be able to buy the actual British Judge Dress and Stainless Steel Rat issues at a comic book convention. Back when they were only about comic books. I liked his style.
Ten years in the iso-cubes for Loach!
Sad to hear about Ezquerra. 2000AD was by some distance my favourite mag growing up.
I just gave you a 90 second suspension for that.
90 seconds in the cubes, creep. Gratuitous familiarity.