|Michele del Campo|
This seems like as good a time as any to acknowledge a rather large debt. A creative one, to be precise. To what you might call a kind of great-great-grandfather once removed, whose bastard descendants include Preacher, Hitman, The Boys, Wormwood, The Pro, Kev, Barracuda, Dicks and more; whose barebones characterization, dark humour and intense action were and always will be a massive influence on my own work; whose writers, artists and editors created the greatest comic ever.
It cost 7p Earth money, it was printed on recycled bog roll, and it made Friday afternoons that little bit better: it was 2000AD, and in those first ten years- before they got desperate and started employing people like me- it was like lightning in a bottle. A glance at the roster of talent involved is enough to take the breath away, and it should be remembered that a whole generation of readers was able to pick up almost any given issue and see a dozen of these guys at their very best.
So thank you: Pat Mills, John Wagner, Gerry Finley-Day, Alan Grant, Alan Moore, Tom Tully, Alan Hebden, Steve MacManus, Kelvin Gosnell, Nick Landau, Robin Smith, Simon Geller, Richard Burton, Doug Church, Tom Frame, Carlos Ezquerra, Ramon Sola, Jesus Blasco, Massimo Belardinelli, Dave Gibbons, Mike McMahon, Kevin O’Neill, Ian Gibson, John Cooper, Brian Bolland, Brett Ewins, Brendan McCarthy, Garry Leach, Ron Smith, Colin Wilson, Steve Dillon, Kim Raymond, Cam Kennedy, John Higgins, Barry Kitson, Mike Dorey, Carlos Pino, Jim Watson, Alan Davis, Jesus Redondo, Jose Ortiz, Ian Kennedy, Eric Bradbury, Mike White, Bryan Talbot, Ron Turner, Jim Baikie, Angie Mills, Glenn Fabry, David Pugh, Mike Collins and many more.
|Michele del Campo|
Thank you, also, for the night the G.I.s died; the Dark Judges on the loose in Billy Carter Block; “Is that what people are? Are we robots too?”; “Vape, baby, vape!”; And there was great celebration which went on all night… and the night went on forever; “An’ the name’s Thompson–Harry Thompson!”; Carefully–oh, so carefully–creeps the Starborn Thing; “And some of them… some of them are stars”; Johnny and Wulf fighting dead men in an alien churchyard; “There’s a moral here somewhere, Grobbendonk”; “Grim”; Red Planet Blues; “Welcome to the wound-feast!”; “But the third word is probably oranges”; “I know many things, Old Red-Eyes”; For you are a Judge. And it is your duty; “Wake up, guys…we’re home,”; “Fancy that for dinner, George?”; The city screaming Chopper’s name; “Been nice knowin’ ya, good buddies. Guess this is it. Truck tucker, y’hear?”; Halo Jones eating breakfast in the ruins; And let the Third Law be that anyone says different’s a dead man; “Because I hate you.”
And, of course: “This Cursed Earth will not break me! I am The Law! I am Dredd–JUDGE DREDD!”
|my drawing / mi dibujo|
He can and he does. I still think about that today; what it meant about the character, and about the comic I was reading (aged 12). Even now I don’t know if Dredd was right or if he was wrong. It was the only way to win, to avoid the further slaughter and enslavement of his own people–but it was genocide. It was moral courage on an almost unimaginable level–but it was appalling. In the end, it was a dilemma not unlike those faced by a number of good and bad men in our own history, and if I had to sum it up in one line, I’d say this: what are you prepared to do when there isn’t any easy way out?
And that, I think, is why I’ve never been able to care about Batman, or Wolverine, or Iron Man… or any of them, really. Not because of what characters like that would or wouldn’t do, but because their publishers would never have the courage to have them written into such a situation.
A belated–but sincere–Happy Thirty-Second Birthday to the Galaxy’s Greatest Comic.
New York City, June 2009
|Nana de la Fuente|
Aun así, he estado un poco más ocupado de lo normal. Y eso ha hecho que me pierda muchas muestras de arte. De todos modos, el día miércoles asistí a la inauguración de “Madera In-Finita” de Nana de la Fuente en la Galería Yvonne Sanguineti. Con una interesante selección de esculturas, la artista nos sorprende nuevamente.
Y el día de ayer aproveché para darme una vueltita por Dédalo, se inauguraba “Heterónimos” de Elisabeth Osés, a quien saludé oportunamente; la muestra se compone de diversas piezas en cerámica con provocadores e ingeniosos títulos (algunos inspirados en la obra literaria de Fernando Pessoa, Arthur Rimbaud o Alejandra Pizarnik), cada pieza tiene una personalidad muy marcada y original, realmente quedé encantado. Saludé a Eduardo Lores y a María Elena Fernández, y les conté que estaba escribiendo guiones para Plus TV.
Después de un rato, me encontré con Rhony Alhalel e Ilse Rehder, que venían de otra muestra. Interesado y curioso, caminé una cuadra hasta la Galería Wu Ediciones, donde se inauguraba la muestra que ellos ya habían visitado: “Dentro y más allá de la fotografía” una colectiva de fotógrafos latinoamericanos con imágenes muy sugerentes. Habría que destacar los trabajos de Trinidad Carrillo, que en más de una ocasión juega con el desnudo infantil pero sin intención de escandalizar. En Wu me quedé conversando muy entretenidamente con Hugo Alegría, quien va a presentar una muestra en el Centro Colich en setiembre.