While IDW Publishing previously announced they would be launching a brand new “Judge Dredd” ongoing series at their WonderCon panel this past March, they kept the creative team on the book a closely guarded secret. Announced today at Comic-Con International in San Diego, IDW revealed writer Duane Swierczynski and artist Nelson Daniel would be tackling “Judge Dredd” when Mega-City One’s top cop arrives in November. Swierczynski spoke with CBR News about bringing 2000 AD’s iconic British character, created by John Wagner, Pat Mills and Carlos Ezquerra in 1977, to American audiences.
Although Dredd, the futuristic “judge, jury and executioner” of Mega-City One, is known primarily for appearing in the pages of anthology series “2000 AD,” Swierczynski first encountered the character in an unexpected place. “I discovered Judge Dredd at the tender age of 15 through a somewhat unlikely source: a bootleg Commodore 64 game where you move Dredd through a digital Mega-City One and pretty much shoot everything in sight,” Swierczynski explained. “Jonesing for more, I realized that Dredd was a UK import, and super-tough to find here in the U.S. Add yet another frustration to my nerdy teenaged life.”
Swierczynski became a Dredd fan for life, and he cited John Wagner and Alan Grant’s “Judgment on Gotham,” the 1991 Judge Dredd/Batman crossover with art by Simon Bisley, as both his first story and still his favorite.
And what will Swierczynski’s Dredd be like? “I’d like IDW’s Dredd to feel like a transgressive sci-fi black comedy police procedural — like ‘Law & Order,’ if, say, Jerry Orbach were a violent inflexible fascist,” Swierczynski told CBR News. “Someone who readers can’t help but root for, since he’s up against overwhelming odds in a city gone insane.”
The cover shown above is by Whilce Portacio and there are others, like this from Jim Starlin: