Wednesday, 15 September 2010

There Be Muties on the Bounty...

'Muties on the Bounty' is a short strip featuring Judge Joyce which will appear in the first issue of the 2000AD fanzine 'Tales From the Emerald Isle'.

I don't dabble much in fan-fiction (which seems almost funny to say at the moment, considering that in addition to 'Muties on the Bounty' I've recently had a Strontium Dog script commissioned by Dogbreath and find myself elbows-deep in a three-part Dreddworld script for Zarjaz) because a) I don't really feel comfortable writing characters others created and b) I have waaaaaaay too many ideas of my own - but when I had the opportunity to have a go at a Judge Joyce strip I couldn't say no. 'Why?' you ask (probably you didn't really ask 'Why?', but I'll tell you anyway).

You see, way back when and once upon a time, the little kid version of me wandered into a newspaper shop and picked up a comic called 2000AD. In it, Judge Dredd had to travel to Emerald City to investigate a crime - and found himself partnered with Judge Sergeant Joyce.

Judge Joyce immediately became my favorite character in the magazine. I liked his happy-go-lucky nature, his smile-in-the-face-of-death attitude and the fact that he was much more human - and therefore relatable - than Dredd. He laughed, he cracked jokes, he tipped the frosty mug during his shift; there was a lot of joy in Joyce.

So of course I went and ruined all of that.

'Muties on the Bounty' finds an older, more world-weary Judge Joyce. He's been beaten down by reality, killed one man too many, seen an awful lot of suffering. Fake smiles, hollow laughs; this isn't the Judge Joyce we remember.

When a group of mutants hijacks a ship sailing the Black Irish Sea, Joyce is the first Judge on the scene...and what he finds is not at all what he expected...the glimmer of humanity in a bunch sub-humans.

Brigonos Mac Giolla Chomhgaill aka Professor Byah is handling the art duties, and his work so far is stunning.


  1. So you're the dirty scribe who wrote it, then? There's no name attached to my version of the script, so I was wondering. I intend to adjust the contrast before the pages are lettered, though, so you should be able to see more than a muddy blur on the finished article. Hopefully.

    Also, the joke's on you, making him all weather-beaten and that, as I'm going to do my damnedest to make Joyce look like Father Ted.

  2. Yeah, I'm the bugger responsible for your woes! Mind you, Prof, I expect that - like every artist I work with - you'll make my script look better/cooler than it actually is, ha! Your stuff looks great so far.

  3. That artwork is absolutely gorgeous. I'm very jealous!!!