John Hicklenton – 8 May 1967 – 19 March 2010 – R.I.P.

I know that this isn’t technically gaming related (although there was a pretty awful Judge Dredd game out many many moons ago) but……

Back in the early 80’s – the really early 80’s – one of my older brothers started reading a comic called 2000AD. Up until that point, the only comics that I had really read were the likes of The Beano, Dandy, Buster, Whizzer and Chips etc – all the really insipid crap that you used to get. There was at the time a more “grown up” kids comic called Eagle, but 2000AD was like a revolution.

“What!? This is a comic, and that guy is shooting the other guy….in his face!” it was amazing. It may not seem like a big deal now when you can see people getting shot in the face whenever you want. But back then there was no internet, the newspapers barely had pictures in them (and those that did weren’t even in colour), and the closest you got to multimedia was a fuzzy pirated Betamax video and a packet of Space Raiders. Yes, this was the 80’s, and we didn’t even have MTV.

But back to the point. There were two characters/stories in 2000AD that had me mesmerised – Judge Dredd and Torquemada. Which is where John Hicklenton comes in. He was the illustrator for many of the stories involving these characters. First when it was all black and white, and then when 2000AD went fully colour. I was an avid 2000AD reader for about ten years until I “grew up” and didn’t keep tabs on any of the goings on in that area.

So I was saddened to read that John Hicklenton had travelled to Dignitas in Switzerland to end his life after a battle with Multiple Sclerosis. He was 42.

This was a talented and driven artist who, I’m sure, will be sadly missed by all who knew him and those who admired his work. You can find a really good interview from 2006 where he explains his comic book origins here

John Hicklenton 1967 - 2010

Peas and loaves

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