It’s difficult to write anything new about a chap who people speak so fondly of, who is revered by generations of British comics readers and is such an influence for so many comic creators.
Comic fans feeds are awash with outpourings of grief and expressions of sadness on the passing of a legend of British comics.
These messages, posts and threads have become a celebration of the life and work of a true great. From his early work for DC Thomson to his work on “Battle” with “Rat Pack” and “Major Eazy”, to creating “El Mestizo”, “Judge Dredd” and “Strontium Dog” and adapting “The Stainless Steel Rat” before moving onto “Third World War” for Crisis.
He worked in the American comics market too, with long term collaborators Garth Ennis, John Wagner and Alan Grant, on titles including “War Stories : Condor”, “A Man Called Kev”, “Bloody Mary”, “Bob The Galactic Bum”, “Just A Pilgrim”, “Adventures In The Rifle Brigade” and “Battlefields”.
Carlos would always return to 2000AD. It was always an event when Carlos drew Dredd or when you knew that “Strontium Dog” was returning to the Prog’. A fantastic action artist, Carlos’s versatility, rate of output and the quality of his work was legendary, Carlos was the only artist to complete a Dredd mega epic solo, but not once, but twice and with two of the best. Once with “The Apocalypse War” followed by an extended run on the strip and then a few years later with “Necropolis” and it’s prologues.
Although his style evolved it was always distinctively and recognisably Carlos. He was an early embracer of digital technology, but still went back to pen and paper for those lucky enough to commission work from him.
I was lucky enough to meet him a few years ago at ICE in Birmingham. He was gracious polite and patient to the gibbering manchild in front of him who produced a scrap of paper for a “Major Eazy” sketch.
Here’s to a creative genius. Here’s to Carlos Ezquerra.
Carlos The King.