It’s a weird thing when you work on something as long as Si Coleby and I did on THE ROYALS and then see it coming close to the finish line. Six issues that took as long as you’d probably imagine, looking at the pages. I didn’t scrimp on the reference, Coleby definitely didn’t hold back on the background detail and the ref on the final pages. Then there was a period where we wondered if the series, despite being a labour of love, would ever see the light of day. It’s been documented that we were originally set to release via Wildstorm, before Wildstorm shut down. Fortunately Will Dennis and the people at Vertigo backed us, felt strongly about the series, and here we are today, with #5 in the shops. One issue to go. And the best cover of the series too:
Love the wobble Si’s put on some of thise bombs, before they’d right themselves and travel towards their target. You can buy THE ROYALS digitally here: https://www.comixology.com/The-Royals-Masters-of-War-2014/comics-series/13488
And #5 sees the series’ main mystery revealed – the identity of the Nazi spy. As well as the fate of several major characters being decided. And the small matter of the D-Day invasion of Normandy too. In terms of scale, there’s probably not many more back-breaking subjects for a comic artist. Si did brilliantly though, working alongside inker Gary Erskine and colourist JD Mettler. Look:
Si and I have been pretty honest about part of the motivation for coming up with The Royals being blatant plane porn. “I want to draw something with World War 2 aircraft.” We’re both aviation nuts (don’t judge us). And Si delivered possibly my favourite WW2 aircraft, the Mosquito, beautifully in this issue:
That’s Calais undergoing reconaissance below, in a historically accurate attempt to convince the Nazis that the invasion was coming further north than Normandy. Coleby referenced maps of Calais. We tried to do things properly on THE ROYALS.
Elsewhere, ORDINARY #1 came out, and we received some very nice reviews for it. Believe them and buy! Here’s a link to the Tumblr page for Ordinary where I collated our review cuttings.
I’ve been posting the guest pin-ups that people have done for Ordinary periodically. We still have some crackers to show. This was Ben Oliver’s.
And here’s a page or two from the upcoming ORDINARY #2, due end of June, featuring the unfortunately superpowered President Of America – whose every thought is now visibly to people in little clouds that hang above his head. Not helpful for a politician. But funny. Hopefully.
Tara’s one of our central characters. Say hello to Tara.
Here’s D’israeli’s brilliant cover to #2.
You can buy ORDINARY digitally here: https://www.comixology.com/Ordinary-1/digital-comic/96364
In terms of print copies of #1, try OK Comics in Leeds, who have a signed exclusive onesheet print with each issue. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Also, in a couple of weeks, a two-part Judge Dredd story by myself and Chris Weston starts in 2000AD Prog 1888. It’s called ‘The Heart Is A Lonely Klegg Hunter’ and is the first time Chris and I have collaborated since we did the Superman: Savior story for Adventures of Superman. Here’s Chris’ *unbelievable* cover.
All the background detail.
I’ve also done a one-off Time Twister with the excellent Simon Gurr that may be in the same issue. It’s called ‘Burping Hitler’. Si’s great. I’ll show off some of the art when able.