I have loved the comic 2000ad ever since I first read it, probably around 1980 and has profoundly influenced me in so many ways. I don’t want to think about the big characters like Slaine or Strontium Dog, I want to remember the little figures who helped to build up the bigger story.
1. Stoogie. Long before e-cigs, Robo Hunter Sam Slade had a Cuban robot cigar called Stoogie. He used to give Sam more or less nicotine depending on stress levels. Although Stoogie was introduced due to a crackdown on smoking in comic books, he still made me want to smoke.
2. Mean Machine. A member of the Angel Gang, Mean was born so gentle and kind that Pa Angel had to take him to the doctor to make him cruel. Given a robot claw arm and dial on his head that controlled the level of his psychosis, Mean could choose just how crazy was. ‘I aint wasting no time on 3, I’m going straight to 4 on ya.’
3. Flytap. A human soldier with a carnivorous plant grafted onto his arm, Flytrap, was quite brutal to the new recruits in the war story ‘Bad Company’ but he was a goodie really. He had an extra head too, and he was grown back to life from a seed.
4. Mongrol. He’s a massive robot with sub human intelligence. After having his entire body destroyed, apart from his head, Mongrol was rebuilt by a scavenger girl called Lara. When I first read ABC warriors, I didn’t even realise that Mongrol was a play on the word ‘mongrel’.
5. Scarlet O’Gasmeter was the curvy woman from Hewligan’s haircut about a man who had a permanent hole in his hair. She was clever, cool and you never got to see her eyes.
Can you think of any more?