Friday, August 28, 2015

No. 42 Cliff Robinson

First Prog: (as strip artist) 362; (as cover artist) 414
Latest Prog: (as strip artist) 1727; (as cover artist) 1944

First Meg: (as strip artist) 213; (as cover artist) 2.52
Latest Meg: (as strip artist) 334 (as cover artist) 343

Total appearances: 204
-including a total of 65 credits for interior art
-but, for the sake of the numbers, let’s acknowledge a whopping 144 covers drawn across the Progs, Megs, specials, reprints (and I’m not even counting his awesome audio dramas and novels…)

Creator credits:
Mother Earth

Other art credits:
Judge Dredd
Anderson, Psi Division
Venus Bluegenes (in the Rogue Trooper Action Special, which I’ve never read)
Plenty of Future Shocks and other one-offs

Notable character creations:
Mother Earth, I guess?
Mother Earth cares about the planet
Words by Bernie Jaye

Chief Judge Silver
Pretty sure he designed and drew the first ever Simp, too. You know, the people from Mega City 1 who dress like weird future clowns and sort of predicted the rise of reality TV stars – you know, people who actively wish to be ridiculous for the sake of a little fame, while pretending they are merely being true to their inner selves.

Notable characteristics:
Clean lines; iconic poses; wonderful imagination; sauciness; cheek bones; creases in clothing; hideous bodily afflictions.
For lovingly-rendered yet hideous, flesh-rotting skin, call Cliff Robinson
Words by Robbie Morrison
1980s body horror was the best.

From sickening diseases to saucy ladies. Dig the Carry-on faces from the two male judges
Words by John Wagner

On Cliff:
For an artist generally thought of, I think, as a covers man, it’s interesting to note that Cliff Robinson started out doing interior strips – specifically, Future Shocks – just like everyone else. It simply turned out, relatively early on, that he has a real knack for an iconic single image, especially if it involves Judge Dredd. But, in fact, for the first few years of his long association with 2000 AD, he was as regular on the inside as he was on the outside.*

A lovingly vivid death
Words by Wagner & Grant
After those first few Future Shocks, he became part of the rotating pool of Dredd artists, along with a stint on Anderson, Psi Division as she took on the Dark Judges. Now, I don’t think I’m being too controversial here, but I imagine Robinson got that gig partly because he’s something of an adherent of the Brian Bolland school of drawing. He likes it clean and shiny. By coincidence (or perhaps not), he’s also not the fastest artist in the world. Like Bolland before him, he probably always had a Dredd episode on the go, but with a gap between publication and, increasingly, put onto stories that absolutely played to his strengths.

And then, of course, there are the covers. With the amount of care that goes into each line lovingly drawn onto the tiniest crease of fabric, you can forgive Robinson for taking his time. Over the years, the number of covers he put out crept up into double figures, while his interior strip work went down to just the odd Dredd or one-off tale here and there (with one notable exception). Let’s indulge in a little Cliff Robinson cover appreciation gallery, shall we?

Love love love those curvy kneee pads and shoulder pads.
For my money, Robinsons's biggest contribution the the look of Dredd

Hold on, this isn't a cover - it's one of Robinson's many delightful star scans.

Robinson tackles 2000 AD's biggest characters

Another star scan, lovely touch of humour / sci-fi in-jokery

I had this on a mug for a while, once

And old school cover for a more modern Prog

The sort of cover where you just have to know what's going on inside

Tackling the obvious head-on

Robinson enters a phase of 'how busy can I make this cover' in style

Moving away from Dredd towards more cerebral stuff

A new angle on Dredd

How many homages to the old days can you spot?

Bringing an old Bolland tale to life for a reprint cover

Button Man never looked more exciting

Last week's prog! He's still got it.
If he's slowed down a bit in recent years, it may be because he;s being kept super busy by fans who commission work from him! I've no idea what they cost but I get the impression Robinson is very obliging. Splendid.
One interesting curio about Robinson is that he’s worked well as both a penciller and an inker. It’s to that common in 2000 AD, but American comics nearly always divide art jobs this way. I think the idea is that pencillers have to have a good imagination, and above all a good way with storytelling – basically, they choose how to show the characters/setting in any given panel, then draw them in with more or less details. Inkers, on the other hand, have to be good at tracing tone, atmosphere, and on a more technical level, they have to be good at applying a line of wet ink onto a clean page of art that can at times be molecule-thin, and keep it neat. It’s f’in hard, that is.

The point is, Robinson can do both. He’s worked as an inker over imaginative storytellers such as Mike Collins, and more recently as a penciller under the blanket of inking workhorse Dylan Teague.

Now let’s talk about Mother Earth. Sad to say, it’s one of my all-time least favourite 2000 AD series, but it’s the only series that featured Robinson as co-creator and full-time artist on. It ran in the late 800s, and was perhaps the last in an annoyingly long line of new series that seemed intent on trying to recreate Judge Dredd.** Mother Earth, the character, was like an eco-Dredd, applying the harshest possible sentencing to people who committed crimes against the planet. For reasons that make no sense, she recruits a trio of idiots to help her. I suppose it made a little sense, because Cliff Robinson had shown on years of Dredd work that he’s excellent at drawing convincing idiots.

The piolluters have to drink their own polluted water, see? There's nothing bad about this sequence in itself, but it doesn;t sustain a whole series.
Words by Bernie Jaye

Mother Earth then proceeds to wreak poetically suitable justice upon corporate polluters and other scumbags, often with a decent splash of gore (again, playing to Robinson’s strengths). There’s an argument that the series could have worked. Pollution is obviously bad; saving the planet obviously good. Stick an OTT nutter into the mix, and you’ve got a Pat Mills comedy. Sadly the execution wasn’t funny enough, the idiots didn’t add enough relatability, and Mother Earth herself, despite being a genuine badass, was simply too powerful for the concept to make sense. Her goals were clear, but there didn’t seem to be any obstacle to achieving them, given that she could just teleport in and kill whoever she wanted, whenever she wanted.

Ending on a high note, let’s talk about Robinson’s work on Judge Dredd! For a while there, he was picked to produce some pretty important episodes. He varied between the incredibly silly, but crucially memorable stuff such as the Booby Prize, which remains my favourite Dredd vs evil Game Show Host episodes, and then the super in-continuity stuff like the episode where Chief Judge McGruder takes the long walk and is replaced by new Chief Judge Silver. On the silly but memorable side – the simps; on the ‘important’ side – the opening episode of Oz, at the time the first proper Mega-epic in aaaaages.

This game will kill you.
Words by Wagner & Grant

I've always thought robinson was especially good at drawing liquids.
See also Brian Bolland and Colin Wilson.
  Dredd has three sides: he’s iconic, he’s outrageous, he’s serious. Robinson brings out the best in all three.

 More on Cliff Robinson
The man's own blog, featuring a vast number of private commissions
Obligatory links to Covers Uncovered, here for a solo cover; here for one with Dylan Teague on inks

I can't leave without bringing up my favourite Robinson trope:
really showing how far forward Dredd's visor would be in front of his face.

Personal favourites:
Anderson, Psi Division: the Four Dark Judges
Judge Dredd: The Booby Prize; A Chief Judge resigns; Carry on Judging; Simp; Simp about the House; S.A.M.; Still mental after all these years
Vector 13: Graven images
Pulp Sci-Fi:  Eggs is eggs; War of words
Hondo City Justice: Project Behemoth
Words (that make sense in context) by Mike Carey

*It’s all about the numbers and the counting for me.

**I give you… Dead Meat feat. Inspector Raam; Trash featuring Trashman Trask; Cannon Fodder; Calhab Justice feat. Ed MacBrayne;all the roughest, toughest and most noble lawmen in their chosen field.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

No. 41 Simon Fraser

First Prog: 1035
Latest Prog: 1823 (no more Dante, but anything Tharg can do to get Fraser drawing again would be great, please. Seriously, his Dredd work is amazing.)

First Meg: 2.72 (aka issue 92)
Latest Meg: 305 (but I’m holding out for Book II of Lilly MacKenzie to appear here in print…)

Total appearances: 203
-including his creator-owned series Lilly MacKenzie, which premiered on his website but was reprinted in the Megazine.

Creator credits:
The Adventures of Nikolai Dante; Family; Lilly MacKenzie

Lilly MacKenzie in a Moebius tribute

Other art credits:
Judge Dredd
A single Past Imperfect

Notable character creations:

Nikolai Dante – and almost everyone and everything associated with that series
I’m not sure, but in ‘Blood Cadets’ he may have drawn some of the first versions of a selection of Dredd clones who have grown in prominence over time. Making him, in a way, one of a handful of artists to draw ‘Dredd’ without his helmet on…

Notable characteristics:
Constant, dynamic, swirling motion. A full range of human acting ability. Showing the action from bizarre angles. Fleshy characters. A flair for body horror – although this may be pure coincidence of the stories he’s worked on. Anyway, he’s dead good at drawing people morphing from one shape into another, often with gruesome consequences. He seems interested, too, in trying to get to a certain reality in the way things work, and the way real people look.

Slashing claws and melting faces: body horror deluxe
Words by Robbie Morrison

Crazy swirly fighting effect! That's how to make an entrance to upstage Nikolai Dante.
Words by Robbie Morrison

On Simon:
As a 2000 AD artist, Simon Fraser is so strongly associated with Nikolai Dante that it’s hard to look beyond that. But, you know, his Judge Dredd work is pretty darned fantastic; his Shimura episodes some of the best that character had, and he did get to co-create Tharg’s only full-on gangster series, Family.

Straight lines everywhere. Who needs cross hatching?
Nonetheless, The Adventures of Nikolai Dante was the first story he worked on for Tharg, and it kept him pretty busy for the next 12 years or so, (with the odd break), and it remains a much-beloved classic series. Indeed, while I do remember some readers complaining that they lost the thread of the story somewhere around the Pirate Queen arc(s), I don’t recall anyone ever having a bad thing to say about the art, especially not Simon Fraser’s art.

The prehistory of the series suggests that writer Robbie Morrison had intended it to be a period piece, set somewhere between 1700 and 1900 I’d guess. Then-Tharg David Bishop told him to Sci-Fi it up so it’d fit better into 2000 AD. Where, when and how Fraser got involved I don’t know, but I do know that he brought some serious sci-fi skills to the mix.

Firstly, there’s those fantastic flying chess knights, as seen on this cover from the original hardback reprint of the first series.

Why shouldn't flying cars look like chess pieces?

Secondly, there’s the whole idea of the weapons crest – a sort of techno-organic* bit of kit that bonds to the wearer conferring metallic body constructs. Nikolai gets to turn his hands into swords; his father and half-siblings get to do all sorts of crazy body-morphing stuff with theirs. (See also Family. I haven’t read it in ages, but seeing the family’s powers in action was, as I recall, the chief highlight)
Dante's sister, Lulu, uses her crest to send beasties out of her body.
Words by Robbie Morrison
Thirdly, there’s the race of pink lion/marshmallow hybrid aliens, who show up quite a bit early on, and then basically disappear once it’s apparent John Burns couldn’t quite render them so well, and Morrison probably never liked them that much anyway. Fraser made them pretty convincing, I thought!

Fourthly, and perhaps bestly, there’s the architecture. There may be readers who never took to Fraser’s style, but I can’t believe any reader felt anything less than jaw-dropping admiration for the man who poured his time and ink into designing and drawing magnificent cities, floating palaces, flying fortresses and the like in all their art nouveau/art deco / art who-the-f-knows window-laden masterpieces. If there was one thing that really sold the ‘old world in the future’ setting it was the location dressing.

When I become Tsar, I'm having one of those built for me.
Words by Robbie Morrison

Of course, if there’s one thing that really sold the actual story, it was Fraser’s character design and facility with expressions. Honestly, I can imagine some people finding his style off-putting. He has a scratchy line that is diametrically opposed to some of the heroes of cleanliness like Bolland or Weston. He also seems to favour a certain type of cheekbone structure that I, for one, am deeply in love with, but isn’t exactly in the ballpark of cool as your Simon Bisleys or what have you. Nonetheless, there aren't many who can compete with him for drawing men and women who can be beautiful and flawed in equal measure.

The many faces of Nikolai Dante part 1
Words by Robbie Morrison

The many faces of Nikolai Dante part 2
Words by Robbie Morrison

The many faces of Nikolai Dante part 3
Words by Robbie Morrison

Oops! That's not gentleman thief Nikolai Dante. That's gentleman ronin Shimura pulling a Dante.
Words by Robbie Morrison, so it's hardly copying.
And there's a lush texture to the art, no?
Then there’s the weird angles thing. Fraser has something of a knack for framing a panel around a character so that it appears he’s making it as difficult as possible for himself to draw it. Instead of profiles or ¾ faces, he taken on 5/6 faces, or draws from the perspective of the ground so you’re kind of looking up their noses and that kind of thing.

Finding the angle to show a full face kiss.
Followed by body morphing terror.
Words by Robbie Morrison

There’s logic to it, of course. Choosing such outrageous angles brings everything to life. It reminds you that Dante is a swashbuckler, throwing himself around in carefree ways that show he doesn’t always think about what he’s doing before he’s doing it.

Finding all the angles on Dredd
Words by John Wagner
Equally on his Dredd work, it adds to the futuristic weirdness of the setting. There’s also something incredibly comics about it. Sure, filmmakers can and do use dutch angles**, but almost always the movement within the frame does a lot of the work – Fraser’s single panel craziness achieves its own effect.

That's what I call a gunshot wound!
Words by John Smith

Pure comics. Love the way the train snakes into Dredd's helmet.
Words by John Wagner
Fraser’s creator-owned series, Lilly MacKenzie, is written by the man as well as drawn by him. Opening story the Mines of Charybdis had a very explicit focus on trying to be realistic about space travel. It’s hard launching a rocket, it’s hard flying a spaceship, and it’s hard landing one. Fraser uses all his tricks to get this across, while also touching, again, on the realism of human bodies, and the reality of getting bored and angry with your travelling companion.

For a cartoony artist, I may be over-emphasising this realness aspect to his work. Yet it’s something I draw very strongly from his work, along with its dynamism. Without both of these, I’d probably raise an eyebrow at the emotional ups and downs that, say, Nikolai Dante goes through on a weekly basis, rather than drinking it up and letting it move me to my bones.***

I’m not sure I’d quite realised it before writing this all down, but Simon Fraser really is one of my very favourites.

Sucking chest wound! Drooling sideways mouth! Extreme tongue close-up!
Words by Al Ewing

More on Simon Fraser
Check out his ongoing Lilly MacKenzie story, the Treasure of Paros, over on Act-I-Vate comics
A 30 minute youtubeclip showing him creating a Nikolai Dante cover
Talking about his final Dante cover on Covers Uncovered
A Q&A from 13thDimension
And an interview on the ever-dependable Everything Comes Back to 2000 AD podcast

Personal favourites:
The Adventures of Nikolai Dante
Judge Dredd: Blood Cadets; Zoom Time; Jumped
Shimura: Dragon Fire
Lilly MacKenzie and the Mines of Charybdis

Flipping the axis to achieve full pathos.
Words by Robbie Morrison

*I’ve no idea if this phrasing is copyrighted, but I first came across it from Chris Claremont’s New Mutants / X-Men work. Anyway, it fits here pretty well.

**apparently it’s the technical term for tilting the camera.

***Stopping, very briefly, to acknowledge the sterling work of Fraser's regular colourist Gary Caldwell. I'm keeping brief and in the footnotes 'cos I don't want to pre-empt the man's own upcoming blog entry...

Friday, August 14, 2015

No. 40 Peter Milligan

First Prog: 216
Latest Prog: 1277, although he’s due to resurface with Prog 1950 very soon!

Total appearances: 207 and counting
-including Rogan Gosh from Revolver, but not including Skin, which should have run in Crisis but didn’t, ending up as a standalone graphic novel printed by another publisher.

Creator credits:
Sooner or Later; Bad Company; The Dead; Freaks; Tribal Memories; Shadows; Bix Barton; Hewligan’s Haircut; Rogan Gosh

Other writing credits:
Rogue Trooper (in a handful of annuals and specials)
A whole pile of Future Shocks
A single, and incredibly weird, Judge Dredd story (in a Mega-Special)

Notable character creations:
Micky Swift
Danny Franks
-and almost every other character from Bad Company
Bix Barton and Michael Cane (no ‘I’ because he’s literally a cane, you see)
Hewligan and Scarlet O’Gasmeter
The God of leaning against hot radiators
Banal and bizarre in one breath.
Art by Jim McCarthy
Notable characteristics:
Wit; sarcasm; big ideas; poking fun at clever people, stupid people, stupid people pretending to be clever and indeed clever people pretending to be stupid; silly jokes; literary (and not-so literary) references; Having what appear to be versions of himself as the protagonist, and often not a very sympathetic one at that*

Milligan champions outsiders - because, frankly, there are no insiders.
Art by John Higgins

War of (t)wits
Art by Eric Bradbury

On Peter:
Peter Milligan taught me that it’s OK to be pretentious. It’s ok to explore high-minded concepts in the guise of an action comic (Bad Company), and it’s also OK to mock the very idea of high-mindedness in the guise of an avant garde art comic (Sooner or Later; Hewligan’s Haircut). He taught me that if and when writers name-drop famous philosophers, you’re not missing out on the joke if you haven’t heard of them – thinking you’re being clever for having heard of any given philosopher IS the joke.

Righteous anger coupled with wordplay
Art by Brendan McCarthy

And, for a writer with something of a reputation for being tricksy (The Dead; Rogan Gosh; Hewligan’s Haircut), he’s actually written a whole lot of straightforward narratives (Bad Company, obviously, but also Freaks; Tribal Memories; Shadows).

Going back to the beginning, Milligan sure had to put in a lot of hard graft. It’s long been the case that new writers had to break in by writing Future Shocks and other one-off stories with surprise endings. Milligan may have written more than almost anyone**, and didn’t get to write his first proper series for 5 years after his first saw print!

Newspapers that report on the future: a beautifully simple premise
Art by Jose Casanovas

Hailing a taxi on the De Niro planet - not gonna end well.
Art byJohn Higgins
Later Future Shock hopefuls may complain that Milligan got in early and used up a lot of simple ideas that play on expectations of who is the narrator / the alien / the robot / the clone and such. But the fact is these stories worked, and many still have a kick today. He also had the decency to cut them down to as little as one or two pages, as the twist dictated.

Biblical reference, there
Art by Brendan McCarthy
Most of his one-offs were pretty classic sci-fi. Not so for his first series, Sooner or Later. For me, this series is the ne plus ultra*** of late 80s pretentious ‘comics about real people’. Of course, it’s one of the most unreal comics ever. The first episode did have quite the slice-of-life feel to it, with professional layabout Mickey Swift getting up to not much, before falling through a plot contrivance into the far future. But as the narrator, he did, sort of, keep the focus on things like unemployment, fashion, taste in music and all the other good stuff that trendy comics of the late 80s were actually about. 


With the help of co-conspirator Brendan McCarthy, Milligan dreamed up a pretty fantastical future to go with the moaning. A delicious slice of weirdness like nothing else before or since. Given how well the pair work together, it’s a shame they only had one other series together for Tharg, and even that was for fringe comic Revolver. Rogan Gosh, very vaguely informed by the pair’s childhood in Indian-infused West London is incredibly beautiful and incredibly odd. Well worth seeking out.

The Todds - 2000AD's best-coiffed villains
Art by Brendan McCarthy
Referencing polo mints and Beatles songs.
Art by Jamie Hewlett
Swifty’s Return, with uber-art-comics bad boy Jamie Hewlett, was decidedly different and decidedly similar at the same time. See also Hewligan’s Haircut, which isn’t as clever or groundbreaking as the hype at the time suggested, but is still fun. Of course the best joke in it is the not-endorsement from hair-brand Vidal Sassoon that appears on the collected edition.

Long before then, Milligan had served Tharg his masterpiece, and a perennial contender for all-time best series ever: Bad Company. This was, originally, a Wagner-penned war story that was meant to run in a proto-Megazine. When that fell through, Milligan was given the series. He turned it into a straight-up 'war is hell' story that kept its debt to John Wagner by being a sort-of remake of Darkie’s Mob. Like that series, it is narrated through letters from a raw recruit who is something of an intellectual. Even more like the old Battle strip, lead character Kano is a scary man-beast with a secret past – one that connects him to the enemy – just like Darkie himself.

Kano's brain is not right
Art by Ewins & J. McCarthy

Previous 2000 AD thrills had tried to tease mysteries (Project Overkill; Return to Armageddon, kind of; Halo Jones II had a murder mystery of sorts) – but none pulled it off with the same aplomb. The secret of Kano’s black box was questioned early, but only answered in the last episode, and - for me, at any rate – managed to bring an answer that was both surprising and satisfying. That there were other secrets to come was an added bonus! (Predicting who would live and who would die was way harder than any 80s slasher/action films would achieve, too)
But it wasn’t just the plotting – if anything, it was the characters. Bad Company is especially fondly remembered for the motley collection of weirdoes and mutants that bicker and tease each other even as they die together. Kano aside, it's not entirely clear how they got to be quite so weird, but the theme is clear – to cope with the rigours of that kind of war, you've got to be pretty messed up.

Being able to cope with war is itself proof of madness
Art by Ewins/J. McCarthy

Sheeva and De Racine
Art by Ewins/J. McCarthy
Just to be annoying, Milligan then comes up with another perhaps less loved but no less fascinating crew of refined weirdoes for Bad Company II, and again for Bad Company 2000 (although with just 6 episodes, these didn't have a chance to breathe). He even managed, along the way, the come up with a final mission and 'how the war ends' story that was entirely satisfying. God, he's good.

So good, in fact, that the secret weapon of the wider story is the odd one out – Kano. This tale is something of a murder mystery, but it also has a lot of the feel of a western to it (one of the revisionist ones, like Unforgiven). It's also a proper science fiction story, with its setting on an alien planet where time occasionally flows backwards. And it's also a horror story – one of the really devastating ones where the horror is brought about by personal tragedy and grief, although also by monsters.

Somehow you don't believe Kano has found a happy ending.
Art by Ewins/J. McCarthy

Yup, it's definitely a tragedy.

In ambition, Kano might only be matched by much earlier work The Dead, which I keep failing to understand, but admire for actually being about life and death and what those might mean.

Fludd's quest gets off to a false start
Art by Massimo Belardinelli

Where Danny Franks is, on the whole, someone you root for, Milligan does a good line in irritating idiot protagonists, too. Carl Woolf, from Freaks, is one such. That he is narcissistic and ignorant sort of ends up being the point of the story (in which he is kidnapped by aliens), but it mostly serves to make the story funnier.  

Mushroom atoms, man.
Art by John Higgins
Tribal Memories, and even shorter series, is another such. It nods towards Brave New World with its theme of bringing an old world 'savage' into the future to be gawked at by pseudo-intellectuals who should know better. It's also pretty hard not to read into it a swipe at white people who trade on black culture 'cos they think it's cool.

Mohammed (dude at the back) is also the self-aware narrator.
Art by Riot
 Shadows, a longer series, gives it hero a chance to overcome her ignorance and prejudice and embrace the plight of the homeless/downtrodden. Then something weird happens with computers/the internet that I didn't entirely follow, but it was rather moving.

Do you remember when no one really knew what the internet was?
Art by Richard Elson
A withering look to match an intolerant attitude
Art by Jim McCarthy
Which leaves us with Milligan's final gift to 2000 AD, Bix Barton. Apparently the character/series is in part inspired by the person and work of Steve Ditko, comics legend and recluse. I don't know enough about Ditko to understand the references. Instead, Barton seems to me to be another Milligan protagonist who you root for and kind of despise at the same time. Bix Barton is a 'proper' Englishman from between the wars who is roused in the near future to deal with bizarre crimes and mysteries. He likes rugby, tea, and being horrible to people who don't share his values. He's nothing like them, but you can trace a line from Barton to Harry Kipling and Ampney Crucis if you wish.

Anyway, it works. Barton is witty with his mean quips; his trappings, including a flying car and a talking walking stick are delightful, and above all the ridiculous cases he confronts are diverting. Silly, yes, but still diverting. It's the kind of stuff that you can't really see fitting into any context, which is what make sit such a good fit for 2000 AD.

By this time, Milligan was already turning heads over in America with his trippy and confusing (but often also coherent) grown-up comics such as Enigma and Shade, the Changing Man. I strongly recommend his work on X-Force/X-Statix, too – one of the best teen superhero comics ever, especially if you love but also hate the X-Men. (And while I'm recommending things, do check out his pre-2000 AD work, too: Paradax and Johnny Nemo, for more likably unlikable protagonists)

But the good news is, he's coming back! A new series of Bad Company is already written and probably drawn by now. Just maybe it'll inspire Milligan to some new offering that could only have a home in the Galaxy's Greatest Comic.

The Smiths: very important band, apparently.
Art by Brendan McCarthy

More on Peter Milligan
There's a neat fanpage here
An old TV clip here, where he talks Bad Company with Brett Ewins
One of many recent pieces about his upcoming return, this one from Comics Alliance
-but really, disappointingly little out there, especially covering his 2000AD stuff.

Personal favourites:
Sooner or Later
Bad Company: every last goddamn frame of it
Bix Barton: Lovesick World; Nigel, the Napoleon of East Finchley
Future Shocks: The Man who was too clever; Bad Timing; Extra! Extra!; But is it art?; The Thought that counts (and probably lots of others I haven’t re-read in ages)
Tribal Memories
Rogan Gosh

*Actually, this is more prominent in his later work, I think. But I'd include as examples Mickey Swift; Danny Franks; Peter Finnigan (from Skreemer); Patrick Mulligan (from Marvel series Toxin)...
Bix Barton looks kinda like Milligan, at least his haircut.

**Yes, I’m sure one day soon I’ll scratch the itch to count that all up…

***I love being pretentious.