The Next ‘2000 AD Apex Edition’: The Brilliance Of Kevin O’Neill

by Richard Bruton

Last month we lost Kevin O’Neill, one of the great talents in comics. Which makes the announcement today that he and 2000 AD had been working on an apex edition of his work somewhat bittersweet.

Kevin O’Neill slipcased Apex Edition

This came as a hard read this morning – just awful timing on top of the awful news of O’Neill’s death in November. But it’s also bloody great news as well, let’s not forget that – an Apex Edition celebrating all of that wonderful O’Neill artwork from 2000 AD across the years – not that is something wonderful.

Yes, after the Apex Editions for Brian Bolland and Mick MacMahon, we now get one for the third of the truly great 2000 AD artists, Kevin O’Neill. It’s the latest in their series of huge over-sized replica art books that reproduce original pages and covers at the size they were drawn.

The 2000 AD Art of Kevin O’Neill: Apex Edition is available to pre-order now. 2000 AD and Kevin had been working on its preparation in months leading up to his untimely death.

Due for release on 28th June 2023, the Apex Edition will be available in standard and special slipcase editions. The standard edition is available to pre-order from the 2000 AD webshop and will also be available for comic book stores to order next year. The slipcase edition is only available from the 2000 AD webshop and will include an individually numbered extra bound page, featuring a page of brand new art created by O’Neill exclusively for this edition.

The Apex edition slipcase edition
The Apex Edition standard edition

The contents of this 160-page collection were compiled by O’Neill from his own archive, working closely with Rebellion’s editorial and reprographics teams to curate what looks like a stunning collection of work and a fitting testament to one of the greatest in comics.

You’ll find a selection of his work from 2000 AD – covers, strips, double-page spreads, and includes work on Ro-Busters, Nemesis, ABC Warriors, Judge Dredd, all the way through to his final comics work on Bonjo From Beyond The Stars.

“There was and is no-one who draws like Kev O’Neill and this new Apex Edition is ample proof of what an amazing talent he was – whether it was his character design or the incredible energy he brought to every page. It is a shame that he never got to see the finished book that he’d worked so hard on over the past year, right up until the end of October in fact, but I think it is fitting that it stands as a true testament to such a unique talent and such a warm, generous man.” – Editor Oliver Pickles

The complete list of contents… this is something you’re just going to adore…

Tharg the Mighty headshot concepts
2000 AD Sci-fi Special 1977 cover
Judge Dredd: Judges Graveyard pages 1-6
Tharg’s Future Shocks: Hunted pages 1-3
Mach Zero Star Scan
2000 AD Annual 1979 cover
2000 AD covers – Progs 40, 71, 84, 88, 97 (unused due to strike action), 103, 112, 167 (sketch & cover) 398, 483, 485, 489, 492, 500
Ro-Busters cover – Starlord issues 5 & 16 Cover
Ro-Busters Star Scan – Starlord issue 19
Ro-Busters – 2000 AD Prog 88, pages 1-4, 6
Ro-Busters – 2000 AD Prog 90, pages 1-6
Ro-Busters – 2000 AD Prog 103, pages 1-6
Ro-Busters – 2000 AD Prog 104, pages 1-6
Ro-Busters – Ro-Jaws, 2000 AD Prog 106 Star Scan
Ro-Busters – 2000 AD Prog 111, pages 1-6
Ro-Busters – 2000 AD Prog 112, pages 1-6
ABC Warriors – 2000 AD Prog 119, pages 3-7
ABC Warriors – 2000 AD Prog 123, pages 1-6
ABC Warriors – Titan Book One frontispiece
ABC Warriors – Prologue pages 1-3
ABC Warriors – Epilogue pages 1-3
Shok! – Judge Dredd Annual 1981, pages 1-7
Judge Dredd: The Law According To Dredd – 2000 AD Prog 474, pages 3-7
Judge Dredd: The Law According To Dredd – 2000 AD Page 475, pages 1-2, 4-7
Judge Dredd – 2000 AD Prog 521, page 1
Nemesis: Terror Tube – 2000 AD Prog 167, pages 1-6
Torquemada The God – 2000 AD Prog 520, pages 1-6
Torquemada’s Second Honeymoon – 2000 AD Annual 1988, pages 1-6
Tomb Of Torquemada Poster Prog, cover
Tomb Of Torquemada Poster Prog, pages 1-6
Tomb Of Torquemada Poster Prog, poster
Nemesis the Warlock: The Final Conflict – 2000 AD Prog 2000, pages 1-6
Bonjo From Beyond The Stars – 2000 AD Prog 2312

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