THE BRITISH INVASION: SPIRIT OF ’86
FRIDAY 22nd JULY 2016 at 12 MIDDAY – 1pm (ROOM 29AB)
I’m extremely excited to reveal details of something I never thought would ever happen, back when I first attended my first San Diego Comic-Con in 2010: my very first submitted panel for SDCC 2016!
The title for the panel is THE BRITISH INVASION: SPIRIT OF ’86, in which we’ll discuss a period in comics history in which a number of artists and writers from the UK – creatives such as Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman, Brian Bolland, Grant Morrison, Peter Milligan and more – were lured by their American counterparts across the pond and, in doing so, had an immeasurable impact on not only the creative approach and literary recognition of comics, but also the lasting business of the industry itself, to this day.
In this 30th Anniversary year of the 1986 release of Moore/Gibbons/Higgins‘ seminal comic WATCHMEN, I feel this is a timely opportunity to show light on this period, celebrate the key works of the Invasion and see where their influence continues to shape contemporary comics.
I’ll be joined live on the panel, and virtually through the power of VOIP, by some incredible guests, some who shaped the Invasion back in its inception and some that continue that legacy forward in 2016…
Joining me on stage will be:
PAUL LEVITZ has been a award-wining icon of the comics industry for over 35 years, serving as a writer, editor, multi-character creator and eventually in the role of President of DC Comics (2002-2009). Paul continues to be a potent force to this day, bringing the LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES to a new generation and currently writing the DOCTOR FATE titles for the DC Comics: REBIRTH line.
Along with publisher Jenette Khan and managing editor Dick Giordano, Paul was responsible for hiring Vertigo Editor Karen Berger, alongside whom bringing the likes of Alan Moore, Dave Gibbons and many others to the attention of American publishers and a whole new readership – Paul is a pivotal player in the narrative of the British Invasion.
KIERON GILLEN is a widely published award-winning comics writer, very much striking the path as the ‘new Neil Gaiman‘, with powerful and intelligent work on display on books for Marvel Comics (such as YOUNG AVENGERS, IRON MAN and STAR WARS: DARTH VADER), as well as his own creator-owned books for Image Comics, such as PHONOGRAM and the Eisner Award-nominated THE WICKED + THE DIVINE (both with artist Jamie McKelvie).
Kieron represents the direct linage between the creatives that planted those first steps in the U.S. and those working in the industry today. He is a Special Guest at San Diego Comic-Con 2016 and we are very lucky to have him take time out his rare trip to California.
Lastly joining us in person, but certainly not least, is another titan in comics, artist DAVID LLOYD, a man who first started work with art appearing in TV COMIC, DOCTOR WHO MAGAZINE and various Marvel UK titles, during which he co-created the highly stylised, noir-thriller NIGHT RAVEN, a strip which tonally segued into his most famous creation, V FOR VENDETTA, co-created with Alan Moore (printed in WARRIOR MAGAZINE in 1982, reprinted by DC in 1988). The film based on this landmark comic celebrates its Tenth Anniversary in 2016 so this is a timely appearance for David on this panel.
Not resting on his laurels, David went on to provide art for SLAINE (written by Pat Mills), HELLBLAZER (with Grant Morrison) and THE TERRITORY for Dark Horse Comics (with Jamie Delano). In 2012, David was part of a collective of British creators that introduced ACES WEEKLY, an online independent publisher which formed part of the digital vanguard of the future of comics.
Taking part in the panel, via Skype, will be:
DAVE GIBBONS needs very little introduction for fans of comic books but, for the sake of this post, I’ll give him one anyway: Jack Kirby Award-winning artist and writer, noted collaborator of Alan Moore (including SUPERMAN: THE MAN WHO HAS EVERYTHING and WATCHMEN, the UK’s first Comics Laureate… Dave’s legacy to comics, on a global scale, is immeasurable.
While he is unable to join us live in the room, Dave will be participating as though he is, via the magic of VOIP telecommunication – he will be joining in the Q&A portion of the panel, answering all of your burning questions about his role in the British Invasion, from first hand experience.
Also via Skype, we will also be joined by PAUL JENKINS, a master comics writer who moved to the States, first working as an editor for Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird, before moving over to DC Comics’ Vertigo imprint. In 1994, Paul took over as the writer of HELLBLAZER and it was this creative period which really cemented his reputation in the American comics industry as a writer of power and import.
Paul has subsequently gone on to work for Marvel Comics on many of their prestige titles, redefining and reinventing characters such as Spider-Man, The Incredible Hulk, The Sentry and Wolverine, the latter with the ground-breaking series ORIGIN, which transformed the mutant character forever. He continues to write pinnacle work in comics for Boom! Studios, which he joined in 2013.
This is a stellar line-up of top-flight creative talent and I’m honoured, humbled and thrilled that they have agreed to participate! I’ll be spreading the word about the panel up to the day we take to the stage at San Diego Comic-Con so please keep following @EnglishmanSDCC on Twitter for all the latest updates, using the hashtag #BritishInvasionSDCC.
You will be able to watch THE BRITISH INVASION: SPIRIT OF ’86 when it takes place in ROOM 29AB, the large panel room at the back east corner of the Convention Centre above Hall H, on FRIDAY 22nd JULY 2016 at 12pm MIDDAY – 1pm.
Do spread the word and let people know about this fascinating insight which I promise will be a standout panel of the convention: myself and my fellow panellists will be conducting the second half of the panel nude. (Nah, only kidding.)
Hope to see you all there!