I was genuinely saddened to hear of the death of comic artist John Hicklenton after a long struggle with illness.
Hicklenton's work existed right at the polar edges of the kind of stuff that The Galaxy's Greatest Comic would foist upon the young and impressionable. His tortured forms and grotesques an early alarm bell, warning you that what you were reading was formed from the raw, inky matter of The Weird. The dudes work managed to make everyone else's efforts that issue seem distinctly normal and when you consider that he used to share page-count with Heads like Kevin'O'Neill, Simon Bisley and Brendan McCarthy you go some way to understanding just how deeply unsettling his best work was.
His most famous run was on Pat Mills' Nemesis The Warlock, wherein he completely revamped the look and feel of the series. Turning Nemesis into a multi-angled swarm of inks and his enemy Torquemada into a fanatical, muscle-ripped boot-boy. I remember seeing his work for the first time and being petrified of it, as it pulled the rug from under me by exploding the rules of anatomy, turning the protagonists into livid, sweating flesh tornadoes.
Sadly, this ruptured view of the human body was thrown into all-too-sharp focus when he was diagnosed with M.S. in 2000. He leaves behind a phenomenal and inimitable body of work and some well-blown minds. All Hail.
Mat TOTS X