Rogue Trooper, one of the signature classic characters of British weekly anthology 2000 AD, will be returning in 2023 in a full 13-part series written by Garth Ennis and drawn by Patrick Goddard. The first installment of new storyline Blighty Valley will begin April 5, 2023 in 2000 AD Prog 2326.

Rebellion‘s PR synopsis of Blighty Valley sounds like fun:

“In this new tale, Night’s Horizon is the period two weeks out of every year when Nu Earth’s orbit carries it closest to the black hole. The Norts call it Zvartchvintern; the first settlers knew it as Lightfall. Things have a reputation for going a little… screwy around this time. Now, Rogue Trooper is about to experience those effects first-hand…”

It has been a while since Rogue Trooper has graced the pages of 2000 AD and even longer under the auspices of a multi-part series. The Genetic Infantryman (G.I.) bred to survive the hostile and polluted environment of the war-ravaged Nu Earth, spurred on by his search for the one who betrayed his squad, has been a classic character since his debut in 1981’s Prog 228. Created by Gerry Finley-Day and Dave Gibbons, the saga of Rogue and his comrades (whose personalities survive on bio-chips attached to his equipment) concluded some time ago but Rogue, Nu-Earth and the forever-war between Norts and Southers has remained the inspiration for a succession of one-shots (including in 2000 AD’s popular Regened special issues) and spin-off series, most recently Gordon Rennie and Simon Coleby’s  Jaegir ongoing.

While a succession of writers have had a go at the series, usually in annuals, specials and one-shots (Alan Moore and Peter Milligan to name a few) – this will be the first time Garth Ennis has taken him on. Ennis has been on a roll with Rebellion and 2000 AD projects, including Battle Action over the summer and bringing back Bonjo with the late Kevin O’Neill.

Ennis said,

“For me Rogue Trooper is as vital a part of classic 2000 AD as Judge Dredd, Strontium Dog, Robo-Hunter, Nemesis the Warlock, or Sláine, and I well remember wandering the wastes of Nu Earth with Rogue and the bio-chips on their hunt for the Traitor General. The stories that instantly come to mind are ‘All Hell on the Dix-I Front’, ‘Fort Neuro’, ‘Eye of the Traitor’, ‘You Only Die Twice’ and ‘To The Ends Of Nu Earth’ – I hope ‘Blighty Valley’ will prove a worthy successor to such unadulterated gems.”

Matt Smith, editor of 2000 AD, said:

“Garth Ennis has written classic 2000 AD characters before, but this is the first time he’s scripted Rogue Trooper. As you’d expect from someone steeped in war comics, his take on the G.I. is powerful, thrilling and explosive. With Patrick Goddard providing the stunning visuals, this a dramatic, unmissable addition to the Nu Earth saga.”

The character has been adapted into videogames, particularly the Rebellion-developed 2006 third-person shooter (which was remastered and rereleased as Rogue Trooper Redux in 2017). A forthcoming movie adaptation directed by Duncan Jones, and produced in joint-venture with Liberty Films and 2000 AD-owners Rebellion is also (still) in development.