Hello SPBMers! A few months ago I mentioned how I made a guest appearance in Jennie Gyllblad's fantasy webcomic SKAL as Market Punter #9 - this guest appearance was awesome it sent reality bending shockwaves throughout the whole internets compelling The Marvel Daniel Clifford(TM) aka Stan 'The Man' Lee to refuse a cameo in the film X-Men: First Class and leaving DC feeling so worthless they cancelled their entire line of comics!
But I was not the only Grice to appear in a comic, oh no. The Grice name is near-legendary in the comicbook arena with a long tradition of appearances...
Take for instance my uncle Norbert 'Noddy' Grice who first broke into the comics scene playing a creepy journalist Vernon Grice in football strip "Play Until You Drop" which ran in infamous British weekly Action in the 1970s. In the strip Vernon blackmails a first division footballer whose father was photographed taking a bribe, and commits many unscrupulous acts such as sabotage to keep his cash cow... er.... milking... cash. So convincing was Uncle Noddy's villainous performance as Vernon that much like quality actor Mark Savage who played school bully Gripper Stebson in BBC kids' soap Grange Hill, he found himself reviled in real life and took temporary retirement away from the public eye as a Punch & Judy Man in Prestatyn, North Wales.
However, Uncle Noddy was to return triumphant in the 1980s in one of the most legendary comics of all time: Watchmen! Noddy's devotion to his art knew no limits and in order to portray psychopathic child murderer and dog lover Gerald Grice Noddy - like quality actor Robert DeNiro as boxer Raging Bull in the film Raging Bull - gained over 8st in flab! Watchmen was one of the most critically acclaimed graphic novels of all time. In fact, so convincing was Uncle Noddy's villainous performance as Gerald that much like real-world nut-monger Gary Glitter, he found himself reviled in real life and took temporary retirement away from the public eye as an icecream man in Prestatyn, North Wales.
However, Uncle Noddy was to return triumphant again in the 1990s in his biggest role yet in one of the most legendary strips in one of the most legendary comics of all time: namely Judge Dredd in that 2000AD! Originally auditioning for the role of Judge Dredd himself (see left) Noddy failed to gain that part as it had already been cast 22 years earlier - however so impressed with Uncle Noddy's audition were Dredd writers Alan Wagner and John Grant that they offered him another role, that of creepy Judge Daisy Thugpunch Grice*. (*note: Judge Grice's forenames were never revealed, but those were almost probably them I reckon.) Again, Uncle Noddy threw himself into the role and, like quality actors Tom Selleck and Ron Jeremy, grew a moustache.
Judge Grice was originally only to appear as an extra in 5-part story "Nightmares" (progs 702-706), but Uncle Noddy made such a good impression - and worked so cheap - that he was brought back and given a larger role in 4-part story "The Devil You Know" (progs 750-753). Uncle Noddy was on a roll and despite Judge Grice being written out at the conclusion of that story he was brought back by quality writer Garth Ellis for Dredd mega-epics "Purgatory" (progs 834-841) and "Inferno" (progs 842-853) where Grice legendarily earned his title as Indisputed Greatest Judge Dredd Villain Of All Time!
Unfortunately, so convincing was Uncle Noddy's villainous performance as Judge Grice that much like real-world despot and genocidal maniac Adolf Hitler, he found himself reviled in real life and took his own life in a bunker in Prestatyn, North Wales.
Well I hope you're enjoyed this look into a forgotten piece of comics history. If you haven't please write your complaint on a £20 note and send it to the usual address.