Axe Cop logo
|Author(s)||Malachai Nicolle, drawn by Ethan Nicolle|
|Current status / schedule||Story episode or "Ask Axe Cop" every Tuesday|
|Launch date||December 2009|
Axe Cop is a webcomic by brothers Malachai Nicolle (age 5 when the series began) and Ethan Nicolle (age 29 when the series began). Malachai is responsible for the ideas and stories, while Ethan turns them into comics. The first four comics were drawn in December 2009 and posted to Facebook; the website was not launched until January 2010.
The site also features Ask Axe Cop, a series of comics where Axe Cop responds to questions from readers.
The webcomic has been highly praised, leading to a publishing deal with Dark Horse Comics for both a limited online and print run.
Axe Cop is about the adventures of a police officer who prefers to wield an axe in battle. He's a gruff, tough man dedicated to killing bad guys. The comic focuses on the times he's called away from the daily grind to help with more complex problems such as rescuing a child from a zombie dog woman, helping Bat Warthog Man find his friends, or babysitting. This generally involves fighting bad guys including the bad guys from other planets. Axe Cop has gathered a loyal team. His first ally is Flute Cop, who goes on to become Dinosaur Soldier (upon exposure to dinosaur blood) and changes into other forms in other episodes. Axe Cop gained other allies which included but are not limited to Ralph Wrinkles, Sockarang, Leaf Man, Baby Man, The Wrestler, Uni-Man, Uni-Baby, Wexter, Presty, Best Fairy Ever, Bat Warthog Man, Army Chihuahua, Gray Diamond, Liborg, Water Queen, and others.
Axe Cop episodes are nominally set in the present day, enlivened with aliens, dinosaurs, zombies, robots, etc., and the episodes tend to feature whatever topic happens to be on the writer's mind like sea creatures, brains, and especially babies. Little effort is made to keep track of back stories, powers, and equipment. This is not to say that the comic is entirely chaotic: the main characters and their relationships stay consistent, there are persistent world-building elements (most notably the shape-shifting properties of being splattered with blood or getting a fruit's juice on them), and a number of powers and items recur (e.g. the hypnotize button on Axe Cop's wrist has not been mentioned again, but the robot arms in his mustache are explained).
Ethan Nicolle was already fairly well known for his critically acclaimed graphic novel Chumble Spuzz when he got the idea to write Axe Cop. The idea arose when Ethan was playing pretend with his brother, who invented the Axe Cop persona. At the time, the elder Nicolle was working on a graphic novel that he wanted to release as a webcomic, and he intended to use Axe Cop as a way of practicing the medium.
Characters include Anita, Army Chihuahua, Axe Cop, Baby Man, Bad Santa, Bat Warthog Man, Best Fairy Ever, Bigfoot, Bobber and Gobber Smartist, Book Cop, Chemist M, Club Cop, Chicken, Chicken Slice, Dr. Doo-Doo, Dr. Googleman, Dragony Dragon Witch, Electric Man, Evil Rhino Man, Fishy Fish, Flute Cop/Dinosaur Soldier, Fwinky Dog, Gray Diamond, Gray Stone, Hell Chicken, Iggy and Willy, Iron Spider-Cannon, King of All Time, Leaf Man, Liborg, Lighting Boy, Lobster Man, Presty, Pretzel Man, Psydrozon, Rainbow Girl, Ralph Wrinkles, Scientist, Season Man, Sockarang, Super Axe, Telescope Gun Cop, The Evil Flying Book, The Snowards, The Wrestler, Tubby Doll, Turkey Turkey, Uni-Baby, Uni-Man, Water Queen, Wextler, Wizard Artist Rabbit, and Wolver Man.
Entertainment Weekly listed the comic as their "Site of the Day" on January 28, 2010. In her review, Margaret Lyons described it as "all kinds of silly fun" and asked, "Are we looking at the next great comic franchise?" Detroit News said in their review, "'Axe Cop' is a hoot." GQ named the comic their "Time Waster of the Day" on February 4, 2010.
In response to the success of the online comic, Nicolle was approached by several comic publishers to print an Axe Cop series. With help of the Gotham Entertainment Group, Nicolle found that both he and Dark Horse Comics had the same level of interest in the publishing deal, and accepted their offer. Dark Horse published an ashcan copy of Axe Cop for the 2010 San Diego Comic-Con International, which included the first five episodes of the web comic and some of the "Ask Axe Cop" strips. Dark Horse published the 3-issue Axe Cop miniseries "Bad Guy Earth" in the second quarter of 2011.
Awards and honors
- Volume 1 (144 pages, January 2011, ISBN 1-59582-681-5) -
- Volume 2: Bad Guy Earth (collecting Axe Cop: Bad Guy Earth #1-3, 104 pages, October 2011, ISBN 1-59582-825-7) - Uni-Man has made a Good Guy Machine that turns all bad guys into good guys where Axe Cop demonstrates it by turning Pseudo Goodis into Handcuff Man. The Psychic Brothers (consisting of Psychic Boss and Psychic Helper) from Psychic Planet steal the Good Guy Machine in order to convert it into a Bad Guy Machine to build an army of bad guys.
- Volume 3 (160 pages, April 2012, ISBN 1-59582-911-3) -
- Volume 4: President of the World (96 pages, July 2013, ISBN 978-1-61655-057-8) - Axe Cop has become the President of the World. A mad scientist from Mars named Dr. Tuwo recruits an army of aliens (consisting of giant robots, the Apple Men from Apple Planet, the inhabitants of Soccer Planet, and every other alien) in a plot to attack Earth.
- Volume 5: The All-American Choppers - (May 21, 2014) - Axe Cop and Ralph Wrinkles work with Super Axe, Captain Axe, Axe Girl, Axe Woman, and Axe Goat in order to fight demon lumberjacks that are making Axe Beasts.
Axe Cop has been adapted into one of several short animated features that was shown during the Fox's Saturday night counterpart to Animation Domination, that piloted in January 2013. Fox's Nick Weidenfeld, who is developing the content for this animation block, had been interested in getting the rights for an animated Axe Cop for some time, based on its creativity. For the initial season, six 15-minute episodes of Axe Cop will be made, which is envisioned to expand into full half-hour episodes in subsequent seasons. Popular YouTube animators Arin Hanson and Marc Moceri were brought in to help with writing and animation. The television series Axe Cop premiered on July 27, 2013 with Nick Offerman as the voice of Axe Cop, Ken Marino as the voice of Flute Cop, Patton Oswalt as the voice of Sockarang, Megan Mullally as the voice of Anita and other characters, Rob Huebel as the voice of Gray Diamond, Tyler, The Creator as the voice of Liborg, Dan Harmon as the voice of Uni-Man, Michael Madsen as the voice of Baby Man, Giancarlo Esposito as the voice of Army Chihuahua, Vincent Kartheiser as the voice of Bat Warthog Man, and Deborah Ann Woll as the voice of Best Fairy Ever.
- Collins, Sean T. (January 29, 2010). "'My five-year-old could write that!': Bow before the blade of Axe Cop". Robot 6. Comic Book Resources. Retrieved February 3, 2010.
- Hudson, Laura (January 29, 2010). "Axe Cop: The Comic Written by a 5-Year-Old, Drawn by a 29-Year-Old". ComicsAlliance. Retrieved February 3, 2010.
- Rickmers, Dan (February 3, 2010). "Axe Cop: The Web Comic Written by a Five-Year-Old". NYU Local. Retrieved February 3, 2010.
- Banks, Dave (February 5, 2010). "Sockarangs, Pretzel Heads and Uni-Babies - A Glimpse Inside The World Of Axe Cop". Wired. Retrieved July 19, 2015.
- Hudson, Laura (February 2, 2010). "Axe Cop, The Interview: Talking with the 5 and 29-Year Old Creators, Malachai and Ethan Nicolle". ComicsAlliance. Retrieved February 3, 2010.
- "Brother of Axe Cop!". Geekchicdaily. February 4, 2010. Retrieved June 4, 2010.
- Lee, Landon (February 1, 2010). "5 year old's comic 'Axe Cop' sweeps the Web!". KXTV. Retrieved June 4, 2010.
- Lyons, Margaret (January 28, 2010). "Site of the Day: Axe Cop". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved February 3, 2010.
- Detroit News review
- GQ Time Waster of the Day
- Arrant, Chris (August 2, 2010). "Artist's Six Year-Old Brother Inspires DHC Series AXE COP". Newsarama. Retrieved August 2, 2010.
- "Comic-Con 2012 :: Special Guests". Comic-con.org. 2012-07-11. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- "The Eagle Awards - Results And Dave Gibbons\' Acceptance Speech". Bleedingcool.com. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- [dead link]
- "Great Graphic Novels Top Ten 2012 | Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA)". Ala.org. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- Andreeva, Nellie (April 24, 2012). "Fox’s Saturday Late-Night Animated Block Greenlights First Series". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved April 24, 2012.
- Bibel, Sara (January 8, 2013). "'Animation Domination High Def' FOX's New Alternative Animated Programming Block, to Premiere Saturday, July 27". TVbytheNumbers. Retrieved January 14, 2013.
- Fitzpatrick, Kevin (January 8, 2013). "FOX RELEASES ‘AXE COP’ VOICE CAST, SETS SATURDAY ANIMATION DOMINATION HD PREMIERE". ScreenCrush. Retrieved May 11, 2013.
- Nicolle, Ethan (March 31, 2013). "Animated Series Trailer!". AxeCop.com. Retrieved May 11, 2013.
- "Criminal Past". Axe Cop. 2012-11-21. Retrieved 2012-12-04.
- Doctorow, Cory (2011-03-11). "Axe Cop meets Steve Jackson Games". Boing Boing. Retrieved 2011-03-11.