Co-Founder Of Dark Horse, Randy Stradley, Retires After 35 Years

After 35 years, the co-founder of Dark Horse Comics, and VP – Publishing, Randy Stradley, has retired. In 1985, comic store owner Mike Richardson approached his friend and Star Wars comic writer for Marvel, Randy Stradley, with his plan to start a comic book publishing company.  The idea was to not only allow writers and artists to tell the stories they wanted to tell, but to actually own the work they created.  They pasted up the first issue of Dark Horse Presents on the counter of a comic shop, hoping they could sell 10,000 copies in order to break even. Instead, the book sold 50,000 copies and birthed a publisher.

Co-Founder Of Dark Horse, Randy Stradley, Retires After 35 Years
Randy Stradley, from Dark Horse Comics

Over the next 35 years, Randy Stradley played a key part in shaping Dark Horse's publishing line, editing seminal series including ConcreteBoris the BearThe American, Hard BoiledGive Me Liberty, Dark Horse's own creation GhostSin City, and Dark Horse Presents. He was also central in publishing and promoting licensed comics such as AliensPredatorGodzilla, Mystery Science Theater 3000, and Star Wars.

"After three and a half decades, I believe I've done just about all that I can. It has been a great ride, and I want to think Mike Richardson for the tremendous opportunities he's afforded me. It's with mixed emotions that I step down, but I know that Dark Horse will continue on to new heights, and that the company is in good hands," said Stradley.

As a writer, Randy Stradley also conceived and wrote Aliens Versus Predator which inspired a film franchise, the tales of Lieutenant Janek Sunber from Star Wars: Empire and the trials of Jedi Das Jennir in Star Wars: Dark Times/

"I cannot overstate how integral Randy has been to the development and growth of Dark Horse," said founder and president Mike Richardson. "He was not only a writer, editor, and creator, but also a friend and collaborator for three-and-a-half decades. Together we created something very special that succeeded beyond our wildest dreams.  Sad though his departure may be, I wish him all the best in this new chapter of his life."


About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.