Two former Sex Pistols — guitarist Steve Jones and drummer Paul Cook — are suing John “Johnny Rotten” Lydon for blocking the licensing of the group’s music for Danny Boyle’s Sex Pistols miniseries.

Pistol is a six-episode limited series that’s been adapted from Jones’ 2017 memoir Lonely Boy: Tales From a Sex Pistol. It’s been causing tension among the onetime bandmates ever since it was announced, and while legal action isn’t a surprise, the direction of it is. In April, it was Lydon who threatened to sue, calling the decision not to hire him as a consultant “disrespectful.” His attempts to curmudgeon his way into a check didn’t work, and he’s now trying to grind the production to a halt by refusing to grant permission for the group’s songs.

As The Associated Press reports, Jones and Cook are relying on a 1998 accord in which the Pistols agreed that future decisions would be made on a “majority rules basis.” Their lawyer claims that bassist Glen Matlock and the estate of his replacement, Sid Vicious, all support licensing the music. He also referred to a “brittle and fractious” relationship between Lydon and, well, everybody.


For his part, Lydon insists that licensing music can’t be done without his consent. His lawyer also complained that Jones’ memoir paints him “in a hostile and unflattering light,” going so far as to describe him as “the annoying little brat with the great bone structure who’s always asking for more.”

Lydon remains a colorful character. Last year he said he’d been suffering from fleas, telling the world “there’s a fucking bite on my willy.” Perhaps unsurprisingly, he recently came out as a Trump supporter.

As of now Pistol is expected to air sometime next year on FX.