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2000 A.D. Prog 1962

    Ian Jane

  • 2000 A.D. Prog 1962

    2000 A.D. Prog 1962
    Released by: 2000 A.D./Rebellion
    Released on: December 23rd, 2015.
    Written by: Various
    Illustrated by: Various
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    A new self-contained Judge Dredd story kicks off this latest issue of the UK's greatest science fiction comic, this time featuring a pretty killer painted cover courtesy of Clint Langley.

    Judge Dredd - Street Cred by Michael Carroll and Paul Marshall: In Sector 65 of Mega-City One, a neighborhood known as Hell's Outhouse, a young man named Thelvin storms into Rosanne's Bar and tells everyone inside that he shot Judge Dredd. He then tells them how he watched Dredd chase down a bunch of bad guys in the next sector over and how, when Dredd was distracted, he came up behind him and shot him down. Of course, no one at the bar believes him and Thelvin decides to pull up a stool and drown his sorrows in drink, until someone shows up with video footage proving Thelvin is telling the truth. It's then that a man named Mister Bacon tells him that he'll negotiate with the mob on Thelvin's behalf to see what they can do about collecting the bounty that has long been on the lawman's head. It's going well, until Thevlin admits that he didn't shoot him dead…

    This is a fun single issue story, good humor here. It's quick, not too deep or intense, but it's definitely an entertaining story if a bit of a throwaway. Marhall's art is okay but not as good as the last few artists who have been illustrating the Dredd stories in 2000 A.D. If this isn't a classic story, you'll get a kick out of it regardless.

    Kingdom - Beast Of Eden by Dan Abnett and Richard Elson: In this second chapter, we see the Pack running through the wasteland in their tricked out vehicles, looking for the Outriders but to no avail. They halt the convoy and decide to spread out on foot. They find that Fort Longtime is trashed, there don't appear to be any survivors. They head west to check out a huge mass they see in the distance and they find not a horde but a super swarm - huge, hungry insects, all heading towards The Kingdom. That's not good.

    The story needs more time to really flesh itself out but we'll probably get there, Abnett is a good writer so there's no reason to expect any less. The action is pretty solid here, however, and Richard Elson's artwork is fantastic with loads of detail and some really epic page layouts keeping our eyes happy.

    ABC Warriors - Return To Ro-Busters by Pat Mills and Clint Langley: In this second chapter we learn that Ro-Jaws had to be sacrificed to keep the identity of the War Robot who put an end to war a secret. From there, we learn who Fux News reported on the crash of the Superbowl a good twenty minutes before it actually happened but it doesn't matter, Quartz Construction will rebuild it all - and of course, the Robot Liberation Movement is entirely responsible for all of this. And then we see how Hammerstein, obeying Quartz's orders, tried to toss Ro-Jaws into the generator…

    Definitely the coolest story in the issue, this is top notch stuff. Mills' story has a nice satiric mean streak to it, making some well-aimed and properly deserved not so subtle digs at corporate control and right wing media outlets while still telling an engrossing story with some classic characters. Langley's art is awesome, every panel full of detail. The last few pages are intense and the layouts here are weird but at the same time they really draw you into things.

    The Order - In The Court Of The Wyrmqueen by Kek-W and John Burns: In the London of 1580, a drunken Starkey threatens to cut Calhoun, but Calhoun doesn't seem to worried. Intuitor Brown shows up and puts a stop to it before it can become much of anything and he calls Calhoun off to a separate cell to talk and to show him the horrors that are taking place next door, horrors he needs to clean up with his scrub brush while the masked men who defiled the corpse run off to review their efforts. And then Calhoun is attacked by the Brainwyrms… and he makes his escape accordingly.

    This is a messed up, and pretty gory installment but it's got an interesting twist or two to it that makes it a pretty surprising read. This is an interesting period set mix of horror and sci-fi, really nicely illustrated by John Burns whose art style is entirely appropriate for the setting and the action that takes place within it.

    Strontium Dog - Repo Men by John Wagner and Carlos Esquerra: Johnny Alpha is drinking at the pub when he's accosted by some strange men who hand him a letter. Phineas wants him to help the two men that brought him the letter, Pikey and Bovus Stix, find jobs. Johnny talks it over with his mutant cohorts and, once they realize they can use the Stix's as fodder if it comes to that, they agree to take them on, but on a probationary level. Johnny fills them in on the job, how they have to get The Rock for the Belerians and evict Castor Limax. To do this, they'll need help from the Galanthans… now they just need to figure out how to get them to play ball.

    It's always a kick to see these characters back in action as Wagner's writing mixes up humor and, in this issue, the potential for action. The heist is still in the planning stages but this installment sets the odds against Alpha and his band of merry mutants so you know that it's all going to hit the fan at some point. Anyone familiar with 2000 A.D. knows that Carlos Esquerra is the right guy to draw a story like this and he does it well, giving the characters that weird look that makes his art so interesting but getting hyper detailed on some of the backgrounds and on some of the space craft seen in this issue.

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