This is my first review in a while for the prog. Not because I’ve not been enjoying the previous week’s instalment, nay, far from it. Rather it was more to do with the fact I’ve had tonnes of reading material to get through, literally, I kid you not! But one thing I can say about this prog is that it was an enjoyable read. It’s the closing chapter so to speak as all of the current runs end here with new ones starting in the next prog.
First things first, the cover; another variant cover of Slaine (I picked up cover 2 of 2). I’m not too fond of Clint Langley’s photoshopped artwork, and there was nothing that special about this cover for me. Just an angry shot of Slaine with his large axe, and a full moon in the background. Langley is no doubt a talented art droid, but I prefer his more orthodox art style to this.
As for the strips themselves, Judge Dredd: Bender ends this issue. I have been enjoying Wagner’s story far the past few weeks, but I haven’t been overly bowled over by it. In fact I enjoyed his previous story, ‘Wastelands’ more to be honest. I feel this story is a pre-cursor for another story to come, my gut says ‘Judge Death’ but we’ll just have to wait and see! Ben Willsher’s artwork has been okay, I’m not a big fan but there were still some great moments. You cannot deny the visceral quality he brings to a story, and his eye for detail and the way he sets up the panels is great. But having said that I did get confused toward the end, especially as to who was shooting who, and before I knew it one of the main characters had taken a lethal hit. Was it intentional? I still cannot say. It was quite a frustrating end to a story which started off great.
Age of the Wolf III also came to its conclusion. I didn’t really take to this strip when it started, but gradually it did pull me in and I started to genuinely enjoy it. It did feel a little rushed though, as did The Ten-Seconder’s which followed. But how good was it to see Edmund Bagwell back on art duties again after that small respite? The opening page was fucking marvellous (I apologise for the language but I need a strong word to emphasise my point and feeling!) That alien’s spit transmorphing into earth panel by panel was really great. The blue-skinned alien ‘savages’ looked an awful lot like the Na’vi, but who cares. I wish Tharg would make Edmund Bagwell a permanent fixture in the prog – I could never tire of his art!
Last but not least, Slaine. The book of Scars finally ends, and I must say other than one or two episodes (such as McMahon and Langley’s black and white input) It wasn’t that memorable. As someone new to Slaine (but a fan of Conan) it failed to make an impression on me. Will it put me off from reading the Slaine books? No. In fact I might order a few tpb’s soon. But I hope I don’t get to see Langley’s photoshopped work in any of the trades I buy.
All in all, it was a good prog, not great. Highlight for me would have to be Ten-Seconders, it’s been nothing short of brilliant and I’ll miss it. Looking forward to the next prog (which I’ll pick up today along with the much anticipated Meg!), and especially the return of Brass Sun.