Cover by Mark Harrison: Not my cup of Tetley’s unfortunately. It looks a little muddied and I’m not too keen on Alpha’s look. Also the way he’s holding his gun looks odd. However, the four figures below Alpha are nicely rendered, very Boo Cook-esque and nice use of white space. It reminded me of James Harren’s cover in Prog 1819.
Judge Dredd:Titan (Part Six)
Another interesting episode this, however, just a few quibbles. For instance, that injury to Gerhart: it’s difficult to understand how he’s still able to converse with Austin with half the side of his face missing! I understand he’s had work done on him after taking a missile hit in Prog 1836, but he must have some steely grit to be still standing and attempting the rescue of Dredd. Some other interesting developments too with Aimee Nixon demanding independence of Titan from MC1, and Sinfield trying to play the good guy. And we haven’t even started on Dredd, who is in pretty bad shape. These injuries sustained here and over the years are bound to take their toll on him (as we saw in Rob William’s terrific story in the Meg The Man Comes Round, which delves upon this issue). Will Chief Judge Hershey blow up the prison colony with Dredd still inside?
The artwork from Henry Flint is again outstanding. I especially loved the colour schemes on his flashback scenes, it was very evocative of Carlos Ezquerra’s style. Rob Williams’ script is also engaging, and I’m having a lot of fun with it. Very looking forward to seeing how this storyline developes next Prog.
Ulysses Sweet – Maniac for Hire: Centred (Part Seven)
I’ve been enjoying Ulysses’ deranged escapades from the opening episodes but in recent weeks I felt the story did lapse. However, we’re back on form here in what is a hilarious episode, the key point being the homage to Rupert Bear! Guy Adams’ script, both in poetry and prose was really funny. Of course it’s all in Ulysses’ head as he’s still zoned out while dribbling from his mouth and holding a rabbit like posture, and at the same time the Amethyst Cluster comes under attack from Space Pirates. Paul Marshall’s artwork especially the mentioned homage pages, are a real treat. I also love the page wherein we see Ulysses trying to break out of the confines of the boxed panels! He’s much too dangerous for even Tharg’s Mighty Organ!
Grey Area: All God’s Children (Part Two)
The Rookuk (an alien warrior race) are mighty peeved after the good samaritan Anders mentions ‘god’ while trying to help them. Seems like the Rookuk are not too keen on god and Anders finds his throat the brunt of their leader’s anger. The ETC try to resolve the standoff via diplomatic means instead of violence. While I am enjoying this new series, this particular story was a little poor. The dialogue seems too generic, and I’m sure someone of Dan Abnett’s stature can do far more better. Even the Rookuk’s native language seems poor – Klingon it sure ain’t. Patrick Goddard’s artwork however, remains the highlight.
Future Shocks: Family Business This was a nice little Future Shock from new writer Gary Simpson, accompanied by lovely black and white art from Eoin Coveney (also new to the Prog). The story concerns time travel and our protagonist encounters himself on several visits. Suffice to say the twist at the end was an interesting one and brought a smile to my face. I hope to see more from both these new droids in the future.
Strontium Dog: Dogs of War (Part Seven)
This was a terrific episode! We catch up with the battle of Ongar as Johnny Alpha and his Strontium Dog agents/fellow muties close in on Dad Nabbett, leader of the Norm Brotherhood. The Muties show no mercy to the Norms, and the action is unrelenting. Carlos Ezqurra’s art is superb particulary on page four: nobody does a more better scene of carnage and mayhem quite like him. Wagner’s script is also engaging, showing Aplha as a leader who who will stop at nothing to uphold the rights of his fellow mutants. But of course there’s a nagging doubt regarding some of his actions.
Overall, a strong Prog this week and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Next week: we come to the penultimate episode of Judge Dredd: Titan. We also see the return of ABC Warriors, both of which I’m looking forward to with great fervour.