Review: 2000ad Prog 1879

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Phil Winslade's stunning cover

Cover – stunning work from Phil Winslade! I remember seeing a preview of the cover and thinking to myself that the colour composition wasn’t too thrilling, but upon purchasing my copy and seeing it up close, I can’t help but disagree with my initial thoughts; I think it’s a marvellous piece of work! I love the look of Dredd with his customary grimace and the lighting is perfect. The background is really eye catching giving it a fast paced neon light feel, the painted look adds to the dynamism of the piece. I certainly love it, and even though Dredd’s lawgiver is obscuring the logo, at least the main title is visible.

Judge Dredd: Shooters Night (Part 1): John Wagner is back again with another new story. This time a young shooter goes on a killing spree (no doubt echoing the recent events in America). But for Dredd, there’s something which just doesn’t seem right to him. Is it a case of a disillusioned young man taking out his frustrations by going on a murder spree, or is there more to it?

Well I certainly enjoyed this terrific opener, and a large part of it is due to John McCrea’s excellent artwork. I love his detail and linework, and the look of Old Stoney Face himself. Chris Blythe’s colours complement the artwork perfectly and no where is this demonstrated better than on page 5, the top panel is absolutely superb: snow falling at night, with Dredd looking on as the parents of the deceased seek solace with one another. And the last panel is also a standout, with Dredd’s upper frame seperating two panels. He’s very thorough man our Joe, and it’s demonstrated beautifully here.

Outlier (Part 6): I’m really losing interest in this strip. I’ll be glad to see the back of it when it finishes. None of the characters are appealing to me not even the Hurde-Human hybrid or Private Investigator Carcer. For a moment there was a feeling that both characters might be one and the same, but that was disproved as fanciful thinking a couple of episodes back.

Slaine: A Simple Killing (Part 6): I feel I may have been a bit too harsh on my assessment of Simon Davies’ art in my last review, because those slash pages are really quite something, not to mention the look of those creepy mermaids;  they’re certainly not your typical mermaids. I love it when creators give you an interpretation of something well known – differently. Guillermo Del Toro did it Pan’s Labyrinth, his fairies were definitely not Tinkerbell, they looked more grounded , as were the Vampire’s in 30 Days of Night. There was nothing romantic about them;  forget the Crucifix and garlic, these were viscious predators of the night, with their unnatural looks and unquenchable thirst for blood . And Davies’ mermaids are just as scary looking here. If Mermaid’s existed, I know which version I would find more fascinating.

One thing I’ve noticed with Pat Mills’ work in the prog the last couple of years, is that I don’t immediately take to it, it takes me a few episodes and then I get reeled in by his storytelling. By the end, enjoying his work as was the case for Savage (Rise like Lions) and ABC Warriors (Return to Earth). And the same is being proved with this very strip. Great stuff.

Sinister Dexter: Gun Shy (Part 6): Well we finally come to the end of this run of Sin Dex and I’m a little relieved to be honest. There were moments when it was kinda fun, epecially the excellent opening episode, but there were too many instances where I felt I had seen this before. I really enjoyed Smudge’s b&w artwork though, but  I wish Dan Abnett would stop twatting about with Sin Dex and start writing some stuff of real interest. How about some more……Kingdom! It’s been a while since we last saw Gary the Oldman and his post apocalyptic exploits in the Prog, and I would love to see him back again.

Jaegir: Strigoi (Part 6): Thank f*** this is over…eh, hold your horses! Back in June? Oh balls 😥

On the whole it’s been quite a poor prog, with Judge Dredd and Slaine being the exception. I’m really looking forward to the start of Indigo Prime next prog as I’ve heard some good word about it. I mean, It can’t get any worse can it?

Note: A big thanks to Richard over at ECBT2000AD for posting my review which can be viewed here.

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