Saturday, 28 May 2011

Judge Dredd Megazine VOL 4.1

In the summer of 2001 it was clear someone in rebellion was pleased with the end of year progs because the judge Dredd megazine after years of printing any old crap from the files or being stuck with reprints of recent mega epics (necropolis) or stuff which while awesome does not deserve to be in a book called JUDGE DREDD MEGAZINE (Preacher) It was clear it was time for a change and thus the Meg undergone its forth such regeneration turning into a mammoth 100 pager.

For your £3:95 you got over 90 pages of comic strip about 50 of which were reprint. Over half of this reprint would come from 2000ads own archives. For this first issue Robusters was dusted off for the first time in years joined by over exposed awesomeness from Dr and Quinch.

The other half at first came from other British books as we say hello to Lazarus Churchyard. I didn’t enjoy it much though it was interesting seeing D’israelis early art which looked nice but nowhere near as good as his current stuff. This British reprint thing took a backseat after Churchyard ended but we’ll come to that in 4.9 as we officially begin the Meg slog.

The remaining 40 pages of strip were all brand new. We got a 15 page Dredd strip featuring the return of the fatties and in particular a training camp for speed eating contests. Lenny Zero returns as he comes face to face with a certain Lawman…who? Well his name is on the front of the magazine.

The final brand new strip was wardog which I believe was supposed to be based on a Rebellion published videogame which never happened as far as I know which is a shame because despite the cornball insane premise it was a neat little strip. What was that cornball premise? Well our hero has a bomb in his head and if he fails to complete a contracted mission before the timer hits zero, he dies. Better than it sounds believe me!

The meg slog will continue in 4.9 the first officially bought by me issue

1245: Illegal alien!

Dan Abnett begins his very long game in this weeks sinister Dexter as Dexter faces off against a crazed alien ambassador who gets high on tomato sauce. This one story sets off a chain of dominoes which still topple to this day. For you see this episode proves the existence of aliens in the hitmens world. This leads into various other stories which leads them into an adventure through space and dimensions. This of course leads us into the ongoing war of the Moses storyline. Which shows up in the prog when Abnett is not busy in America plotting the destinies of Marvels space characters Ohh full circle…

Next prog slog: Another long running story begins as the chief judges man is on the loose.

Friday, 27 May 2011

1244: Dino might!

The nastiest tyrannosaur of Dredds world is back and stalking the deadliest game around. Pissed off creators!

Yes overshadowing the return of Satanus in Satanus unchained was a backstage battle. Each episode of the serial came with an American style tag stating that Satanus was created by Pat Mills and artist Mike McMahon, but that didn't seem to quell Mills' aggravation that the character was used without his permission.

Andy Diggle and Pat Mills failed to find any agreement on the subject, and Mills, who was already unhappy with the current ABC Warriors debacle (see 1240 for vague details or search online), declined to write for the comic again until after Diggle stepped down at the end of the year.

It’s a terrific story and Gordon Rennie got the pure joy of doing an almost affectionate parody of the style of writing done by Mills on the original flesh series.

Next Prog slog: The (very) long game begins in Sin/dex

Saturday, 21 May 2011

1243: Fear the vampire king!

Underworld is a film starring Kate Beckinsale about a war between vampires and werewolves and how the love of one vampire and werewolf screws it all up. A love like blood is the story of a war between vampires and werewolves and how the love of one vampire and one werewolf screws it all up.

Written by the usually fantastically bonkers John smith this is a fairly pedestrian affair without some of his crazier ideas. It is more like one of those one off stories which makes you wonder why they are even here in the first place.

There is some genuinely lovely Fraser Irving art though.

Next slog: Diggle vs. Mills Unchained!

Friday, 13 May 2011

1240: Meks and violence


All aboard the disaster train woo woo!

So Andy Diggle current editor of the prog (and a really good writer on his own) wanted an old school ABC warrior’s storyline and that’s what Pat Mills gave him reluctantly. You see Mills didn’t like writing this story and Diggle hated editing it and Mills hated Diggle editing it and the vicious carousel just goes round and round…but more on that another day…

So ABC warriors return to mars (or the third element as later gns would call it) is a failure but at least it’s a nice looking failure. Even then most of the artists don’t exactly bring their A game to the strip. So by this point in the story Mick McMahon and his odd art style (at this point his art looks like a mesh of that horrible cubism phase and his great old school style) is drawing a confused story involving “Martians” from war of the worlds blowing up shit on mars. Oh and for some reason steel horn is no longer the mess and back in his old body and is dragon to the main villain…

Ugh all aboard the disaster train…

Next Prog slog: Underworld unleashed…wait wha?

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

1236: We all have our Demons...

Mike Carey's short-lived series Carver Hale grabs the cover of this prog. Anyone living under a rock may not know this but Mike Carey is the writer of sandman spin-off Lucifer. The truly astonishingly good Unwritten and one of the major writers in X-men at the moment His turn in 2000ad was short lived due to an exclusive deal he signed with dc to write amongst other things the already mentioned Lucifer.

Our hero of this story is Carver Hale. A criminal who is wiped out by rival crims He is brought back to life and is mixed into some complicated demonic goings on when he discovers those rivals have made deals with demons. He now shares his body with one of these beasties and decides to get revenge on those who killed him.

It is a tragic shame this story was put out to pasture after this one story arc. If there was one single story thrill from this time (and there was a lot) that deserves to be revisited it’s this one. Of course if Carey didn’t take that exclusive we may not have got the unwritten so it is a good sacrifice.

Next slog: ABC WARRIORS oooh boy…

Saturday, 7 May 2011

1230: Feeding time!

In the year of our lord Nineteen twenty six four figures from this period in time face the terror and the ancient other worldly evil of the old ones. Harry Houdini, H.P Lovecraft, Charles Fort and Arthur Conan Doyle are our only hope and one of them will not survive the battle against the evil of the old ones human servants the illuminati. Guess who when you see the cover which heralds this final part.

Necronauts one of my favourite all time 2000ad series so good I have bought every trade version of this story, which has, came out. Gordon Rennies writing is tense and atmospheric and is ably paired with Fraser Irving who is one of the best artists to come out of the Nerve centre in the past eleven years and the perfect artist for an excellent horror tale such as this.

If you have never read this story, track it down. It is worth it!

Next Prog slog: Mike Careys short stint as a droid

Friday, 6 May 2011

1228: The Joy of Dex

Sinister Dexter get a contract to whack (heh) a porn star called buster cherry in their latest two parter called Money Shots. They are trying oh so very hard to ignore all the lesbian antics and porn scenes filmed around them but considering it is an Andy Clark drawn strip (heh) I can understand their pain. So they finally catch up to their man and find out the truth. Buster has been doing these films for so long that he is no longer aroused at all the sight of the Clark drawn females. He hired the gun sharks to attack him hoping to get a thrill and it worked…Too well as what you think happens to Poor Buster happens…

Yeah a very silly story, which exists only for Andy Clark to draw hot women…not that I, am complaining of course.

Oh and World of warcrap returns…

Next Prog Slog: Necronauts for reals nuff said