Almost certainly dropped on his head as a child, here is Orlok with his take on 1878.
This reminded me right off the bat of a horror movie poster.
Though I adore Coleby’s work I don’t really like this for the cover as it seems just an extension of his fine work inside and the colours don’t really do it for me. The composition’s fine though and you can pretty much figure the story out from there.
There is only slight logo obscuring this time so I’ll let that shit off.
Inside, Paedo Tharg is back and gives us the skinny on the Free Comic Book Day edition. This features a truly brilliant Spiderman No More tribute cover by Henry Flint.
Elsewhere, Damage Report features some more gobshitery with Robokeef endorsing UKIP jizzbat Nigel Farage.
The Judges do some damage limitation and Blixen gets his just reward. Still, that’s life in the big Banana City for you. The Section 7 programme is “suspended”.
So, the big revelation was all about covert surveillance with the citizens being fitted out with in house bugs during the post DOC refurbishments. Sneaky.
The info gained will lead to arrest, seizure or in some cases, de facto blackmail. Edgar was doing a similar thing with city officials way back in the Megazine (“Sleaze”).
My biggest issue with Blixen was not that he lays this out in order to further his own reputation but how he does it. For example, exposing those of a criminal bent is fine since the Judges know what they are up to and will doubtless be visiting, as seen by the unfortunate Chucky, arrested as the piece goes live. But exposing those who have committed no crime but morally dubious actions has done more harm than the Judges. Take Wray for example. Her furry activities are now exposed whereas at least with the Judges she theoretically had an option to keep this under wraps if she played ball. He has effectively outed people to the point where they stand to lose everything. But then that is the nature of his show and he’s a scumbag feeding off the corrupt and innocent alike.
The resulting death toll from this expose is a thousand plus at least two Judges, so he has that on his conscience too.
It’s an interesting take that not all of the Judges knew about this programme and though Dredd did, he had reservations about it, citing it as a step too far and a rare mistake from Hershey. I wonder how Beeny will take the news? She’s on the edge as it is.
I’m astonished that Stalker is still handling anything close to PR after her track record. Still, desperate times call for desperate measures, and her “Nothing to hide, nothing to fear” mantra is one echoed by many. The resulting riots seem a little tame in comparison to the height of the Dem marches.
Buell recommends sending a clear message to Blixen and the viewers of his show and I think that was what happened. There’s little doubt that this is a staged robbery gone wrong and the Judges are behind this, especially given the arrest of Zin in Brit Cit.
There was some lovely narration in here too as a heavy hearted Dredd is berated by the Banana City boys.
The art is still aces. Loved the first page with the family on the couch. The mum and daughter are comforting each other with protective contact and while she looks worried, the daughter looks positively terrified. Even the dog looks slightly concerned afraid that images of him licking his balls and humping a teddy bear will come to light.
Also loved Stilgo Filks reading his banned publication on the shitter. I miss doing that, the pages warping with the aromatic onslaught brought on by Mexicali Tacos.
The design of the Anti-Judicial leaflet was also cool as was the sight of closet furry Liotta Wray hanging from the ceiling.
The JSA mouthpiece bears an uncanny resemblance to anti-Independence Scottish Labour stalwart (and Daphne Broon lookalike) Johann Lamont, so MacNeil is having yet more fun here.
Finally, a special mention to the riot happening on multiple levels on page 4 which features both a burning Lawmaster and Manta. Lovely.
The Hurde turn out to be Borg-like and torture the three scavengers, sharing their pain, in a bid to understand them. Caul and Carcer come face to face at last.
I’ve enjoyed the art a bit more in this and though it still seems pedestrian, the posing and framing are getting a little better. The colours, especially on the planet scenes are really well done.
In particular, the torture scenes are some of the most visceral we have seen in the Prog and could be a bit much for those idiots who let their apple cheeked cherubs read it.
Nameless Dude is ripped apart while a flying hurde mirrors his screams with a face of its own. Meanwhile Jess is skinned alive by the Hurde version of Gunther von Hagens, though she still manages to keep some dignity with a modesty restraint covering her peeled mimsy.
That was lucky, eh?
Storywise I feel this taking itself far too seriously and it transpires that Caul’s Hurde ability is the mighty power to morph parts of his anatomy into something from one of the thousand or so creatures in his suit database. I expect to see him as a slug at some point, or maybe a giant rabbit.
It also seems that the death of the woman he loves has been what launched Caul on his killing spree. What is this, an 80’s action movie?
A wider conspiracy is hinted at with Ramona’s people examining the dropped arms and secretions for R&D purposes. She believes that Caul and Carcer can connect psychologically so we’ll see how that theory pans out. As Caul seems to know that Ramona is collecting his discarded arms, I get the feeling that this may be a trap being sprung by Caul, who is leaving these trophies on purpose. Maybe with enough of these he can reactivate them and do some damage from within.
Meanwhile, her people are now working on ways to block the “Black Matter”, which makes them sound like members of UKIP.
At the end of this he wounds (but not kills) Carcer, giving him a message for Ramona.
Slaine and Sinead talk for a bit before she grows a tail. Well, this is Wales after all…
Hmmn. This is going a little bit off the boil for me, but I’m still hanging in there.
Sinead and Slaine discuss some mutual daddy issues and Slaine reveals he would rather go to a party than to Monadh. His age and wisdom have shown him that killing monsters is all well and good except they are replaced by other monsters and the cycle never ends. The fiery youth has given way to the seasoned veteran and he just can’t be arsed.
Sinead’s not happy at this and gives him shit about him not being as good as the great Slaine MacRoth, unaware that he stands before her with his chopper in his hand.
The double page splash here as Slaine finishes off the gloop was gorgeous and this shit will keep me reading no matter what. It’s a joy to look at.
I loved the panel background on pages 4-5 that had no heads on show for the conversations. That immediately draws you to the feet and ankles so you can see something is amiss.
Some truly wonderful expressions here too.
What always happens with Sinister Dexter is that I turn the page after enjoying the preceding stories and inevitably have this reaction…
The sentries get picked off and Atalia suddenly remembers what her father once told her about cunning prey.
Right, this is still good but Rennie is pulling out the tropes as he goes. I’ve seen the child/parent hunt stuff a few times now across different genres and though he does something a little different with it, it is still unoriginal. Even the blooding (albeit into the symbol of the Norts) had a ring of familiarity to it.
I’m also getting a bit tired of all the regimental reminiscences which are being used to pad out this story every instalment.
“Tell me, Kapiten Dickschaft, do you remember, Sgt Bollockov?”
“Of course, I fought alongside him and his twin brother from the 3rd Buggery Battalion at the ninth Battle of Biffin’s Bridge. They were both drained in that engagement I can tell you.”
It’s dull now. Knock it off and tell the fucking story.
That aside, the rest of it is fine. Atalia figures they have been duped, having been foolishly drawn away to examine the bodies of the sentries and as such they have just conducted the worst homeland defence since the Maginot Line. Grigoru has apparently mutated to such a degree that he is now invisible to normal detection making this a harder fight than she thought. Meanwhile there is a nice reference to the GIs as Reesa states she has enough toxins to eradicate a shit ton of them. So, when is this set?
Oh, and if all that fails she will pop the kids so they don’t suffer. How very Shipman of her.
The art is magnificent once again, even if it does show a bruin getting plugged in the eye.
Coleby provided a lovely contrasted between the two Atalias over a twenty year gap.
Not a foot wrong at all.
Dredd was a good old fashioned grim tale where there are no real happy endings.