Orlok has been away in Rarotonga, so here’s a quick run through of some Progs he missed while he was away drinking, snorkeling and catching crabs. First up, 2006…
This was a nice enough image with Judge Sam grabbing another man’s helmet but it won’t be in the running for cover of the year, sadly. There is a Burdis maddening greater than 7 links on that chain and in the Flint-rage stakes there is some slight logo coverage.
I’m not sure the blue trademark works either.
Inside Yewtree Tharg gives a fitting tribute to Steve Dillon which in retrospect might have been better with an actual picture of the man, though.
Hmmm, yes well, this wraps up with a teaser of more to follow which I like and yet don’t like considering the content. To be honest, I’m getting bored with all of the conspiracy bunkum now be it biscuit obsessed loons in the walls, secret cities on the moon constructed using a budget skimmed from hitherto unknown “titty tax”, a super-secret Justice Dept branch hanging out for 30+ years for the big one that never comes or invisible Judges stalking our heroes like a 50s B-movie.
It’s a bit like when they announce a summer blockbuster disaster movie and suddenly there are three others with the same plot in the pipeline. Tone it down, eh?
We are also left with the possibility that Smiley (was that him walking through the walls?) is now the villain of the piece. If it means him getting shot by Judge Inception that has been hiding inside the walls of his office inside the walls, then I am all for it.
“He knows we’re onto him” exclaims Captain Obvious at the end of this story. Yes, I guess those headless corpses lying on the ped are a bit of a clue.
Sam is an interesting character in that he is being tormented by bad dreams and he is by far the best thing about this as he methodically works out what is happening and baits the trap for Dredd and co to close it tight. That was also a nice scene with the HR Judge who just doesn’t want Dredd on his ass at the end of the day and swings Sam’s secondment to architecture as part of the plan to flush out the wall dwellers.
There were a few missteps here, sadly. Why do the invisible Judges go for the close up kill? A shot to the face from thirty metres will do the trick and still look as much like foul play as a sword to the throat (unless they plan to say this was a shaving accident that eventually caught up with him). And why is it always fucking ninja swords in these circumstances? Does nobody use an axe these days?
When it is revealed that the method being employed is stealth tech augmented by Enceladus energy, Sam rigs some fancy spex to figure out how to detect them (clearly his training is in architecture and optics) and yet when these are knocked off his face he can still apparently see he assassins. Er, how?
A panel or two later, Dredd and the gang show up and the Invisible Judge tells him (Dredd) that he is not willing to make the necessary sacrifices. Right, is this the same Dredd who willingly nuked half a billion people to save his city, had his face burned off in Necropolis and yet still came back and put his boots on the ground to save the day and ran into a blazing inferno to find a cure to the Chaos Bug? Have you been living in the walls for the last 30 years, pal? Oh, you have- sorry.
I liked the perps self-destructing but won’t that leave residuals with DNA or enough organic matter to have a Psi Judge read the stiffs a la Jean Paul Blatty’s victims (see The Graveyard Shift).
The art is lovely with some great panel work and truly expressive layouts for the intrigue and isolation. I also like how Frank has just one eye covered.
I’m perplexed by the timing of this. It was seven days to the big smash and now it is just hours so it seems we have lost some valuable time along the way that has never been adequately explained. Maybe they have all been watching Netflix or something.
The biggest worry for me is that the lizards in this story and are more interesting and rounded than the humans and so we are probably getting into David Icke territory. The expanded dino fight was the best thing in it since it looked very pretty and who cannot get behind Gorehead blinking out of time and then zapping back in for the coup de grace?
In the present Cret there is an end of the world party where Claw is fucking around with Pastor Sunday and Reagan is outed as gay.
This is a fucking outrage.
No, not the gay thing as that is old news (though isn’t it about time we had our first gay white dinosaur handler in the Prog?) but the fact that Claw has sworn almighty vengeance on Sunday and even though they are apparently all about to die and he hasn’t slotted him. It’s almost as if he has seen the script for next week’s instalment and knows they survive.
The art is lovely with a great last panel hampered only by the fact that once again it seems static with no sense of movement. That said, the image doesn’t get much more apocalyptic looking that that without featuring Trump’s tiny digits over the launch codes.
With 50% of the Norts killed in the drop and the rest being picked off we’re on for a four way fight between the General, the Mercs, Rogue and Atalia.
Rennie is moving all of the pieces to their positions before the final act but unless there is a massive revelation this is going to be a huge waste of time. Entertaining though it is as a dumb action story I don’t hold out any hope of it adding value. The future prospects seem to be as follows; the General is a cunt and will escape, Rogue will survive, the Merc will die and Atalia will come out of this with a mark against her one way or another. I don’t think this will be physical either since it seems to be a different engagement.
I don’t think Rennie is suited to anything involving military parlance written into the story. The concept of radio silence is generally only employed to hide one’s position from someone who may be listening out for chatter. Though the Norts laudably die without a sound this can be remarked upon but with different terminology, because that element of radio silence (in the military sense) is lost as soon as Atalia blabs her position to her CO. Still she doesn’t seem that bright as she has the wrong spelling of her name on her suit.
Once again the art is detailed and explodes with some lovely colour work, though there are a few outright jarring bits. Unlike Savage the art doesn’t quite suit Rogue Trooper’s world which I have always imagined to be dirty and devastated. PJ just doesn’t have the umph to pull off the future tech, either and some of the sizes seem off or else that is a very small Rogue attacking a normal sized holocaust suit on page 4. It was also off putting to see the (cool) triptych on page 5 where Rogue is apparently hunched over and gurning like he is squeezing out his own Venus Browngenes.
I’m not sure but I think PJ is taking the piss out if the 80s Image comics trope of the ridiculously armed bounty hunter/warrior. If so, it’s pretty funny.
Mills seems to be teasing us that Savage may indeed have gone off the deep end. With no war to fight he has gone to Germany to kick off and kill, kill and kill again.
Mills may also be pushing us closer to the same deep end thanks to the music lyrics permeating the story. Hell, even the support characters are commenting on them now. Are we going to be degenerating in a musical next issue? Actually, that would be a fucking awesome way to wrap this up with singing robots, German rhyme and Savage using his shooter like a fancy cane.
Nika is still clearly upset at the Yegor thing and this is mentioned just to drive that home again for what I imagine will be a team up next week.
Savage returns home from his latest kill and finds Yegor waiting for him because like Nika he noticed his lack of fear when interviewed. Bill plays the insanity card and says it because of the Stare, which momentarily causes Yegor to drop his guard. This is all the time Lightning Hands Savage needs to reach across to the bar, pick up a shotgun that is facing the other way, cock it, level it and pull the trigger. There is no way Yegor could have squeezed his own trigger in that time. No way at all.
Before being finished off with a butcher’s hook and pinned to the wall (yes really) the sex pest dies giving Savage a side quest in the form of Beelitz Sanitorium.
Our hero is then confronted by Nika who has found shotgun residue on the glass and finally tacked down her man.
I see three options:
1. She shoots him in the face.
2. They have dirty scat sex on top of the bar.
3. They join forces albeit temporarily.
Who’s for three? Anyone? Anyone?
The art is fabulous and suits this perfectly. Nuff said, really.
The art has a nice graphic of the title on worktop and above all else it is certainly colourful and unique.
The story is just meh, sadly. After some dead ends with the Gene hunt, our heroine blackmails some so called pals into helping as they have been selfish pricks until now. After finding Gene she is cold cocked by second painted face woman who turns out to be the real Libra. Cue the old “I’m Libra”/ “No. I’m Libra” trope.
To be honest, I couldn’t be more bored by this if you stuck Thomas Hardy’s name on it. If I wasn’t borderline OCD with my reading of the Prog then this would get skipped.
Does it belong in 2000AD- yes.
Did the Space Girls also belong in 2000AD- yes.
Does that make either of them automatically likeable? Fuck no.
Do I like asking questions and then answering them myself? Yes. Look, I have issues, alright.
Savage is dumb fun now so it wins out by the thinnest of margins.