With Milligan distracted Stateside, it took a while to get the gang back together for the 3rd series of Bad Company. What we got wasn’t quite what was expected and a further shift from the common or garden war story.
Ararat had done an Alderaan, Bad Company had been destroyed, Kano was missing in action. It seemed that was the end for our bunch of psychologically unhinged combatants. But they reckoned without editorial’s desire to satisfy a hungry readership………..
Word on the new latest Sci Fi special was that it was mainly reprint. That’s not a million miles from the truth, but there are also some shiny new gems in amongst the family jewels. WARNING : spoilers
2000AD Sci Fi Special 2020
“Twenty Years In The Rebellion”
Review By Luke Williams
It is hard to believe that it has been 20 years since Rebellion took over “stewardship” of the Galaxy’s Greatest and the Meg’. Love them or loathe them, it’s a pretty safe bet that if it wasn’t for them, we would be talking about 2000AD and it’s sister mag’ in the past tense. To celebrate, Tharg has drawn together a package that celebrates the china anniversary of marriage of Rebellion and the Prog’.
Behind an imposing Jock & Chris Blythe Dredd cover is a mix of reprints of some of the best one offs from the Rebellion era, new strips featuring characters from both eras and editorial features.
From the archives we get Al Ewing’s “Terror Tale” debut drawn by Dom Reardon, Dan Abnett, Andy Clarke and Chris Blythe’s sharp and playful “Sinister Dexter : Bullet Time” and a perfectly paced and heart rending episode from the final lap of “Nikolai Dante” by Robbie Morrison, Simon Fraser and Gary Caldwell.
Dredd universe representation comes from a reprint of the “Judge Fear” episode of the disturbing “Dreams of Deadworld” by Kek W and Dave Kendall and a masterful Wagner and Ezquerra Dredd, as Joe hands over the keys to his Rowdy Yates gaff to his clone, Rico.
Shiny new contributions come from Al Ewing back on Dredd after far too long. Joe pulls immigration duty and interviews a very familiar genteel walking corpse, with art by new great Jake Lynch and colours by Jim Boswell.
Dan Abnett and Richard Elson’s “Kingdom” comes out of retirement and guest stars the only ursus maritimus on the CIA death list.
John Reppion and Clint Langley goes all 90s style as they transfer “Storm Warning” from the Meg’ with a gate crashing (not to mention slightly incongruous) “Blackhawk”.
Finally, Ian Edgington and Steve Yeowell serve up “Red Seas” vs “Ant Wars”, the mash up literally no one asked for, but that’s fun all the same.
The customary (and cost reducing) text features and pin ups round the package off. Eveyrone loves a list and Karl Stock provides his best 20 strips from the last 20 years, provoking debate and fanboy hate on the socials and the forum. Rebellion supremo Jason Kinglsey is interviewed and so new they are still under warranty (yes, okay they have been around a few years now) art droids Dan “why isn’t he in the prog more often” Cornwell and Stewart Kenneth Moore providing a Dredd pin up and multi character DPS respectively, John Charles efficaiously colouring Cornwell’s work.
It is mainly reprint, but it’s brilliant reprint and the new material is worth admission. A little eye watering at £7.99 for those of us who still baulk at paying over £4 for a comic, but it’s an impressive package (fnar).
Another repackaging of old strips? Yes, but this is a bit special. This is pre 2000AD “Strontium Dog” in a tasty hardcover, with the original colour spreads. Luke has all these in his “Starlords”, but he bought it anyway….