COMIC REVIEW: 2000AD PROG#1900 / AUTHOR : JOHN WAGNER, IAN EDGINTON, DAN ABNETT / ARTIST: IS CARLOS EZQUERRA, D’ISRAELI RICHARD ELSON/ PUBLISHER: REBELLION /EDITOR: THARG THE MIGHTY ONE / RELEASE DATE: SEPTEMBER 24TH
Like many publications of quality, 2000AD has been around since 1977. Given that it’s a serialised anthology comic, you would be forgiven for assuming that this would make the comic impenetrable; after all with roughly 37 years worth of world-building it stands to reason that it’s going to be a bit involved.
Of course, 2000AD wouldn’t have lasted this long if that was truly the case. This is due to frequent issues that function as ‘stepping on’ points, and issue 1900 is a very fine example of this. It contains only three stories, but they’re all very good introductions to the Galaxy’s greatest comic.
Judge Dredd: Block Judge is a fine example of why Dredd has lasted so long. Not only is Carlos Ezquerra’s art on top form, but also John Wagner is back in the driving seat as scriptwriter. The set-up for this one is simple; the previous resident peacekeeper from a one of Mega City One’s habitation blocks has died, and Judge Dredd and a small team move in to settle in the replacement. The first part of this story swiftly introduces the main characters, and Dredd’s trademark gruffness helps set the scene. The block is going to ruin and it will require blood, action and police work to set it right again. A promising start to a story that is just similar enough to the recent movie to draw new readers in.
Next up is Stickleback : The Thru’Penny Opera. Ian Edginton and D’Israeli have always been a dream team when it comes to creepy and atmospheric stories and this latest instalment of Stickleback is certainly those, given that it begins with a most unconventional burial. The black and white art style suits the story perfectly and is nicely retro.
The last strip is Kingdom: Aux Drift, which follows the continuing adventures of genetically engineered dog soldier Gene The Hackman. Those familiar with Kingdom will be delighted with the new direction the story has gone in, and those who have used issue 1900 to get acquainted with this marvellous post-apocalyptic sci-fi action epic will find themselves fully briefed on the basics by the end of the this issue.
The prog also includes a short history of 2000AD itself, which does the job reasonably well. 1900 is a landmark issue, and we’re looking forward to the next big milestone in the comic book’s history, that all-important issue 2000.