2000 AD Prog Slog

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Prog 181

Alan Grant's first continuous Strontium Dog story as main script robot, Death's Head, concludes here. Johnny Alpha, Wulf Sternhammer and The Gronk hunt down one mean hombre, Willy Blanko, who already it's been established has donated his own arms to a gunslinger so that he could become the planet's fastest draw. A very generous gesture you might think except they were booby trapped to blow up when in close proximity of Alpha.

Wulf isn't sparing us the use of the word "cucumber" anymore. "Hello, ol' cucumber." "You've been cucumered." "Cucumba, cucumber, cucumber." I'm loving it. I'm really looking forward to seeing him stuffing a sock into a bounty's mouth to keep him quiet, which I remember happening first time around but am yet to encounter during The Slog.

It's noticeable that Grant's writing style has similarities to the strips co-creator, John Wagner, which probably explains why they later go onto work together so often. It's concise and pacey with a sense of the absurd. It does lack the same foreboding atmosphere of the earlier stories but, instead, there are freaky mutants and odd aliens in abundance. Helping to make the script read light and airy is Carlos Ezquerra's art. Since he last drew Strontium Dog we've seen his style grow less murky and more spacious in other strips. For me, Grant is the definitive Strontium Dog script robot, which is really saying something, I think, when you consider that the previous writer was John Wagner.

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  • "Put der sock in it"

    I remember who the bounty in question is/was. I won't spoil it for you, but let's just say he deserves it.

    By Blogger Stavros, at 3:08 pm  

  • Stavros, I enjoyed Wulf doing that so much that my memory has tricked me into thinking it's something he did all the time.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 7:29 pm  

  • The Wagner/Grant thing - the Bish's "Thrill-Power Overload" articles in the Megazine revealed that they wrote everything together, whether under Grant's name, one of Wagner's pseudonyms, or the occasional "Grant/Grover" to balance the books. The guy that typed it up got the cheque. So "Death's Head" is probably a Wagner/Grant script, which explains the similarity of style.

    By Blogger paddybrown, at 8:53 pm  

  • Paddy, thanks for that. I wrote more about that partnership in today's entry.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 3:38 pm  

  • I wasn't aware, as Paddybrown states, that Wagner and Grant were doing the opposite of Lennon and McCartney, by writing everything together and signing it independently. The best SD story, and I know that's a controversial stand to take, is obviously 'The Killing' - which is credited to Grant alone. I shall now go ahead and assume they both wrote it...

    By Blogger Matt D, at 4:00 pm  

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