2000 AD Prog Slog

Monday, March 10, 2008

Prog 429

Every now and then there is a Strontium Dog story that gets my ire up and has be shouting at the page, "Get him, Johnny! Shoot his legs off!" Slavers of Drule, currently running, is one of them. In it, a reservation of nice, honest, hard working folk on Smiley's World are attacked, abducted and sold into slavery elsewhere in the galaxy. The police don't hold much hope of locating any of the victims so decide not to bother looking but Johnny Alpha with his norm partner Wulf, moved by the plight of one family in particular, is tracking them down for free. I can't wait until they successfully make all guilty parties involved in the chain pay. "Hit him, Wulf! Hit him with your hammer until he is as dead as der cucumber!"

The bad guy in the current Judge Dredd story, The Midnight Surfer, is Judge Dredd. All Marlon Shakespeare AKA Chopper AKA The Midnight Surfer wants to do is take part in Supersurf 7. Unfortunately, Supersurf 7 is illegal in Mega City One and the Judges are determined to ensure that it doesn't take place. If this means shooting foreigners off of their skyboards then so be it. In Dredd's defence, Supersurf 7 has caused disruption in Mega City One resulting in property damage and death but, on the other hand, the morale that Chopper's win has had locally is immense.

I remember Song of the Surfer being a surprise at the time. Not just because Dredd is portrayed most overtly so far as the villain but also because his appearances are kept to a minimum. Cam Kennedy's Dredd art is, once again, brilliant to look at and Wagner and Grant's script is, once again, beautifully paced. It's a wonderful example of script and art working in unison and exceeding the sum of its parts.

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  • Quick correction for you. The Midnight Surfer is my favourite Dredd story ever. Song of the Surfer was a pile of dreadful nonsense that should never have happened (partly because Chopper should've been dead.) Kennedy's never been better than here and the story highlights everything that makes Dredd such a quality strip.

    By Blogger Peter, at 10:45 pm  

  • He is dead, that guy who turned up later on is an impostor.

    By Blogger garageman, at 12:27 am  

  • That's right! He died and came back to life again... or something. Midnight Surfer is a beauty.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 6:02 pm  

  • Like Peter, Midnight Surfer is one of my favourite strips. I think you summarised very well, Paul, the reasons why I like it so much - finally, a story explicitly outlining Dredd as the bad guy. Though, to be fair, he's pretty cool to Chopper right at the very end of the strip.

    By Blogger dmstarz, at 4:47 pm  

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