2000 AD Prog Slog

Monday, September 22, 2008

Prog 640

In Johnny Alpha’s last big adventure until his return in the year 2000, The Final Solution, the New Church, or whatever they are called, march the country’s mutant population through a portal in Stonehenge to a brave new but hostile world. It’s taken Alpha along with Middenface McNulty and Milton Keynes resident, Feral, nineteen weeks to travel here, uncover the plot and learn that Sagan is his half brother. It’s like a particularly memorable episode of The Jeremy Kyle Show. In part twenty, I expect to see Alpha’s request for a DNA test refused because violence is a big part of their relationship.

For a story that is supposed to be as significant as this one, I feel that The Final Solution isn’t working as well as previous Strontium Dog epics have. Part of the problem is that the story is lurching forward in fits thanks to its flow being interrupted by relatively long breaks. Another might be that I know what the final outcome of this tale will be and I find myself feeling frustrated by how long it’s taking to get there.

I’m genuinely disappointed to say that Simon Harrison’s art continues to be a problem for me. I still can’t tell characters apart and the visual flow feels inconsistent. However, his work does exude an exuberance which has me willing for him to succeed and I do really like the cover he has painted for this prog. Ultimately though, my old school loyalty to long time Strontium Dog art robot Carlos Ezquerra has me longing for his return to the character, especially now that he’s back drawing for 2000 AD after his time at Crisis.

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  • I remember being very happy when Colin MacNeil took over.

    By Blogger Mark, at 7:52 pm  

  • Hello, Paul. Just wanted to let you know that I'm a recent reader to your blog and have started making comments on your earlier posts. I may catch up with your recent stuff eventually!

    By Blogger dmstarz, at 1:10 pm  

  • Yup, Colin MacNeil was a welcome arrival on Strontium Dog...

    You'll just have to bite down hard on something and get through these difficult few weeks.

    There's definitely some stuff around the corner that made me very glad I didn't stop getting the comic at this point. "Dead Man" is after all, only ten short progs away!

    By Blogger Kevin Levell, at 2:21 pm  

  • Mark, I remember that feeling too. I'm trying not to cheat by looking ahead.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 6:05 pm  

  • Cheers, dmstarz. I'll look through for them hopefully soon.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 6:05 pm  

  • You're right, Kevin, but as my post today illustrates, these are difficult times.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 6:07 pm  

  • Simon Harrison undoubtedly had talent, I liked Revere a lot (and still did when I read the reprint in 2000ad Extreme), even though its John-Smith-on-extra-strong-mind-bending drugs-stuff.

    Your analysis is spot on though. Its hard to tell who's who and what the hell is going on half the time.

    Added to that is something which I found since reading the post wagner/grant split. Since they split wagners quantity is low but he keeps up the same high standards as ever on dredd.

    Grant however seems to be piling out the work but the quality is markedly inferior to wagner/grant stuff. Dredd is out of character in half his stories and the anderson strip varies all over the place in tone.

    By Blogger Derek, at 7:42 pm  

  • You might be right regarding Grant, Derek. I'll see how The Slog progresses before commiting to anything...

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 5:57 pm  

  • I actually just finished the Harrison episodes of this story (23 of them, I think) in the "Final Solution" collected edition last night, and I hope I never have to look at them again. My eyes are still hurting.

    (If this appears a million times, I think the "word verification" feature is garbled.)

    By Blogger Grant, the Hipster Dad, at 8:26 pm  

  • Hope your eyes are feeling better, Grant.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 6:24 pm  

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