2000 AD Prog Slog

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Sci-Fi Special 1989

Once again, the sci-fi special has a female bias, only this time not a single male lead appears, not even Judge Dredd. In his place is Judge Corey who previously has only appeared as a support character in an Anderson PSI Division story. In Leviathan’s Farewell, the empathic judge is so distraught after encountering a dieing whale at sea that she shoots herself. Very moving but what I want to know is how the whale was alive in the polluted Black Atlantic in the first place.

Elsewhere, Tyranny Rex returns in a more accessible-than-Soft-Bodies and touching short excellently drawn by Dougie Braithwaite. The cover of the special goes someway to explaining my confusion over the colour of Tyranny’s skin in previous entries as she is painted green. Before, she’s been coloured as white skinned on covers.

I am unclear over who it that staffs Tharg’s editorial team. In a recent Future Shock, it seemed to be established that creators and editorial are now human beings. However, in a feature published here called “the Droids”, we are introduced to the current team of robots that work behind the scenes. Nick Abadzis provides a serious of lively illustrations for the piece but I remain baffled just the same.

I am fascinated to know why it is that 2000 AD seems to be sticking with strips like Judge Corey, Tyranny Rex, Moon Runners and Zippy Couriers. Is it because, as I’ve theorised before, that Tharg is trying to increase readership by appealing to women? In an intellectual way, it makes sense I suppose; if all the boys in the country are reading your comic then you can double the readership by getting all the girls to read it too. However, surely it doesn’t work that way. Even if the comic’s appeal to women has improved (which I suspect isn't the case given the image of male being pandered to by attractive women that covers the comic) then it must be at the expense of male readers who find the touchy/feely tone of these newer strips at odds with what they liked about 2000 AD in the first place. I do remember that, at the time, I found the persistence with these types of strips confusing, alienating and frustrating.

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  • Leviathan's Farewell is my mum's favourite ever 2000AD story and it's probably one of mine too. It's a lovely little story which captures the emotional side of the best Anderson stories and has something to say in a not too heavy-handed way. Well, compared to Third World War at any rate.

    By Blogger Peter, at 8:33 pm  

  • Funny how opinions can differ ...Leviathans farewell is one of my least favourite anderson stories. Putting a suicide story in a summer special was a real bummer.

    By Blogger Derek, at 11:57 pm  

  • Peter, if your Mum likes it who are we to disagree :-)

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 5:07 pm  

  • Derek, I don't hate it or think it's greta - I sit somewhere between, I think.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 5:08 pm  

  • My mate Richard Dolan did that cover. I've made a few posts about him here on my Blog.
    I like your blog as I used to love the old 2000AD's and Starlord.

    By Blogger Andrew Glazebrook, at 10:56 am  

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