2000 AD Prog Slog

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Batman Judge Dredd Judgement on Gotham

Let me tell you, a lot of comic readers from this period spent much of their time getting over excited about upcoming Batman projects which, when they arrived, usually late, disappointed. I’m referring to Killing Joke which, as good as it might be, didn’t really qualify as a graphic novel, and Arkham Asylum, which turned out to be an expensive clash of themes. However, Batman’s first meeting with Judge Dredd, Judgement on Gotham, delivered on its expectations.

Firstly, Simon Bisley’s art is stunning. I imagine American readers, unfamiliar with Slaine The Horned God, must have been amazed when they saw it. Typically, the book was late and there are some of Bisley’s signature short cut pages of blue wash over pencils towards the back done, I imagine, due to deadline pressures. However, he more then compensates with the many impressive single images that work like big budget movie special effects.

Alan Grant and John Wagner always write a strong access story when the need arises and Judgement on Gotham is a very entertaining introduction to both Judge Dredd and Batman’s worlds. All of the characters get fairly represented although I’m not so sure that Judge Death performing a song on stage at a heavy metal concert is a good idea.

After Judgement on Gotham, cross company efforts become increasingly common place during the nineties and less eventful. Seeing Superman fight Predator and Doctor Strange mashed into a single character with Doctor Fate deadened the thrill of it. However, for us British comic readers, Judge Dredd’s meeting with Batman at this time said that not only was our favourite comic character better than what had come before it, such as Dan Dare and Dennis the Menace, but now he is on a par with the international established greats.

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  • I didn't buy this at the time, and I still have never got 'round to buying it. That might have been around the point I admitted to myself I didn't care any more. Woah.

    That was then, and this now is me going over to Ebay to see if I can pick up a reading copy for f*ck all.

    By Blogger Mark, at 10:45 pm  

  • I loved this when it came out and Bisley's work was awesome on it - but honestly, I've read it twice and just vaguely remember Death ending up with a chicken on his shoulder... that's what's stuck with me... actually, perhaps it was a TURKEY?

    Mark, there are a plentiful supply on ebay you should be able to get it for well under a fiver inc. p&p

    By Blogger Kevin Levell, at 2:49 pm  

  • Do it, Mark, but don't spend more than a couple of quid on it. it's fun.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 5:44 pm  

  • Kevin, I should have mentioned the chicked on one shoulder and the ribs on the other... :-)

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 5:45 pm  

  • Just working my way through Slog now (makes great reading on the bus) and I'm sure I'll writing gushing things about the experience so BUT...

    Much as I loved Judgement on Gotham it is a great example of the fall from grace of Judge Death from iconic villain to pantermine dame!

    By Blogger Colin, at 12:11 pm  

  • Yeah, I commented on it happening in Young Death recently in the Megazine. Oh well...

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 9:09 pm  

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