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2000 AD Prog Slog

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Prog 799

Latest Judge Dredd epic, Judgement Day, ends after twenty episodes. That’s a little shorter than your average super-epic, even shorter in time to tell if you consider that a third of the episodes appeared in The Megazine. In it, Dredd uses Sadu’s sword to lob Sabbat’s head from his tentacled body and the entire world’s zombies drop to the ground, just as I predicted. (Although, of course, I didn’t really predict this as I first read this episode sixteen and a half years ago). Dredd sticks the head on the peak of the loadstone, keeping Sabbat alive for eternity, and sentences him to life, no remission.

Had Judgement Day been written by John Wagner and Alan Grant, we would have seen it killed off weeks ago, just like they did with City of the Damned. But Garth Ennis is writing this during an era of editorial long term planning and multi-publication co-operation. It’s hard to imagine a young man at the start of his career feeling able to approach Tharg at this time and saying, “Judgement Day; it’s just not working out”. Just think of all the people he would be inconveniencing. Supposedly, Wagner and Ennis came up with the story together but Wagner bailed out very early on. The whole thing does feel uncertain; like a tale that even the writer of is unsure of what it is about.

There are moments to like in Judgement Day, particularly the presence of Johnny Alpha. The art was as good as Squaxx dek Thargo have come to expect from an epic and it’s fitting that Carlos Ezquerra draws this final part where the two major characters he helped to create walk battered and bruised but triumphant from the cave where they have defeated their enemy. However, the unnecessary slaughter of billions and the crass serialisation of it in two separate comics makes this an epic worth reading but quickly forgetting, in my opinion.

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6 Comments:

  • Great last line:

    "Who the hell's gonna mess with us?"

    By Blogger Reds, at 11:21 am  

  • dosen't the ponytail on Sabbat look horribly dated? very late 80's

    By Blogger Derek, at 1:25 pm  

  • Reds, the whole last page is great for various reasons :-)

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 5:51 pm  

  • Derek, I'm dreading the inevitable pony tail come back. Yuk!

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 5:51 pm  

  • Absolutely! I'd hang a poster of it on my wall. Ezquerra is just the best.

    By Blogger Reds, at 10:09 pm  

  • Paul - we're just like Sabbat wasn't wearing red braces ;)

    By Blogger Derek, at 9:44 am  

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