2000 AD Prog Slog

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Judge Dredd Mega-Special 6 1993

I’m back, you Squaxx! I decided to take a little break from The Slog to recharge my batteries after I brought seventy comics published over the last year for 50p each. They included runs of The Boys, written by Garth Ennis, the Fantastic Four, written by Mark Millar and Kick Ass, written by Mark Millar, plus sets of Dan Dare by Garth Ennis and Gary Erskine, Punisher War Zone by Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon, Sea Guy written by Grant Morrison and War is Hell; First Flight of the Phantom Eagle written by Garth Ennis. That’s right; I took a break to read recent works by regular contributors to the era of 2000 AD that The Slog is currently at. You could argue that this hardly constitutes a break at all.

This years Mega-Special is a flip comic, a format I am surprised isn’t used more frequently. One half is given over to the theme of hate and the other to love. What is the most interesting thing about it is that there seems to be a lot of contributors I haven’t heard of before or since. These are mainly artists such as Benet, Darren Stephens and Lol who seem to have arrived fully rather than as partially formed creators finding their skill set and voice.

The real fun in the Mega-Special for me this year is the contributors known more for their non-main stream comics. Shaky Kane draws another iconic little number written by East Enders’ scripter, Si Spencer. Paul Grist, who at this time is writing, drawing and publishing the very early issues of the excellent Kane, provides the art to Judge Dredd Kinky Boots. Everything visual about this strip is perfectly placed and timed. Ilya writes and paints a one off called Carrion Carnage which features all of the humour and energy you associate with his other work such and The End of the Centaury Club and Skidmarks. I can only assume that the pull of creative control that comes with non-mainstream comics is why Ilya and Grist never go on to become regular contributors to 2000 AD and The Megazine when they are clearly better than a lot of the other regular creators they use.

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  • What did you think of Dan Dare?

    I thought it was interesting and surprisingly touching to see Garth Ennis attempt to do a character who (unironically) represents English heroism and decency in the same way as he's done for Americans (Preacher) and Germans, (Thor, Enemy Ace, etc...) over the years. It made me think that's something that we haven't seen in comic books for a long time. By way of contrast, I'm hard pressed to think of a single main 2000 AD character who doesn't have fairly major character flaws!

    Not that I'd have wanted it any other way of course...

    By Blogger Tam, at 5:59 pm  

  • I really enjoyed Dan Dare although my only previous frame of character reference isn't the Eagle by 2000 AD and Revolver. I also read a years worth of The Boys, Punisher War Zone and War is Hell and Dare was much better than all of those, I would say. Hopefully, the planned for sequel will go ahead.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 5:02 pm  

  • Benet did a lot of work for Commando at that time.

    By Blogger Derek, at 6:29 am  

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