2000 AD Prog Slog

Friday, September 25, 2009

Prog 907 30/09/09

Big Dave finishes his latest short run story, Wotta Lotta Balls, in this prog. In it, Dave and his mates travel to America to save ‘Engerlunds’ reputation in the 1994 world cup taking place there. It involves playing football against the German team who are secretly being managed by Hitler, who have killed the ref and are using all sorts of underhand methods to win the game, such as driving tanks onto the pitch and using them to fire in their goals. As entertaining a spectacle Grant Morrison and Mark Millar have cooked up between them, it still can’t compare to Diana Ross kicking the ball in the wrong direction to the goal rigged to fall apart during the tournament’s opening ceremony.

I’ve realised why I have niggling doubts about Big Dave; I feel as if I’ve seen it all before, and not just because I read the strips for the first time fifteen years ago. Since Big Dave first appeared, its sense of politically challenging satire has become more common place such as in TV shows like South Park (good) and Family Guy (not so good). Of course, Big Dave wasn’t there first either being predated by Viz by over a decade but it did anticipate the zeitgeist, I suppose, by boiling it down into a single strip and individual narratives.

Morrison and Millar might be big shots in today’s comic industry but the real creative star of Wotta Lotta Balls is Steve Parkhouse, back on Big Dave after being temporality replaced by Anthony Williams last time. This time, Big Dave is in water colour but still retains the animated spontaneity that made Parkhouse’s black and white stories such fun.

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  • there was a strontium dog story once where they ended up on a planet where two brothers were using slaves to build giant heads out of stone (a bit like pyramids, but heads)there was a competition between the two to see who could have the most people die on their head.
    Do you know what issues that was?
    And is it reprinted anywhere?

    By Blogger spleenal, at 9:18 pm  

  • Sorry Spleenal, the story rings a bell but I can't remember the story title of what progs it appeared in.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 5:31 pm  

  • Spleenal, that was the story 'Slavers of Drule' in Progs 420-430ish.

    It'll be reprinted in one of those fat Strontium Dog complete Case Files books, I'd guess Volume 3.

    Not sure what that's got to do with Big Dave, a strip I really wanted to like but in fact never found to be funny. You're right about Steve Parkhouse's art, though.

    By Blogger alexf, at 9:24 am  

  • Thanks Alex.

    By Blogger Paul Rainey, at 5:45 pm  

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