Hitting the shelves Wednesday 13th June… here’s the 2000AD Prog 2085 Preview, all wrapped in a Cliff Robinson cover…
JUDGE DREDD: THE PARADIGM SHIFT – Michael Carroll and Jake Lynch
There’s a joy in seeing a classic bit of Dredd play out, and it happens here in the first couple of pages. It’s almost like stand-up, with us waiting for the inevitable punchline once Dredd deals with the latest perps… and there it is… deal done…
“So… the murder charge?”
“Oh, absolutely. Consider it scratched. Take him in. Thirty years… charge is reckless driving.”
Yep, the oldies are the goodies. But, of course, Michael Carroll knows that, which is why we get such classic Dredd moments thrown in.
As for the meat of the latest Paradigm Shift, that bust brings Dredd just that little closer to finding out who’s looking for the deadly nerve agent from a century ago. And in flashback, when the Judges are new and the Justice Department faces threats perps and existing agencies alike, things are getting particularly nasty. All good stuff, building neatly to a conclusion.
SKIP TRACER: HEAVY IS THE HEAD – James Peaty and Paul Marshall
Detective fiction meets hard sci-fi… Skip Tracer really is trying hard to do its best Blade Runner. And you know what? For the most part, I reckon it’s doing a fine job of it as well.
Peaty’s mixing things up well, delivering an action sequence in flashback reportage to cleverly allow him to keep the ‘tec fiction broody exposition flowing.
This episode, Blake’s investigations take him, via a gene-mutated Minotaur splice thing, down into the Underneath… and that’s a very, very bad idea.
SURVIVAL GEEKS: GEEK-CON – Emma Beeby, Gordon Rennie and Neil Googe.
Those first two panels… beautiful use of transition and pause to tell a gag in the reader’s mind. And it’s everything Survival Geeks does so bloody well. And then there’s the barbed commentary on all things geek. I’m wondering is it Rennie or Beeby who really doesn’t like Doctor Who all that much in general, and Rose Tyler in particular?
All in all, another cracker of a Survival Geeks episode.
THE FALL OF DEADWORLD: DAMNED – Kek-W and Dave Kendall
We’re still in the depths of the darkness in the heart of Deadworld’s Justice Department, as Sister Psiren begins to see things differently and considers her next moves. And somewhere in Sov space, there’s an order given that could prove that it’s not only the Dark Judges that are in the mass-murder business right now.
There’s a great tension to this latest Deadworld tale, pulling me into the story, wanting to decipher all of the twists and turns in this tale with a terrible end.
DURHAM RED: BORN BAD – Alec Worley and Ben Willsher
Four episodes in and this really is proving to be such a spectacular revamp of Durham Red. Worley and Willsher take the character on a hunt for her prey, all the while thirsting for blood, without a proper meal for a week. The harsh colour landscapes of the desert shift into nightfall and Willsher’s palette drops into a deep blue, with his silhouettes against the sky just stunning.
Yes, this Durham Red really is perfect case of two creators working in synchrony to deliver something so very good. Sadly, this is the halfway point and Willsher’s art won’t be with us for part five. Badly burning your drawing hand will inevitably cause some issues with deadlines. Willsher’s fine now, but it really is such a shame to have to say goodbye to his art when it’s genuinely the very best I’ve seen it. Next issue, art duties fall to Lee Carter.