The Weekly 2000 AD – Prog 2158 – Shining The Light On Crime – Dredd’s On The Serial Killer Case.

by Richard Bruton

It’s the Weekly 2000 AD, taking you for a little look-see around the UK’s premier sci-fi comic, delivering greatness since 1977…
Inside, it’s time for a new Judge Dredd from Michael Carroll and Nick Percival, something very creepy and bloody in The Harvest. Alongside this, we have more of everything else, which means more brilliance in Brink, more death and destruction in Defoe, more falling in Deadworld, and a near-complete lack of hope in Hope.
But first… a suitably terrifying Dredd cover by Nick Percival

Cover by Nick Percival

Prog 2158 is out in the UK and on digital from 20 November, with international copies coming out later – ask for it by name at your local comic shop.

JUDGE DREDD – THE HARVEST – PART 1 – MIchael Carroll, Nick Percival, letters Annie Parkhouse.
Dredd gets called in for what Judge Temple describes as ‘A weird one’… where there’s a serial killer taking limbs.
It’s the little touches as ever, the girlfriend who gets a shot off to give the Judges a skin sample to give them a break in the case getting eight years for possession of an unlicensed firearm, that little reminder that the law will always get you in MC-1.
So now we’re off on the procedural, something it’s always fun to see Carroll put these things together. And there’s few better to do a real gruesome Dredd all about death, gore and body horror than Percival.

DEFOE – THE DIVISOR – PART 9 – Pat Mills, SK Moore, letters Ellie De Ville
Irdonozur is looking to escape Earth and establish a kingdom of pain on the moon and it’s been smuggled onboard the Britannia spaceship… the same spaceship Defoe is on.
Yes, more zombie action, more Defoe being Defoe, but most importantly more of this sort of thing from Moore…

The various styles he uses, the effects, the details, it’s all done so beautifully well. But here it’s all about the action and despite using a multitude of page designs and unusual panel layouts, the construction of the page and the talent of the artist is such that you never lose track of things, there’s a wonderful flow throughout.
And then there’s the final panel. Always good to end with the heroes looking up to the sky with a final… ‘Oh F…’.

BRINK BOOK 4 – HATE BOX – PART 9 – Dan Abnett, INJ Culbard, letters Simon Bowland
While Bridge Kurtis continues to get settled into her new role as Major Crimes boss, it’s probably not the best time to get a visit from the magnificently grumpy Hab-Sec Commissioner, who immediately just blows the Hate Box away with the swearing. Oh, he is not a happy bunny, not at all.
The case is snatched out from under here and given to Gang crime. An understandably pissed Bridge gets out of the office for a little bit of a bitching session with Picazo, her old friend in Gang Crime, where it becomes obvious that this job is just something to keep Bridge out of the way…

Again, I look at the work INJ Culbard puts into the totality of Brink with wonder. Here, it’s the colour tone shift, from the artificial cold greens of the Hab Sec offices to the vibrant reds of Bizet’s Grill. And then there’s the work on the conversations, with so much through every look, every side-glance. It’s all just so damn good.
We’re a whole nine episodes into Hate Box and effectively very little has happened as yet. Except inside that very little happening, there’s so much that’s gone on in terms of the conversations, in terms of moving the characters around, in terms of giving us yet more intriguing glimpses into the story that’s unfolding around all that we’re reading. It is wonderful stuff.

THE FALL OF DEADWORLD – DOOMED – Part 9 – Kek-W, Dave Kendall, letters Annie Parkhouse
The disparate forces of the Dark Judges on one side, some in open revolt. The tiny resistance force of Jess Childs and Judge Fairfax on the other. And in the middle of it all, the Sovs have decided it’s time to make their move, expecting to waltz into this version of America… oh, how wrong they were.
But even dropped into something this bad, they’re not giving up, meaning there’s another side to the conflict, a conflict that keeps ramping up and up.
And although part of me still wants to see it pick up its pace a touch and get to the ending we know is coming, I’m rather enjoying the whole thing, with a lot of the enjoyment coming from the Dave Kendall artwork.

HOPE… UNDER FIRE – PART 9 – Guy Adams, Jimmy Broxton, letters Ellie De Ville
So, Alberto Modi’s taken the demon from Mallory Hope and is now raging through New York, leaving death and destruction in his wake. He is, as Hope says, an original monster.
And this monster, over the course of just this one episode, taking place over a few weeks, maybe months, shows just how powerful, how merciless he can be. Hope’s just struggling to figure out just how he’s doing it, using so much magic it should have killed him within hours.
It’s an episode that quickly, easily takes us inside the depravity, doing the clever thing of letting us imagine most of it for ourselves and making it all the more shocking by doing so.

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