2000AD, as hopefully, you all know by now, is one of the greatest comics in the UK. And Judge Dredd is its greatest character. But a real problem with Dredd is just where do you start? Well, coming later in 2020, you get the easy way in – the Essential Judge Dredd. The greatest adventures of the Lawman of the Future, a perfect way to experience the brilliance of the character.
Yes, starting in September, you get the Essential Judge Dredd, a graphic novel collection presenting the very best of Dredd, perfect for both new and old readers alike. It’s where you’ll find the most important tales of Dredd and a way to get the easy in on just what makes him, after more than four decades, still one of the most complex, relevant, and readable characters in comics.
It all kicks off with one of the greatest Dredd tales there has ever been, Judge Dredd: America. A tale that continues to be far too relevant in this modern day, of democracy, of control, of choice. America includes work by John Wagner, Garth Ennis, Alan Grant, Colin MacNeil, John Higgins, John M Burns, and Jeff Anderson.
This collection not only includes the classic Wagner and McNeil America, but also features the tales of America Jara and Bennett Beeny that came after, tales of freedom against the totalitarian state, where freedom-fighters are terrorists, and where the world in Dredd we know is brought into sharp focus, making the reader question just what it means to live under the law of the Judges. It’s a timeless tale, and one that’s perfect as an introduction to the world of Dredd, Mega-City One, and the Judges.
America has long been held as one of the key Dredd tales and having it as the opener in this new series is perfect. As Ben Smith, head of Rebellion Publishing, says:
Not only is America one of the most amazing Judge Dredd stories ever told, this incredibly prescient look at the demands society must make for democracy and what a state will do to protect itself couldn’t be more contemporary. This is not only the ideal first story for any reader new to Dredd, it’s something everyone should read in this year of all years. Make sure you read it before you vote, citizens!
Volume two of the Essential Judge Dredd continues in November 2020, as John Wagner and Carlos Ezquerra’s tale of early Dredd is reprinted in Essential Judge Dredd: Origins.
Now, as an extra, here’s the first instalment of Judge Dredd: America, from my old copies of Judge Dredd Megazine Volume 1, from way back in 1990…