Friday, 18 March 2011

2000AD Prog 1725: Destroyer of Worlds!

A Review of 2000AD Prog 1725 (released March 16 2011.) After gushing over Liam Sharps cover last week I thought it would be a while before we saw anything of the same calibre, but Henry Flint really delivers and I strongly suggest you to click for a full resolution image over on 2000AD covers uncovered.

 Cover: The front alone lacks punch, I hope that hasn’t put off any random browsers, but as a whole it really works; dynamic, colourful really well drawn and just a bit different. Flint hasn’t gone quite as bonkers with his alien designs as he does on the interior pages though!

Dredd: Served Cold part eight
Dredd confronts Deller, but in the ensuing fight his bionic eyes are knocked out by an EMP grenade. Deller is latter seemingly killed at the hands of other judges but is actually saved by one of Ryders men who uses another clone body as decoy. He claims ownership of the criminal organisation after his boss’s death and offers Deller a partnership.

I’ll forgive the relative lack of action through this storyline as this week we have people exploding all over the place! While things are wrapped up a little too nicely as far as Deller’s escape goes; the promise of a new reoccurring villain is a nice idea. Mega-City One approach to crime fighting rarely leaves this as a possibility. John Higgins art coupled with Sally Hurst colours has been a treat throughout, I hope they get another stint on Dredd sooner rather than later.

Shakara: Avenger part twelve
Overlord Brenneka’s armada continues to be decimated by the world engine weapon, whilst Shakara himself continues to grow weaker due to infection by the Red Death.

Not a lot happens here really, but when you have Flint illustrating literally hundreds of space ships exploding and crashing into one another you can’t really complain. I imagine Robbie Morrison wanted at least a couple of Progs to show the carnage that the Shakaran weapons can deliver, so with 2 instalments left we should be getting getting more with regards to the plot next week. While I’ll be sad to see the strip go I’d rather it go out with a bang than be dragged out for another book.

Flesh: Texas part two
‘Boots’ McGurk is attacked by the irradiated Tyrannosaurs Gore-head just managing escape. The dinosaur cattle drive kicks off in full.

A Great improvement over last week. McKay still doesn’t seem to have settled into an art style, the weight and shape of his lines seem to change drastically from page to page and not in the context of the panel. I do think it all looks good, but it’s a little distracting. Story-wise we get loads of quirky “Millisms” but he could have left out yet another dig at religion.  I really liked the use of the messages from the CEO of Trans-Time concerning the state of affairs in the future, (present?) they really added some density to the plot.

Future Shocks: The Last James Drillard
A multi-dimensional crime lord finally tracks down the final James Drillard, a man who in his own dimension had betrayed him.

A catchy enough premise, a little wordier and more engaging than last week but again let down by an un-climatic twist. Filler, but Future Shocks are as much at the heart of 2000AD as Dredd so I certainly don’t mind their inclusion. Only the greatest stay with you but they normally make for a nice change of pace.

Kingdom: His Master’s Voice part twelve
Gene kills General Hurlocker and leads Clara Bow and the rest of the mongrels on another walkabout.

This is not so much a new status quo, more returning to the old, but the dynamic is certainly to be different with new characters but more importantly a change in Gene as a character. The vignette regarding the origin of Genes name was touching and I can’t wait for this series to return.

Next week There’s likely to be a new ongoing story as well as a new Dredd, Shakara gets ever closer to its big finale and Flesh continues. The Prog's really in a strong state right now, after what I felt was a shaky start to the year.