If you're a new fan of the future's toughest cop, IDW's ongoing Judge Dredd series has provided a pretty great place to jump on. In their ongoing story, Duane Swierczynski and Nelson Daniel have given readers a crash course in Dredd's future-shocking world, taking readers on a dizzying tour through Mega City One as it's attacked by renegade robots, murderous clones and more.
Now, with Judge Death and his genocidal, otherwordly cronies waiting in the wings to pronounce a death sentence on the city, I talked to Sweirczynski about his history with the character, his approach to making such a strange and complicated world friendly to new readers (while keeping it decidedly unfriendly to the people who actually live there) and why Judge Dredd is a lot like ROM: Spaceknight.
Even though it suffered from a critical lack of Batman and villains who had purchased nuclear submarines under false names, 2012's Dredd still ranks as one of my favorite comic book movies. The second attempt at translating 2000 AD's long-running character to the screen brought a great cast into a story of brutal action and thrilling adventures through one of Mega City One's massive blocks, and left me -- along with a lot of other fans -- hoping that we'd get to see more of that world soon.
Well, we're still waiting for a sequel, but this week, we got the next best thing. With Dredd: Underbelly, Arthur Wyatt and Henry Flint are telling a story set in the world of the film, where Dredd and Anderson face down a sinister operation behind a new drug on the streets of Mega City One. And if you liked the movie, you're probably going to want to pick up this comic.
Next week, Judge Dredd is packing up his Lawgiver and scowling his way across the Cursed Earth for a visit to Mega City Two in the appropriately titled Judge Dredd: Mega City Two. The trip comes courtesy of writer (and former ComicsAlliance contributor) Douglas Wolk, artist (and current ComicsAlliance favorite) Ulises Farinas and colorist Ryan Hill, but it's hardly a vacation. Out of his element and as grumpy as ever, the story finds Dredd in the sprawling future version of Los Angeles, where every neighborhood has its own laws.
It's pretty exciting stuff from a long-time Dredd fan, but if you can't wait for Wednesday for the series' first issue, we have some good news: Check below for a preview!
R.M. Guera may be one of the more under appreciated artists in comics. Guera's gritty, European-influenced line work is ideal for his recent work on the comic adaptation of Django Unchained, as well as his most notable series, the award winning Scalped, which he co-created with Jason Aaron for Vertigo. And if you asked me what artist, who had previously never illustrated a Judge Dredd story, was best suited to offer his take on Mega-City One's top cop, Guera would have been one of the first names to come to mind.
So while it isn't a surprise, it's certainly welcome news that Guera will be illustrating a Judge Dredd short story, written by Rob Williams, in the pages of 2000 AD.
When it comes to the holiday gift-giving season, comic book readers are notoriously difficult to shop for. I mean, most of us are down at the shop buying our favorite stuff every single week, so when the time comes for people who like us to get us something we want, well, a lot of times we already have it. That’s why we’re stepping in with a public service, bringing you comics-related items sure to make the season brighter, whether you’re browsing for a gift or just looking for something to drop hints about so that you don’t get stuck with a random assortment of back issues again.
If you're in need of a stocking stuffer that will ensure you have a profoundly violent Christmas (in a good way), then there are far worse ways for you to spend $10 than a copy of Dredd on DVD. And most of 'em will get you six months in the cubes, creep.
To put it mildly, JudgeDredd has had a rough couple of years. His city's been put through the wringer yet again, he's questioning the justice system, and crime shows no sign of slowing down no matter how many times he shoots it with high explosives. Fortunately for him, Douglas Wolk and Ulises Farinas have stepped up to send him on a vacation this January in Judge Dredd: Mega City Two, a new miniseries from IDW where Mega City One's most famous lawman takes a trip to the West Coast to see what post-apocalyptic California has to offer.
To find out about the series, we spoke with Wolk, a long-time Dredd fan, about why he loves the series, what the inspiration was for (re)building Mega City Two, how he's rewriting the book with Farinas as he goes, and what stories new Dredd readers should check out.
Here at ComicsAlliance, we love pretty much all things Judge Dredd (with maybe oneexception). We're also admirers of the work of illustrator Ulises Farinas. As such, any combination of the two is going to pique our interests, so when we found out Farinas and colorist Ryan Hill would be teaming up with writer -- and Judge Dredd historian -- Douglas Wolk on an upcoming Judge Dredd miniseries for IDW and 2000 AD, we were intrigued. And if this early piece of promotional art is any indication, readers are in for a treat.
As it is prone to do perhaps more often than some of its American competition, British sci-fi weekly 2000 AD has designed its latest issue to be especially welcoming to new readers. Four brand new stories begin in this week's 2000 AD Prog 1850, each meant to introduce audiences to the unique blend of art, attitude and insanity that can typically be found every week in "the galaxy's greatest comic." Among them, a new Judge Dredd strip as well as new work by Al Ewing (Mighty Avengers), Pat Mills (Marshal Law), Ian Edginton (Victorian Undead), and INJ Culbard (The New Deadwardians).
The new-reader-friendly prog is part of a concentrated effort to raise awareness of 2000 AD and Judge Dredd in particular so as to persuade the powers that be that a Dredd movie sequel is something they should put into production at once. That effort includes an official Dreddsequel petition and the latest issue of Judge Dredd Megazine, which introduces a new strip that will continues the continuity of the cult favorite Karl Urban film.
In theory, Judge Dredd: Day of Chaos should be everything I hate about big event comics. It goes out of its way to be grim and dark even by Dredd standards, boasting a body count over 300 million, features a protagonist who's often powerless to stop the terrible things that are going on, and the only person who really comes out of it with anything that remotely resembles a victory is a mass murderer. It's almost thoroughly devoid of hope, with a focus on brutality and horror that's telegraphed from the opening. Half of it's built like a zombie story, and in true 21st century event comic fashion, there's even a dude who gets his arm cut off.
Taken all together, that's essentially a checklist of things I never want to see again in superhero comics. In Day of Chaos, however, that all comes together to form a textbook example of how to do event comics right.
Q: Does it ever bug you that comics characters don't age in any significant manner? --@sackobooks
A: I'm not gonna lie to you, Sacko: The first time I looked at this question, I dismissed it almost immediately, because to me, the answer seems pretty obvious. I mean, I am a guy whose career is defined by being super into a guy who's been in his early thirties for the past 74 years, so it's clearly not that big an issue. But then I got to talking to Matt Wilson about it, and he made me realize that there's actually a lot there to talk about.
After all, some characters do age. But do they need to?
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