COMIC REVIEW: 2000 A.D. PROG 1900

The Galaxy’s best weekly Comic has hit a milestone with Prog 1900.

Designed to be a jumping on point for new and lapsed readers, 2000 A.D. wants to welcome all of you into the fold. This is a move practiced by the comic at least a few times a year but with Prog 1900, 2000 A.D. has promised something special and what we get is rather good indeed.

First up is the undisputed icon of 2000 A.D., Judge Dredd, in a new story written and illustrated by original creators John Wagner and Carlos Ezquerra. In what promises to be a highly entertaining storyline, Block Judge shows the lawman of the future dealing with community policing as he and a group of fellow Judges take up the job of stamping out crime in the chaotic Gramercy Block. Wagner seems to have been strongly influenced by the recent Dredd movie adaption for this story’s setting and he does not let up on the action as Ezquerra’s art captures every grim and bloody detail.

Next we have the The Thru’Penny Opera, the latest instalment in Ian Edington’s creepy and grotesque Stickleback series. A comic with strong overtone of Steampunk, Stickleback is strikingly different to 2000 A.D.’s usual hard and pulpy science fiction output. The exceptionally beautiful artwork by D’Israeli, conjures up images of German expressionist silent cinema, allowing Stickleback to stand out a truly unique piece of work. Some readers unfamiliar with the previous stories may initially be a little put off by a lack of exposition, however there is certainly enough in the story to intrigue both new readers and fans of the series alike.

Finally, Dan Abnett and Richard Elson’s Gene the Hackman, returns in a new saga of their popular Kingdom series. In Kingdom: Aux Drift, everyone’s favourite genetically modified dog gets caught in the middle of a fight between a horde of giant insects and a bi-plane piloted by a pair of foul mouthed pilots. Kingdom is certainly one of the most original series in 2000 A.D.’S recent history and the first part of this story is full of spectacle and just enough bug splattering carnage to leave you wanting more.

It is interesting that Judge Dredd aside, 2000A.D. has chosen these particular stories for this jumping on issue. Previous progs such as this have had more than three stories and in some cases just stand alone pieces to give a new or lapsed reader a taste of what this comic is about. I was a little disappointed to find no Future Shock strip and instead a two page article dedicated to milestone issues of 2000A.D. in the past.

A minor grumble aside, Prog 1900 is a solid issue of thrills wrapped up in gorgeous in Greg Staples’ gorgeous cover art.

I’ll see you here for Prog 2000 due out in 2016 Terrans!

GS Rating: 4/5

GS Blogger: Matt Davis @DecadentGent

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