Welcome back Dredd heads to March 2003 and Meg 203. The cover for this issue has a real valentine day theme to it. Even though it was released a month after. Along the top of the meg we see a mini Dredd as a Quepid type, shooting dead the real quepid with an arrow!
Once you've stopped laughing at that strange scenario, you'll notice that the main piece is of a Judge Death Jimp (an impersonator) getting married. The quote of the cover is 'Til Death do us part', I so hope there is a Judge Death themed tale this month..fingers crossed.
- Judge Dredd The Marriage Game- Script John Wagner Art Ian Gibson
This tale is a spoof of the old Classic 80/90's Blind Date tv show (a very bad UK programme). But nothing is that simple in the Dredd verse. Judge Dredd and a team of Judges are using the show to capture wanted perps with outstanding warrants. Inviting them backstage as a prize and then arresting them. But whilst the Judges are concerned about back stage, the real crime is unfolding on the main stage!
Good opening tale, light hearted and full of Mega-City One quirkiness. Plus Walter the Wobot stars in it too. I like these sort of tales as to the epic story arcs, as Dredd can't always being saving the city, sometimes he needs to fight crime too.
- Black Siddha Bad Karma Part 2- Script Pat Mills Art Simon Davis
In this episode we find out a bit more about the Black Siddha's past, part of that past was extremely dark and moody. So dark in fact that the Hindu Gods want to put Rohan on trial for the crimes of his past life. Can Rohan regain his senses in time to realise just how much trouble he is in or will be become a victim to his past life?.
This series is really shaping into a good tale. I can see that Rohan is ultimately going to assume the mantle of the Black Siddha and fight to right the wrongs of his past lives.
- Family Part 3- Script Rob Williams Art Simon Fraser
The internal politics of the 'Family' come out to play in this episode. With 'Family' members arguing over who should be next in line for the top spot. With tensions running high, the mysterious exploding man is back and seems to want to start a turf war.
I'm still enjoying the strip but I do worry it will become just another superpower comic strip. I want to see more of the criminal organization and the cops, rather than these superpowered men.
- Juliet November Phoenix Falling- Script Alan Grant Art Graham Manley
Juliet's awkward date continues at an awkward pace, following the murder at the theatre. Fearing arrest by the Judges, the murders attempt to keep everyone hostage. Is this the chance Juliet has waited for to use her powers for good or will she get stage fright?
Pretty average strip, quite underwhelming and causing me to lose interest in this tale. Highlight of the strip was the last image, showing Dredd standing on top of a pile of beaten up monkeys!
- Devlin Waugh Ride Tide Part 2- Script John Smith Art Colin Macneil
The lights are going out all over the ship and Vampires have boarded and killed most of the crew! Lucky for Devlin he is handy with wooden chairs and an axe. As Devlin and Larry locate Lilith, it soon becomes apparent their only choice is to die on the boat or to die at sea!
This strip is a real saving grace for the meg, I'm enjoying the way the story is growing and I look forward to seeing more. The fish vampires are nuts and I can't see how Devlin will escape this time. Colin Macneil's artwork is a treat to the eyes and really absorbs me into the tale.
- Sinister Dexter Dead Famous- Script Dan Abnett Art Steve Roberts
Another cheeky one page strip from this comical hitman duo. In this episode the pair hunt down a dead rock and roll legend and make sure his back catalogue stays dead.
I enjoy these one shots. I just wish they would give them more than just a page once a month. I was big fan of the strips back in 2000ad. And with such an impressive backdrop for tales, I just want to see more!
They continue this section as they long back into the past and show of their writers and artists earlier works. First up:
- Slaine- Script Pat Mills Art David Pug
Slaine's fight against the Cythrons continue in this tale. And that all I will write. I just can't get into this tale. He now has a leyser shield, to match his leyser gun (WTF!), this is becoming more sci-fi than fantasy and it's causing me to really struggle with tale and I will now most likely be skipping this tale in future. Real shame.
- Darkies Mob- Script John Wagner Art Mike Western
After surviving a trail by mob, Darkie leads the unwilling men even deeper into the jungle. Here they destroy a platoon of Japanese soldiers, by setting them on fire. Before Darkie then leads them onto a number of daring raids destroying a train line and capturing a fortress.
I'm enjoying this series, it's pretty far fetched that this one unit can cause so much trouble. But I like how the characters are progressing and I'm keen to find out more about Darkie. He seems like a british Rambo, but I fear he has a dark past.
- Tharg's Future Shock- The Collector Script k. Gosnell Art I. Kennedy
Set during the Vietnam war; a fighter ace by the name of Major Jones, tracks down a mysterious black fighter jet that has bested many of his friends. After following it to a recluse runway, Jones confronts the plane's pilot. It's at this point, that Major Jones discovers that the pilot is know as the Collector: aka the Devil himself. To make matters worst Jones has landed in Airbase Hell!
Pretty short tale with a good twist at the end. The Devil character artwork reminded me of the original master from Dr. Who. Which isn't a bad thing.
Not to sure on this issue. Out of the nine strips only three strips (Black Siddha, Devlin Waugh and Darkies Mob) stood out, whilst the rest was average or in the case of slaine piss poor! So with that in mind and can only score it a 2 out of 5. I hope it returns to a better score in the next issue. As always drop me your thoughts below and see you for more.