The Weekly 2000 AD – Prog 2157 – Sov Surprise At Dead Deluge In Fall Of Deadworld

by Richard Bruton

Welcome, welcome one and all to the magnificent Weekly 2000 AD here at Comicon, taking its regular 7-day look inside the latest 2000 AD, the king of all weekly sci-fi comics.
Inside, we get the explosive climax of Judge Dredd: Guatemala, where John Wagner and Colin MacNeill end their latest tale of old man Joe as he takes on the robo-nation of El Presidente. All the other strips keep on keeping on, with more Defoe versus those angels, Brink‘s Bridge Kurtis on the case investigating mass kills on her home Hab, Hope manipulated and abused by old war buddy Alberto Modi, and the Fall of Deadworld sees Sov troops on the ground meeting the forces of the dead.
And it’s The Fall of Deadworld that features on another great Cliff Robinson and Dylan Teague

(Cover by Cliff Robinson & Dylan Teague)

Prog 2157 is out in the UK and on digital from 13 November, with international copies coming out later – ask for it by name at your local comic shop.

JUDGE DREDD – GUATEMALA – PART 8 – John Wagner, Colin MacNeil, colors Chris Blythe, letters Annie Parkhouse.
As you might expect, when Dredd, the Mechanistas, and MC-1 decide to bring down the robo-reign of El Presidente, it doesn’t take that long to effect change. But that’s the point in some ways, watching Dredd play at negotiation was fascinating while it lasted. But this one is the final take-down, and it’s as impressive as it is fast.

But what Guatemala does leave us with is a sense of Wagner moving pieces around his own personal chessboard, involving Hershey’s genes and Dredd’s thawing attitude to the robo-Judges. Both could well play heavy in future Wagner sagas of Dredd. As I’ve said before, Wagner and MacNeill may not return to Dredd as often as he used to, but if ever it were a case of quality trumping quantity, this is it. A class act.

DEFOE – THE DIVISOR – PART 8 – Pat Mills, SK Moore, letters Ellie De Ville
As the Dutch government get devoured by a cannibal feeding frenzy, the influence of Irdonozur ripping the world of Defoe apart. And Mills nails it right there on page 1 – having the Selenites and Irdonozur in a civil war just means two sides going to war with the people suffering in the middle.
Oh, and now it’s time for Defoe to get himself shot into space… we knew it was going to happen but has Defoe picked up an unexpected passenger? After all, his son sees a demon in the gunpowder flames of the ship taking off.

As usual, a mention for the spectacular artwork on this latest Defoe (including that amazing burst of full-color in the page above), with SK Moore continuing to out-do himself here, with so many different styles, so many effects, all capturing, quite perfectly, the tone of Defoe. Can I put in a fervent wish here that this will not be the last we see of SK Moore, whether it’s on Defoe or something else?
Beautiful artwork, and a Defoe story that I can really get behind… cracking series.

BRINK BOOK 4 – HATE BOX – PART 8 – Dan Abnett, INJ Culbard, letters Simon Bowland
It’s a little down-time for Bridge Kurtis, Hab Sec officer in charge of major crimes, back on her homeworld. And she’s visiting her Mom, who’s not in a good way.

It’s these little interludes that add so much to the world of Brink, to rounding out the character and her world, and it’s done so beautifully well by both Abnett and Culbard, whose ability to capture a lifetime of heartbreak, the loss of a father, the living loss of a mother, the driving force that took Bridge away… just in a couple of panels… exquisite.

HOPE… UNDER FIRE – PART 8 – Guy Adams, Jimmy Broxton, letters Ellie De Ville
Alberto Modi’s plan is revealed, and it’s bad news for magical PI Mallory Hope, as we find out more about Modi’s role in bringing magic into Hope’s life.
We get to watch in horror as Modi tries to strip Hope’s magic away, and then watch in brutal black and white to see just what Modi intends doing with all that power now.
Even now, there are pages of Broxton’s art in Hope that just look so gorgeous, that tonal b&w artwork perfect for the strip and the mood.

THE FALL OF DEADWORLD – DOOMED – Part 8 – Kek-W, Dave Kendall, letters Annie Parkhouse

“Sweetheart, you’ve got thirty seconds to up-anchor and haul ass back to vodkaland or you’ll be showering in body parts at bedtime tonight”

Now, if that greeting from Chief Judge Casey to Colonel Mira Ruin doesn’t give you some idea of what the Sovs invading dead-occupied America here have waiting for them, then nothing will. It’s also a perfect example of the dialogue Kek-W throws into this strip.
Yes, I still think it’s veering into the realms of doing too much in the middle phase of the tale, stretching things out before we get to the inevitable fall of Deadworld, but at moments like that, it’s a reminder that, at its very best, this is a strip to put a twisted smile on your face, a strip to enjoy the chaos unfolding, and a strip to relish every page of Dave Kendall’s fabulous artwork.

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