The Weekly 2000 AD Prog #2309: Buratino, Chimpsky, Hershey All Saying Farewell
by Richard Bruton
It’s 45 years old and it just gets better & better – 2000 AD is the UK’s greatest sci-fi weekly comic and we’re here with The Weekly 2000 AD to give you a preview.
Everything at this end of the year plays into the end of the year Prog, with its all-new strips meaning that everything here is either ending now or ending soon.
So, it’s only four strips this week, but we do get extra-length finales here for Judge Dredd: Buratino Must Die and Hershey: The Cold In The Bones, plus it’s the end to the current Chimpsky’s Law and his ‘Terrifically Disturbing Adventure’. There’s also the latest episode of Enemy Earth.
All in all, it might be light one strip this week, but the quartet is just damn good.
Prog #2309 is out on Wednesday 23rd November. Shall we take a look inside?
JUDGE DREDD: BURATINO MUST DIE – PART 6 – FINAL PART by Rob Williams and Henry Flint, letters by Annie Parkhouse
Extra-length ending here as Dredd, Anderson, Buratino, and the Sov Zersetzung all crash together.
We discover just what it is that Buratino’s been working on for the Justice Department in return for his and Isaak’s sanctuary, we get to uncover Isaak’s secret – and see Dredd in wonderfully brutal mode right at the end of this one.
I was concerned last episode/last week that this would be one that abruptly ended and should perhaps have had more episodes. Well, I was sort of right and sort of wrong with that. It didn’t end abruptly after all, and Williams’ way to wrap it up did work and worked well.
But of course, I would still really like to see him tackle something longer than six episodes, longer than 10 – I’d love to see him go really epic with Dredd. But for now, ‘Buratino Must Die’ is a fine, fine Dredd.
And of course, before the quick preview, a word about what is so bloody obvious – Henry Flint’s artwork really is absolutely superb, whether it’s talking heads or out-and-out action, there’s a stylistic brilliance about it that just delights and shows him to be one of the Dredd greats.
ENEMY EARTH: BOOK 1 – PART 8 – by Cavan Scott, Luke Horsman, letters by Annie Parkhouse
Well, if you wanted to know just how much darker Scott and Horsman were going to be taking Enemy Earth, last episode should really have proven it to you, as we got to see this…
Yes, that’s dark. Yet it still manages to keep in the whole all-ages vibe that Enemy Earth started off with.
So, this episode it’s the recriminations, with poor Jules trying to convince an understandably distraught Zoe that he had no choice and it was the only to keep her alive.
In the process, we find out even more about how Zoe lost her Grandma, what being infected means for people and, in the process, see a stronger bond develop between the pair. It’s simple but pretty clever writing from Scott and some very nice artwork from Horsman. It’s a 10-parter so it’s running to the ending right now – but I can’t help but think that this means that we’re racing to a semi-ending, running into the second series. And that really wouldn’t be a bad thing at all.
CHIMPSKY’S LAW: A TERRIFICALLY DISTURBING ADVENTURE – PART 8 – FINAL PART – by Ken Niemand, PJ Holden, colours by Chris Blythe, letters by Simon Bowland
Chimpsky, Mr Grofaz, and Lenny are the only one’s left not affected by Timmy and Thruppence’s psychic manipulations.
Although, as we saw in the final panel of last Prog, it could be that it’s not Timmy and Thrupence at all, and never has been…
Well, for the final part Niemand turns it all round and makes us see the other side of Timmy, the damage that he’s gone through to make him turn into the nasty little thing we’d seen so far. It’s a good turnaround, fleshing out the villain, making you consider just what makes a monster.
So it’s a downbeat ending to the whole series, necessarily so, but really well done as well, with Niemand and Holden in great synergy all the way through.
As for the ending, well, it does show us that Chimpsky’s been thinking a lot about just who it is that’s messing with his life, who it is that set up the business with the Jepperson Family and then threw Timmy in his direction.
Like he says, he has an adversary, but he knows nothing about them. So… next series may well be him doing something to rectify that.
And the prospect of another series of Chimpsky is a fine thing.
HERSHEY: THE COLD IN THE BONES: BOOK 1 – PART 6 – FINAL PART – by Rob Williams, Simon Fraser, letters by Simon Bowland
The end of the first part of Hershey’s finale, her own end, dying in the cold, and it’s a bloody magnificent thing that could have a far-reaching impact on the world of Dredd than we first thought.
After investigating down here in Antarctic City, Hershey and Frank have stumbled – well, fallen on top of – the answer, and it all ties into Smiley and into Enceladus energy…
There’s also insight into just what’s going on with the Joy drug, derived from the Enceladus spiders, a plant based organism that could be ingested, something addictive… something that’s now growing inside Frank let’s not forget.
All in all there’s a huge info dump going on here in what’s effectively the mid-season finale. But there’s also one last chance to stare in wonder at just how good Fraser’s artwork is here, no matter what he’s called on to show…
Damn, that’s brutal stuff.
And with that, we’re at the end, and I’m waiting impatiently to read the second part sometime in 2023, where the repercussions of that last page come good. Will Hershey really die? How far will the Enceladus spiders get and how much damage could they cause in the world? All of it might be answered, and I’m looking forward to reading it.