Hello 2012. Hope everyone has had a good start to the New Year.
A bit of catching up to do this week, after all the Christmas and end of year madness. I’ll be running three comics posts over the next three days, to catch the 21st Dec and 28th Dec, releases and bring us nicely up to date with 4th Jan releases going up on Friday 6th.
Today though, to kick things off with a bang I’ve got something special.
2000AD – Prog 2012
At long last I’ve got a 2000AD review to put up. Prog 2012 is a heady dose of thrill power, running to 100 pages and kicks off new story arcs and includes some one shots, giving the reader a fair idea of 2000AD’s mix of SF and supernatural stories, and a nice intro to their series to start the year.200AD is different from any of the other big name comic books. With it’s serial format and weekly schedule the stories are paced much differently from the usual fare, and there is fare more latitude for one off stories, be they for established characters or wholly new pieces. The writing in undeniably slanted towards the British reader, and is possibly more adult than that found in DC and Marvel. The art is also distinct and different, varying from series to series.This combines to give 2000AD a different tone to it’s rivals, one that’s refreshing to read after all the New 52 reviews. Prog 2012 lays the groundwork for the first part of the coming year, with the opening parts of stories for a number of characters/series. The most obvious exception to this is Dredd himself, the iron jawed judge getting something altogether different for his story…
Judge Dredd – Choose Your Own Xmas
A complete of a change of pace from the normal comics, this Yuletide adventure follows the footsteps of the Fighting Fantasy books and produces a non sequential, chose your own adventure. The story follows Jackson Packard, and the unfortunate adventure you guide him through, ending in failure or success as your choices dictate. Of course, this being 2000AD, it has more than a little fun with the concept. A testament to both quality and the sheer difference of it, is that I’m going back to re read it one the review goes up.
Absalom – Sick Leave (Part 1)
The story starts in a falling down part of East London, where graffiti and gang tags mask the signs of something far more ominous, drawn onto the walls of a council estate. It’s not long before things start to go wrong for the officers under Detective Inspector Absalom’s command, investigating the area. Absalom himself is absent from the scene, instead the DI is visiting an oncology ward, and finding something equally horrible waiting for him. It’s British police vs the supernatural, in action filled black and white grubbiness.
Nikolai Dante- The Wedding of Jena Makarov (Part 1)
The most bizarre Year Of The Tsar 2677 , Nicolai Dante, bastard son of the Romanov Tsar, and leader of the rebellion against his father, has been captured, and is being publicly tortured. Nikolia Dante has a very long running story, having first appeared way back in 1997, and is far more detailed than I could hope to detail here. My knowledge of the series is limited to only fairly recent occurrences, so it is probably best new readers simply go with the flow, rather than rely too heavily on anything I say.
Aquilla is a wanderer, blessed by the godess Ammit The Devourer. One of the gladiators that took parts in Spartacus’ rebellion, he was crucified with his fellow rebels, before his prayers were answered. Now serving the god who freed him, Aquilla stalks the world, hunting for souls to sake Ammit’s hunger.
Grey Area- Meet & Greet (Part 1)
Earth is accepting extraterrestrial visitors and quarantining them, in the North American based Global Exo Segregation Zone, or the Grey Area. The ramshackle holding area is policed by the Exo Transfer Control squads, tasked with preventing any escapees entering the wider world and dealing with creatures far superior to them in ways too numerous to list.
Dandridge- A Christmas Ghost Story
The ability to harness spirits, spearheaded by the Victorian Spiritualists has lead to a very different England to the one we know, with a society and economy based on the supernatural. Our narrator, Dandridge, himself a formerly imprisoned spectre recounts a tale of supernatural horror.
Sinister Dexter - Now & Again
The two gunsharks have fun jumping around the 2000AD verse. Dan Abnett clearly has a ball with his two characters, as they run into many of 2000AD’s most recognisable faces.
Strontium Dog- The Project (Part: 1)
Johnny Alpha has been presumed dead for some time. Finally back in the land of the living, he’s avoiding returning to his old vocation as bounty hunter.
And that’s the lot. The coming year will see me making every effort to get 2000AD reviews onto the schedule regularly, so expect to hear far more from Dredd, Tharg, and the others.
More comics tomorrow.