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Author Topic: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread  (Read 71908 times)

Colin YNWA

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #435 on: 01 April, 2018, 05:39:58 pm »
Well I've rattled through the last twelve Progs of 1990 and so I'll rattle through some thoughts

1. John Wagner's run as regular Dredd writer ends with a bit of a whimper alas... even the PJ Story 'What I did during Necropolis' is relatively weak.
1a. Though that said I love the debate between the senior Judge's about whether citizen's should get a vite. Dredd shines in those moments

2. Garth Ennis's run, which I'm fonder of than many I think, we'll see how we do on re-read, starts with a nice enough opening in 711

3. The creators profiles which appear sporadically after 700 don't half make the creators see a bit up themselves. I used to think they seemed so cool!

4. So is the fella in Junker meant to be an edgier cool Han Solo? If so why does he just come across as a complete dick?

5. Hewligan Haircut is defo better than Time Flies, neither of them really holds up any more.

6. Unlike Shamballa which is just brilliant on every level. One day I'm going to try to get bold and rank the early Anderson stories, will be bloomin' hard but Shamballa will surely be near the top?

7. How much do I love Bitz, the answer is quite a lot. A lovely compact flashback of 8 bit fun.

8. Much as I'll be happy to give Mark Millar a hard time later I do absolutely adore Silo, its Soooooo good.

TordelBack

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #436 on: 01 April, 2018, 06:26:02 pm »
My feelings on Silo are thus: it could have got away with the The Shining bit,  or it could have got away with the Die Hard bit,  but not both.  When the second 'homage'rolled around I went from enjoying a seriously stylish strip to feeling like Millat was taking me for a fool.

And yeah,  'Wot I did during Necropolis' is so sub-par for both writer and character that to this day I generally remember it as being an Ennis strip.

Colin YNWA

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #437 on: 02 April, 2018, 08:07:22 am »
Okay well that was weird. I'd realised I'd missed the Winter Specials out of my re-read so grabbed them from '88, '89 and 90 to catch up... now I've owned the '89 special since I caught my collection up a few years back and I don't think I've ever read it. I know when I bought it I'd put it aside to read as part of my catch up but seem to have missed this one when doing so...

... not that I missed much. I mean the Arthur Ranson Dredd looks great, but...

Tyranny Rex does not look like that.

Medivac is pretty poor and Bellardinelli's art doesn't work at all here

Even some of the text pieces are reprint AND

...Well the end of Rogue Trooper - The Hit, well old skool Rogue in general is very forgettable.

...maybe I did read it and just found nothing in it to recall!

Colin YNWA

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #438 on: 03 April, 2018, 07:37:23 am »
1989

Not quite sure what to say about 1989... well actually maybe I do. When talking about 1988 I said this looking ahead

Quote
Yeah there are some real highlights... just not as many as I've become used to. So 1988 makes it clear that 2000ad grew too fast to quick and needed to take a breather for a moment before learning just what it can do with its new shape and form...

... now in 1989 ... if memory serves... it might just do that... though it won't all be plain sailing either... lets find out together shall we.

I was damned close, but 1989, or at least the bulk of it, is very similar to 1988. ...

Yeah Prog 650 came just a little too late to save 1989. Its not a bad year, not by any stretch, but it continues the dip from the magnificence of the mid eighties and when it stinks it really bloomin' stinks.

So I'll guide you through the annuals and the specials and then we'll head into the new decade.... full of fresh hope and A levels (well it was for me!) ... and we might have enough for another classic, or we might still be a little too choppy... I look forward to finding out.

So there we have the last two years, and my predictions of what was to come in the following year and now I've finished

1990

and have to say I'm glad I said
Quote
we might still be a little too choppy...
cos that's very much what 1990 is. I mean don't get me wrong there are some real highlights, Song of the Surfer, end of Deadman and build up to Necropolis, Necropolis itself is pretty damned good, end of Zenith Phase III. Luckily its not all endings that are good as we have Shadows and yeah I'll say it Silo oh and another Anderson classic* BUT those endings are symptonatic of 2000ad's problems at the moment.

So yeah as stuff ends there's just not yet the quality to replace stuff, some new strips are fine, but not great, Medivac, Armoured Gideon I enjoy but they are not standout. and some stuff is just poor, I'll not harp on again and name names.

Stuff is changing and the good times have ended. Change is good, but change is hard and sometimes as well as looking at the doors that are opening you need to look at the doors that are closing a little more closely. 2000ad in 1990 is right in the middle if its teenage outburst. It cares too much about the fact that Jason Donovan is a bit rubbish, I mean its not as if we didn't know that, and forgetting what made itself so special as it grew up, its talents and creativity. The fact that the chaotic energy of childhood is far more exciting and rebellious than the forced pretensions of teenage years when we get too distracted by trying to be cool and looking at what others are doing. We think we're being cool and individual by joining the cool crowd, but in reality we're in danger of being 'so alternative its conservative' and frankly when we look back we'll be embarassed.

I was lucky when all this was going on I was in the middle of my own teen outburst and as such I loved a lot of this stuff. What stands out to me how much of the stuff I really enjoyed reading when this came out Horned God, Hewligan's, Time Flies, Bradley etc just doesn't hold up to me now. That's cool it was meant for me then, not me know, but me now is getting really bored with it all!

So yeah choppy was a very good good word to describe 1990, the lows and more tellingly medicority, make the highs feels all the better. There's just not enough of them and the Progs slump continues with what is very possibly the weakest year for the Galaxy's Greatest yet... chillingly I'm not entering 1991 and starting my job in Yorkshire Bank with any optimism that things will be picking up any time soon!

*You know there's a case to be made that Anderson to date (1990 date not now) is the most consistently brilliant thrill in the Prog. It tends to get a little overlooked by other highlights, Zenith, Bad Company, Halo etc etc but I'm always delighted when its in and it has much to say and stretches things far more than other strips. I do love Anderson and its had so many highlights its almost as if we're been blinded to its brilliance!

feathers

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #439 on: 03 April, 2018, 11:18:02 am »
Anderson was great, and always good quality.  It's funny how things slip away, I'm at the end of 95 and just been reminded how long it's been since her last appearance by the introduction of Judge Janus - I assume she moved straight to the Megazine in what was undoubtedly a big loss for the weekly.

Magnetica

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #440 on: 03 April, 2018, 07:16:31 pm »
I am part way through the Shamballa volume in the Mega Collection. I originally wasn’t bothered but then Alan Grant named it as his favourite story out of everything he has done (at the 40th). I bought it there and then and even got him to sign it. It has just been sitting in my pile of stuff till now. Having finally got round to it, I think I can safely say Shamballa is just fantastic.

Indeed it is the sort of thing we could do with in the Prog right now (but that’s a whole other debate).

Colin YNWA

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #441 on: 16 April, 2018, 08:59:57 pm »
The saving of early 1991

Its getting pretty rough out there. 2000ad has a venerable history of dark heroes who defie expectation and the cliche of the hero. Dennehy in Junker isn't one of those he's just a charmless twat. I'm almost enjoying reading it to see just how much of a twat they will make him... but then it dawns on me what a joyous twat he is and I go back to not liking it.

Alas Rogue Friday in the Golden Fox Rebellion isn't much better. At least Rogue Friday isn't a twat he's just dull.

There's some lukewarm Future Shocks and while I've always been a defender of Ennis Dredd I'm wondering if this will continue as I'm finding Death Aid pretty flat, especially when we get a lovely Wagner and Yeowell one off pop up.

Anderson - Engram is great but alone its a struggle to save this pretty dire start to the year... I mean a run of Bitz is becoming one of the highlights of the Prog and I was genuinely happy when Roxilla waxed lyrical about a band I'd heard of and actually really like (Lush for those interested).

This tricky period for Tharg is of course however saved by a classic, that for reasons that I'm sure baffle you as much as me has never been reprint and that of course is the letter printed in Prog 715. A masterpiece, cleverly defying expectation, sharp, witty and endlessly entertaining. This letter at first seem to be a plea, you then reflect on it as an artist poem exploring the phrase 'Careful what you wish for' then the pathos and irony hits you. It works on so many levels.

I'm sure in some far off database Buttonman has this highlighted in a special colour, just incase he wants to read it again. He doesn't need to of course as this favourite of all the missives has been read so many times he's commited it to memory.

After the joy of the picture I'm sure we will all discuss in a couple of Prog's time the big question on everyone's lips is whatever happen to that great artist. Whatever happened to Colin Taylor?



TordelBack

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #442 on: 16 April, 2018, 10:58:10 pm »
Alas Rogue Friday in the Golden Fox Rebellion isn't much better. At least Rogue Friday isn't a twat he's just dull.

I'll this for the late Mr. Fleisher, he had a great ear for Rogue Trooper titles: Golden Fox Rebellion, Saharan Ice Belt War, Apocalypse Dreadnaught - every bit as good as Ascent to Buzzard 3, From Hell to Eternity or personal fave All Hell on the Dix-I Front: these are stories I want to read (sadly, I did).

Anyway, I heard Colin Taylor went into the steam tunnels under the local library and was never seen again.  But sometimes, when the staff come in in the morning, the Graphic Novels section has been reshelved according some incomprehensible and possibly non-euclidean system.

Colin YNWA

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #443 on: 21 April, 2018, 09:02:14 pm »
So like mid March until the glories discussed below have much to back them up. Some nice Wagner Dredd's drop in to make me realise how poor Death Aid actually was. Some interesting shorts, including some for regular stories do their best to shore things up, but really its down to V for Ven...

...I mean Brigand Doom to help keep the Prog afloat. I mean its a pretty lazy comparison to label Brigand Doom a V copy. But having read V recently as it goes the only reason its lazy is cos its so bloomin' obvious. Now that's not to say its anywhere near as good as V. Its not. However its does do its own things better and its a real blast. It really eggs on the dark so 90s unsubtle satire. At least here McKenzie bites at a target more worth than Jason Donavan, Pop and Goth Culture. Its sharp, its exciting, its funny when it wants to be ... really its exactly what it says it is, its 2000ad does V and the thing is 2000ad does V is a good idea.

And Jez doesn't David D'Antiquis do a perfect job on the art!

AlexF

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #444 on: 23 April, 2018, 12:39:35 pm »
Having only read V many years after Brigand Doom left the Prog I've never made that comparison before, but you're absolutely right. The plotting doesn't live up to that but the art does, I reckon. And I do think McKenzie got a lot of things right with character, setting and tone.

Colin YNWA

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #445 on: 23 April, 2018, 09:09:30 pm »
I saw the cover of Prog 723 and my heart sank. I have to be honest its not a good Prog.

While art is always very subjective I have to say this is one of the hardest Progs I can ever remember on the eye. Yes we have a Wagner Dredd, but I find Vanyo's Dredd really ackward and stilted and it looks so dated. I love Carl Critchlow's current work, love it, but his painted work on Nemesis amd Deadlock is the very defination of the mud period.

Next might be more controversial but I'm no fan of Cassanovas, again I find his art awkward, this figure work just doesn't move for me and I sometimes find his storytelling clunky. Oh and I don't like his design work and particularly his robots ... which given he's doing Robo-Hunter here doesn't bode well.

Now Jim McCarthy's work I can enjoy, he's not a favourite however and here the colouring strangely flatters his line work... oh and speaking of both the colour not working and controverisal I'm not liking Ron Smith on Golden Fox Rebellion. For me Ron Smith is past his best at this point and again the colours just scream at you... not in a good way.

Finally while he's not my favourite I do like David Hine's art and he's perfect for low key tale of Tao De Moto... but two pages of pleasing art just ain't enough in the Prog...

... I know others will utterly disagree and that's now it should be, art is like that, but for me behind the cluttered uninspiring cover the Prog isn't the sight for sore eyes it can be...

... I'm such a negative nelly and I've not even mentioned the stories...

Fungus

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #446 on: 23 April, 2018, 09:42:19 pm »
Ha - at 'uninspiring' I guessed the cover in question   :)
It's the kind of cover that makes you wonder if the prog had given up - and a jumping-on prog, too...

Brigand Doom was moody, beyond that I can't see the appeal. Always felt the strips of the time did it a favour, by comparison. A pale V.

TordelBack

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #447 on: 23 April, 2018, 09:52:33 pm »
For me Ron Smith is past his best at this point and again the colours just scream at you... not in a good way.

No artist could make that story readable (well, maybe Cam Kennedy), so I won't blame Ron.   But the colours are indeed vile.

OTOH, I quite like Cassanova's insanely busy art on RoboHunter: it's not entirely successful,  but I can see why Tharg thought he was a natural fit.

Hine's work is definitely pick of that litter.

AlexF

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #448 on: 25 April, 2018, 01:32:55 pm »
Mud aside, I remember really enjoying the ridiculous mystery angle of Nemesis & Deadlock. It's kind of a perfect example of why murder mystery comics ought to work really well - but ultimately don't. (Basically, you have to set up a bunch of possible crooks in episode 1, then each episode explains why each in turn couldn't be the real killer. There's no room to seed careful clues about who the villain actually is; Mills doesn't even try, just playing the whole thing for laughs and picking his usual holes at elitist types).

Colin YNWA

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Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« Reply #449 on: 26 April, 2018, 08:59:27 pm »
Mud aside, I remember really enjoying the ridiculous mystery angle of Nemesis & Deadlock. It's kind of a perfect example of why murder mystery comics ought to work really well - but ultimately don't. (Basically, you have to set up a bunch of possible crooks in episode 1, then each episode explains why each in turn couldn't be the real killer. There's no room to seed careful clues about who the villain actually is; Mills doesn't even try, just playing the whole thing for laughs and picking his usual holes at elitist types).

The trouble is the laughs just don't work for me and the whole thing feels laboured and forced and while Mills is trying to deal with big issues under the fun and be so cool and alternative, alas it just feels so twee, the very last thing I think he wants it to be.

Anyway Junker... bloody hell that didn't half go on!