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Messages - AlexF

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Other Reviews / Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« on: 14 October, 2019, 11:10:44 am »
Yeah, Sci Fi hospital dramas really ought to work in 2000AD - I wonder if the problem is that no writers in a position to deliver such a strip have actually worked as medical professionals or even in a hospital setting - I think it's one of those things where you need a bit of real-world knowledge to bring a story to life.

Anyway, on to Prog 1300 and beyond - thrills are going to start ramping up, I'm sure of it!

Other Reviews / Re: Musings on The Small House.
« on: 04 October, 2019, 12:45:54 pm »
To my mind, because of Dirty Frank, The Small House really begins with the first Low Life story. On that basis, can anyone provide an order of reading of all relevant/connected stories leading up to The Small House, and whether or not they've been collected?

Too lazy to do it myself, but if there is a sequence of books collecting the full story line, I'd be tempted to get them all and put them on the shelf together. I might even get a second set and send them to a friend in New Zealand.



If you're going to bring Low Life into it, and you should, the ultra-complete reading order, as available in collected form, would be:

Judge Dredd Mega Collection Vols 20 and 21 (all Low-Life all the time, + the first bit of Titan)
or else Mega-City Undercover Vols 1, 2 and 3 (All of Low Life + Lenny Zero + Max Normal)


Judge Dredd: Titan (Which covers Titan + both books of Enceladus)

Judge Dredd: Cold Wars (which has a couple of Williams-scripted bits about Sov stuff - but you could easily skip this volume)

Judge Dredd: the Small House (which includes a vital pre-Small House story, and a neat epilogue)

That pretty much has it all. There are a couple of uncollected Rob Williams Dredd stories you could arguably throw in that delve into the Dredd-Hershey relationship, and introduce SJS Judge Gerhard, and heck why not all the stories with Sensitive Klegg, but you don't need to read those to follow the overall story. Plus, I can't remember what they're called or which Progs/Megs they were in.

If you're being super thorough, you might want to hunt out some uncollected Gordon Rennie and Al Ewing stuff, to see where the Kazan Clone came from (Gulag, I think?), and to meet Account Judge Maitland (The Bean Counter?). The Rennie Stuff will come up in the Case Files soon enough...

General / Re: Space Spinner 2000AD
« on: 04 October, 2019, 10:30:16 am »
There is an awful lot of 80s nostalgia going on in my TV watching / podcast listening habits of late, and none can touch the 80s glory of the new SS2000 logo.

But what's SpaceSpinner2000 going to look like in the year 1990?

General / Re: Space Spinner 2000AD
« on: 16 September, 2019, 04:30:08 pm »
Best art: Ewins / J.McCarthy for Bad Company
Best writing: Wagner/Grant for the double-whammy of the Rammy and the Blimps from Alabammy
Best overall Thrill: Bad Company, not least for getting a decent sequel ready for print within just 6 months of the first book being a smash hit.
Best Month: a toss up between February and November; reckon I'll side with November on a technicality - I think I've bought reprints of ALL five thrills multiple times (Oz, The Rammy, Bad Company II, Zenith phase 1, Nemesis VII and no Future Shocks...)
Best Year: I'm sticking with 1986. RAGE!

Best overall moment: Fox getting married! Many congratulations / herzlichen Gluckwunch as they may or may not say in Germany these days.

Other Reviews / Re: Musings on The Small House.
« on: 13 September, 2019, 11:00:51 am »
Having just re-read the Small House in collected form, with the prologue, I liked it even more than when it was first in the Progs. I remember it felt like a breakneck thrill-ride at the time, with not enough explaining what was going on and what it all meant - but in collected form that's really not a problem at all. I sort of wish there were another couple of earlier stories in there bridging the Rob Williams 'saga' in between Titan/Enceladus and Act of Grud, but that's the thing with Dredd - it is possible to break it into satisfying chunks, but to get the absolute most out of it, you've just got to read basically ALL of it!

In all, a hugely satisfying conclusion to the Trifecta / Titan sequences; a slight shame that the 'ramifications' basically amount to a couple of character deaths (I will miss you forever, Dirfty Frank!) Hershey resigning and us getting a new chief Judge - one of these days Wagner or someone is going to dare to relax the iron rule of the Judges into some sort of democracy. Can you imagine if Dredd has to step back to being merely Judge, but requiring another person / body of people to take over the jury/executioner parts...

or maybe that would break the whole concept of the character/story too much.

Other Reviews / Re: The completely self absorbed 2000ad re-read thread
« on: 12 September, 2019, 03:02:39 pm »
I very distinctly remember that first series of Shakara running in the Prog. It coincided with me first taking out a subscription to 2000AD and getting it delivered to my own flat, as opposed to picking up stacks of Progs from my parents' house in University holidays. And it was so effin' good.

The Smith era neatly marks out the point when I became an 'adult' 2000AD fan, not just someone still reading what I thought of as my big brother's comics. (although he'd basically stopped reading 2000AD around Prog 1000, when he left the country. I don't think it was because of the state of the Prog at the time, but you never know.)

My recollection going forward is that you're about to climb a giant hill of awesomeness, with a few stumbles on the way but basically reaching a thrill plateau in 1-2 years. I look forward to reading your thoughts!

General / Re: Does 2000 AD need another 'Judge Dredd'?
« on: 15 August, 2019, 12:47:52 pm »
Short answer: no, 2000AD doesn't need a new Dredd, it seems to be getting along just fine as it is!

Longer answer: it sure would be fun if a collective of writers/artists got together to dream up a new character/setting and took turns crafting stories over a whole year. See, for example, team Trifecta. I'm sure dividing up the spoils would be a bit of a challenge but not an impossible one.

I, for one, think that 2000AD is missing a bit of the classic Brit comics formula of having a character who pointedly doesn't move forward or change with each episode, and in fact each episode is more or less the same as the last. It worked for Dredd for 30 years before we started getting used to, and hence demanding, more stories that progress an overall plot, likewise Sinister Dexter for the first decade.

Hard to do, especially when it's unfashionable. But this is, more or less, what the likes of Wagner and Mills did when they set up Battle, Action, 2000AD and so on, isn't it? Created a story set up, then farmed out scripts and art duties to trusted creators?

Books & Comics / Re: Adverts in 2000ad
« on: 30 July, 2019, 01:10:51 pm »
I was the type of nerd who was annoyed that a company dared to name itself 'Manga' but had the business model of selling 'anime'.

So few friends.

Books & Comics / Re: Adverts in 2000ad
« on: 29 July, 2019, 12:13:00 pm »
Confession time!
I did (age 15, for all the difference that makes) send off for the Muscle Dynamics programme.
Can't remember if it was the Gateshead chapter or the Isle of Man chapter, although presumably they're the same thing.

I got a very lo-fi book back in the post, which, believe it or not, was relatively practical. It listed a number of exercises you can do in your room without needing any weights or equipment, essentially using your own body as the weight to lift. Of course paying for a book to tell you to do press-ups and sit-ups isn't exactly ground-breaking stuff. It also suggested eating well would help. But it didn't encourage me to send off more money for weights and/or protein shakes.

More salubrious were two appendices: the first telling you how to astound your friends with feats of strength. The only ones I recall were precutting the pages of a telephone directory, thus enabling you to rip it in half at an opportune moment, and a technique for exploding a hot water bottle through the power of breath that made no sense. Blow real hard! was the essence...
Appendix 2 was 'how to be a super-stud'. Charmingly, the advice was practical and simple - be confident, and be prepared to ask lots of people out, 'cos you WILL get rejected more often than not. If you do strike up conversation, actually listen to what the person is saying. It didn't mention 'bring up comics in conversation,' mind.

Needless to say, while I did follow the exercise routine for something like 3 weeks, I did not build any muscles, achieve fabulous feats of strength, or have any more luck with girls.

On the plus side, John Smith gave me Stanley from Slaughterbowl as a role model to aspire to at around this time, clearly the better man than the meathead with the bigger dinosaur.

Off Topic / Comics or opera? U decide
« on: 29 July, 2019, 11:14:04 am »
Following a story on the BBC today about UK petitions, I found this one:

which calls for the government to fund comics in the UK to the same level as opera.
If everyone signs it who reads 2000AD, the Phoenix, the Beano, Commando and all the Panini Marvel/DC reprints...

...it'll probably still fall short of the 100,000 signatures needed to force Parliament to at least consider the proposal. Still, fun to see actual politics being used as a way to keep comics going!

I'm also tickled by the idea of comparing comics to opera. I guess both are examples of arts that were once genuine mass-market entertainments that have ended up being incredibly niche and prohibitively expensive.

Prog / Re: 2000 AD in Stages
« on: 26 July, 2019, 03:22:38 pm »
I'm in love with this thread and all who sail in her.

News / Re: Button Man coming to Netflix.
« on: 24 July, 2019, 07:49:23 pm »
Get Seans Bean and Pertwee both as rival buttons, and we could have some seriously gruesome deaths to enjoy. Not that I'm advocating Paul W S Anderson for director. Neil Marshall, on the other hand...

News / Re: New 2000 AD creators blog
« on: 24 July, 2019, 07:46:58 pm »
When one is guesting on two podcasts that happen to pop up in the same weekend, both times touting a still-ongoing blog project, one had better have new content ready to show for it!

And so, on to the next hero, cover artist of today, strip star of yesterday Alex Ronald:

Megazine / Re: Meg 410 Psilent Running
« on: 23 July, 2019, 10:37:02 am »
Unlike some I enjoyed this Anderson episode a lot; for all we know Cass was a mentor or helped out with Corann at the academy, they may be very close?

You are correct!
Cass was indeed a mentor, some might even say grud-mother, to young Corann. Is she not one of the twins from Triad, and its much-unloved follow up tale Crusade (which itself tied up a dangling plot thread from Engram). The ghost of her twin sister (Lesley?) appearing at the end of this episode was a lovely touch.

A proper good Megazine all round this month, with expert-level Dredd, and much better second episodes fro Diamond Dogs and the Returners, although in both cases I feel there's excellent art carrying a slightly less excellent story.

I should probably put this in the Prog thread, but as one of the people called out for complaining about young, sexy Anderson, it was the 'young' bit that bothered me. Dowling nails not-young but still sexy Anderson to perfection on the cover!

General / Re: Mega City Book Club - a new podcast about 2000AD books
« on: 23 July, 2019, 10:22:43 am »
I'd say the original Crisis printing comes out best, but the mood is changed in each version to interesting effect. Who knew there was so much artistic potential in a drab school building?

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