2000 AD Online Forum

Spoilers => Prog => : Goosegash 14 March, 2021, 12:21:33 PM

: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Goosegash 14 March, 2021, 12:21:33 PM
Thrills Of The Future is plugging the return of Lawless later in the year.

Dredd: Things are coming to a head for Chimpsky as he decides to tackle Zonny head on, and Dredd is on his way. Looks like that inevitable confrontation is coming sooner rather than later

3rillers: I've really enjoyed this as a light-hearted change of pace, there's a charming whimsy to the story which has somewhat absent in the prog of late. Whoever predicted last week the Robo-Vicar would be the killer was spot on.

Thistlebone: Not a huge amount happens this week but I really love the choice of cartoon style for the flashback page.

Proteus Vex: The story wraps up with Vex discharged & disgraced, with a bit of story hook concerning the fate of Midnight. I'm guessing this will definitely be back.

Durham Red: Also concludes. This has been a real unexpected highlight for me over the last few months. Willsher's handling of the action has been superb and I feel like Worley has has added a degree of character believability to Red which other writers have struggled to do, even Abnett didn't manage to make her more than a generic wise-cracking badass. Hope we get more from this team sooner rather than later.

We also get a Star Scan of Red courtesy of Pris Bampoh which I really like, has a bit of a Full-Tilt Boogie vibe to it.

: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 14 March, 2021, 12:45:48 PM
Cover by Simon Davis:

(https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EwMSQ3oXEAY-ekE?format=jpg&name=large)
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 14 March, 2021, 12:46:19 PM
Cover and Logo:

(https://dyn.media.forbiddenplanet.com/_pNY9guolW7LOeEsAE1U_Tctd7U=/trim/fit-in/779x1024/filters:format(webp)/https://media.forbiddenplanet.com/products/ef/1b/87177660244144c18465fd89c842222d53f7.jpg)
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 14 March, 2021, 02:30:22 PM
Thrills Of The Future is plugging the return of Lawless later in the year.

YESSSSSS!!!!!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Wilko10 14 March, 2021, 08:20:32 PM
Thrills Of The Future is plugging the return of Lawless later in the year.

YESSSSSS!!!!!

"It's the town that puts the 'DROKK' back into Badrock!"
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Wilko10 14 March, 2021, 08:38:50 PM
I'll preface my review with this simple statement: What. A. Prog.

Dredd -- "Because they think ideas are dangerous?" It's thoughtful, entertaining and glazed in delightfully Dredd-ish bizarreness. I like seeing Chimpsky become increasingly more committed to making a positive difference in a world where tyranny and order are two sides of the same coin.

NAKKA of the S.T.A.R.S. -- Quite the lightness of touch to see Nakrosky balancing his work with village duties. Two entries into this 3RILLER, and it's progressing very nicely. Seeing Penny and Nakrosky investigate in their own unique ways was a clever contrast; one being personal, the other formal.

Thistlebone -- Suitably grim, with pagan themes befitting of its tone. Such an unexpected turn to introduce simplistic art for a flashback in the midst of Davis' detailed illustrations.

Proteus Vex -- I admittedly haven't been a fan of this series from Part 1 but, truth be told, credit where credit is due, this was an excellent conclusion. The writing was strong, the art forthright and its ending relatively ambiguous as to what happened to Midnight Indicating Shame. Maybe I should give this a second-read.

Durham Red -- Another fitting conclusion to what has been, for me, the Prog Highlight since its run began. So many understated moments, as well as strikingly simple art and a clear arc for characters like Sheriff and Red. Considering John Carpenter is my favourite director, Worley was absolutely spot on in making this an effective siege plot.

Prog Rating - 5/5
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Barrington Boots 16 March, 2021, 10:02:12 AM
Lockdown ennui stopped me reviewing the last prog, but I'm catching up. Also my Prog arrived on Saturday! Wooo!
Lovely cover this week, simple and effective design.

Dredd - The little speech at the start about ideas.. are we building towards a Dredd / Chimpsky confrontation? I enjoy a Dredd where Dredd isn't the central character and I enjoy Chimpsky's more hopeful take on Dredd's world. That said, this is my least favourite Chimpsky outing to date - too much too soon, or just him being a little too good at everything? - so like a few others have said if Dredd doesn't kill him here then I'd prefer to see him move onto his own series. Lovely design on young Chimpsky btw.

NAKKA of the S.T.A.R.S. - Digging this 3riller. I appreciate the gentler pace and the 'Englishness' of it all. It's amusing without being too slapstick or cynical, great characters, cool designs, lovely art and colours. I think stuff like this has a real place in the prog and providing it sticks it's ending I'd like to see more of this.

Thistlebone - Moving at a glacial pace but enjoying this. Less creepy factor in this episode but the flashback nicely done with the art switch - this story is very welcome in my prog.

Proteus Vex - Superb conclusion to what has been an excellent run. Last week had all the action, this week has all the talking with a bit of a cliffhanger ending. Vex himself remains a bit of an enigma but that's not an issue - despite being mainly small scale shootouts, the series has a weighty feel with events seeming very significant because of the way they're framed in the context of a more realised universe. Art-wise I think Jake Lynch has more than stepped up. I really like this and I hope it's coming back.

Durham Red - Wraps up. I'm still not sold on 'regrettable-uncontrollable-bloodlust' Red - the concept works, but not the setup for me, because I can't understand why she'd put herself in situation where she can do such things unless she's a complete idiot. That said her actions at the end of this episode DO work in the context and things wrap up very nicely. On the flipside, not sure why the sherrif acted as he did because until she refuses his offer all I've mainly seen is a badass saving her own bacon, so he comes across as a bit of a bellend.
It might sound like I didn't like this, but I think this reboot is the best take on Durham Red since the original and overall it's been a great read. Full marks to Ben Willsher for his designs in this run which have been great and I loved floating brain lady. I hope this does come back, because for the first time I'd like to see what happens to the character next.

: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 16 March, 2021, 09:23:23 PM
My subscription copy landed and firstly what a striking cover.

Dredd remains brilliant as Naom takes action and Dredd closes in. Its all character, its all action, its all thrills and spills. Its all top stuff. Though my comments remain it would be great to see Chimpsky break out from Dredd after this, but until then let's just enjoy this.

3rillers is excellent stuff as well. Robots with wonky programming and summer fetas, what's not to love, especially when its all drawn by Brendan McCarthy.

Thistlebone is still sowing its seeds, but its doing it masterfully and slowly, slowly cranking up the tension. With explodes some what in that discovery on the final page, I suspect to just slowly, slowly crank up again next time.

Finally we get two ending, both of which end up with someone in prison and the tantalising prospect of seeing them both escape or be rescued in some future tale. Let's hope so as these are both exellent.

Proteus Vex weaves its ending with guile and smarts, after what's gone before we don't need an explosive ending, but this one is very smartand closes things while opening doors for next time. Christ let there be a next time this is a wonderful series and Jake Lynch - now he is JAKE LYNCH (see a self absorbed thread) has done a fantastic job stepping in where Henry Flint had been.

Durham Red hasn't quite done with the violence and beats its way to a conclusion, but it the more sanguine second half that real adds the impact. Its a fantastic ending to a great story and I look forward to seeing that comes next - I hope.

An interesting Star Scan of said Red wraps things up and wraps up a superb Prog. How can next weeks live up to this one - why by double Feral and Foe that's how.

Well done that Tharg... of thrill of the Prog - why just one panel of Lawless thank you very much. The rest my well have been quite brilliant but seeing Lawless on the way back top even this magnificence!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 17 March, 2021, 03:32:54 AM
Again I can say this was a good prog. Looking forward to the return of Feral & Foe next week.


Dredd – The action is heating up as we are heading for the eventually clash between Chimpsky and Dredd. Dredd is one of those strips where the main actor can have a more background appearance than taking centre stage. Interesting that Cookies “stole” the look of classic Flash.

Nakka – More investigations lead us to the point where the “real” killer is revealed. But is he? Next week the full truth will be revealed. This has certainly been one of the more enjoyable thrillers and Nakka would not look out of place with his own entry in the prog

Thistlebone – The plot is slowly moving forward revealing more layers upon layers. This is a great read with Davis art as always spot-on.

Vex – The finale is focus on story rather than action as more truths are exposed. The ending tells us that this is not the end (Carrol revealed in an interview that he will start working on the third arc – please let us not wait too long). I can even say that I enjoyed this series more than the first. I was sceptical of Lynch on art duties (Flint is a true master and one of my favourite modern artists) but his work complements the series wonderfully. More please Tharg, my top thrill of the year.

Red –  Was I entertained the last few weeks? A resounding Yes. Enjoyed this run of Red and a can say that this is certainly the best take on the character. Hopefully we will get more of the team.

5 stars
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 17 March, 2021, 09:59:02 AM
As Chimpsky is heading for a conclusion next week (I saw a ad in the Meg for a new Dredd story starting in prog 2225) I see another remote possibility and that is that Dredd catches him but uses him as an informant or force him to join Wally Squad.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 17 March, 2021, 01:43:10 PM
From Pat Mills twitter feed:
Just editing Episode Ten of Slaine - the very last episode. Beautiful art by Leo. Rather poignant as it's St Patrick's Day.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Bolt-01 17 March, 2021, 02:17:54 PM
ooh, a very interesting thing there is that Pat is getting the opportunity to tweak the script following the arrival of the art! That (I believe) is the exception, rather than the norm.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 17 March, 2021, 04:21:19 PM
Apparently he has been doing this for the whole run and before as well
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 17 March, 2021, 04:27:16 PM
Just checked his Twitter feed for the first time in months and of course there’s another gripe regarding rights.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Max Headroom 17 March, 2021, 07:07:02 PM
I guess Pat saying that episode ten of 'Dragontamer' will be "the very last episode" means that this really is the end of 'Web of Weird' and the end of Slaine. I for one will be quite sad - it's been a roller-coaster ride but overall one that I have enjoyed.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: sintec 17 March, 2021, 07:42:44 PM
Two really strong endings in this Prog as both Proteus Vex and Durham Red wrap up their current runs.  Durham keeps the action up while Proteus goes for a more talky ending but both are superb and are clearly setting up some interesting threads for future stories.

Nakka builds on it's start - the art and story are just such a perfect match with their twee English village sci-fi.  Thistlebone on the other hand gives us a darker vision on the English countryside as it slowly builds the tension.

Dredd is still the weak point for me. I loved some of the earlier Chimpsky stories but this one just isn't quite landing for me. Not sure why. There's nothing bad about it I'm just not that engaged with it - maybe a case of too much of a good thing.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 18 March, 2021, 09:17:33 AM
Pat (presumably) tweaking the end of Sláine removes any lingering optimism I had about him reaching agreement with Rebellion to properly complete the Brutannia story, and to give Manco the longer run he deserves. This makes me quite sad, Sláine is my all-time favourite strip and these last 5 books have been terrific, but Pat saying he can't spend his energy on work he doesn't own makes perfect sense for the man he is. He's 72, he knows the value to himself of both his time and his unique talent: Patxit means Patxit. But maybe we'll get an epilogue for the 40th anniversary (if Manco starts now!).

Meanwhile, in unelected-Tharg's thrillmines productivity soars under the technocratic electro-whip.

Dredd feels a bit familiar, with Captain Cassavetes and PJ Primate all evoking earlier stories of the mind that would not conform. Striding into this is a superb actxposition page of Holden's Dredd cracking robo-dummies, which does serve to remind me that I rather like seeing this monolithic geezer (Joe, not Paul, but also Paul) in action.

Thistlebone scratches my Sláine stump as Mick Aston excavates the  Star Carr Antler Headpiece (https://www.britishmuseum.org/collection/object/H_1953-0208-1), probably my favourite British artefact that wasn't looted from some corner of Empire (unless Yorkshire counts..?). I'm not sure how not-Mick knows the things he knows, but it works.  Slow but beautiful, and I loved the Scouting strip.

(https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/1024/cpsprodpb/13C1A/production/_113922908_scbritishmuseum.png)

Durham Red and Proteus Vex both stick their landings after excellent runs,  Vex maybe having the edge with that unexpected resolution, bravurra final page and tease for future adventures. Both strips have had series that delivered more than admirably on the promise of their rsfit runs, and will be very welcome when they return.

Langridge, McCarthy and O'Grady make for a suburb team, and this enjoyable mix of Hot Fuzz, Asimov and Father Brown on this 3riller feels like it could have considerable legs. Langridge's writing feels effortless, the depth and detail McCarthy gives Nakka's face lends weight, and O'Grady's colours evoke a green and robotic land. Hampson House indeed.

: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 18 March, 2021, 09:33:35 AM
-sigh- "Suburb" = "Superb". If auto-correct had bothered its arse like this during Cradlegrave I'd have been hailed as punning genius.

But while I'm here, top marks to SBD for the most SBD cover ever. How much more SBD could a cover be? No more SBD.

(Although I do hope he didn't starve any of his regular models for the purpose).
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 18 March, 2021, 12:37:54 PM
With this and Pandora Perfect, I do hope Langridge finds enough fans to get him far more regularly in the Prog. His voice is a good one to add to the mix.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 18 March, 2021, 12:40:28 PM
With this and Pandora Perfect, I do hope Langridge finds enough fans to get him far more regularly in the Prog. His voice is a good one to add to the mix.

Yeah absolutely agree with this. He adds something to the already brimming pot.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Barrington Boots 18 March, 2021, 01:06:34 PM
PJ Primate

I nearly used this exact phrase. Definite similarity imo (but nicer, of course)
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 18 March, 2021, 01:48:03 PM
Thirded on Langridge. His stuff is dense and light at the same time, neat trick.

Forgot to mention the Durham StarScan - very nice. Sharon Stone meets Billie Eilish meets body armour. Seems like a good reading of the character. Any significance to the Trident/Psi symbol?
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Link Prime 18 March, 2021, 04:34:13 PM
Love the cover this week.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 19 March, 2021, 09:08:12 AM
Here is the answer for everyone wondering about Chimpsky future:

https://2000ad.com/news/whats-coming-from-rebellions-comics-imprints-this-june/ (https://2000ad.com/news/whats-coming-from-rebellions-comics-imprints-this-june/)
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 19 March, 2021, 09:33:43 AM
Here is the answer for everyone wondering about Chimpsky future:

https://2000ad.com/news/whats-coming-from-rebellions-comics-imprints-this-june/ (https://2000ad.com/news/whats-coming-from-rebellions-comics-imprints-this-june/)

Thanks for sharing broodblik - there's so much good news there. I knew we'd heard Chimpsky was getting his own series, but forgotten we knew that title and so therefore I could have worked out this wasn't it. Super excited about that.

But also more Department K and The Out - which again we knew where coming - but damn June is looking like a good month!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 19 March, 2021, 09:41:51 AM
Shame to not see PJ Holden continue with Dept K though. As for The Out, I hope that 1) gets a collected edition, and 2) gets a shop HC.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: norton canes 19 March, 2021, 10:28:44 AM
Slightly delayed prog comments due to a couple of days laid low by AstraZeneca vaccine after-effects...

Excellent cover but if anything perhaps a bit too minimal? Not quite as striking as the representation of the mask in situ with skulls in the story itself. The flashback page in the strip has touches of Pat the Scoutmaster, from TV sitcom Ghosts, who died in 1984. Also, Seema's mug in the first panel bears the logo of Simon Davis and Boo Cook's band Forktail (https://forktail.bandcamp.com/).

Excellent conclusions to P. Vex and D. Red, both with the promise of more to come. The Star Scan is okay but I'd rather have seen something by the Willsher droid. And I'm not sure we've found the real culprit in Nakka - my money's on further twists...

Deep stuff in Dredd. I love the concept of a 'Black market historian', something we may be needing in our age before long. 

: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: MumboJimbo 19 March, 2021, 10:15:02 PM
Great prog, just a couple of nitpicking gripes in an otherwise flawless issue:

Inspector Nakrosky’s hangdog, seen-it-all-before, grizzled cop look feels incongruent to me when compared to his plummy Bix Barton-esque patter.

Chimpsky’s dialogue has lost its distinctive voice of when he was first introduced, when we were privy to his thoughts making all manner of connections and philosophical conjectures. The pull was seeing the inner machinations of a genius - after all, he was modelled on his Chomsky namesake. He’s become more of a generic good guy, which is a bit of pity.

Apart from that, top notch proggage. I thought Durham Red would be a middling kind of thing, but like Hookjaw, far exceeded my expectations. It’s a purple period for the GG. Proteus Vex is just the kind of thing I sub for, and this second instalment has not let me down.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: The Corinthian 19 March, 2021, 11:07:55 PM
Never mind Chimpsky. I want a Midnight Indicating Shame spinoff series.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 20 March, 2021, 03:58:46 AM
Never mind Chimpsky. I want a Midnight Indicating Shame spinoff series.

Second !!!!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 20 March, 2021, 07:03:24 AM
. I thought Durham Red would be a middling kind of thing, but like Hookjaw, far exceeded my expectations.

The Worley Effect. The two recent strips I've been least interested in reading - until I read them.

This week's writer credits* are worth considering: Carroll, Eglinton, Worley, Niemand,  Langridge. Setting aside the disputed details of the Niemand droid's chassis number, and Langridge's former stint in the dawn-era Meg, Carroll appears to be the elder lemon of that gang of enfants terra-meks, at least as far as 2000AD goes.

Given that there isn't a dull page in the whole comic, this is a sign of a prog in good health, one that doesn't entirely depend on current mainstays like Abnett or Edginton. (Note too that Langridge has immigrated from Regened, highlighting another route in for new or reconditioned talent).


*I take it as read that we all (usually) love the art.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 20 March, 2021, 07:44:15 AM
This week's writer credits* are worth considering: Carroll, Eglinton, Worley, Niemand,  Langridge. Setting aside the disputed details of the Niemand droid's chassis number, and Langridge's former stint in the dawn-era Meg, Carroll appears to be the elder lemon of that gang of enfants terra-meks, at least as far as 2000AD goes.

Given that there isn't a dull page in the whole comic, this is a sign of a prog in good health, one that doesn't entirely depend on current mainstays like Abnett or Edginton. (Note too that Langridge has immigrated from Regened, highlighting another route in for new or reconditioned talent).

This is a very, very good point. As you say a sure sign the Prog is in the finest of health. While we get over the Wagner Droid's slowing output and the indea that Uncle Pat is descending further and further into his own anger at the system we can be sure the Prog is in very safe hands. Christ the fact we don't have  Edginton, Dabnett, KekW and Grennie in a Prog this good is a wonderful sign. The fact that the Neimand Droid's out is becoming so regular, so quickly and then add to the mix the host of other Droids developing in the Specialis each year the foundations of long and healthy future have been well laid and we are really reaping the rewards.

Imagine if we got Al Ewing and Spurrioso back!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 20 March, 2021, 08:09:11 AM
The prog is in a great spot with some of the industries best writers. Dredd has now found a solid group of writers taking the character forward.  The variety of stories and different contributors makes the prog even stronger.  I will go out on a limb and say that I will not even miss Pat at all, Wagner I will miss.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 20 March, 2021, 09:04:21 AM
The prog is in a great spot with some of the industries best writers. Dredd has now found a solid group of writers taking the character forward.  The variety of stories and different contributors makes the prog even stronger.  I will go out on a limb and say that I will not even miss Pat at all, Wagner I will miss.

I'll miss Pat. I already do. Without (regular)  Wagner & Grant, Ezquerra, Kennedy, Ewins, O'Neill, GFD, Ron Smith, Tom Frame et al it's already a completely different comic to the one I started with. But as the metaphysics of Trigger's Broom instructs, and WandaVision reminds us, the prog is a Heraclitian fire, defined only by the constant change that destroys and remakes it.

All that matters is that our favourite broom still takes our weight.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Dark Jimbo 20 March, 2021, 09:20:11 AM
But as the metaphysics of Trigger's Broom instructs, and WandaVision reminds us, the prog is a Heraclitian fire, defined only by the constant change that destroys and remakes it.

Also known as the Sugababes paradox.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 20 March, 2021, 09:20:40 AM
As you say Tordel the prog is a different beast. A beast that keeps on changing re-inventing itself and evolving. Sometimes we still feel nostalgic and day-dream about our lost youth and the classics. The prog was great when I start reading it and the prog is still great today. The next 10 years we will see new talent raises and old ones return. Great to be a reader of the prog
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 20 March, 2021, 10:33:51 AM
I will not even miss Pat at all, Wagner I will miss.
Mm. I very much miss the ‘Horned God and before’ Mills. That for me was his zenith. After that point, it felt like the conspiracy/ideology overtook the ideas. Worst of all, some of the strips—like ABC Warriors—just became boring.

Wagner, though, has the kind of distinct voice that in particular will be missed on Strontium Dog and especially Dredd. On the latter, there are good writers, but few feel just right, such is the mark Wagner stamped on the character. If you removed the credit boxes, Ewing and Niemand are the only two writers I’d perhaps mistake for Wagner.

In a more general sense, it is interesting to not only look at a prog without Wagner (and Mills, for that matter), but also Abnett, who has for year now been such a strength for the comic. The lack of any real weakness in 2000 AD this issue showcases that Smith is in the envious position of having a solid talent pool to draw from. (And that we know Abnett is coming back with more The Out is also something to look forward to.)
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 20 March, 2021, 11:25:08 AM
I will not even miss Pat at all, Wagner I will miss.
Mm. I very much miss the ‘Horned God and before’ Mills. That for me was his zenith. After that point, it felt like the conspiracy/ideology overtook the ideas. Worst of all, some of the strips—like ABC Warriors—just became boring.

That is like more than 3 decades ago (just scary how time flies). I still enjoy Savage (would like this to conclude)  and also Defoe. Flesh is something that I never really enjoyed as much and ABC Warriors just felt like recently to display some great art by Langley
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 20 March, 2021, 11:51:09 AM
...And that we know Abnett is coming back with more The Out is also something to look forward to.)

And I believe we know, more Lawless, Brink (I think that's been confirmed?), Sinister Dexter, Feral and Foe (starting next Prog) all scheduled for this year I believe. Its a frighteningly good depth from one writer alone!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: norton canes 20 March, 2021, 01:04:37 PM
That is like more than 3 decades ago (just scary how time flies)

Yeah, scary biscuits. It's just over four years now since I started reading 2000 AD again after a 27-year hiatus, so much has happened even in that time (the four years, I mean). Although, from the few dozen assorted back-progs I've got from my 1990-2017 time off, things seemed to have settled down a lot more post-millennium, with a constant but steady churn of talented writers and artists (and colourers and letterers) augmented by new blood as and when necessary.

By the way, is there a term for the period of self-imposed hiatus experienced by Squaxx of a certain age, when they left the GGC in the early 90's only to return in recent times?

Buy-atus?
Tooth break?
Prog-lapse?
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: GordonR 20 March, 2021, 01:33:55 PM
By the way, is there a term for the period of self-imposed hiatus experienced by Squaxx of a certain age, when they left the GGC in the early 90's only to return in recent times?

Buy-atus?
Tooth break?
Prog-lapse?

I’d suggest ”Haha, we’re all going to make a fortune from Toxic!  Oh no, wait a minute, we’re not”
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 20 March, 2021, 01:42:48 PM
Yeah, it's a decent prog and a good spot that there arent even any* second or thrid wave creators showing on the writing side.

Pat going off on one again is so utterly dispiriting (I've just had Book of Scars delivered as I intend to get all the HB Slaines to finish off the collection I stopped at the Wanderer with)... I think last time he went off on one just after I'd bought Spacewarp! I should have learnt by now that a Mills Bomb is never that far off.

That said, I still think the new writers are decent, but Neimand aside, not turning on my thrill receptors in the same way Pat or John have done, even with their later Rebellion era work.  So I will sorely miss him, no matter what nonsense he is whipped up into on Twitter (well maybe no maater what!)

Proteus Vex has loads of good ideas, but the manner in which it is told strikes me a bit akin to someone describing the very exciting RPG sessions they have been running, rather than taking part in them,

Red as killer of innocents works for me, but only if we were to make this a rare and forced occurrence where something went terribly wrong with her usual plan to feast on wrong uns.

Thistlebone will need a reread of the first one before I tackle the new one, which isn't the best sign, but I appreciate it's tone. 

Nakka is fun, but a lot of the fun is Brendan McCarthy's art.

Even Neimand needs to (as others have already stated) move Chimpsky out of the line of fire before his ability to dodge Dredd becomes nonsensical.... If I was to predict anything, could this be the story wwhere Dredd catches up with him, but sets him to work "officially", Peeper style?  That could lead into his own series free from repercussions of the Law?

: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 20 March, 2021, 01:47:38 PM
By the way, is there a term for the period of self-imposed hiatus experienced by Squaxx of a certain age, when they left the GGC in the early 90's only to return in recent times?

Buy-atus?
Tooth break?
Prog-lapse?

I will never simply call them my Wilderness Years again - each of those is brilliant!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 20 March, 2021, 02:16:23 PM
By the way, is there a term for the period of self-imposed hiatus experienced by Squaxx of a certain age, when they left the GGC in the early 90's only to return in recent times?

Buy-atus?
Tooth break?
Prog-lapse?

I will never simply call them my Wilderness Years again - each of those is brilliant!

Thrill-less
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 20 March, 2021, 03:22:28 PM
Red as killer of innocents works for me, but only if we were to make this a rare and forced occurrence where something went terribly wrong with her usual plan to feast on wrong uns.
Oddly enough, I’ve read through the entire original Ezquerra-illustrated Stront run now in my Rebellion+Hachette re-read and, well, it’s not like she was particularly picky before. In one case, she murders a prisoner Alpha captured. Elsewhere, she’s shown as _almost_ overstepping the mark. So all we’re getting now is a less sanitised version of the character (which is quite ironic, given how many readers—or possibly ex-readers—of a certain type argue the modern Prog has been neutered).

As for Vex, it feels a little like a strip trying to use similar historical narrative devices as Nikolai Dante. But it doesn’t quite stick the landing for me. I’m not sure why, but it feels like it perhaps needed one more run-through from an editing standpoint. Even so, it’s good to see something new and inventive and that makes me want to read more rather than hanker for old strips.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 20 March, 2021, 05:06:48 PM
Mm. I very much miss the ‘Horned God and before’ Mills. That for me was his zenith. After that point, it felt like the conspiracy/ideology overtook the ideas. Worst of all, some of the strips—like ABC Warriors—just became boring.

Very happy to vociferously disagree on this one!  Defoe is one of the best strips of the new century, Savage not far behind. Both reinvented themselves completely every 2 books or so, Defoe in particular going out on a high. I loved the return of Flesh, for all that the last book was a disappointment. And the Return to...  series of ABC Warriors were a treat (although I agree that the strip has otherwise run out of steam, as it really only has one story to tell: Warriors fight each other and break-up,  Warriors get back together to fight lovingly-designed Mirror-Warriors).

My feelings on Sláine hardly need yet another airing, but if I'm the target audience, I've been very excited by the direction since Book of Scars.

And at the risk of being lynched, American Reaper is a good read in large chunks. And this is something that is true of Sláine too.

In fact, as long as Pat stays away from Dredd (not a fan), I'd be more than happy to see something from him every week.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 20 March, 2021, 06:47:29 PM
With Red, it's a balance though - think Dexter - would that series work if he was a Serial Killer who occasionally killed bad people (spoilers - I only watched a few epsidoes along time back, so not sure if that is actually a good summation of it!)

Morally, she is shady in the first place, sure - by that level, Alpha is shady, given he is happy to go wth Dead (and has a higher death count than Dredd!).  If she is a fairly unrepentant killer (as in, she takes few steps to stop "the urge" taking out any passer by) then where is the sympathy or tragedy?  Why should we be rooting for her or indeed why would the cop try to let her escape?


Vex, I agree, the framing is trying to pull a similar trick to Dante,  but for whatever reason just doesnt have the balance right.  Certainly happy to see more, but it needs to hook me on the narrative not just the DnD Manual word building

Red as killer of innocents works for me, but only if we were to make this a rare and forced occurrence where something went terribly wrong with her usual plan to feast on wrong uns.
Oddly enough, I’ve read through the entire original Ezquerra-illustrated Stront run now in my Rebellion+Hachette re-read and, well, it’s not like she was particularly picky before. In one case, she murders a prisoner Alpha captured. Elsewhere, she’s shown as _almost_ overstepping the mark. So all we’re getting now is a less sanitised version of the character (which is quite ironic, given how many readers—or possibly ex-readers—of a certain type argue the modern Prog has been neutered).

As for Vex, it feels a little like a strip trying to use similar historical narrative devices as Nikolai Dante. But it doesn’t quite stick the landing for me. I’m not sure why, but it feels like it perhaps needed one more run-through from an editing standpoint. Even so, it’s good to see something new and inventive and that makes me want to read more rather than hanker for old strips.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 20 March, 2021, 06:49:39 PM
Yeah, that's my take on Pat's output - still more hits than misses, Defoe being a particular gem in all its various incarnations

Mm. I very much miss the ‘Horned God and before’ Mills. That for me was his zenith. After that point, it felt like the conspiracy/ideology overtook the ideas. Worst of all, some of the strips—like ABC Warriors—just became boring.

Very happy to vociferously disagree on this one!  Defoe is one of the best strips of the new century, Savage not far behind. Both reinvented themselves completely every 2 books or so, Defoe in particular going out on a high. I loved the return of Flesh, for all that the last book was a disappointment. And the Return to...  series of ABC Warriors were a treat (although I agree that the strip has otherwise run out of steam, as it really only has one story to tell: Warriors fight each other and break-up,  Warriors get back together to fight lovingly-designed Mirror-Warriors).

My feelings on Sláine hardly need yet another airing, but if I'm the target audience, I've been very excited by the direction since Book of Scars.

And at the risk of being lynched, American Reaper is a good read in large chunks. And this is something that is true of Sláine too.

In fact, as long as Pat stays away from Dredd (not a fan), I'd be more than happy to see something from him every week.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 20 March, 2021, 07:37:20 PM
I just like the way each episode in Vex was revealing more of the world. Shedding all the layers as the story progressed. World building at its best. My understanding is that Carroll will star writing the third series.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 20 March, 2021, 07:58:29 PM
Very happy to vociferously disagree on this one!
Horses for courses, I suppose. I’ve tried to get into Defoe a few times, but it just hasn’t clicked. I have time for Savage. ABC Warriors always feels like recycling. I like the old Flesh, albeit in a nostalgic way. (It’s very of its time.) The new one didn’t gel with me at all. I’ll likely revisit, but am not expecting to change my mind.

Sláine, as I’ve said, is one of those strips that felt like it had a glorious rebirth with the Invasions arc, bar what they did to Niamh. (I realise Matt Smith took the ‘blame’ for that one, but I imagine Mills could have argued the toss—I understand he got his way about everything else in script matters.) I really liked Brutania #1, which for me felt like a kind of Hellboy take on Sláine, going heavy on the myth and mystery. But then it all devolved into shouty nonsense. I’ll eventually hit that on my Hachette re-read and hope it’s better in a single volume rather than weekly.

If she is a fairly unrepentant killer (as in, she takes few steps to stop "the urge" taking out any passer by) then where is the sympathy or tragedy?  Why should we be rooting for her or indeed why would the cop try to let her escape?
What is it she writes in that letter to Alpha? Something along the lines of: “You’re right — I can’t be trusted. Sorry, but I guess that’s who I am.” Feels like that’s where Worley sits the character. She’s deeply flawed, but keen enough to do the right thing. I’m not sure I need someone who’s sympathetic—I want someone interesting, and Worley’s take on the character has got me interested.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 20 March, 2021, 08:02:46 PM
I recently reread Brutania via the collections and it read much better collected than the weekly episodes.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 20 March, 2021, 08:41:21 PM
I took Red's letter to Alpha to mean she couldnt be trusted not to double cross Alpha and make off with the loot rather than she would be ripping his throat out!

If she is a threat to any random person who crosses her path, then she is a monster - which might be interesting, but I'm not sure it is sustainable as a story centred on her as the main character over any length of time.   now if that's the story you are telling, that's fine, but then I dont see why the guy gave her the opportunity to escape at the end?




If she is a fairly unrepentant killer (as in, she takes few steps to stop "the urge" taking out any passer by) then where is the sympathy or tragedy?  Why should we be rooting for her or indeed why would the cop try to let her escape?
What is it she writes in that letter to Alpha? Something along the lines of: “You’re right — I can’t be trusted. Sorry, but I guess that’s who I am.” Feels like that’s where Worley sits the character. She’s deeply flawed, but keen enough to do the right thing. I’m not sure I need someone who’s sympathetic—I want someone interesting, and Worley’s take on the character has got me interested.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: The Corinthian 20 March, 2021, 10:49:40 PM
I took Red's letter to Alpha to mean she couldnt be trusted not to double cross Alpha and make off with the loot rather than she would be ripping his throat out!

If she is a threat to any random person who crosses her path, then she is a monster - which might be interesting, but I'm not sure it is sustainable as a story centred on her as the main character over any length of time.   now if that's the story you are telling, that's fine, but then I dont see why the guy gave her the opportunity to escape at the end?

I get the impression that Johnny's never entirely trusted Red, but this isn't a version of the character that he'd have any time for. She'd be just another of the long line of scumbag SD agents who wind up on Alpha's bad side and therefore dead by the end of their story.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Jim_Campbell 21 March, 2021, 07:00:33 AM
I dont see why the guy gave her the opportunity to escape at the end?

For starters, he wasn't party to that conversation…
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 21 March, 2021, 05:09:33 PM
He is aware of the facts, though, as shown in part 1, where he says "this is waht she is" or words to that effect - now, he might have been impressed that she saved him (from being killed because of her), but he knows about the "Allurian Massacre" and this is part of a pattern that Red is clearly infamoous for
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Barrington Boots 21 March, 2021, 06:57:07 PM
I also think Alpha probably would have killed this version of Durham Red.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Magnetica 21 March, 2021, 07:44:58 PM
I agree it is good to see that the Prog can deliver a strong line up even without any stories by Wagner, Mills or Abnett.

Indeed Carroll and Niemand have been doing great work recently over in the Meg with Dreadnoughts and Megatropolis. Here in the Prog, Mike Carroll is really coming to the fore with Proteus Vex. It’s just the sort of strip we need to take 2000AD forward. And Jake Lynch has done a cracking job, so much so that I didn’t miss Henry Flint on it at all, which is quite something.

As for the Pat / Slaine situation - for me it’s not a matter of expecting to miss Pat, as after all if you want to read his stuff there is Spacewarp. Well there would be, if it came out more regularly, but with one issue in 8 months and counting, I can t help wondering when we’ll see another.

The tragedy here for me, is not that Slaine is ending, but the apparent reason: he is bowing out, and presumably being killed off, not because his story has reached a conclusion but to stop other writers using him. That seems a pretty sad end for what is a top four 200AD character. There is nothing in the current story so far to suggest it is the last one and given Pat has stated he has recently edited the last episode, I am expecting his death to feel just tacked on.

But to be honest, when I say Slaine is a top four 2000AD character, that is all based on everything up to and including the Horned God. And I was sad when the concept was first mooted that Slaine as the high king would be ritually put to death after 7 years. Maybe it would have been a better conclusion for the character if that had actually happened 30 years ago.

Of course this is all based on assumptions as to what will be in the last episode; I hope I’ll be eating my words when we  see it.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 22 March, 2021, 03:59:03 AM
If it has not been published it did not happen yet. If Tharg is not happy with the ending they the last episode might not get published at all.

I am very much between two directions of thought on how creators characters should be used. I am more included to believe that a character should stay with whom wrote it to begin with. Slaine is Pat's creation and if he does not want to continue with it leave it be. But you get cases where characters only really become great when it was handed over to another writer. I just not like the idea of continuing to reborn and re-image characters (I am looking at you DC/Marvel).
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Sean SD 22 March, 2021, 07:18:10 AM
My Top 3 for Prog 2223 :)

1st - Durham Red - Strong ending, what is Red up to I wonder?
2nd - Proteus Vex - Keen to see more adventures of Vex and co. My top thrill of the year so far. Will have to reread from book 1 to remind myself of all the planets etc. I think Jake Lynch has been great on this
3rd - 3riller - Nakka of the S.T.A.R.S - Would like to see this more regularly in the GG
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 22 March, 2021, 09:31:06 AM
. I am more included to believe that a character should stay with whom wrote it to begin with. Slaine is Pat's creation and if he does not want to continue with it leave it be.

I'd no more want to read non-Mills Sláine than I would non-Morrison Dante, non-Abnett Kingdom or (more pertinently) non-Smith IP/Waugh. I don't see anything intrinsically wrong or even necessarily low-quality about the principle, or I'd never have enjoyed Moore Swampie, Delano Hellblazer, Miller Daredevil, Worley Hookjaw or Rennie Satanus, but I'd just personally have zero interest in reading it.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 22 March, 2021, 10:41:30 AM
It is not that I am not interested in different writers take on a character in most cases it just do not work. If you look at something like Hook-Jaw it actually worked. The only thing taken from the original was the shark with hook in its jaw but in reality it was a completely new strip (and stealing the title).
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 22 March, 2021, 11:54:41 AM
2000 AD is quite rare in having few ‘house’ strips. Although Mills naturally talks of Dredd being one of his, that’s not really been the case since the very early days. It’s a shared universe, primarily driven by John Wagner for many years, but nonetheless something various people get to write. See also: Anderson and Rogue Trooper.

Elsewhere, though, 2000 AD has taken an approach closer in nature to something like Image rather than Marvel, enabling creators to continue with their strips and for others to not get a look in. And, yes, I’d also say that when that ‘rule’ has been broken, the results often don’t work: the Skizz sequels; the twitching zombie that was Millar’s Robo-Hunter; Ulysses Sweet.

But there are some strips that do survive that transition, although I’m well aware some of those have proved divisive—notably John Smith’s strips. But I much prefer this Durham Red to previous incarnations, have found the Deadworld/Dark Judges stuff pretty good (although perhaps they are now house characters), and rather wish Hogan/Hughes had continued with Robo-Hunter.

: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 22 March, 2021, 12:18:00 PM
Durham Red went trough a few incarnations but the latest one is the first time I can say it works for me - Worley stop treating her like she is a "babe" that's also a bounty hunter.

I was never keen on any other than TB Grover's Robo-Hunter.

Flesh the first run was  semi-fine but everything afterwards (even Mills stuff) never worked for me.

Ulysses Sweet was not great the first round and was not great the last round. Everything about the character was just not likeable.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: The Corinthian 22 March, 2021, 01:14:33 PM
And, yes, I’d also say that when that ‘rule’ has been broken, the results often don’t work: the Skizz sequels; the twitching zombie that was Millar’s Robo-Hunter; Ulysses Sweet.

Technically, the Skizz sequels don't break that rule because they were by one of the original's creators.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 22 March, 2021, 01:19:20 PM
I dunno. I don’t think we’d necessarily be thrilled with Steve Yeowell scripting Zenith, Simon Fraser on Nikolai Dante, or Paul Marshall writing a sequel to Firekind. So although I have a lot of time for Jim Baike on art duties, his iffy Skizz doesn’t get a pass from me.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 22 March, 2021, 01:22:57 PM
Skizz was great the sequels also a no pass from me (the artwork was as with all Baikie's work great)
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Magnetica 22 March, 2021, 01:33:33 PM
Just to clarify something on my post - I’m not interested in reading someone else’s Slaine either. What saddens me is the character (potentially) being killed off in a way that is not consistent with the story and is done for other reasons.

Other writers taking on characters is a strange one, I think. I generally don’t like it in comics, but have no issue with other artists drawing them. And other writers taking things on happens all the time in TV and film and yet people still watch those films or shows and consider them to still be canon. For example the different Star Trek shows where written by different people and certainly not all by Gene Roddenberry, the recent Star Wars films weren’t written by George Lucas. Dr who has had many different writers (but I don’t like it where new writers retcon continuity that has been established years earlier).
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 22 March, 2021, 01:37:02 PM
I don’t mind it in comics—for me, it’s all down to whether or not the end result is any good and, ideally, whether the original creator is OK with it. As for Mills, it remains to be seen how Sláine ends, but if he just gets a Gáe Bolga up the bum out of the blue to stop anyone else playing with Mills’s toys, that’s not going to be good. Whatever else I think about this particular run, it’s clearly the beginning of a new chapter and not designed to be the end of the entire run.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 22 March, 2021, 01:37:59 PM
Just to clarify something on my post - I’m not interested in reading someone else’s Slaine either. What saddens me is the character (potentially) being killed off in a way that is not consistent with the story and is done for other reasons.

Maybe that is why we have the delay since Pat would rather kill off his character than allowing it to maybe one-day written by someone else. But even this in comics are not a sure thing how many times has characters been killed off and "miraculously" returned from the dead.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: The Corinthian 22 March, 2021, 01:53:43 PM
I dunno. I don’t think we’d necessarily be thrilled with Steve Yeowell scripting Zenith, Simon Fraser on Nikolai Dante, or Paul Marshall writing a sequel to Firekind.

Me neither, but that doesn't detract from the fact that they are just as much these series' creators as the writers are.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 22 March, 2021, 02:03:20 PM
But even this in comics are not a sure thing how many times has characters been killed off and "miraculously" returned from the dead.

Yes, I was going to say!  Killing Sláine, ABC Warriors or even Nemesis doesn't usually stick.

I think Pat'd be crazy to really-mean-it-this-time kill Sláine in a single unheralded tweaked episode, when a few weeks knocking up a Death of Sláine story would do some slight good for his wallet and his brand.  (Although it need hardly be said that he's a creative genius with more than half a century's experience of the comics biz, and I'm just one of the dreaded fans whose tyranny hath brought many a great man low).

Also, I really quite liked Ulysses Sweet, original and return both, so my judgement should be given even less weight.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 22 March, 2021, 02:04:31 PM
I dunno. I don’t think we’d necessarily be thrilled with Steve Yeowell scripting Zenith, Simon Fraser on Nikolai Dante, or Paul Marshall writing a sequel to Firekind.

Me neither, but that doesn't detract from the fact that they are just as much these series' creators as the writers are.

I'd make an exception for a Fraser Dante - that boy can write.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 22 March, 2021, 02:14:39 PM
I don’t think Pat gives the slightest shit anymore. I half wonder whether he’d kill Sláine out of spite, probably via a spear thrown by a character called Jay, Son of King Slea.

(As I’ve said before, I get the work-for-hire thing. I’ve been crapped on many a time. But I draw the line at insulting my fellow creators in the space I work in and posting borderline slanderous rants about publishers.)
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 22 March, 2021, 02:20:48 PM
I half wonder whether he’d kill Sláine out of spite, probably via a spear thrown by a character called Jay, Son of King Slea.

 :lol: Well I think we know who's first in line for the Sláine: Slay Harder writing gig!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: The Corinthian 22 March, 2021, 05:30:25 PM
The first episode of The Horned God basically starts with Ukko grieving for Slaine "for he is gone from us now".  That was 32 years ago. Mills has been millking it a bit.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 22 March, 2021, 06:19:40 PM
As longs as something is popular most of us will be milking it.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 22 March, 2021, 06:33:32 PM
Yeah, this:

I saw Pat saying that it would take 6 weeks to come up with the new direction for Slaine, so put his effort into space Warp instead - fair enough.

But it's clear that this story is the start of a new direction/chapter, introducing new villains and set up that he has already invested in (and indeed so ahve his fans) - If he is willing to shit on that story to make a point to the "Man", well, let's just hope that isnt the case, but if it is.... cheers Pat.

 Only been a loyal fan for these 40 years. Pat is the creator, but if no one actually buys and enjoys your comics  then no one will ever want to exploit them I suppose...

If Pat had/has said "right, ths is it" and worked up this final Slaine to  fitting climax, then he is doing a service to his creation and his fans - if he is throwing his toys out the pram?  Not sure what that acheves - noses/faces/sharp implements and all that


I don’t mind it in comics—for me, it’s all down to whether or not the end result is any good and, ideally, whether the original creator is OK with it. As for Mills, it remains to be seen how Sláine ends, but if he just gets a Gáe Bolga up the bum out of the blue to stop anyone else playing with Mills’s toys, that’s not going to be good. Whatever else I think about this particular run, it’s clearly the beginning of a new chapter and not designed to be the end of the entire run.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 22 March, 2021, 06:46:47 PM
The Slaine series definitely feels like a start of a new arc and I would rather have an open-ended ending than a tantrum ending. You never know in life you might want to double back on the bridge you just crossed, oops I burned it.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 22 March, 2021, 08:42:13 PM
The Slaine series definitely feels like a start of a new arc ...

FWIW I read Dragontamer as Brutannia Bk IV: the Brutus/Llandin thing was introduced (and visited) in Books of Invasion, and touched on occasionally in Wanderer, but Sláine was lost in grief for Niamh and the entire vanished tribes of the Earth Goddess and pretty much ignoring his role as champion of the Goddess. He rediscovered his purpose on Mona, where his friend Gort turned out to have been twisted by the teaching of the Drunes in the very College he's currently rampaging around, and through Sinéad connected with his mother and his hitherto unknown druid father. Book IV of Brutannia ended with him issuing a challenge to Brutus, Who is enabling the rule of the Drunelords and this is exactly where is where Dragontamer starts. 

In my opinion the only reason Dragontamer looks like the start of something new rather that the climax of that whole storyline is the change of artist (and title). Now I'd suspect Pat had actually planned this to play out over at least another book (The Web of Weird Book II") before thinking "I'm fecking Pat Mills, why am I still making money for these keniggets after 40 yrs when I could be creating my own IP to flog to Netflix? ". But even so Dragontamer so far has made a good fist of pulling together the strands and themes of Sláine's past (with the regrettable omission of Kai, the Alexander Rozhenko of this saga).

So while an ending at this point can only feel abrupt, I don't see the itself as a false start, instead more of a rather rushed conclusion. But aren't we always complaining about decompressed unending multi-book series anyway?

But most likely I'll be back in a few weeks to cry Ochón,  Ochón!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: The Corinthian 22 March, 2021, 09:28:12 PM
It doesn't seem that long ago that Mills basically abandoned the idea of a multi-book epic conclusion to 'Nemesis' and wrote the whole thing off in three months.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 23 March, 2021, 09:20:05 AM
FWIW I read Dragontamer as Brutannia Bk IV: the Brutus/Llandin thing was introduced (and visited) in Books of Invasion, and touched on occasionally in Wanderer, but Sláine was lost in grief for Niamh and the entire vanished tribes of the Earth Goddess and pretty much ignoring his role as champion of the Goddess. He rediscovered his purpose on Mona, where his friend Gort turned out to have been twisted by the teaching of the Drunes in the very College he's currently rampaging around, and through Sinéad connected with his mother and his hitherto unknown druid father. Book IV of Brutannia ended with him issuing a challenge to Brutus, Who is enabling the rule of the Drunelords and this is exactly where is where Dragontamer starts. 

The last 4 pages of Brutannia Bk IV almost serves as a prologue to Dragontamer - prog 2060.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Dark Jimbo 23 March, 2021, 11:01:04 AM
In the afterword to the final Hachette Slaine volume, Matt Smith talks about the imminent 'next phase of the woad warrior's adventures' starting in 2020, 'The Web of Weird, first book of the Dragontamer arc.'

So the original plan was definitely for this to be the start of a new phase, rather than any sort of epilogue.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 23 March, 2021, 02:07:05 PM
In the afterword to the final Hachette Slaine volume, Matt Smith talks about the imminent 'next phase of the woad warrior's adventures' starting in 2020, 'The Web of Weird, first book of the Dragontamer arc.'

So the original plan was definitely for this to be the start of a new phase, rather than any sort of epilogue.

Good info, cheers Jimbo!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 23 March, 2021, 04:26:27 PM
Yeah, part of my interest in finally catching up with the Slaine HBs was to get all the Brutania tales together on the shelf and read them as a single piece - It's clear that new characters were being introduced here for the purpose of future plottage - a book or probbaly two more would make sense knowing how Pat formualtes these things - so he has done the "research" you would think - this is part 1 of an new arc, so that "development time" has surely already been done to a fair degree?

if we're getting what appears to be a Poochy ending, well what a great f**k you to the comic, but just as great a f**k you to the fans, those fans you'll want to be buying your Spacewarp product
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Jacqusie 23 March, 2021, 07:38:42 PM


I'd no more want to read non-Mills Sláine than I would non-Morrison Dante, non-Abnett Kingdom or (more pertinently) non-Smith IP/Waugh.


I thought the first Non-Smith Devlin Waugh's were pretty good efforts by Rory McConville, and the art by Mike Dowling captured the essence of Devlin rather well. Not too over the top and pretty faithful to what we might expect from the Vamp and it was a hard gig to folllow the story with his brother and fill in the blanks left by John Smith.

Why McConville then lost the gig I'm not sure we ever found out, but the next chapter's by Aleš Kot were somewhat of a radical departure and try as I might to enjoy it, there was a feeling throughout that the character had moved too far away from Swimming in Blood, Red Tide and Chasing Herod (one of the best stories in the prog ever I reckon)

You can over-do a premise and the whole "spirit of the demon Titivillus" thing is being stretched out on every panel to the extent where we are in the realm someone telling the same joke for the 248th time. Waugh has sadly become a pastiche of his former self which is rather unrecognisable and contains little of the charm that endured when we had the excitement and verve of the original writer.


: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Max Headroom 23 March, 2021, 07:51:10 PM
I must agree with Jacqusie that I preferred McConville's take on Devlin to Kot's. Some of the latter's story-telling is not too bad, but the whole 'Demon in a Dildo' thing has become a bit ridiculous. Of course, nothing even comes close to John Smith's early work on the character (but I guess this goes without saying).
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 23 March, 2021, 08:22:37 PM
The problem for me with McConville’s Waugh is it immediately decided it was despite to explain all the vague hints at weirdness Smith had enjoyed using as background colour since the strip’s inception. Sometimes, things don’t need explaining. Strips are better off if you don’t.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 23 March, 2021, 09:05:33 PM
Especially true of Smith's writing, where he works almost like a Foley artist on a radioplay, building a sort of mental sound:scape out of throwaway names, unseen events and scientific/arcane-seeming terms. You could imagine the vast and complex universe that these things were alluding to, but if you actually opened the front door to see what sadistic Chadarisq-Khan abomination was lurching up the driveway, all you'd find would be a stagehand jumping up and down in a box of gravel. Better not to look, it's the sound effects that make Smith's stories so great.

To be fair I haven't really read any of the ersatz Devlin, just glanced through the odd episode, and don't intend to. If one of my absolute favourite current 2000AD writers couldn't make anything worthwhile out of continuing an ongoing IP story, I don't feel even residual curiosity for the new adventures of Devlin.

: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: The Corinthian 23 March, 2021, 09:26:51 PM
Despite the Revere misstep I've made my peace with Kek-W's Indigo Prime, but I find post-Smith Devlin hasn't held my interest at all.

I'm curious though about why - Sci-Fi Special aside - no one's had a crack at Tyranny Rex yet, as it's potentially the Smith series most amenable to being written by someone else. He even left it on the verge of big skiffy adventure rather than decapitated nun weirdness.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Goosegash 23 March, 2021, 11:12:37 PM
The frustrating thing for me re: Slaine is the strip already had the perfect ending in the finale to the Book Of Invasions - Slaine defeats Odacon, has a touching farewell with Niamh and vanishes from written history into the realm of myth and folklore. I remember putting that issue down and thinking "Wow, what a fantastic ending to the whole saga Mills pulled off there."

And then it carried on for another fifteen years!

I have no idea how Mills intends to leave things, but I have a horrible such a hasty wrap-up tagged onto a story that was clearly not intended as any kind-of grand finale can only disappoint. I'd like to be wrong, but...
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 24 March, 2021, 03:59:39 AM
I do not think Mills ever intended for Slaine to end. If its popular just continue with it. This is why I would have not have a series than one where we have a forced ending. But lets see and wait maybe the door is slightly ajar.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 24 March, 2021, 10:17:54 AM
The most annoying part of that possibility is that the main influence for Sláine - CúChulainn - has one of the most spectacular and emotional death sequences in all of myth, and the story so far hasn't really touched on (used-up) any big aspect of it.

As to ending things after BoI, I definitely see the appeal, but I think it was appropriate that Sláine's story extended beyond his purpose as champion of the Tuatha Dé Dannan given his past. While I generally disliked the Wanderer stories, they were a perfect lead-in for the excellent Brutannia.

As mused before, I suspect the Brutannia Chronicles were originally meant to run another few books, covering the current ground, since only the initial and concluding episodes actually take place in Brutannia, while (despite Sligo and Mayo placenames suggesting otherwise) all of the Dragontamer does.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: I, Cosh 24 March, 2021, 10:32:09 AM
Seems to be a hell of a lot of wild speculation on the basis of absolutely zero evidence that Pat's somehow planning to use the latest delay in the art to radically change the ending of the current story rather than just tweak the dialogue.

You think he's going to magic marker a big arrow going through Slaine's head in the last panel? Or change the last speech bubble to "Oh! My ... heart! UURGH!"
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: norton canes 24 March, 2021, 11:23:29 AM
I wonder if he's been reading Mean Team..?
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 24 March, 2021, 11:32:26 AM
Seems to be a hell of a lot of wild speculation on the basis of absolutely zero evidence that Pat's somehow planning to use the latest delay in the art to radically change the ending of the current story rather than just tweak the dialogue.

You think he's going to magic marker a big arrow going through Slaine's head in the last panel? Or change the last speech bubble to "Oh! My ... heart! UURGH!"


Not that, certainly, but when Pat's been vocal about editing the last-ever episode of Sláine, which is delayed several weeks, after originally having a different title and scheduled to run about a year ago, you'd be forgiven for imagining that he's tweaking something to indicate there'll be no more. It doesn't seem likely that he's just tippexing out the "Sláine will return in 2022!" caption box, or the final character in "The End?".

But I agree, I don't see a Pooch moment in our immediate future. Although maybe that'd finally please the "Sláine should have ended after Horned God (ie 30 years ago) and as for those leyser guns and aliens" lobby,  you never know!

: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 24 March, 2021, 11:33:09 AM
* "Poochie".
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 24 March, 2021, 11:42:35 AM
Well, on ‘pooch’ one might argue this could be a ‘screw the pooch’ moment, but who knows how it’ll end up? I do get the feeling no-one’s going to come away from this satisfied, but here’s hoping the strip at least gets a good send-off rather than just being guillotined because the creator doesn’t like working with Rebellion.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 24 March, 2021, 05:47:47 PM
Not really Zero evidence:

We've had 9 parts of a 10 part story, which seems to be setting up all kinds of new protagonists and situationswith one part to tie those off AND give is a decent send off for a 40 year old character.

we've had evidence this was was meant to be multiple books

We have evidence from Pat himself, telling us he was ending the story in such a way as no other writer could ever get their hands on Slaine... that sounds like it would need a fair amount of ground covering to get where we are at the end of part 9 to wherever 6(?) pages leaves us.

That said, I had a dream last night that next prog was an all Slaine special and over the course of the prog it finished really well! Definitely spending too much time mithering on this, for sure.  Just feel as a fan of Pat who has mostly stood by him as creator and creative pugilist somewhat let down on both fronts - but yeah, may be too premature to be writing the end off, but you can see the reasons for why a brief rewrite (which I agree appears as much as is available to be done) might fail to stick the landing given the imposed restrictions




Seems to be a hell of a lot of wild speculation on the basis of absolutely zero evidence that Pat's somehow planning to use the latest delay in the art to radically change the ending of the current story rather than just tweak the dialogue.

You think he's going to magic marker a big arrow going through Slaine's head in the last panel? Or change the last speech bubble to "Oh! My ... heart! UURGH!"
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Jim_Campbell 24 March, 2021, 06:04:53 PM
fail to stick the landing given the self-imposed restrictions

FTFY.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: The Corinthian 24 March, 2021, 06:36:42 PM
* "Poochie".

"I have to go now. Spacewarp needs me."
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 24 March, 2021, 06:41:39 PM
True enough!

You'd think the best way to end the story so no other writers wanted to meddle would be to end it satisfactorily, but what do I know!

If it gets a "Final Solution" ending, there's always going to be a desire to "fix it" - Halo Jones on the other hand has remained meddling free, precisely because it ends prefectly where it does.


fail to stick the landing given the self-imposed restrictions

FTFY.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Max Headroom 24 March, 2021, 07:13:08 PM
Do we know in which Prog part 10 of 'Dragontamer' will be?
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 24 March, 2021, 07:35:37 PM
I'm presuming this weeks (Sat for subscribers) as NAKKA is over, but not sure if that's confirmed
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: I, Cosh 25 March, 2021, 09:04:45 AM
The forum doesn't like Twitter links so here's a screenshot courtesy of our friends on FB

(https://scontent-frt3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-0/p180x540/164967363_611250599788829_2843645308959751892_o.jpg?_nc_cat=102&ccb=1-3&_nc_sid=825194&_nc_ohc=OR7UZdSJdwIAX8g1Mjc&_nc_ht=scontent-frt3-1.xx&tp=6&oh=618e3c668093bdd47a72be3472c01d11&oe=60802FA6)

Of course it's impossible to say how much of any statement can ever be called true. Or what truth is.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 25 March, 2021, 09:17:16 AM
That's reassuring info, cheers Cosh!  Don't know how I missed that tweet myself.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Bolt-01 25 March, 2021, 10:05:59 AM
The finale isn't is 2225 - There is a Terror Tale, though :)
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Jacqusie 25 March, 2021, 10:20:18 AM
I must agree with Jacqusie that I preferred McConville's take on Devlin to Kot's... the whole 'Demon in a Dildo' thing has become a bit ridiculous.

...aand that's why having stopped the Meg, I won't really miss the next series when there will be 10 episodes of it!  :)
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Barrington Boots 25 March, 2021, 10:34:49 AM
Maybe there is no Slaine final episode, just endless speculation as to when it will appear and therefore a big middle finger to all who of us who said it'd got boring and wanted it to end.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 25 March, 2021, 11:07:44 AM
More from his twitter on the subject:

I should add that on all my stories I edit against the artwork. Sometimes on Slaine this is cos Leo may move things around, or the theme needs stressing & so on. On the last episode, I took extra care because it was the finale. I felt the character and the readers deserved it.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 25 March, 2021, 01:45:11 PM
I winder how much air time his positive attitude towards the Regened will get in some quarters. He's not saying it will succeed but he certainly seems to admire the desire.

They're trying to reach the youth audience with Regened and maybe other things - for which they should be commended. Whether they succeed or not, at least they're trying.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 25 March, 2021, 02:10:35 PM
It was nice to see that—and his positive words about Matt Smith. But he also branded Rebellion as “profit first and creativity second”, which is quite something. If Rebellion only cared about profit, it wouldn’t take any risks, and that slew of specials and niche reprint—a chunk of which is Mills’s work—definitely sits in the ‘risk’ category.

If nothing else, I do hope Sláine ends well and naturally. It’d also be nice if Savage got a conclusion, but I won’t hold my breath, because it seems like Mills is done with 2000 AD for good.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 25 March, 2021, 02:16:16 PM
It was nice to see that—and his positive words about Matt Smith. But he also branded Rebellion as “profit first and creativity second”, which is quite something. If Rebellion only cared about profit, it wouldn’t take any risks, and that slew of specials and niche reprint—a chunk of which is Mills’s work—definitely sits in the ‘risk’ category.

If nothing else, I do hope Sláine ends well and naturally. It’d also be nice if Savage got a conclusion, but I won’t hold my breath, because it seems like Mills is done with 2000 AD for good.

Yeah his view of Rebellion seemed to be tempered positivity - which has always seemed a balanced view given they will never see eye to eye (I imagine) on creators rights - but its in stark contrast to how his view is portrayed in some sections.

It will be a real shame if Savage doesn't get a send off - for me its been the absolute pinicale of Uncle Pat's recent work - but if he hasn't the time or energy for that at least we have the healthy chunk that we have.

One thing I will say having read his Twitter feed over lunch is agree or disagree (or be a lot of both as in my case) he sure makes that feed a compelling read!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 25 March, 2021, 02:23:19 PM
He also has some other positives to say about Rebellion:

So that endless readers have said 'I gave up on 2000AD in mid to late 90s.' I've written previously on reasons for this & how Rebellion rescued 2000AD.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 25 March, 2021, 04:08:35 PM
Yeah in the quoted tweak he states it wasnt a huge rewrite as the story had reached a point he could natuarally end it... Having reread parts 1-9 last night, it is certainly building to a climax and I can see how this fits being the final arc of Slaine, but not how you could wrap everything up withoout a further few episodes at least  - we have a lot of newly introduced protagonists; Slough Gorm, Alban, Brutus, Innogen, the students we see escape in part 9 even - if there are just 6 pages (hoping for 12, but not expecting it), to wrap up all those threads AND Slaine's story seems a pretty big ask... we shall see in two weeks time now!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Barrington Boots 25 March, 2021, 04:27:06 PM
My money is on a Mean Team style ending. Slaine is victorious and then in the final panel a dragon flies down from out of nowhere and kills him.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 25 March, 2021, 04:28:41 PM
I can not see that even this arc can be properly completely within 6 pages but it is something I am now looking forward to see how it ends.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: wedgeski 25 March, 2021, 04:32:05 PM
It was nice to see that—and his positive words about Matt Smith. But he also branded Rebellion as “profit first and creativity second”, which is quite something. If Rebellion only cared about profit, it wouldn’t take any risks, and that slew of specials and niche reprint—a chunk of which is Mills’s work—definitely sits in the ‘risk’ category.
I just can't get on his side when he lobs out jabs like that. Is there a Rebellion-hating audience he's trying to pander to with those kinds of comments?
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: GordonR 25 March, 2021, 04:41:20 PM
It was nice to see that—and his positive words about Matt Smith. But he also branded Rebellion as “profit first and creativity second”, which is quite something. If Rebellion only cared about profit, it wouldn’t take any risks, and that slew of specials and niche reprint—a chunk of which is Mills’s work—definitely sits in the ‘risk’ category.
I just can't get on his side when he lobs out jabs like that. Is there a Rebellion-hating audience he's trying to pander to with those kinds of comments?

You’re obviously not on Facebook, then.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Jim_Campbell 25 March, 2021, 04:43:24 PM
He also has some other positives to say about Rebellion:

So that endless readers have said 'I gave up on 2000AD in mid to late 90s.' I've written previously on reasons for this & how Rebellion rescued 2000AD.

Of course, the small problem with this (unless he's recently resiled from his "it was all Bishop & Diggle's fault" position) is that he's objectively wrong about why 2000AD lost most of its readers and, although he's right that Rebellion saved the comic (for reasons I've banged on about at tedious length), it's hard to make the argument that Andy Diggle was simultaneously killing the comic whilst Rebellion was saving it, since Andy's formal accession to Thargship happened on almost the same day that the Rebellion buyout became official.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 25 March, 2021, 05:38:41 PM
Also: Rebellion saved the comic through finally being an owner that loved it, but also only cares about profit and doesn’t care about creativity, although Matt Smith is a great editor. I mean, those things aren’t mutually exclusive, but you need to do a bit of mental gymnastics to make it all fit.

And, yeah, as Gordon says, there are plenty of people on Facebook who claim to be fans of 2000 AD and seem to think Rebellion is useless through not making something for today’s kids that’s exactly the same as what they enjoyed 40 years ago. Some of them merrily scan this forum, shooting screen grabs for their collections, and pointing out to creators like Pat Mills when anyone here is critical of him. (I they omit any of the reverse, because they prefer shit-stirring to balance.)
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 25 March, 2021, 06:01:18 PM
Everything comes back to Rebellion Hating.

It was nice to see that—and his positive words about Matt Smith. But he also branded Rebellion as “profit first and creativity second”, which is quite something. If Rebellion only cared about profit, it wouldn’t take any risks, and that slew of specials and niche reprint—a chunk of which is Mills’s work—definitely sits in the ‘risk’ category.
I just can't get on his side when he lobs out jabs like that. Is there a Rebellion-hating audience he's trying to pander to with those kinds of comments?
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 25 March, 2021, 06:13:27 PM
My money is on a Mean Team style ending. Slaine is victorious and then in the final panel a dragon flies down from out of nowhere and kills him.

I thought you were going to say Slaine is revealed to be Mad Jack Kellar and the Land of the Young actually the fantasy island from Mean Team. We'd all then start crying out for a series about Ukko after he's had his mind transfered into the body of a Shoggey Beast....

... but you weren't...
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 25 March, 2021, 06:21:34 PM
I am sure that is not true the real truth must be that Slaine is actually Vex's Flesh Pilot's Flesh Pilot.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 25 March, 2021, 06:42:06 PM
Slaine gets hurled through time and tuned into the dinosaur he kills in the very first episode.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Magnetica 25 March, 2021, 09:11:20 PM
Quote: “profit first and creativity second”.

The thing about this is - business exist to make money.
Businesses that go a long time without making money eventually end up out of business.
So yes in an ideal world, the comic should be all about creativity; but the best way for it to survive to bring is the thrills we want, is to make a profit.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: The Corinthian 25 March, 2021, 11:37:24 PM
The forum doesn't like Twitter links so here's a screenshot courtesy of our friends on FB

(https://scontent-frt3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-0/p180x540/164967363_611250599788829_2843645308959751892_o.jpg?_nc_cat=102&ccb=1-3&_nc_sid=825194&_nc_ohc=OR7UZdSJdwIAX8g1Mjc&_nc_ht=scontent-frt3-1.xx&tp=6&oh=618e3c668093bdd47a72be3472c01d11&oe=60802FA6)

Of course it's impossible to say how much of any statement can ever be called true. Or what truth is.

I'm not sure there's ever been a Pat Mills series that came to a natural end. 'Charley's War' is probably the closest and even then he'd been planning to take it further until circumstances got in the way.

While I'm tempted to say that he's never met a dead horse he couldn't flog, I can totally understand why someone whose formative writing experiences were in the sweatshops of British kids' comics of the 1960s and 1970s would be ruthlessly pragmatic about finding, honing and exploiting ideas that work for as long as possible - and equally ruthlessly pragmatic about walking away when they stop working.

Which makes me wonder if the abrupt conclusion to 'Nemesis' was down to his abrasive working relationship with David Bishop and/or a fortunately unfounded suspicion that 2000AD wasn't going to be around much longer?
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Jim_Campbell 26 March, 2021, 06:10:13 AM
Which makes me wonder if the abrupt conclusion to 'Nemesis' was down to his abrasive working relationship with David Bishop and/or a fortunately unfounded suspicion that 2000AD wasn't going to be around much longer?

I have a vague recollection that Kev O'Neill said he'd draw the 'last' episode on condition that it was the last episode.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 26 March, 2021, 06:25:01 AM
Which makes me wonder if the abrupt conclusion to 'Nemesis' was down to his abrasive working relationship with David Bishop and/or a fortunately unfounded suspicion that 2000AD wasn't going to be around much longer?

I have a vague recollection that Kev O'Neill said he'd draw the 'last' episode on condition that it was the last episode.

Interesting he only drawn the last episode so basically this was a "reward" for being the artist whom created the look of Nemesis. I might have to revisit this and put book 10 on the re-read batch since I can not recall that it was abruptly ended.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: GordonR 26 March, 2021, 07:42:33 AM
Which makes me wonder if the abrupt conclusion to 'Nemesis' was down to his abrasive working relationship with David Bishop and/or a fortunately unfounded suspicion that 2000AD wasn't going to be around much longer?

I have a vague recollection that Kev O'Neill said he'd draw the 'last' episode on condition that it was the last episode.

That’s the one.  Trust me, if Kev hadn’t imposed that condition, Nemesis would have been joylessly grinding on to this day, like Slaine and ABC Warriors.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 26 March, 2021, 08:13:41 AM
I take the point about Nemesis (and to a large extent the Warriors), but has Sláine really been grinding joylessly on? There's been a lot of development and excitement these past few books, and for a certain constituency of readers, of which I am a tragic example, it continues to be a treat.

Even back in the mid 90s when I'd given up on the rest of the comic, a Sláine cover was enough to spark an opportunist train-station purchase. The nadir of the strip occurred in the very early Rebellion era, but with a few exceptions everything before and after that remains an enjoyable occasionally thought-provoking  read.

I get that I'm in a minority here, but seeing as the comic trades on a blend of novelty and nostalgia, I think Sláine continued earn its place.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 26 March, 2021, 08:29:45 AM
I can not remember a Slaine series which I did not enjoy and it never felt like it is grinding forward. Dragontamer is the first time a Slaine arc just felt empty with endless battle scenes and no real endpoint
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 26 March, 2021, 11:22:50 AM
To my mind, Sláine’s natural end was Horned God. When he became Doctor Who with an axe, a great many of those strips were not that good. Book of Invasions was a return to form, which provided another exit point. I don’t think the strip was “joylessly grinding on” though—it’s been more of a quality rollercoaster.

ABC Warriors, on the other hand, really has been a trudge for years now. It’s the comic equivalent of a looping background on a cartoon show, and it’s such a pity, given the set-up and the cast that it’s so dull.

Ironic, though, about Nemesis, given that the final episode didn’t look as good as Flint’s work on that series. (And I say this as a big fan of Kev’s artwork elsewhere.)
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Magnetica 26 March, 2021, 12:43:37 PM
I am fairly relaxed about Pat’s exit from 2000AD on the basis that:

My love for Slaine is based almost entirely on everything up and including the Horned God.
My love for Nemesis is based almost entirely on the first six books.
My love for ABC Warriors is based almost entirely on the first series.

I have never really warmed to Defoe; I did enjoy the last couple of series of Savage, and not seeing the development of the ABC Warriors in that is going to be the big miss for me; but not yet another saga for Slaine.

I said up thread I would be miffed if Slaine’s death is just tacked on, but reading Pat’s latest Tweets it seems like that isn’t the case. (Not sure how the ending will make further adventures no longer possible though.)

The thing with Slaine is that it has never really felt like one big story that was heading somewhere anyway. Pat gas said further adventures would have required him to come up with a new theme and research it, so it’s not as if we will be missing out on the eventual ending he had in mind, because actually that doesn’t exist.

: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Mikey 26 March, 2021, 02:16:44 PM
Maybe the end of Sláine will be a rug pull of Ukko getting killed, thereby making him unable to chronicle further adventures? I've no idea if that conceit was somehow abandoned at some stage!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 26 March, 2021, 03:09:32 PM
The thing with Slaine is that it has never really felt like one big story that was heading somewhere anyway. Pat gas said further adventures would have required him to come up with a new theme and research it, so it’s not as if we will be missing out on the eventual ending he had in mind, because actually that doesn’t exist.

Absolutely!  I'd argue that Pat is extraordinarily good at seeding future elements* of the strip (the Time Monster being summoned in episode 1 leading to Time Killer, Myrddin's pool itself leading to the idea of warriors for the goddess being "dispatched" to different times in the struggle against the Cythrons, the idea of gaolers of the Dark Gods in Tomb of Grimnismal leading to the Archons in Brutannia, the introduction of the New Trojans and London in Gollamh leading to Dragontamer etc etc), but this is largely by way of world-building, rather than some overall structure. The early years did have the arc that chronicles Sláine's journey home and eventual showdown with Slough Feg and Medb, but even within those 6 years were some huge diversions, and now represents a pretty small chunk of the series.

And this is entirely approriate for myth (and folklore), even 'invented' myth: the stories of gods and heroes are meandering, episodic and disjointed. They may have a beginning and (sometimes)  an end, but there is seldom an consistent biography or theme, let alone plot. Look at Fionn MacCumhaill: he starts off the earnest outcast student who gains all the knowledge of the world from a salmon, becomes a war leader of a band of heroes, and shags a deer-woman; but as often as not he appears in stories as a giant hurling boulders to shape the landscape, but then as a hen-pecked husband of a different wife gets into comedy scrapes with even bigger giants. Then he appears as a tyrannical lech vengefully pursuing a prospective third wife whose father-in-law is the father of the gods themselves. nd then his son (with the deer) travels into the future via Tir nan Óg and learns that his father and the Fianna exist only myths,  meets St Patrick and dies.

It's not exactly a three-act structure.

And nor is Sláine.


*Or mining past ones, Who knows,  time is a spiral ever-turning.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 26 March, 2021, 03:43:07 PM
My memory of Nemesis ending seems to be that David Bishop wanted to have the last Nemesis as part of the Prog 2000 celebrations - who decided that Nemesis should also come to an end is a whole other question from that.

Kev was invited back, so for this to work, it would have to be Bish-Op wanted Kev to do Nemesis in Prog 2000, he said he would only do it if he could kill off Nemesis and they worked backwards from there to ditch the planned "Hammer of the Warlocks" plan asap and move to the Greatest Hits we got instead?  Seems unlikely, but who's to know (other than the Dark Days Droid himself!)
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Dark Jimbo 26 March, 2021, 03:59:57 PM
My memory of Nemesis ending seems to be that David Bishop wanted to have the last Nemesis as part of the Prog 2000 celebrations - who decided that Nemesis should also come to an end is a whole other question from that.

Kev was invited back, so for this to work, it would have to be Bish-Op wanted Kev to do Nemesis in Prog 2000, he said he would only do it if he could kill off Nemesis and they worked backwards from there to ditch the planned "Hammer of the Warlocks" plan asap and move to the Greatest Hits we got instead?  Seems unlikely, but who's to know (other than the Dark Days Droid himself!)

Hammer of the Warlocks was published in 1994. I think any plans to do much following on from that were already long since dead in the water by 1999.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 26 March, 2021, 04:04:02 PM
My recollection was that (Langley?) was going to do the Hammer of the Warlocks, but then went on an extended jaunt around the World, by which time he returned, Pat was busy elsewhere.   

They wrap up the Hammer of the Warlocks storyline as part of Book 10, so it wasnt as if it ws completely forgotten, just sidelined to make way for the ending - feels a little like history repeating itself - Flint comes along and is the perfect fit to reinvigorate the strip in a way that felt very rooted in those first books, but gets the story chopped out from under him.  Similarly Manco feels like a new Bisley/Fabry level artist brought in just to see the story end - you could rgue the same for Colin MacNeil on Stront I suppose!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: IndigoPrime 26 March, 2021, 04:05:26 PM
Quite. Nemesis had been dragging on regarding that ‘final battle’ for ages. Deathbringer ended at the very start of 1989. The forgettable Nemesis & Deadlock plugged a hole in 1990/1. Bride of the Warlock (the strongest Nemesis, to my mind, in years) was in the 1992 special. Then we got Shape of Things to Come in 1993 (all six pages of it). Hammer of the Warlocks was 1994. Book X began in 1999.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 26 March, 2021, 04:06:38 PM
Curiously, neither Bish-Op or Pat address the story endingin TPO / BPBVB... there might be an online audio interview where Pat covers it, maybe... hence my recollection of the Langley backpacking story!

: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 26 March, 2021, 04:09:28 PM
There was also the Tomb of Torquemada Poster Prog around 1995?  Brilliant piece of Mills/O'Neill hilarity (though the Irish jokes may not have aged so well!)

Quite. Nemesis had been dragging on regarding that ‘final battle’ for ages. Deathbringer ended at the very start of 1989. The forgettable Nemesis & Deadlock plugged a hole in 1990/1. Bride of the Warlock (the strongest Nemesis, to my mind, in years) was in the 1992 special. Then we got Shape of Things to Come in 1993 (all six pages of it). Hammer of the Warlocks was 1994. Book X began in 1999.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Jim_Campbell 26 March, 2021, 04:12:28 PM
Flint comes along and is the perfect fit to reinvigorate the strip in a way that felt very rooted in those first books, but gets the story chopped out from under him.

Worth noting that Henry moved over to the Deadlock solo series, set in the Nemesis milieu, which was pretty well-received (by me, anyway!).

In The World According to Pat, the reason there was never a second series was because Andy Diggle refused to commission a follow-up. Now, there are two slight problems with this account, one objective: Andy hasn't been the editor for twenty years; and one subjective: Andy recalls this rather differently, in as much he didn't like Pat's initial pitch for a second series and passed on it, but didn't in any way indicate that he wouldn't consider different pitch for a sequel.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Leigh S 26 March, 2021, 04:19:53 PM
Indeed - am I misremembering or does Deadlock say something along the lines of "I am Nemesis" again in that as well, and you could swap him out for Nemesis and the same story would have played out?

Very much enjoyed it, though it remains a road untravelled once the other ABC Warriors turn up
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Magnetica 26 March, 2021, 04:21:48 PM
Which makes me wonder if the abrupt conclusion to 'Nemesis' was down to his abrasive working relationship with David Bishop and/or a fortunately unfounded suspicion that 2000AD wasn't going to be around much longer?

I have a vague recollection that Kev O'Neill said he'd draw the 'last' episode on condition that it was the last episode.

That’s the one.  Trust me, if Kev hadn’t imposed that condition, Nemesis would have been joylessly grinding on to this day, like Slaine and ABC Warriors.

Just so we are all clear: is this referring to the original last ever episode, i.e. the last episode of Book X published in Prog 2000 in Dec 1999 or the subsequent last ever episode published in (the other) Prog 2000 in Sept 2016?
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Dark Jimbo 26 March, 2021, 04:28:28 PM
Just so we are all clear: is this referring to the original last ever episode, i.e. the last episode of Book X published in Prog 2000 in Dec 1999 or the subsequent last ever episode published in (the other) Prog 2000 in Sept 2016?

Either way, he still got to draw the last ever episode!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Jim_Campbell 26 March, 2021, 04:36:17 PM
Just so we are all clear: is this referring to the original last ever episode, i.e. the last episode of Book X published in Prog 2000 in Dec 1999 or the subsequent last ever episode published in (the other) Prog 2000 in Sept 2016?

The final episode of Book X.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 27 March, 2021, 01:15:56 PM
I also saw a question posted to Pat related to Flesh:

Q: Are you and Clint Langley going to be working on a final chapter for Flesh? It ended on a heck of a cliffhanger...

Pat: Too busy just now. I'd need to review it and see if it required some rethink for the finale, both in story and art terms. Off hand, I'd say it needed it. I won't just knock it out. It's too important & I think Flesh deserves to go out on a high note, like Leo's Slaine.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 27 March, 2021, 01:18:37 PM
A question related to ABC Warriors:

Q: Sad we will see no more Slaine and A.B.C. Warriors. Prog won’t be the same without the possibility of those two returning

Pat: Thanks. Planning to complete the last ABCs soonish as Clint completes the colouring on existing pages

Was hoping for more Savage rather than Flesh or ABC Warrios
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 27 March, 2021, 01:45:55 PM
So this is great, and to me unexpected, news. From this Pat is essentially still engaged with his - let's be honest - beloved creations, and ensuring that their stories are treated properly. So it's far less the petulant rage-quit I've seen it alluded to as elsewhere, and more the reasonable disengagement of a septuagenarian super-creator from the WFH environment in favour of making something he actually owns. You might cynically suggest that this is part keeping a few irons in the fire, but who the feck wouldn't.

Now I'm not sure that Defoe needs a more formal ending, but if S K Moore could get one more series of that under his mind-boggling belt, I'd be one happy squaxx.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 27 March, 2021, 01:53:32 PM
Maybe that was the agreement between Matt and Pat. Pat does not want anyone but him to work on his creations so if he give his series closure then no one else will work on his creations.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 27 March, 2021, 02:04:51 PM
I've had that impression for a while, he does want to close things off, but time is the limting factor. This clearly isn't him stormin' out the room and slamming the door as somoe what to portray it. Its always been a need to move on, but doing so as civilly as possible... well most the time.

So with any luck we'll get closure on everything that's still going. As I've said before I'm especially keen to see Savage get the send off it deserves, but fans of all his series deserve to get the ending and Unca Pat deserves to close things off the way he wants to.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Jim_Campbell 27 March, 2021, 02:09:36 PM
So with any luck we'll get closure on everything that's still going. As I've said before I'm especially keen to see Savage get the send off it deserves, but fans of all his series deserve to get the ending and Unca Pat deserves to close things off the way he wants to.

He's already said a couple of times that he feels Savage has come to a natural end, which I find disappointing because I've found it the most entertaining of Mills' series in recent years, by some margin.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 28 March, 2021, 01:56:59 PM
The las ABC Warriors story looks like it is going to be the Joe Pineapples spinoff
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 29 March, 2021, 10:06:56 AM
More info from Pat's twitter related to ABC Warriors:

Q: Hey @PatMillsComics, do you have any idea when the last ABC Warriors story will appear in @2000AD? Even approximately...

Pat: I'd guess end of the year. Clint is still colouring the pages he's inked and I've got about maybe 6 episodes to write which he'll need to draw and colour.  What do you think? End of the year seems about right
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: BPP 04 April, 2021, 09:15:46 PM
Honestly find myself at the opposite end of the spectrum from most readers here as to this as for it it was the poorest strip in 2000ad for quite some time. Dull, poorly drawn (sorry but for me it’s an artist who has gone backwards from the days of great art he produced in dredd) with poor layouts, unclear script (who ‘ what was in the air at times was confused as hell) an 11 part shoot out without tension or humour and worst of all a character who has nothing to do with wagner / Ezquerra’ s Durham Red.

I did laugh at the Ford transit van model by the booster station. Seemed a sensible vehicle to have on a snow frozen hell.

Utterly banal, lacking 2000ads humour or intelligence. Honestly I’m up for more Skip Tracer than this.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Link Prime 07 April, 2021, 10:47:05 AM
Utterly banal, lacking 2000ads humour or intelligence. Honestly I’m up for more Skip Tracer than this.

I'm with ya on this, unfortunately.

Give the character back to the ever inventive Dan Abnett or newly reconstructed Hogan Droid, or hang up her knickers unisex full body suit.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 14 April, 2021, 04:32:18 AM
For all the Proteus Vex fan's Michael Carroll tweeted the following:

(https://pbs.twimg.com/media/Ey25yeWVgAkXd-U?format=jpg&name=large)
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 14 April, 2021, 06:40:29 AM
Very good news indeed - wonder who'll be on art duties?
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Bolt-01 14 April, 2021, 09:30:36 AM
Okay - if we can't have Henry or Jake -- who would you want to see take a swing at this?

My first thought -- SK Moore. The art has a similar 'density' but a very different look.

Who would you pick and why?
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 14 April, 2021, 09:43:51 AM
Who would you pick and why?

Well assuming we rule out none starters like Brendan McCarthy (god that would be something) and the fact we shouldn't wait for David Taylor let's give Lee Carter a go.

As it happens I'm happy to report - though this is speculative - that over on Facebook Jake Lynch has just shared the image of Mike Carroll's first page of script so fingers crossed that's a hint he may be back.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Bolt-01 14 April, 2021, 01:02:31 PM
Yeah? Result.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: TordelBack 14 April, 2021, 06:13:20 PM
S'right. Lynch has completely won me over on a strip that I thought could only be Flint's:
he's a massive talent.
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 14 April, 2021, 07:28:48 PM
Flint or Lynch does not matter more Proteus Vex please !!!!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: Colin YNWA 14 April, 2021, 07:33:55 PM
S'right. Lynch has completely won me over on a strip that I thought could only be Flint's:
he's a massive talent.

He really is and i hope he's starting to get the recognition he deserves. Wonderful artist in my Prog Slog I'm just getting to the point when his art is first appearing and he's developing in front of us. Each time he appears he's getting better and better. It interesting comparing his Orlok / Sinister Dexter with Proteus. Still clearly very much the same artist, with such an idiotsyncratic style, yet he's come on so much. It fascinating looking at his work and trying to work out how he's come on so much, while changing so little. I being about to write about it in self-absorbed parts but I just can't figure it out!
: Re: Prog 2223 - The Root Of All Evil
: broodblik 14 April, 2021, 08:01:30 PM
I can remember the Orlok series and to be honest I just did not like the art. I always frowned when I saw his art and then the tide started to turn around. I can now say that he has become one of my favourites really enjoying his growth and style.