Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
 

Author Topic: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!  (Read 976 times)

Southstreeter

  • Member
  • Page Numbering Droid
  • **
  • Posts: 114
    • View Profile
Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« on: 11 January, 2021, 05:32:57 PM »
I always enjoy reading the review threads, but don’t often contribute to them. Anyway, it’s Monday, and I’ve had my prog since Saturday, so it seems like for once I’m ahead of the pack!

So, Dredd - art terrible, story interesting.
Hershey - art great, story a bit nasty, and I’m still bemused at how healthy Hershey is (I know she is faking being dead, but she was always seriously ill).
Slaine - looks fab, story unoriginal but still engaging.
Vex - still bonkers good.
Red - good in an old skool way.

broodblik

  • Member
  • Battle Hardened War Robot
  • ****
  • Posts: 2599
  • watkykjy?
    • View Profile
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #1 on: 11 January, 2021, 06:10:08 PM »
Cover  by Neil Roberts:


Old age is the Lord’s way of telling us to step aside for something new. Death’s in case we didn’t take the hint.

The pen is mightier than the sword if the sword is very short, and the pen is very sharp.

broodblik

  • Member
  • Battle Hardened War Robot
  • ****
  • Posts: 2599
  • watkykjy?
    • View Profile
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #2 on: 11 January, 2021, 06:10:36 PM »
Cover plus logo:

Old age is the Lord’s way of telling us to step aside for something new. Death’s in case we didn’t take the hint.

The pen is mightier than the sword if the sword is very short, and the pen is very sharp.

Colin YNWA

  • Member
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 16791
  • testing testing...
    • View Profile
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #3 on: 11 January, 2021, 08:49:23 PM »
Very good Prog, not great, but...

Dredd. Look I'm going to say it I'm struggling with Will Simpson's art a bit. I've always loved it but its getting a little loose and fuzzy at the edges for me now. Mind I still love the way he draws Dredd's lips! The story is solid.

Hershey just brilliant its hard, its bitter and its very, very good. The art is just sublime too.

Slaine well its doing Slaine very well isn't it. Its so very Slaine, so absolutely Slaine. The trouble is I've not really enjoyed Slaine - the odd story aside - for like 25 years or something. Its takes 8 lush pages to say almost nothing and certainly nothing new.

Proteus Vex
on the other hand is just superb. It looks brilliant and its nicely different to what we've had before and I really enjoyed the indirect insight into our lead.

Durham Red okay it lost me for a second when ... something exploded.... I mean stuff explodes in 2000ad all the time but here I wasn't sure what it was. Then I read it again and I did. Fine I got it. The trouble is this would normally really throw me out the story and kill the tale. The thing is this is really good. It has an old school charm and a modern edge. Its just plain fun and - one explosion aside - fantastically crafted.

Good prog just not without its prioblems.

Barrington Boots

  • Member
  • Page Numbering Droid
  • **
  • Posts: 199
    • View Profile
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #4 on: 12 January, 2021, 02:01:32 PM »
Its takes 8 lush pages to say almost nothing and certainly nothing new.

This is the essence of modern Slaine! And this series is indeed the Slaine-iest of all Slaines!

I won't be reviewing this weeks prog in detail because I only just did the previous weeks yesterday, and nothing much has changed for me. Slaine looks FANTASTIC (that underwater bit especially) but says nothing yet still top thrill for me this week. Vex looks good but felt a little ponderous this week story-wise. Durham Red looks good too but finding this tale a bit slight. Dredd looks awful and not digging the story - the back up cast lasted less time than expected! Hershey is not for me at all.
You're a dark horse, Boots.

broodblik

  • Member
  • Battle Hardened War Robot
  • ****
  • Posts: 2599
  • watkykjy?
    • View Profile
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #5 on: 13 January, 2021, 04:10:04 AM »
This prog was good not the best we had but still enjoyable. Story wise must of the stories is starting to pick-up some direction, but it was the art this round that gets most of my attention. Nice bonkers cover by Neil Roberts to semi-warp the prog.

Dredd – Everything was fine and then everything was not as this chapter ends our heroes in a bit of a pickle. This round the art worked much better, the colouring at least did not reflect the same messiest as the previous episode. The story is still going strong and I am interest in how Dredd gets out of this one.

Hershey- This was a particularly good episode, and the path of destruction is set. Simon’s art is a real strength for the story. The use of less colour set the tone for each panel.

Slaine – So no more, say no more but the art is just fantastic. The story has not got more momentum and I am now more infested into the last warp-spasm of Slaine. Yes, but before I forget the art is great.

Proteus Vex – The sci-fi romp continues, and the variation and variance of aliens and creatures keeps me wanting more. This is a great story by Carroll with Lynch providing great visuals.

Durham Red – This has now become a standard give-me-what-I -want-or story, still it is interesting, and we know how this will end.

It looks like this year might be a busy one for Edginton with another reveal of what is to come. So, more Fiends and Scarlet Traces.
Old age is the Lord’s way of telling us to step aside for something new. Death’s in case we didn’t take the hint.

The pen is mightier than the sword if the sword is very short, and the pen is very sharp.

Tomwe

  • Member
  • Prog Stacking Droid
  • ***
  • Posts: 888
    • View Profile
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #6 on: 13 January, 2021, 09:24:03 AM »
What a cover!

Bolt-01

  • Global Moderator
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 11704
  • It ain't called ZARJAZ fer nuthin'!
    • View Profile
    • FutureQuake Press
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #7 on: 13 January, 2021, 02:55:42 PM »
Indeed. I'd seen it online but in the 'flesh' - fantastic.

Top quality coverage there Neil.

Really enjoyed the rest of the prog too.

TordelBack

  • Member
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 27180
  • Thunder Chops is dragged off, gnashing...
    • View Profile
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #8 on: 13 January, 2021, 04:36:18 PM »
Really spectacular cover, highlights just how strong a design Vex is as he moves through the hands of very different artists and remains instantly recognisable - think we have an enduring 2000AD character on our hands.

Good to see Scarlet Traces returning, could this be the final chapter, now all the characters are (nearly) back on Earth?

The Dredd feels a bit like a missing chapter from Carroll's 'Black Snow' sequence (wittily over-titled 'Dredd in the Land of the Soviets' by a certain AlexF), or 'Deep in the Heart',  neither of which would be my favourites from his work, but I can't deny that I'm intrigued to see where it goes.

Unfortunately the high-concept setting doesn't really suit Simpson's lovely character-focused art. I sometimes have no idea what the characters were looking at. Million-dollar tanks?  Where? I find myself imagining what D'Israeli or Googe could have done with the brief 'Death Belt Ewok Village'.

That said, I really do love the smoky, visceral action Simpson draws, and above all else his craggy Dredd, another chunk of lofted rock in motion. More of this, please!

I've considered mentally replacing resurrected Hershey with a resurrected Aimee Nixon with an undercover Hershey face-job, and enjoying the very pretty story on that basis. Maybe one day.

Sláine. Manco's beautiful art eases back a bit on the stuffing and becomes much more enjoyable for me. I'm pleased to see that he's gone for a mix of 2- and 4-legged dragons, bridging the considerable design gap between Dragonheist and Horned God, with a healthy nod to Bellardnelli in his red female dragon.

I've no problem with the story being simple, Sláine has found new purpose and is coming to destroy New Troy in vengeance for the events on the Isle of Man, a direct continuation of the last episode of Brutannia Chronicles. He's also coming to terms with the truth and meaning of his origins. In some ways this would have worked better positioned as a conclusion to that story, and I wouldn't be surprised to learn that was the original plan: it always seemed odd that most of the events in the 'Brutannia Chronicles' didn't take place in Britain.

What does puzzle me a bit is why Sláine seems to be moving from Ballina to Enniscrone on his journey from the Isle of Man to London, but maybe all will be revealed.

Proteus Vex continues in high style, a well-balanced mix of space mystery, violence and striking visuals. Interested to see if Andrum is really a wee pilot-person too. May need to re-read that bit.

Durham Red chucks a nice baddie design Inyo an already stylish story,  particularly enjoying the colours.

norton canes

  • Member
  • Prog Stacking Droid
  • ***
  • Posts: 528
  • The leper heart will see you for what you are
    • View Profile
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #9 on: 13 January, 2021, 09:24:51 PM »
Neil Roberts has drawn Vex fantastically there, in a real dramatic, action-packed pose. Unfortunately the lurid background is a bit of a distraction.

I can't believe I've butchered the work of a highly-respected art droid, but... I reckon something like this would have looked better:




Sorry Neil (sheepish emoji).

broodblik

  • Member
  • Battle Hardened War Robot
  • ****
  • Posts: 2599
  • watkykjy?
    • View Profile
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #10 on: 14 January, 2021, 05:34:10 AM »
norton I like your take on the cover it gives it a very sci-fi feel.
Old age is the Lord’s way of telling us to step aside for something new. Death’s in case we didn’t take the hint.

The pen is mightier than the sword if the sword is very short, and the pen is very sharp.

TordelBack

  • Member
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 27180
  • Thunder Chops is dragged off, gnashing...
    • View Profile
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #11 on: 14 January, 2021, 09:16:50 AM »
Norton's version is very stylish and eyecatching indeed, but I think the kaleidoscopic background speaks to the wider technicolour weirdness of the setting, which is as big a part of the strip as the titular character.

I suppose it's a toss-up between a striking character cover, and trading on/promoting the appeal of the strip.

Darren Stephens

  • 2000AD Creator
  • Battle Hardened War Robot
  • *****
  • Posts: 2572
    • View Profile
    • Darren Stephens Art
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #12 on: 15 January, 2021, 09:47:12 AM »
Norton's version is very stylish and eyecatching indeed, but I think the kaleidoscopic background speaks to the wider technicolour weirdness of the setting, which is as big a part of the strip as the titular character.

I suppose it's a toss-up between a striking character cover, and trading on/promoting the appeal of the strip.


I agree. The cover background is integral to it's design. I see where Norton is coming from, though.
https://www.facebook.com/darrenstephensart/
                                       CLICK^^

norton canes

  • Member
  • Prog Stacking Droid
  • ***
  • Posts: 528
  • The leper heart will see you for what you are
    • View Profile
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #13 on: 15 January, 2021, 10:52:27 AM »
Anyway. After thoroughly derailing the thread, onto the prog's contents (don't worry, I won't be rewriting chunks of dialogue)

Desperadlands: a solid Carroll script coming across a bit by-numbers but I'm sure that's because the story is really intended as a showcase for Will Simpson's vividly vibrant art. He's obviously having a whale of a time, channelling his inner Pollock with the spatter and switching between styles from frame to frame. It's almost like two or three different artists have drawn Dredd himself.

Hershey: For a series that's supposed to represent a fresh start it contains a few too many callbacks, especially since I wasn't around for most of Dirty Frank's backstory. And it feels like with the boxing stuff Hershey's taking a bit of a convoluted route to get to Edu. Still, nothing wrong with a bit of slow-burn.

Slaine: Taking it right back to basics, this is just great. If, as it appears, this is going to be the last time we see Slaine it would be fantastic to have it go out with us wanting more, rather than just limping away.

Vex: Lovely stuff, proper hardcore space opera with a glam flourish. Jake Lynch's boisterous artwork is a heady cocktail of Mike McMahon, Jim Baikie and Ramon Sola. I'd love to see Vex and Midnight guest in a Dredd story.

Red: Also fantastic, and just the sort of thing that would make great TV action drama. Top marks for floating jellyfish brain villain and for introducing her with no explanations!


Finally, I guess the 2000 AD accountant droids might disagree, but I'm all in favour of expanding the length of strips so that we get a story on the back page instead of an advert.

broodblik

  • Member
  • Battle Hardened War Robot
  • ****
  • Posts: 2599
  • watkykjy?
    • View Profile
Re: Prog 2214 - High Vexplosive!
« Reply #14 on: 15 January, 2021, 02:04:09 PM »
Finally, I guess the 2000 AD accountant droids might disagree, but I'm all in favour of expanding the length of strips so that we get a story on the back page instead of an advert.

Cannot remember the last time that we literally only had story no nothing else. I am also more for this...
Old age is the Lord’s way of telling us to step aside for something new. Death’s in case we didn’t take the hint.

The pen is mightier than the sword if the sword is very short, and the pen is very sharp.