It seems someone has been doing some pruning Wikipedia, resulting in the deletion of some Judge Dredd-related articles, including an extensive feature on Judge Death – although a snapshot of the page survives on the archive site Wayback Machine.
While concerns about the removal of the page have been raised on the 2000AD forum, however, let’s hope this is just some spring cleaning by Wikipedia to tidy up pages lacking sources, and not some attempt to expunge Judge Dredd by crazed keyboard-savvy thrill suckers.
Investigating, the removal of the Judge Death page, for example, looks like it was some time coming. A warning about its unclear sources had been in place since October 2015, and the final Wayback snapshot in December 2019 announces the page – which it seems had not been updated since 2017 – had been targeted for deletion, pending page discussion.
Wikipedia visitors looking for Judge Death are now being directed to its “List of Judge Dredd Characters” Page. The popular reference site has a detailed guide to its Deletion Policy, and only administrators can completely delete Pages, and they can be undeleted on appeal.
Whatever the reasons for the removal, the Page was a useful, quick reference guide to Judge Death and some feel having it was good to have such a resource on Wikipedia, a first point of call for may web users initial research into comics and comic characters, before delving deeper on the web. Given the reported disappearance of similar Dredd-related pages on the Fandom Wikia service, it’s a shame to see introductory reference guides like this disappear.
Of course, there’s nothing to stop 2000AD from adding a guide to Judge Death to its web site, and a fairly new fan web site with no connection to publisher Rebellion – judgedeath.co.uk, a domain registered last June – features much more information on the character, as noted by artist PJ Holden, and opinions on stories, the latter something that could never feature on Wikipedia.
Let’s just hope the site doesn’t cross the line when it comes to copyright and is renewed when the domain expires later this year, and isn’t hijacked as past British comics-related sites have been, such as the once legendary Sevenpenny Nightmare!
• 2000AD Official Site: 2000ad.com
Judge Dredd, Judge Death © Rebellion Publishing Ltd.