The latest edition of 2000AD, Prog 2265, comes with a striking cover from David Roach, coloured by Dylan Teague – and, officially, Judge Dredd Megazine 440 is out too – although that was released a week early by some WHSmith stores!
You can read my review of the Megazine here, which includes Hawk the Slayer #1 by Garth Ennis and Henry Flint. (If you don’t have time, I thought it was great – and the whole issue is great value for money, too!)
In 2000AD Prog 2265, “Judge Dredd”, “Kingmaker”, “Proteus Vex” and “The Order” are joined by “Saphir”, writer Kek-W and artist David Roach’s turn-of-the-century, beautifully-drawn, Parisienne tale of magic, mystery and fantastical worlds.
Regular 2000AD readers will recall “Saphir” made its debut as a “3riller”, back in Progs 2197-2199, and now it returns as a short series featuring even more monsters and mayhem. It’s a great opening episode.
Also out this week is the first volume of Karl the Viking, a British comics classic from writers Ted Cowan and Ken Bulmer and artist Don Lawrence (Trigan Empire, Storm). Crammed with great, beautiful drawn action adventure from cover to cover, this is definitely one to check out.
In Prog 2265…
Judge Dredd: Working Girl by Kenneth Niemand (w) Patrick Goddard (a) Dylan Teague (c) Annie Parkhouse
Mega-City One, 2144 AD. Home to over 180 million citizens, this urban hell is situated along the east coast of post-apocalyptic North America. Crime is rampant and only the Judges — zero-tolerance cops empowered to dispense instant justice — can stop total anarchy. Toughest of them all is JUDGE DREDD — he is the Law! Now, courier Mona Plankhurst had become involved in a highly dangerous delivery scheme…
Proteus Vex: Desite Paths by Michael Carroll (w) Jake Lynch (a) Jim Boswell (c) Simon Bowland (l)
Another galaxy, the far future. The centuries-long war between the Alliance and the Obdurate people is over, a conflict brought to an end with the deaths of billions when the Alliance teleported a dying white dwarf star into the Obdurate system. Imperium agent PROTEUS VEX — who is operated by a flesh-pilot — has now become an enemy of the Alliance when he released information about past war crimes…
The Order: Fantastic Voyage by Kek-W (w) John Burns (a) Simon Bowland (l)
Throughout history, mankind has been under threat of extermination by the Wurms, creatures that break into our reality. Defending humanity are the men and women of THE ORDER, a band of warriors that have fought the entities across the centuries. But time has become fractured, and now the despotic Francis Bacon is determined to rule a vast empire. Now, the various members of The Order have become separated…
Kingmaker: Falls The Shadow by Ian Edginton (w) Leigh Gallagher (a) Jim Campbell (l)
The Nine Kingdoms may have defeated Ichnar the Wraith King to live in relative peace, but they hadn’t reckoned on the Thorn — a race of aliens that occupied their world with the intention of strip-mining its magic. Wizard Ablard, ork Crixus and dryad Princess Yarrow believed they may have the means to stop them — but Ichnar manifested in Ablard, and Crixus and Yarrow were forced to kill him. Ichnar’s spirit escaped…
Saphir: Liaisons Dangereuses by Kek-W (w) David Roach (a) Peter Doherty (c) Annie Parkhouse (l)
Paris, 1899. Inspector Alphonse Mucha of the Sûreté previously met and became involved with the mysterious Lady Sofia Corundum when he was called to her house, and was embroiled in an adventure that took him to a dangerous dimension. Now, the powerful Lady Sofia has need of the Inspector once more — and yet again Paris is about to feel the wrath of a being from another reality…
Judge Dredd Megazine 440
Cover by Kenneth Stewart Moore
Judge Dredd: Praise Zort by Rory McConville (w) Staz Johnson (a) Chris Blythe (c) Annie Parkhouse
Death Cap by TC Eglington (w) Boo Cook (a) Simon Bowland (l)
Diamond Dogs III by James Peaty (w) Warren Please (a) Simon Bowland (l)
Lawless: Ballots Over Badrock by Dan Abnett (w), Phil Windslade (a) Jim Campbell (l)
Surfer by John Wagner (w) Colin MacNeil (a) Chris Blythe (c) Annie Parkhouse (l)
Interview: Steve White by Karl Stock
New comics: Hawk the Slayer by Karl Stock
Bagged graphic novel: Hawk the Slayer #1 by Garth Ennis (w) Henry Flint (a) Rob Steen (l)
The comic book sequel to legendary 1980s British sword-and-sorcery flick Hawk the Slayer begins, a five issue mini series, with each issue to be bagged with Judge Dredd Megazine every month. It’s a dream come true for writer Garth Ennis, who’s a massive fan of the movie, and the art by Henry Flint is simply sublime, managing to capture the charm of the original whil also adding his trademark gritty dynamism.
This is the debut of the strip that will be published as a US-format miniseries for the Direct Market from April. Read our review here
New 2000AD and Treasury of British Comics Collections
Essential Judge Dredd: Dredd vs Death
By John Wagner, Alan Grant (Writers) Brian Bolland, Brett Ewins, Cliff Robinson, Robin Smith, Alex Ronald, Andy Clarke, Bryan Talbot (Artists) Gary Caldwell, Charlie Kirchoff (Colourists) Tom Frame (Letterer)
Out: 18th January 2022, 160 pages, paperback
The essential Judge Dredd graphic novel series – the ultimate introduction to the Lawman of the Future!
The crime is life! The Judgement is death! When Judge Death enters Mega-City One from a parallel dimension, his plan is simple: to find every single living cit and sentence them – to death!
The fourth volume in the oversized Essential Dredd series includes the first two Judge Death stories, from John Wagner (A History of Violence) and Brian Bolland (The Killing Joke), presented in stunning black and white, and featuring restored pages. It also includes the first solo Judge Anderson adventure, presented in luscious new colours, also starring Judge Death.
The Essential Dredd Collection is a perfect jumping on point for new readers and this volume introduces Judge Death, the Dark Judges and wisecracking Psi Judge Cassandra Anderson.
Karl the Viking Volume One: The Sword Of Eingar
By Ted Cowan and Ken Bulmer (Writers) Don Lawrence (Artist)
Out: 19th January 2022, Paperback, 240 pages | £19.99
Rebellion’s Trigan Empire collections are easily their most successful Treasury of British Comics series yet, which has prompted the planned release of a collection of “Karl the Viking”, a stunning Viking strip first published between 1961 and 1964 in the weekly adventure comic, Lion, that went on to achieve huge success in Europe.
“Karl the Viking” is a sweeping historical fantasy story of an orphaned Saxon boy, adopted and raised by the viking Eingar after his raid on Britain. Upon coming of age Karl succeeds Eingar and leads his tribe into battle in Britain against wild tribes of Picts, and re-connects with his old Saxon family, gaining an ally in his cousin Godwulf, and making an enemy of the Earl of Eastumbria.
These fast-paced stories were drawn by Don Lawrence shortly before he revolutionised painted comic art with “The Rise and Fall of the Trigan Empire”, when he was already a master of pen and ink, and his “Karl the Viking” series was the pinnacle of black and white comic art.
Launched in Lion in October 1960 as “The Sword Of Eingar” (in Issue 447, cover dated 29th October 1960), this terrific adventure strip was retitled “Karl the Viking” with Issue 463 (cover dated 18th February 1961). It was later reprinted in both Lion and SMASH, and one story even got an outing in the Action Holiday Special in 1980.