REVIEW: 2000 AD PROG 1976

Publisher: 2000 AD Rebellion
Writers: Michael Carroll, Gordon Rennie & Emma Beeby, KEK-W, Rory McConville
Artists: Colin Macneil, Neil Googe, Dave Kendall, Joshua George, Paul Davidson, Liam Sharp (Cover)
Colourist: Len O’Grady, Gary Caldwell
Lettering: Annie Parkhouse, Ellie De Ville, Simon Bowland
Release Date: UK 13 April 2016/North America 13 May 2016
Price: UK £2.55/North America $2.99

2000 AD PROG 1976 Rebellion

2000 AD PROG 1976 Rebellion

The comic book shop, I’m still only in the comic book shop. Every time I wake up, I think I’m going to be reading the latest issue of 2000 AD. When I finished last week’s 2000 AD it was worse; seven days left before the next one. I hardly said a word to my wife until she said yes to a subscription and a digital download.

It’s been nearly a week now, waiting for the next issue of 2000 AD, getting softer, while Judge Dredd’s adventures get stronger. Each day without 2000 AD my comic book collection moved in around me a little tighter.

Everyone gets everything he wants. I wanted a review, and for my sins, they gave me one. Brought it up to me like room service. It was a real choice review too, 2000 AD PROG 1976 and when it was over, I wanted to do another one and then another one and so on. I love the smell of 2000 AD in the morning. That comic book smell, smells like entertainment.
The 2000AD PROG 1976 would take me into the very heart of Tharg. It might be my review but was sure as hell was Mike Conroy’s website. The rest of the crew were mostly comic book fans, with one foot in their comic book collections and the other in their social media apps.

What are they going to say about Judge Dredd? Are they going to say he was a tough man? He was an insightful man? He had a bike, man? He had a shoot first ask questions later plan? He’s the law, man.

And the good Judge is kicking off this issue of 2000 AD PROG 1976 and I like that. Anyone who says different just zap with the words, man, the words. Writer Michael Carroll and artist Colin Macneil  take Dredd back out into the Cursed Earth for Part 4 of Grindstone Cowboys and it is far from plain sailing. Carroll can pace a story, no doubt about that and Caldwell takes that pacing and turns out – well – page turning visuals. Colours by Len O’Grady are the icing on this particular cake. Six short pages and you will be left wanting more, or hanging around a comic book shop or website PROG 1977 appears.

The Survival Geeks Part Four: Geeks Fatales has that kinetic energy seldom seen and seldom seen done this well. The artwork of Neil Googe zips everything along not haphazardly but more energetically than most comic books achieve, with spot  on colouring from Gary Caldwell. The writing of Gordon Renne and Emma Beeby (how do writing teams work? I’d terminate with extreme prejudice any writer I had to….er……..moving on) seems completely in harmony and happily delivers the premise of misfiring trans-dimensional technology into an engaging comic book story.

Tainted: The Fall of Deadworld Part four is a strong contender for the best thing in 2000 AD PROG 1976. Kek-W delivers a dystopian world you might like to visit but you would not want to get stuck there, unlike all the desperate characters populating the strip. With little allegiance to each other, most things in Tainted get decided with  violence or at gunpoint. Dave Kendall’s artwork seems rushed and a little immature but has promise and I can barely rub two stick figures together so I’m not overly complaining; the artwork gets the job done.

The weak spot for me in 2000 AD PROG 1976 is the Future Shocks. Let me qualify that, if I can. There is nothing wrong with Joshua George’s black and white artwork or, for that matter, Rory McConville’s story. It is the format, the O’Henry endings. Or maybe that is just me, slightly long in the tooth, slightly ‘been there and done that’. It’s not unpleasant and neither is McDonalds; I just do not want to eat there every day or every issue.

Aquila: Charon’s Mercy Part 4 rounds 2000 AD PROG 1976 off. Gordon Rennie’s story of Roman Gods, torture, death and vengeance sits well with all that has gone before, with the exception of Future Shocks. It is a relentless piece and Paul Davidson’s artwork, added by Len O’Grady’s colours, quite literarily take no prisoners. A warning for the faint hearted is pointless as nobody with a faint heart should be reading 2000 AD.

Someday this review’s gonna end. That’d be just fine with the boys on the website. They weren’t looking for anything more than a way back to the comic book store. Trouble is, I’d been back there, and I knew that it just didn’t exist anymore without 2000 AD PROG 1976.

 

The review……….the review…………..

 

Reviewer: Steve – Willard – Hooker
Reviews Editor: Colonel Walter E. Kurtz

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