With the arrival of DCYou and DC Entertainment’s latest creative push, Superman has been going through quite the ordeal over in his world of comics. For those who aren’t caught up, Superman had his secret identity of Clark Kent revealed to the whole world by… Lois Lane.
Judge Dredd, the Lawman of the Future certainly gets himself into some scrapes in the pursuit of justice in Mega-City 1.
In his many years on the streets, he has fought a wide variety of foes including a future zombie version of himself, vampires, werewolves and even Santa, as well as the regular assortment of law breakers and perps. But some of his entanglements have definitely been odd, even for a guy who sees mutants and undead judges on a semi-regular basis. With the release of the new graphic novel Predator vs. Judge Dredd vs. Aliens out October 21 (today), it seemed just the right time to look at who else in the fandom universe Dredd has had the pleasure to kick around with.
Judge Dredd / Batman (1991, 1993, 1995, 1998)
Recently collected into a trade paperback, these adventures have both Dredd and Batman turning up in numerous places (sometimes in Gotham, sometimes in Mega-City 1), having a tussle with someone (or each other) and then teaming up to solve a greater problem.
In Judgment on Gotham, the duos’ first encounter used a dimensional portal to bring the two characters together. It works slightly better in this context because the Judge Dredd foes, The Dark Judges, used dimensional devices to first visit Mega-City 1, and Judge Death uses it here to go to Gotham City. Batman believes he has taken out the Judge and ends up accidentally transporting himself to Mega-City 1. After Judge Anderson clears up who Batman is, we get quite an adventure penned again by Wagner and Grant, with The Scarecrow and Judge Death teaming up to wreak havoc at a rock concert in Gotham. The Simon Bisley artwork really adds something special to the story and the way he draws Scarecrow and Judge Death makes them even more chilling than normal.
The second book in the series, Vendetta in Gotham, has a fun (if slightly filler feeling) script by John Wagner and Alan Grant that actually uses this notion of superhero team-ups having a punch first, talk later policy to its advantage. This is seen in a nice plot twist halfway through the story which I will not reveal here, but it comes off as refreshing change, just like the villains, The Ventriloquist and Scarface, who are rarely used in such a way in the comics. This is all supported by Cam Kennedy’s great artwork in the book.
The last two entries are The Ultimate Riddle which has The Riddler getting in on the action, and the story throwing Batman and Judge Dredd into a gladiator styled battle arena, while Die Laughing had The Joker rehashing Scarecrow’s scheme, going to Mega-City 1 to release The Dark Judges with Batman hot on their tails. They were both fun in their own way, with some great artwork by Glenn Fabry and Carl Critchlow. However the stories never had the impact that the first two Wagner/Grant stories had. A little bit of fun but nothing too exciting, maybe the series team up had reached its natural end.
Predator vs. Judge Dredd is a story with limited plot, but enough fun scenes to get it through. Basically it involves a Predator coming down to hunt the Judges, and Dredd has to get down and dirty to take him out. The book does stuff in some obvious links to the other films, mostly Psi Judge Schaefer, a relation of Dutch from the first Predator film. Then there is the scene where Schaefer drinks Predator blood to track him down which seems slightly silly but it mostly reads like a big action epic and is fun enough for that exact reason.
Judge Dredd vs Aliens (2003)
Judge Dredd has met a fair few alien creatures, some on vacation, some with mischief in mind and, in one instance, some used as muscle for the insane Chief Judge Cal in The Day the Law Died. So it was no great surprise that he would eventually tussle with both the Xenomorphs and Predators.
In Judge Dredd vs. Aliens: Incubus, John Wagner and Andy Diggle (writers) and Henry Flint (artist) do a great job at bringing the Aliens to Dredd’s world. When the usual stomach problems cause a chest burster to emerge out of a perp, it is up to Judge Dredd to try and keep the Alien infestation under control before they get loose and start impregnating the citizens. This all extends out into a bigger plot line and the reasons behind the Aliens actually arriving on Mega-City 1 are satisfying once revealed. With scenes ranging from the hospital where the chest burster first appears at, into the bowels of The Halls of Justice where something sinister is afoot, it all amasses to a fun read.
There are elements of each of the first movies here, with Dredd having his own Verminators helping him to solve problems very similar to the marine help Ripley had in Aliens. The lead up to the hospital scene has the suspense of the original Alien movie stamped all over it. The only downside is that Dredd seems pretty much invincible here, with even acid blooded Aliens not giving him too much stress. However, when he meets the Predator, he has to go into full Arnold Schwarzenegger mode to take it down.
Mars Attacks Judge Dredd (2013)
Dredd did not stop there with the extraterrestrials. His next big meeting was in the IDW universe where he squared off against the Martians. In 2012, IDW started their own Judge Dredd comic, with a separate continuity, but by and large keeping with the general feel of the original UK comic books. Think ‘Ultimate Judge Dredd’ and you get the idea. IDW has recently become quite well-known for their lavish in-house crossovers. Infection 1 and 2 started the ball rolling, with zombies and Cthulhu-styled creatures appearing in comics published by IDW (Star Trek, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Ghostbusters, etc.). In 2013, their cross-over event was Mars Attacks, and while most comics had just one appearance in each of their issues, Dredd had his own mini-series involving the grotesque invaders.
The plot is simple enough (a pattern we have seen before in these cross-overs with Dredd) with a search for a new mob leader that involves a former mob boss’ son turning up with some familiar looking aliens to back him up in his attempt to take over. Dredd gets roped into things when the sector house he is visiting is right in the middle of this mob takedown. Dredd, of course, then does his thing. Yet again there is not much story here, but what is on show works thanks to the Al Ewing story. Seeing these characters fight it out is lots of fun and the mix of violence and comedy flows together smoothly on the page, which was beautifully illustrated by John McCrea.
Judge Dredd vs. The Rest
Even after the Dark Knight and Alien invaders making appearances with Dredd, there are still a handful of others left that may be of interest. Judge Dredd vs. Lobo: Psycho Bikers vs. Mutants from Hell (1995) has Wagner and Grant reuniting for writing duties, with some explosive artwork from Val Semeiks tying it all together. Lobo meets Mean Machine and then Dredd has to get involved. You can pretty much guess the rest, as a lot of property damage gets done along the way! Great fun if you love Lobo as that sense of humor is spliced throughout this book, but Dredd fans may feel a little left out as sometimes it feels like the main man is running the show and he is just along for the ride. Still it’s a short read, so no harm.
The 2000 AD anniversary issues are like having a little homage to all of the characters past and present, with a few short pages dedicated to self-mockery of said characters. These stories are normally very self-aware and have a tendency to wink at the audience to let you in on the joke. It is here in the 25th anniversary of the magazine, a meeting takes place, which would have made a darn fine comic, with Judge Dredd meeting Marshal Law, the hero hunting anti-hero. Though it is only a page long, it makes you think that the two would have teamed up for future endeavors rather than having the usual fist fight.
Finally, there were two events that even the die-hard Dredd fans might have missed. One had him meeting with 1980s UK comedy performer Jeremy Beadle. whose wacky ‘caught on-camera’ pranks got the better of him in Mega-City 1, or when he appeared with Captain Britain, Dan Dare, Lenny Henry and Desperate Dan to celebrate the UK charity event Red Nose Day. That one is just plain strange!
So what is left for Dredd? Well there are plenty of superheroes out there for him to team up with (or against), but also with the numerous versions of Dredd out there now (the Stallone movie version, the Karl Urban movie version, the UK comic version and the IDW comic version) it would be nice to see a cross-universe shakeup involving all the versions of Dredd turning up. Only the future will tell for sure, but if it does happen you can be sure Grizzly Bomb will let you know. If we left out any of your favorite Judge Dredd meetings, let us know in the comments section or on our Facebook page!
Images: 2000 AD, Fleetway Publications, DC Entertainment,
Dark Horse Comics, IDW, Red Nose Day, Cartoon Aid.
Schism starts off with one theme common in the X-books: Humans hate and fear mutants. Cyclops and Wolverine head off to ask the world to stop the proliferation of various Sentinel programs. Now if you’ve forgotten what Sentinels are, they are big ole’ purple and magenta robots whose speciality is to hunt down and eliminate mutants. In a world where mutants are feared, these Sentinels throughout various countries act as deterrents to mutants the same as nukes do to humans. In the middle of Cyclops’ speech it is of course interrupted by none other than Quentin Quire who I haven’t seen since the Grant Morrison days of the New X-men during the ‘Riot at Xavier’s’ storyline. I actually hated the little turd with a passion but he serves a purpose here, throwing the world into panic against mutants with his antics.
The Schism story so far is decent, though after the reveal on the last page I’m skeptical about where it may be going. You’ll know what I’m talking about when you reach the end. I’m sure by the midway point we’ll see the X-men start to fracture between Wolverine and Cyclops and we will have seen plenty of Sentinel bashing throughout. I’m interested to see how they handle the Hellfire Club in the series and its new leader which is the part I find so ridiculous.
Wolverine had to have been my favorite character in the issue, blowing off a group of students at the beginning of the issue because he’s so exhausted. You would be too if you were on the Avengers and several X-Teams! By the end though he has bought a gift for one of the students he blew off and joins her in eating some ice cream. Cheesy? A little bit, but I enjoyed it nonetheless.
Overall I give the first issue of Schism a 3 out of 5 bears.
They have me interested to read the next issue, I love sentinels and I never seem to tire of the art of Carlos Pacheco. The points I took away are because of this ludicrous story point involving a young little fell named Kilgore, but maybe more will be revealed in the next issue pertaining to him.
It’s been a while since we’ve taken a look at the new titles coming out of the DCNu, so if you need a refresher you can check out Batman, Superman, Green Lantern, Teen Heroes, Solo Heroes, and the Justice Leagues. These new #1’s feature a more macabre side of the DC Universe, and should appeal to a large number of fans out there. Let’s get started.
All fans of Sith Lords rejoice! After so many rumors, cancellations, and delays – we are finally going to get the oft talked about Darth Plagueis novel! Darth Plagueis is, as you may or may not know, the Master of future Sith Lord and Emperor – Darth Sidious. Or as he is known to the gullible galaxy at large: Emperor Palpatine. Here is the description below from Starwars.com:
Revenge of the Sith, while attending a ballet, Supreme Chancellor Palpatine casually mentions to Anakin Skywalker the tale of Darth Plagueis. Plagueis was a Sith Lord so wise and powerful, that he could even manipulate the Force to create life or stop death in others. Ironically, such a powerful being could not prevent his own death, for in the way of the Sith, Plagueis was killed in his sleep by his apprentice.
Palpatine told the captivating tale to start certain wheels spinning in the Chosen One’s head. Ever since then, Star Wars fans have been clamoring to know more about Plagueis. Author James Luceno delves into the secrets of the dark side to find out more about Darth Sidious and Darth Plagueis in a new hardcover novel, Star Wars: Darth Plagueis, due out this winter.
I would love, love, LOOOOOOOVE to have read A Dance of Dragons early, because it’s been pure torture waiting the last few years for George R.R. Martin’s 5th installment of A Song of Ice and Fire to be released. (That’s the name of the series that the HBO watchers would call a Game of Thrones.) But I have to tell ya, I’m not willing to risk a decapitation for it because that’s what the main man himself has promised to the bastard who sold 180 copies earlier than the July 12th release date of the novel. Check it out below from IGN:
Woe to the Amazon employee who accidentally shipped copies of George R. R. Martin’s 5th book in the Song of Ice and Fire series, A Dance with Dragons, early. 180 copies of the book, which was heavily embargoed until its release date on July 12th, were prematurely shipped out to readers by Amazon in Germany and now spoilers have begun to pop up all over the web.
“I am not happy about this. My publishers are furious. If we find out who is responsible, we will mount his head on a spike,” the Game of Thrones author wrote on his blog.
That’s just great. Now I have to tread very carefully until the 12th because there are 180 potential assholes out there who could spoil what happens in the book. I won’t even be reading the comments on my own article for fear of it being blown wide open for me! But be careful viewers of the TV show before you read on, because I’m unleashing a couple spoilers of my own below!
You’ve been warned!
After the last book, A Feast for Crows, we are finally back with some of our more favorite characters. It was nice to see Jaime and Cersei Lannisters’ points of view but I’ll take Arya, Tyrion and Jon Snow any day. Daenerys I don’t mind, but I don’t find her as interesting as the others. We’ll be seeing her for sure as she practices at being Queen in Mereen as well as the development of her three dragons who continue to grow. Tyrion is off across the Narrow Sea to escape the vengeance of his sister Cersei due to his “supposed” killing of Joffrey and his bad ass murder of papa Tywin. Arya now in Bravoss continues her training with the assassins known as the Faceless Men and Jon is now trying to secure his position as the 998th Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch against those who still bear him ill will.
I can’t wait to finally see what is happening with everyone and will definitely be waiting for July 12th because Mr. Martin looks like he could have the penchant for going medieval on your ass.
If you haven’t had enough Game of Thrones or didn’t feel like watching ten hours of show on HBO (That makes you a coward) then never fear! According to Gamma Squad, the series following the books AKA A Song of Ice and Fire will be brought forth to you by the medium of comic book:
Dynamite Entertainment will be publishing the first issue of the monthly comic starting this September, and compilations of the comics will be published later by Bantam Books. Daniel Abraham will write and Tommy Patterson will draw, while the covers will be handled by Mike S. Miller and Alex Ross.
I’m not familiar with the artist or writer, although I was informed that Daniel Abraham sometimes collaborates with George R.R. Martin who penned the Song of Ice and Fire books. Seeing a cover from Alex Ross is always a welcome sight though, as is evidenced by the picture above.
Even the artist Tommy Patterson looks to have some mad skills. His drawing of Tyrion has convinced me he is a damn good fit for the series and I’m all about giving talented artists who don’t do much mainstream work a chance to branch out. With something as big as Game of Thrones is getting I’m sure Mr. Patterson will be known throughout comic-land soon enough.
As excited as I am for this newest interpretation of A Song of Ice and Fire, I was actually hoping for more tales from times past in Westeros as the Hedge Knight and Hedge Knight 2 gave us. I’m still hopefully waiting for a day when George R.R. Martin writes stories about the rule of the Mad King and Robert’s Rebellion, if that ever happens. If it does then we’ll more than likely have to wait until a Song of Ice and Fire is completed. Is anyone else excited for this? Sound off below!
Click here for more Game of Thrones goodness!
I hope at this time everyone is loving the crap out of Flashpoint and even the tie in issues that have released so far. There has been a massive amount of tie ins so there had to have been at least one everybody has liked. One of the more debatable ones in my opinion had to be Grodd of War, which as you probably guess stars the Flashpoint equivalent of Gorilla Grodd.
There isn’t much to review about the comic. All that I can say is if you like violence and Grodd then you will no doubt love the living shit out of this comic. It basically shows that Grodd is a merciless SOGB (son of a gorilla bitch) and goes around looking for fights to further challenge himself. The whole one shot is just an excuse to have Grodd and his army enter the mix in Flashpoint proper as at the end of the comic he decides to go to war with Aquaman and Wonder Woman.
Overall I give the comic a 2.5 out of 5 bears. I’m not a fan of Gorilla Grodd so I wouldn’t recommend it to the casual reader, but it was a simple story (which is good sometimes) and has some pretty decent art. It will actually be a welcome sight to see Grodd and his minions enter the fray against Emperor Aquaman and Wonder Woman.
After a very, very, very long hiatus the first new Versus arrives at Grizzly Bomb! Now if anyone was following our little rag-tag bunch back in the days at Bam!Kapow! then you will remember this series fondly (jedi-mind-trick), as a place to pit some of our favorites heroes and villains against each other in match-ups that we will more than likely never get to see.
I re-did them during my time at Action News, which Doc reposted here as well, so you can check out all 6 here. And now, here we are, at the Grizzly Bomb Stadium. Its only fitting that Versus makes its triumphant reappearance in a very special edition. It’s A Double Date! Couple vs. Couple! A battle of the spouses! It’s like The Newlywed Game, but with more blood and less 70’s flair. Joining me will be Dr. Kronner, and Versus Alum Toni Smith. This kind of brings it all back to the beginning, as the very first Versus was brought to you by Myself, Doc, and Toni.
But that’s enough rambling from me. That’s not what we are here for, is it? So as usual we will discuss who we think are the better characters, and then who would win in a fight. Well, typically. It has been known to be unpredictable. Let’s look at the contenders:
Hawkeye & Mockingbird vs. Green Arrow & Black Canary
Clint Barton and Bobbi Morse; secret agents, Avengers, husband and wife. Both trained to the pinnacle of human perfection. Clint by Captain America and his time in the circus (seriously) and Bobbi as a deep cover agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. Hawkeye is proficient with the use of his bow, and mastery of his specially designed trick arrows, as well as katana’s and many martial arts. Mockingbird wields dual batons/billy clubs, as well as various spy gadgets and fighting techniques.
Oliver Queen and Dinah Lance; adventurers, Justice League-er’s, husband and wife. Both trained to the pinnacle of human perfection. Ollie trained in the harsh world of survival, abandoned on an island, and Dinah raised a superhero’s child, trained by war time heroes. Green Arrow is proficient with the use of his bow and mastery of his specially designed trick arrows, with a brawler’s fighting mentality. Black Canary has her Canary Cry, a high pitched scream that she rarely uses, choosing instead to fight with her various skills and tactical knowledge.
Continuing our look at the DCNu, it’s time to check out the heavy hitters. The go-to gang, the Justice League. Or Leagues, I should say. Featuring some of the biggest heroes in the DC Universe, all of whom have their own #1’s coming out as well. We’ve already looked at Superman, Batman, and Green Lantern (plus Teen Heroes and Solo Heroes) so let’s see the rest. Descriptions from CBR: