29 July 2007

Judge Dredd: Judge Death Lives, Part 2

Continuing the Judge Death Lives saga, we pick up the story with Dredd on the case. I love the bikes here, the Lawmaster. They're what Pancho from CHiPs wishes he had if the 'Pimp My Ride' show existed in the '80s. These things have infra-red guided rocket launchers, machine guns, lasers and could probably pick up a porn channel or two on the computer. These bikes are that good.

Meanwhile, Judge Death has fully occupied the body of the man who freed him from his prison:

Death has his body, he has his helmet, his creepy like hell Judge's uniform and he has a disco ball. Let's PARTA-AYY! The people in that guy's building are so dead.

The Dark Judges go all Charles Manson's Family on the party goers. Don't you just hate gatecrashers?

The reason Dredd and the other Judges aren't going in, kicking butt and taking names is because Death has put up a shield around the apartment block. Unfortunately, the people inside don't know that:

Dredd knows what's gonna happen. That's why he's not doing that wave-your-arms-in-a-futile-attempt-to-stop-the-people-from-running-into-the-shield manoeuvre.


By the way, Judge Anderson (as drawn by Brian Bolland) is HOT.

Thanks to her psychic abilities, she figures out where the Dark Judges are.

Those powers of hers must be hell on her love life. You can't lie to her. She always knows.

"Did you pee in the shower again, honey?"



Anyway, with the help of her psychic juju she and Dredd manage to break through the shield that surrounds the building and go hunt fot the bad guys. Judge Fire gets whupped first but not being alive to begin with, he escapes easily. Judge Fear takes his turn to kill Dredd:

Exactly how frickin' cool is Judge Dredd, anyway? Nothing scares him. He is the LAW!

Realising they're no match for a psychic and a walking embodiment of the Law, the Dark Judges teleport to their home dimension. Dredd and Anderson decide they must follow them there or otherwise, Death and his brothers are just gonna come back again. So, Welcome to DEADWORLD!

The restless spirits of the people the Dark Judges have killed (and they've killed everyone on their world) are urging Anderson to seek vengeance on their behalf. For some reason, they're all bald. Anyway, Judge Fire quickly puts Dredd out of the fight with a fiery trident through the shoulder:

Judge Anderson gives in to the dead and decides to screw with the Dark Judges by using the restless souls' desire for revenge to take Death and his buddies down:

So basically, the demons are defeated by ghosts.

Again, Anderson looks hot. She was released from a coma where a psycho demon was sharing her mind, volunteered for a suicide mission, travelled to another world, got mind-raped by billions of dead people who want to destroy the demon judges that killed them, all on the same day...and she still looks a million bucks. Dredd as usual is non-plussed. He gazed into the face of Fear and had a trident through his shoulder blades and all he has to say is, "Eh. Time for a holiday, I think".

The Judge Death Lives storyline is actually a very compact story written by T.B. Grover (one of many pseudoyms of the legendary John Wagner), with incredible pacing and gorgeous art by Brian Bolland. It's short, sweet and sharp. You don't need to know who these people are and you can still enjoy the story. That's a sign of good story telling.

Judge Dredd stories are available in paperback collections and can be found at Amazon UK. I strongly recommend them. There are eight collections so far. I'm not sure yet if this particular story has been collected and if it hasn't, that is a crime that should be remedied sharpish

Retrospective edit (21/03/09): This story has indeed been collected in Judge Dredd Collected Case Files 05 and Anderson's first battle with Judge Death is collected in Judge Dredd Collected Case Files 03.


thatjames said...

They have Judge Dredd in TPBs? Isn't it a shame they dun sell these here? I remember my brother compiled me a 2000AD collection back in the early 80s (or was it late 70s) and it had Judge Dredd against the Angels... Mean Machine, Pa, Junior... Do you happen to know if they collected that in TPB?

Khairul H. said...

I think I have that Mean Machine issue in another "Best of 2000AD" magazine. I don't have any tpbs yet actually. I just found out about them myself and I'm gonna buy one or two of them soon from Amazon UK. The few "Best of 2000AD" comics I have aren't in the best condition anymore.