This week’s 2000AD #1853 builds on all of last issues stories and action, offering a solid issue for readers. It includes Judge Dredd, Brass Sun, Flesh, Aquila and Damnation Station, so here is a better look at each.
First as usual is Judge Dredd. Michael Carroll continues to offer an interesting story, with this week’s being a perfect example of his ability to set up simple pieces and make them interesting, interspersed with an understanding of characters. This is important when working with the likes of Dredd, as you really need to say more with less words, with Carroll is very, very good at. Also the beautiful visuals of Paul Davidson do favor a brown/blue contrast, but this works well given the underground setting.
Next is more Brass Sun. If there’s one word that describes this issue it’s orange. The opening pages are very, very orange, with a few panels throw into blue for good-old lazy contrast. It’s not meant to be a slight against Inj Culbards work, but some extra reds, dark shadows or other colors might have lessened the effect, which doesn’t go too well with Ian Edginton’s tense set-up written here.
This is followed by Flesh. Again, I get the basic premise but the details are hazy – maybe this is something simply associated with Pat Mills in medias res style of writing. That said, James Hackney still manages to do a lot with a solid black and white art style.
After this comes more Aquila. Gordon Rennie starts to explore the set-up and back story for the current Aquila plot, adding more depth above ‘this is cool – let’s have more of it’. A little dialogue heavy, it adds enough tension to warrant plenty of interest. Likewise, the combined work of Patrick Goddard’s art and Gary Caldwell’s colors create a beautiful and bloody image of ancient Rome. The more gentle, muted palette suits the setting rather well.
Finally, we close this issue out with a continuation of Damnation Station – instantly opening to the beautiful visuals of Mark Harrison. This is one of the most unique features of the series, although Al Ewing is working his way through a very interesting set-up and universe. This issue features the Host for the first time, offering well-written dialogue that leads into enough suspense to keep interest going – if you’re going to promise that ‘big reveal’ this is one of the much better ways to do it.