A second portion of pure sensational power

Rebellion continues to entice a number of new readers 2000 AD‘s defining stories The Best of 2000 AD Vol 2which, like its predecessor, boasts an incredible amount of talent from all over the world 2000 AD‘s history, and offers a double dose Judge Dredd. With Tom Muller’s trade dress continuing and a stylish and decidedly modern cover by Becky Cloonan, it’s a book sure to catch the eye of the 2000 AD curious about content that will help empower new fans who have dipped their noses into this comic book institution’s storied back catalog with the first installment of this stellar series.

The volume opens again with a modern Judge Dredd story, “Magic Bullets” by Al Ewing and Colin Wilson. Today, Ewing is a star writer for Marvel Comics with runs on titles like Immortal Hulk. “Magic Bullets” offers readers a chance to see how he developed his knack for combining real-world problems with big sci-fi ideas, and deadly drone-like pieces of technology piloted by the rich here to the streets of Mega -City One brings. Skillfully drawn by Wilson, it’s a great taste of the kind of Judge Dredd stories you’d expect to find in a current issue of 2000 AD.

Then the volume provides the second half of Brink: Book one by Dan Abnett and INJ Culbard, a recent hit for the magazine. I compared it to before The expanse, and I stick to that. Having read the entire series thus far, I can promise that the strangeness in this excerpt is just a taste of what awaits anyone who makes the wise decision to read on.

Comics critic Tom Shapira then introduces Pat Mills and Kevin O’Neill’s Archenemy the Wizardto keep readers abreast of what even spotlights the character and the stories he appears in 2000 AD‘s iconic character roster. While the Bronze Age styles can be a barrier to entry for fans who have never experienced period comics, these Archenemy the Wizard stories present a revolutionary character with sharper teeth than most modern fictional rebels can muster on their best day. By the end of this offering of early stories, it’s clear why Nemesis has achieved such cult-favorite status among the 2000 AD fidelity.

As a sequel to Nemesis is the ABC warriors story “Red Planet Blues”, by Alan Moore, Steve Dillon and John Higgins, which is a ridiculous amount of talent in a single creative team. While Dillon’s work has always been of the highest caliber, I usually associate him with irreverence, perhaps because he became synonymous with Garth Ennis and stories like Preacher. But here it’s the opposite, with Higgins’ colors giving the linework an extra painted gravitas. It fits incredibly well with Moore’s melancholic script, in which – as is his tendency to do – Moore imbues the idea of ​​retired war robots with far more depth and pathos than lesser writers would ever consider.

The last two stories are 2000 AD classics. “The Vampire Effect” is one Judge Dredd story that is pure meaty sci-fi goodness from writer TB Grover, but is primarily an opportunity to introduce readers to Mike McMahon, one of the artistic giants of 2000 AD. McMahon impresses in this story with its varied two-page spreads and its gnarled anatomy. A page of one DR & Quinch comic by Jamie Delano and Alan Davis closes the book with 2000 AD‘s signature brand of rebellious youth.

Every entry in this book is commendable. If I have a complaint, it’s only in comparison to the first volume, as no single story in this volume disturbed me in the same way as the Judge Anderson “Shambella” story from the first volume. “Red Planet Blues” comes closest, but as a single short, it’s hardly fair to expect it to leave a similar mental impression to the graphic novel length “Shambella.” But 2000 AD is an anthology, that is, longer stories that are not the norm.

But the first part set the bar incredibly high, and to say this falls a little short of it is hardly a meaningful case against it. The Best of 2000 AD Vol. 2 boasts an incredible arsenal of talent, and every story is worth your while, from the revolutionary exploits of Nemesis the Warlock to the surprisingly emotional story of ABC warriorssenseless robots. It is a collection of impeccable quality that will appeal even more to newcomers 2000 AD to continue their training in thrill-power.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Published by Revolt

On January 31, 2023

Written by Several

Art by Several

Color through Several

Letters through Several

Cover Becky Cloonan

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