Judge Dredd – He Is The Law

Judge Dredd may be The Law, but he’s also a pedantic, irritating dick…which I think is the point.

I’ve got a couple of Judge Dredd novellas on my reading list, and having read through those (which were ok, actually) I figured that I needed some more background. I get the city, sort of, but I know there are depths I’m missing. And working at Rebellion comes with a bonus of all the comics online, so I’m working my way through the stash!

Thankfully, though, not all of them. One of my colleagues has incredibly helpfully put a list online of the ‘useful’ episodes, and so I don’t have to read through however-many 80’s cliches…

Although I am definitely in the 80’s. Wars against robots, mutant dinosaurs and resurrected Presidents ahoy!

And Dredd is a dick. One of my colleagues commented that he’s good when he’s playing off against others – and he is. Mega City One is at its best for the life in it, I think…I do wonder how they didn’t run out of stories for Dredd, as he feels like he could be a very one-shot wonder character. There’s no moral flexibility, no romantic interest; he basically gets to beat up another set of thugs and prove how tough he is each time by Doing The Right Thing.

Soulless jerk.

Not that I like Rico any better, mind, but I think he might have the right idea about life.

However, I love the Judge Anderson stuff! I’ve read a couple of novellas and her major comics, and I really like it. I’m waiting for her to turn up in the main Dredd comics but I suspect it’ll be a while yet, as I’m still in the 80’s and women are still mostly screaming victims. I have no idea how she keeps any sanity in the city (and that’s where I do have to actively suspend disbelief) but so far, I’ve got a lot of respect for the writers – despite what I suspect was a lot of fanboy pressure, she’s actually a bloody good, well-rounded character who can definitely kick ass when needed – and who also understands that it’s not always needed. Unlike a certain helmeted goon.

But I’m slowly approaching the modern era with Dredd, so I’ll see who he ends up fighting next!

Author: kate

Kate Coe is an editor, book reviewer and writer of fiction & fantasy. She writes the sparkpunk GreenSky series and blogs at writingandcoe.co.uk. When she's not working, she fills her spare time in between writing with web design, gaming, geeky cross-stitch and DIY (which may or may not involve destroying things). She also reads far fewer books that she would like to, but possibly more than she really has time for.

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