2000 AD in Stages

Stage 28 - 2-Prog Mini-Series

Progs 850-851: 1993

The prog continues to try new meta-formats: this time four two-part stories running alongside the continuing Dredd mini-epic of Inferno. This might read like a top line-up of thrills (Dredd, Stront, Rogue, Kirby and Slaine), but some of them are in their distinctly off-the-boil incarnations.

Imagine an episode of Scooby Doo featuring only Scrappy. Or that 80s D&D cartoon featuring only Uni. Or Buffy with just Tara. Or all of television replaced by scenes of Christopher Biggins in Rentaghost. Or Transformers with just Bumblebee - ah ... never mind.

Judge Dredd: Inferno
In these two episodes credulity is stretched by having all the good Judges just standing outside the West Wall, like there's about twenty of them. Grice's gang could just shoot them but are instead harassing old age pensioners for small change. In a brain-splintering set-piece the Statue of Judgement is toppled and, from its position overlooking the Statue of Liberty, somehow manages to smash through the West Wall, suggesting that Mega-City One is about three or four football fields wide.
Still has two episodes of shouty mayhem and geographical lunacy left to go...

Strontium Dogs: How The Gronk Got His Heartses
Uhm ... Genesis (chapter one of the bible, not the band) meets the Gronk's back-story? Great art from Nigel Dobbyn suffers next to ponderous hippie-smurfing from Ennis. One question: does Gronk really magically levitate into space at the end or is it all just a metaphor?
A prelude to The Darkest Star, starting up in prog 855...

sheridan says:

It's been ages since I read that story so don't know the context, but there is prior art for Gronks flying through space (though as part of their swarming season from their home planet Blas in the Galego system).

Rogue Trooper [Fr1day]: Scavenger of Souls, Prologue
At the end of Apocalypse Dreadnought (prog 791 in 1992) Fr1day was floating in a bubble in space. Somehow he's now been teleported to ... a war-torn planet. And he's been crucified (like at the beginning of Cinnabar). A weird dude called the Scavenger of Souls is introduced in a "he was always here" kind of a way. So, this is an additonal level of soft reboot of what's always been a soft reboot of a hard reboot, and doesn't tell us much (except that there are too many boots here).
1994's Scavenger of Souls stretches this further starting in prog 873...

The Journal of Luke Kirby: Sympathy for the Devil, Prologue
A flashback tale of Luke's father and uncle that brings a biblical slant to the story by suggesting that Santa (no, wait) Satan is gearing up to introduce famine, war, genocide and heroin to earth. Uhm ... aren't those here anyway?
A lead in to a longer tale beginning in prog 873...

Sláine: The Jealousy Of Niamh
A neat little two-parter: Niamh is jealous that Slaine is shagging Danu on the side, so they both get punished by being tied to a tree together and fed by Ukko.
Immediately followed by Demon Killer next prog...