2000AD #2197 REVIEW

by Gavin Johnston on September 02, 2020

Writers: Rob Williams; Dan Abnett; Liam Johnson; Kek-W; Gordon Rennie
Artists: Henry Flint; Mark Harrison; Steve Yeowell; David Roach; Don Reardon
Colours: Chris Blythe; Peter Doherty
Letters: Annie Parkhouse; Simon Bowland; Jim Campbell

End of Days is a Judge Dredd story for 2020, build on the foundations of Classic Dredd.

The format of Dredd leading a team on an adventure to save the folks back home brings to mind the earlier tales of Cursed Earth and Judge Child. End of Days has been full of call backs to earlier stories.

The tone of it, however, couldn’t be more contemporary.

As we pick our way through a global pandemic in the middle of a financial collapse and climate disaster, all the while watching cities burn between commercial breaks, End of Days captures that feeling of spiralling ever faster into extreme absurdity. This is a story for now.

In End of Days everything is going wrong. The world is struck by freak weather. Nuclear weapons malfunction. Rifts open in reality. Biblical prophesies are made flesh and the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse stalk the land. The result is a story so strange it wouldn’t be a huge surprise if it ended with “and then they woke up”.

This Prog, Dredd & Law Gang head for the moon city of Luna-1, which has again been transformed into a world-ending weapon. The mismatched group huddle together in a recap of events so far, building the tension of the impending confrontation with Death itself. It’s a quiet, functional, yet dark and disturbing episode. Henry Flint’s art delivers characters who have become angular, packed close together and avoiding eye contact as the Earth burns beneath them. It starts with a reflection on just how tired Dredd has become and ends with an event that has been foreshadowed for months, if not years.


In The Out, photojournalist Cyd Finlea comes to terms with her resurrection as possibly the last human. Dan Abnett occasionally produces stories with real heft which consist of little more than two characters talking for several pages. This is one of those.

Marc Harrison’s art is frequently packed with information and painted with liquid neon. Sometimes it’s all too much, forcing out the details of character. Here, as Cyd travels alien worlds so far from home that no-one has ever heard of a “Human”, it perfectly conveys strange, new cultures and ways of life.

The Out is weird, touching, and altogether quite lovely.


One-off Future Shock: Stream M for Murder plays with the true-crime documentary format. Billionaire World President Ilan Vas has created the ultimate entertainment product and freed the world from drudgery, only to find himself murdered. Who could have done such a thing? This is a funny tale with a smart premise which cleverly hints at its twist in a way that most Future Shocks don’t.


In Saphir, Inspector Alphose Mucha investigates the murder of a wealthy art collector. It’s a story which begins resembling one of Edgar Allan Poe’s “Tales of Ratiocination” detective stories before all logic is abandoned and we delve into something altogether stranger. The Tharg’s 3Riller format is one I’ve never been a fan of, with stories often falling between overly-padded short tales or cruelly edited longer adventures. First episode is invariably set up, and that it done extremely well, coming as it does from the haunted imagination of Kek-W, with luminaries David Road and Peter Doherty on art.


The Diaboliks also returns with A Crooked Beat and an introduction to a new character and a whistle-stop tour of the scrapes he gets himself into. It’s just a handful of scenes with the climaxes cut out, but this is a nice introduction, and Dom Reardon’s art is charmingly rough and ready, and full of character.

Our Score:


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