2000AD, PROG 2114 REVIEW

by Gavin Johnston on January 16, 2019

Writers: Kenneth Niemand; Dan Abnett; James Peaty; Eddie Robson; In Edginton
Artists: Jeff Anderson; INJ Culbard; Paul Marshall; Nick Brokenshire; Tiernan Trevallion
Colourists: Dylan Teague; Gary Caldwell
Letterers: Annie Parkhouse; Simon Bowland; Ellie De Ville 
Publisher: Rebellion

Thank goodness for Brink. In a Prog that’s a little lacking in thrillpower, a single strip makes it worthwhile.

Judge Dredd: Block Buds was a two partner that felt like it belonged in the '90s, with a throwaway idea and art from Jeff Anderson that mixes grimy and shiny. Enormous holographic projections of toddlers are chosen to give character to city blocks, but malfunctioning tech results in giant brawling children. It's the usual trope of technology gone haywire, but Dredd is little more than a bystander and the whole thing is just a big joke.


Nolan escapes form a sleazy bar in a superfluous episode of Skip Tracer: Louder Than Bombs. After starting an unnecessary fight last week, there’s an unnecessary game of chicken this week. (Pro-tip: never choose to play chicken with a guy in a vehicle who has already demonstrated a willingness to kill you.) The whole thing feels redundant, since it's just a chance for two characters to have a page long conversation in a different locale.


Tharg’s 3riller: The Scorched Zone comes to a conclusion, with an ending that is framed as a twist...but I’m not sure it is. Several identically dressed characters have been fighting zombies in region of the earth evacuated due to global warming, in this Prog quickly finding the cause of the outbreak.


Fiends of the Western Front features a battle between a man bat and his giant bat friend and a vampire who looks like a bat. The man bat wants to use bats, and vampires, to turn men into bats, thereby building a man bat empire. So that makes sense. Teirnan Trevallion, as ever, does a great job with the art, but this Prog is mostly punching, flapping and biting.


Thank goodness for Brink. The quite highpoint of any Prog, Brink: High Society just about keeps this one from sinking. We peek inside the Family Space, and to the world of the secret cult which Kurtis has been tracking for three books now. And it’s probably not what we thought.


Most people with worrying religious beliefs aren’t maniacs who want to watch the world burn. Most are people simply convinced that the contradictory rules they choose to follow are the absolute truth, and the world would be a better place if everyone agreed. Brink gets this.


There’s a genuine tenderness and love in these few pages, as a group of true believers enact their terrifying plan. Joel from Human Resources may be the scariest comic book villain, because he is entirely real and believable as a person, yet looks increasingly unhinged as he calmly and patiently explains to his flock that death is not the end.


Will a mass sacrifice call forward their strange Gods and bring forth a glorious new era for the dying human race? Or are they just a bunch of crazies? The wonderful strength of Brink is that for three books is has skirted around the idea that maybe the whole thing is just a nonsense, and that people do strange things when frightened and alone.



Our Score:


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