2000AD #2211 REVIEW

by Gavin Johnston on December 08, 2020

Writers: Kenneth Niemand; Kek-W; Dan Abnett;  Joseph Elliott-Coleman; Ian Edginton
Artists: Steven Austin; Dave Kendall; Steve Yeowell; Richard Elson; Tiernen Trevallion
Colours: Chris Blyth; John Charles
Letters: Annie Parkhouse; Simon Bowland; Jim Campbell
Publisher: Rebellion


There’s a happy ending for the good guys in Judge Dredd: Simply Normal...almost. After the social commentary of the initial set up, which involved a minority group turning to radicalism after society insists they conform to “normal” behaviours, this became quite a light story with an interesting peek at the strange people of Mega City One.

The Simps, a group of people who are unable to meet the norms of boring society, have launched a raid on a “conversion clinic”, where cruel methods were being used to brainwash Simps into accepting grey normality. Daisy is desperate to save her partner Pansy, whilst the Judges themselves are reduced to background detail. The last minute twist is quite a surprise, if a bit of a deus ex machina turnaound, but still manages to actually be quite touching. Like plenty of great Dredd stories, Simply Normal could simply be regarding as a violent romp, but beneath the surface there’s a smart satire on current affairs.


More love and desperation in Visions of Deadworld: The Good Samaritan. Set in the world of the Dark Judges just as Judge Death and his followers are seizing control, Mark is desperately battling to get his heavily pregnant partner to the hospital, guided by a strange voice at the other end of the phone.

It’s a genuinely disturbing tale which starts off with a terrifying scenario and in its final page descends into brutal madness. Another fantastically nightmarish addition to the Deadworld stories.


Dexter is fighting his way through a zombie infested shopping mall in Dexter: The Funt Outta Town. Along with Billi and Hosanna, Dexter is fleeing the city of Downlode, pursued by the AI that forced him to kill his long term partner. But how do you escape when your every move can be predicted?

Dexter’s first solo story is surprisingly sparse of character given just how much backstory it has. The heroes find themselves in a vast, underground, abandoned shopping mall full of zombies...but there’s not much of an explanation as to where these zombies came from, or how this strange labyrinth of commercialism reached its current form.

There’s bit of humour in the zombies screaming shopping-related slogans and the occasional references to what music is playing in the background, but it still feels lacking in depth in both art and script. One image in particular has the main characters run through a literally empty panel, and there’s no visual indication that this even is a shopping mall. At one point I found myself thinking “that’s a technically proficient bit of lettering”, with Simon Bowland's sound-effect being the most interesting thing on the page



In Future Shocks: Indistinguishable From, a futuristic knight battles monsters. It’s a decent enough tale, with a nice ending, but quite forgetable and I don’t know I go so far as to call it a story with a “twist”, which is the defining element of the Futureshock format.



Finally, Fiends of the Eastern Front: Constanta reaches its bloody conclusion with the framing-device related twist we probably all knew was coming. It's been a fun story well told, with some great fantasy art from Teirnan Trevallion. This final episode completes the backstory for the vampire Constanta, explaining just why the vampire soldier keeps turning up in various wars, whilst hinting that he’s even more awful a person that previously thought. A worthy inclusion in the long running saga.


Our Score:


A Look Inside