skjam: Skyler Sands as a UNIT soldier (Unit)
skjam ([personal profile] skjam) wrote in [community profile] scans_daily2012-04-21 05:45 pm

Old-fashioned Sci-Fi action

Packed in with each issue of Judge Dredd Megazine (now available at Barnes & Noble!) is a smaller magazine reprinting strips from 2000 AD or the Meg itself. I thought you might get a kick out of last month's entry, "Death Planet."



Love that 50s B-movie poster look.

Four representative pages from different six-page chapters, originally published in 2000 AD #62-70, and bagged with Judge Dredd Megazine #321.



It is the 23rd Century, and Earth is heavily overpopulated. A few lucky people can get off the planet in colony ships, to populate other worlds. Wait, did I say lucky?



Commander Varn is, if I remember correctly, the first female co-star of a 2000 AD strip. (2000 AD being very much a boys' comic at the start, it tended heavily to male protagonists.)

Varn's experience in flying colony ships has left her cold-blooded and rather callous towards her "cargo." Rookie Herschal hasn't gotten to that point yet.

The plot kicks in when something goes drastically wrong with the trans-light drive, stranding the Eternity in an unknown space sector and heading directly for the nearest planet. Comander Varn has the leader of the colonists, Richard Corey, unfrozen. He's the rough and ready, doesn't like being ordered around type.

Corey and Herschal defrost as many of the colonists as they can before the crash landing. Once the survivors have left the completely unsalvagable ship, Varn and Corey get into an argument over who's in charge now. The raised voices attract some of the native lifeforms.



Many hardships and deaths later, it turns out the survivors of the Eternity aren't the only humans on the planet.



Screams for mercy go unheeded, for this is the space pirate captain Zeena Dra Gornik, old enemy of Commander Varn ever since Zeena was kicked out of the Guild of Starship Commanders for reasons never fully explained in the text. Turns out one of her minions was responsible for the sabotage of the trans-light drive deliberately to get potential slaves to the planet.

The crew and colonists that remain are soon captured and forced to work in Zeena's tri-berrylium (sic) mine.



That top row is the soppy romance section of the story.

Corey manages to take down Zeena by feeding both of them to the flying reptiles, and the other slaves are able to revolt. Commander Varn decides that once they summon help, she's staying on the planet to help Corey's colony in honor of his sacrifice.



There's also a backup feature called "Angel" about a test pilot who becomes fused with his onboard computer and gains superpowers. The special guest star is the U.S. president, who takes a liking to the man.

Your thoughts and comments?

SKJAM!
nomadicwriter: Judge Dredd age 6 (Dredd)

[personal profile] nomadicwriter 2012-04-22 08:47 am (UTC)(link)
Heh. I just read this a couple of days ago (I've been catching up with the Megazines on digital). It was definitely... interesting. And despite its flaws, many, many times better than issue 322's Inferno reprint. You know a Dreddverse story is bad when even Carlos Ezquerra art can't save it. I think Mark Millar owes me some braincells back after reading that one.

This reminds me I really ought to get on with putting together a bunch of Judge Dredd posts I've been collecting scans for.
nomadicwriter: Judge Dredd age 6 (Dredd)

[personal profile] nomadicwriter 2012-04-22 04:43 pm (UTC)(link)
I was planning to post some scans from the Brothers of the Blood TPB, but then I decided I should probably collect up the earlier clone-related stuff for added context. Then I decided I might as well collect the more recent clone stuff as well. And now I have about fifty pages of scans covering thirty years of continuity. Heh. I think Dredd's really at its best when you're following supporting characters through all the decades of their history like that. Especially since it's a bit tough to showcase individual stories when you're limited to two page snippets of six page instalments.
icon_uk: (Default)

[personal profile] icon_uk 2012-04-22 10:29 am (UTC)(link)
Always loved that art style, very in vogue in British (And European) comics of the period.
lascoden: Anarky (Default)

[personal profile] lascoden 2012-04-23 07:17 am (UTC)(link)
Is he like Cher, and just maybe has the one name?