Mars Attacks! continues to infiltrate the Dredd universe. Is it good?
Mars Attacks Judge Dredd #2 (IDW Publishing)
Check out our review of issue #1 if you missed it.
Last month I was sort of left in the cold, particularly because of the seemingly convoluted plot. Still, I’m curious if issue #2 could pull things around.
If you’re just joining this series, Judge Dredd has got a 500 pound insect trying to claw his brains out and no backup to speak of. The martians were torturing the thing and now that Dredd took them out it’s free to eat whoever it likes. The martians are also working with gangs across the globe, infiltrating crime syndicates to usurp power from the inside. I wasn’t a fan of this round of martian vs. Dredd story elements, but I’m to it if it can bring the compelling.
This takes up quite a few pages.
I can’t shake the feeling that when you purchase a book with Mars Attacks! on the cover, you should be getting plenty Mars Attacks! humor and aliens to go with it, and there just isn’t a whole lot of that here. The aliens get about two pages worth of content, first opening the book showing us their global plan, and then capping off the final page with a promise for more later. Thankfully the end page with the martian adds the humor I’ve been craving. Unfortunately for the rest of the issue however, it’s a lot of Dredd doing detective work, his team showing off new tech and if a general malaise doesn’t kick in for you, hey maybe that’s your thing.
Nice Godfather reference.
Don’t get me wrong: outside of that bit of disappointment, there is a decent comic within. Dredd’s fight with the insect is gory, tense and has an interesting narration that gets inside the bug’s head. El Ewing keeps these bits interesting enough, it’s just tough to care when I’m not sure why it all matters. So far the martians have been getting third billing in this series and I’m not sure why.
John McCrea continues to deliver a sketchy style reminiscent of Erik Larsen which goes a long way in making the story gritty and pulp in nature. He does a good job cramming a hell of a lot on each page which only adds to the worth of the book.
Cool textures in that blue coat.
- Insect battle is well executed
- Great grit in the art
- Where the eff are the martians?!
Is It Good?
It’s alright, but still takes a slight step back from the uninspiring first issue. In some sense I don’t get why this is a crossover at all. If you’re not going to utilize the martians fully, why not just tell a standard Dredd story?