Matt Smith’s Judge Dredd Year One continues to show us the first year of Judge Dredd’s massive career. Yet, the first year is virtually identical to the first. Smith doesn’t manage to tread any new ground and spends the issue wasting a lot of time building to the only satisfying part of the issue: the conclusion.
WRITTEN BY: Matt Smith
ART BY: Simon Coleby
RELEASE: April 24th , 2013
The problems inherent in the first issue are sadly amplified ten fold here in the second. The narrative suffers from pacing issues, and Dredd as a character isn’t fundamentally any different from the version we already know. Smith has opted to tell another Dredd story rather than the story of how Dredd became the man we know and love.
This fundamental flaw aside, the issue still suffers from some serious pacing problems. Almost the entire book is spent discussing the new presence of PSI in Mega City One. This information dump would be great if it wasn’t all redundant. Two thirds of the issue are spent discussing how Dredd is too by the book, and distrustful of PSI. Yet, this is all information we learned in issue one through action.
Coleby’s art remains strong if not wasted. Most of the issue is spent between Dredd and his commanding officer having a conversation, which is hardly the subject for great dynamic art. Luckily things get a little more interesting when the two answer a call, and trudge out into Mega City One. The whole thing culminates in a great final panel. Still, Smith’s story certainly wastes Coleby’s talent.
The final panel, oh the final panel, so great. If Smith can create a more interesting story in the issues to come, then this comic may indeed be worth your time. But, as it stands, nothing differentiates Smith’s Year One from any other Dredd story out there. In fact, there are far better, more interesting Dredd stories out there. Here’s hoping issue three will be better.
Reviewed by – Jimbus_Christ