Judge Dredd Mega City 2 – City of Courts TPB Review

Judge Dredd Mega City 2 – City of Courts TPB


Written by: Douglas Wolk
Art by: Ulises Farinas
Colours by: Ryan Hill
Published by: IDW Publishing

In this graphic novel, we find our titular hero involved in an exchange scheme with Mega City 2. MC2 is the sister city to Dredd’s home, and it is situated on the west coast, encapsulating Los Angeles. This five issue series features Dredd adrift amongst the alien environs of this mega city; so we have the obligatory differences for Dredd to encounter.

Reading this book you don’t feel like you are reading a Judge Dredd story. The central character really doesn’t feel genuine. As much as Wolk likes to drop in a “Drokk” or a “Stomm”, the use of violence, you don’t really buy the character. With regards of the plot for the overall book and the various issues, that is functional. The sub-plot, which pervades the entirety of the book, is formulaic and does not pique the interest.MC202

Art wise, while Ulises Farinas puts in plenty of effort, but, like Douglas Wolk, the feel is not there. While this story isn’t set in Mega City One, there are certain conventions to a 2000 AD story, and with this book IDW have not been faithful to those. There are some visually interesting moments at play, the giant crustacean in the 3rd segment of the book, is beautiful. Similarly, there are some sections where the attention to detail from Farinas, is really well done. On the opposite side you have the characters themselves, Dredd and co. really do not flow well. When I first encountered the first issue in this story arc several months ago, I felt that Farinas would suit a manga type book. Now having seen all 5 parts of the book, that this is indeed the case.

This book just does not work. I’m certain that given more suited material both Wolk and Farinas would deliver something worthy of their names. However, this book isn’t for either. Wolk isn’t a bad writer, Farinas isn’t a bad artist, but they fail to gel with the story or characters and the result is one where you question the rationale behind publishing the book. Compared to IDW’s other Dredd material, this really doesn’t give anything to the Judge Dredd story.

Overall Score: 2/10