Friday, 3 May 2013

Judge Dredd: 'Land Race'

NAME
Judge Dredd: 'Land Race'

FIRST PUBLISHED
2000 A.D. Prog 47

DATELINE
14 Jan 78

PAGE COUNT
6

REPRINTS
The Complete Judge Dredd 4, Judge Dredd 2 and Judge Dredd The Complete Case Files 01.

SYNOPSIS
A race sees claimants fighting over land on the Moon.

FIRSTS & LASTS
First appearance of Rowena.

INFORMATION
On Luna-1, newly domed areas are divided up by means of a land race to claim plots. Competition can be both fierce and fatal. If an individual is declared insane then their claims go up for auction.


Interstellar Psionics Corporations developed the Psi Chair. A device which sends electrodes and influences into the brain, but on full power can also drive a person mad.

Named Judges: Judge Che, Judge Chico

JUDGE-MARSHAL DREDD
He starts the land race, ensures the rules are obeyed during and disputes are settled after. Dredd feigns disinterest in Rowena's assertions to give IPC a false sense of security and then moves in to arrest them.

OTHER CHARACTERS
WALTER THE WOBOT
He introduces Rowena to Dredd. Walter appears to have feeling for her.

ROWENA
Beatrice Spock's robot. She tries to alert Dredd to crimes against her mistress. Rowena appears to have feeling for Walter.

BEATRICE SPOCK
A widow. She claimed a site on Main Street with intentions to build a flapjack parlour on it. Interstellar Psionics Corporations wanted her site and attempted to force her to sign it over to them with intimidation and a psi-chair. She almost signs, but her willpower is too strong for the chair.

ARRESTS
Three IPC hoodlums and their bosses.

DEATHS
One. A man claims his plot and promptly dies.

BEST LINES
Dying land claimant: "I...made it...I claim this plot...uhhh..."

WORST LINES
IPC goon: "Sign the papers, widow lady!"

CATCHPHRASES
A crashing land claimant shouts "Aieee!". Walter says cwafty, cwime, dweadful, Dwedd, weport, wobot, Wowena, sowwy, pwetty, weady, wisks, wuff and waitwess, but has no trouble with trick.

CONTINUITY & CROSSOVERS
Interstellar Psionics Corporations may or may not be the IPC mentioned in Judge Dredd: 'The Judges Graveyard'.

INFLUENCES & REFERENCES
The name Spock obviously recalls the resident Vulcan first officer from Star Trek (1966-1969), while the Psi Chair is similar to a device in the episode Dagger Of The Mind (1966).

MISTAKES
Rowena's accent disappears halfway through.

RETROSPECT
It's surprising that this is Rowena's only real appearance, because her relationship with Walter (and indeed the penultimate panel of this strip) will be immortalised as a Star Pin-Up in Prog 109.


NOTES
Interstellar Psionics Corporations is of course a reference to 2000 A.D.'s then publisher IPC.

CREDITS
Script: John Howard
Artist: Brian Bolland
Letters: Tony Jacob

REVIEW
The land race of 'Land Race' really only takes up the first two pages and the thinly veiled attack on IPC that follows feels tacked on. Brian Bolland's art is phenomenal throughout, Rowena is a great character and it's a shame that her relationship with Walter wasn't further explored.

Next Prog. The Oxygen Desert.