Villordsutch reviews Brit-Cit Noir…
I’ve stepped into Brit-Cit Noir with a bit of trepidation I’ll be honest. My last piece of Brit-Cit I recall was reading it in The Heavy Mob over in the Judge Dredd: Mega Collection back in April last year. The titles were Brit-Cit Brute and Trilogy, albeit from Robbie Morrison and Co., and I really wasn’t overly impressed. What I wasn’t aware of that I’d actually recently read some more Brit-Cit in the Megazine a month or so earlier and bloody loved it! So instantly the doubt I had was dampened down straight away.
Sat in this book we have two pieces of collected works, Strange & Drake: New Blood from the pen of John Smith with art by Colin MacNeil, and also Storm Warning: Relic written by John Reppion & Leah Moore with the art being handled by Tom Foster. Both have been fairly recent releases within the pages of Judge Dredd: Megazine.
Starting with Strange & Drake: New Blood, John Smith has delivered the leafy village called Llanidris in Wales, with a Church, Harvest Festival, Sweet Shop and a local Pub. Add to this Baphomet and his sons rhyming the local women to a mass orgy, infertile men plus Inspector Strange – part of the Endangered Species Squad – who is investigating the bizarre goings on in said village with Psi-Judge Drake, whose Psi power comes across more like a bad case of Tourette’s syndrome than an actual psychic skill. Sounds utterly barking – we’ll it is, brilliantly so! What makes it even more brilliant is that Inspector Strange’s face looks like the skull of a horse due to staring into a Black Mirror, and the Endangered Species aren’t Pandas and Black Rhinos – we’re talking Fairies and Mermen.
The only real hang-up I have about this entire story is that in this world of Mega-City One, Apocalypse War, East-Meg One, Chaos Bugs, Robot Wars, Cursed Earth etc. etc. is how amazing green and pleasant this land looks. Still this is a minor gripe within something that is quite frankly fantastic. Both John Smith and Colin MacNeil have delivered a perfect macabre British nightmare that is littered with humour and if you fail to enjoy it you need to check yourself for a pulse.
Turning to Storming Warning: Relic and regular readers of Flickering Myth will know that I sung about this series from the tallest tree. Both Reppion and Moore have delivered a story that not only ramps up the tension and keeps a foot firmly in Blighty – this world looks so drained of life – there is real danger and it’s truly grounded in the realms of reality within the World of Dredd. Psi-Judge Lillian Storm has been tasked with retrieving a relic of immense power, however this relic is causing horrific mayhem for those that have come before her. As Storm attempts to hone in on the Relic, it’s taken and eventually ends up in a housing block sending its tenants into a violent rampage against Storm and the Judges assigned to retrieve it.
Really this story is the polar opposite of Strange & Drake: New Blood but neither is bad because of this. You’re getting two unique treats within Brit-Cit Noir. Not only is Reppion and Moore’s writing fantastic throughout Storm Warning, but we are getting some amazing art and colours from Tom Foster & Kirsty Swan.
You would do well picking up Brit-Cit Noir today, as it really does deserve a spot on your shelf.
Brit-Cit Noir is available to buy from 2000AD Online price £14.99
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