Judge Dredd: The Cursed Earth, Chapter 3 – The Devil's Lapdogs
2000 A.D. Prog 63
6 May 78
The Complete Judge Dredd 6, Judge Dredd Epics The Collected Cursed Earth, Judge Dredd Epics The Cursed Earth, Judge Dredd Epics The Cursed Earth 1, Judge Dredd 5 and Judge Dredd The Complete Case Files 02.
Dredd's convoy reaches Deliverance while the town is under attack.
FIRSTS & LASTS
The first example of law among the lawless and the first time we see that not necessarily everyone in the Cursed Earth is a mutant.
Deliverance is a town in the Cursed Earth. The town's roofs are covered in spikes and it is equipped with flak guns and a siren. It has suffered from food shortages. The town's Lawgiver sentences its residents for their crimes. Being eaten by the Devil's Lapdogs is a form of execution.
The post-atomic war great winds lifted houses, cars, rocks etc into the air and formed a death belt. The rats have learned how to glide on air currents and became known as the Devil's Lapdogs.
He is arrested and incarcerated by Deliverance's Lawgiver when he attempts to intervene in the execution of Samual and Rebecca.
His Quasar bike is fitted with a self-destruct mechanism controlled from Dredd's bike. He will get a free pardon if he helps Dredd deliver the vaccine to Mega-City Two.
SAMUEL AND REBECCA
Husband and wife, residents of Deliverance found guilty of stealing food from their neighbours.
None, although Dredd is locked up and sentenced to death.
Lawgiver: "How I wish I could be merciful, my child. But I have no choice...The demons of the air must devour you. Because...that is the law!"
Dredd: "And I Am The Law...Let Them Go!"
Judge Jack (at the accusation that he has been cheating at a game played against someone else who is cheating): "Why you...!"
In the last panel Dredd gives us a "For Drokk's sake"
CONTINUITY & CROSSOVERS
INFLUENCES & REFERENCES
Deliverance is also the name of a 1972 thriller film directed by John Boorman, based on a 1970 novel of the same name by James Dickey. A Lawgiver was a central part of the mythology of the first two Planet Of The Apes films and was finally seen in the fifth, Battle For The Planet Of The Apes (1973).
Script: Pat Mills
Artist: Mike McMahon
Letters: R.O. Bott
I am unable to find any other examples of R.O. Bott's comics career. I am forced to conclude that this was his or her sole effort.
The evangelical preachiness of the Lawgiver is great and it's nice that Dredd's first attempt at bringing law to the lawless fails so miserably and sees him locked up, the Rats floating on air currents is the wrong side of ridiculous.
Next Prog: King Rat!