Judge Dredd: The Cursed Earth, Chapter 24 – Dredd's Last Stand!
2000 A.D. Prog 84
30 Sep 78
The Complete Judge Dredd 8, Judge Dredd Epics: The Cursed Earth 2, Judge Dredd Epics: The Collected Cursed Earth, Judge Dredd Epics: The Cursed Earth, Judge Dredd 8 and Judge Dredd: The Complete Case Files 02.
Spikes goes out in a blaze of glory.
FIRSTS & LASTS
First time that a story has reached twenty-four parts and the last appearance of both Spikes and the land-raider.
Anti-Personnel Grabbers, or APGs, are claws that can be mounted on robotic siege tanks. War Droids have infra-red eyes.
After a four day siege in the fort, he offers to give himself up and entrust the vaccine to Spikes. When Spikes is killed, Dredd uses his body as part of a decoy. He and Tweak set off for Mega-City Two on foot carrying a crate of vaccine each.
SPIKES 'HARVEY' ROTTEN
He rejects the robot surrender and is killed climbing over the fort's battlements. Dredd dresses him up in a spare Judge's uniform as a decoy and sends him into battle on a bike set to automatic.
He's almost killed by the APG. Dredd gives him a crate of vaccine to look after and the pair set off for Mega-City Two on foot.
GENERAL BLOOD 'N' GUTS
He offers surrender, but his terms are that Dredd gives himself up and the others can go free. After Dredd's decoy using Spikes' body and the Land-Raider, he believes the Judge is dead.
One. Spikes is shot dead by the Mek Army.
Dredd: "So long, Spikes...You were more than just a punk...you were...the greatest punk of all time!"
Robot: "Attack! Attack! Unto the end! Never stop! Never bend!"
Tweak says Twark, Twaaark and his own name three times, while Dredd says "By Stomm!" again.
CONTINUITY & CROSSOVERS
Tweak's prediction from Chapter 22 comes true here.
INFLUENCES & REFERENCES
The title recalls Custer's Last Stand, which is another name for The Battle Of The Little Bighorn which took place in 1876 between the combined forces of Lakota, Northern Cheyenne and Arapaho tribes, against a US army cavalry regiment.
One of the robot is called Mills and there's a gun labelled McMahon.
Script: Pat Mills
Artist: M. McMahon
Letters: Pete Knight
The penultimate chapter takes a surprising turn as the ending to 'The Bit In Death Valley' successfully gives Spikes not one great send off, but two.
Next Prog: The Big Kiss-Off!