Monday, 30 December 2013

Judge Dredd: 'The Great Muldoon'

NAME
Judge Dredd: 'The Great Muldoon'

FIRST PUBLISHED
2000 A.D. Prog 133

DATELINE
6 Oct 79

This prog also featured ABC Warriors, Disaster 1990, Blackhawk, Captain Klep and The Mind Of Wolfie Smith strips and a cover by Carlos Ezquerra.

PAGE COUNT
6

REPRINTS
The Complete Judge Dredd 12, Judge Dredd's Crime Files 5 and Judge Dredd The Complete Case Files 03.

SYNOPSIS
Dredd attempts to prevent a suicidal showman.

FIRSTS & LASTS
First appearance of the 'Birdie' lie detector. First Judge Dredd art by Barry Mitchell.

INFORMATION
The Little Bowl is an open-air arena for public entertainments on the north side of Mega-City One. It has ten entrance gates and ticket prices range up to 1000 credits. The Great Muldoon is one of the acts.

Judges are equipped with 'Birdie' lie detectors. Once the Deputy Chief Judge has provided a signed permit for something, they are only one who can rescind it. Named Judges: Judge Sweeney.

JUDGE DREDD
He attempts to prevent The Great Muldoon's performance from taking place. He fails.

OTHER CHARACTERS
THE GREAT MULDOON
He plans to dive through solid steel plate whilst juggling rings, drinking a glass of water and reciting Hamlet before falling into a tiny water barrel using a particle converter which will allow his body's molecules to pass through it. He is killed during the performance.

DEPUTY CHIEF JUDGE PEPPER
He has given The Great Muldoon a signed permit for a his dive.

ARRESTS
One. Dredd arrests a robber threatening to explode a proton bomb at the Little Bowl.

DEATHS
Two. Judges shoot a robber attempting to steal the Little Bowl's box office takings and the Great Muldoon fails to pass through a solid steel plate.

BEST LINES
The Great Muldoon: "Whether tis nobler to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune - or to sleep - perchance to dream!"

Splat!

WORST LINES
Arena Public Address: "Robbery! Robbery! Two men stealing the takings at Gate 2!"
Dredd: "We can't have that!"

CATCHPHRASES
Dredd says "Dok!"

CONTINUITY & CROSSOVERS
None.

INFLUENCES & REFERENCES
The Great Muldoon resembles WC Fields (1880-1946), star of silent era movies such as Mrs. Wiggs of the Cabbage Patch (1934), The Bank Dick (1940), Never Give A Sucker An Even Break (1941). He mentions Harry Houdini (1874–1926) a Hungarian illusionist and stunt performer known for his escapology acts. Finally he quotes Hamlet by William Shakespeare (1564-1616).

MISTAKES
The Great Muldoon misses out quite a lot of Hamlet's "To be or not to be" speech.

RETROSPECT
None.

NOTES
None.

CREDITS
Script: John Howard
Artist: Barry Mitchell
Letters: Tom Frame

Barry Mitchell also provided art for M.A.C.H. 1 and The Lawless Touch.

REVIEW
The idea behind this is brilliant although it feel like a call back to an earlier era of the strip. The Birdie sequence and the Great Muldoon's ultimate fate are wonderful, but in places the art is a bit simplistic.

Next Prog: The Invisible Man