Friday, 27 December 2013

Judge Dredd: 'Sob Story', Part 1

NAME
Judge Dredd: 'Sob Story', Part 1

FIRST PUBLISHED
2000 A.D. and Tornado Prog 131

DATELINE
22 Sept 79

This prog also featured ABC Warriors, Disaster 1990, Blackhawk and The Mind Of Wolfie Smith strips and a Judge Dredd cover by Brian Bolland.

PAGE COUNT
6

REPRINTS
The Best Of 2000AD 5, Judge Dredd Classics 69, The Complete Judge Dredd 12, Judge Dredd Chronicles Book 3, Judge Dredd 17, Judge Dredd Paperbacks vs Otto Sump and Judge Dredd The Complete Case Files 03.

SYNOPSIS
Dredd investigates a murder on a mo-pad.

FIRSTS & LASTS
First appearance of mo-pads.

INFORMATION
Mega-City One has a housing shortage and eighteen million people live in mo-pads constantly driving along the city's thirteen and a quarter billion miles of roadway.

Mo-pads can be set to drive on automatic. Some mo-pads are luxurious with huge vid systems, waste disposals, pools and onboard computers.

Sob Story is vid show on Channel 99 where unfortunate contestants appeal for money with hard luck stories. The programme has at least 200,000 viewers. Each contestant's address is given at the end of the programme.

JUDGE DREDD
He sees an out of control mo-pad and rides alongside on his Lawmaster. He climbs aboard and stops the vehicle, before exploring. He discovers a corpse in the pool and a note linking him to Sob Story. Dredd investigates Sob Story

OTHER CHARACTERS
MR RANDALL HODGIS
A wounded ex-soldier. He was a contestant on Sob Story. His royale mo-pad has been on automatic for 2 years, 11 months and 18 days. Dredd discovers his body when the mo-pad begins driving erratically and he climbs aboard. He finds Hodgis' skeleton floating in the pool with a bullet hole in the skull.

JOHNNY TEARJEARKER
Presenter of Sob Story.

ARRESTS
None.

DEATHS
None. Although the body of Randall Hodgis is discovered apparently 2 years, 11 months and 18 days after his murder.

BEST LINES
Johnny Tearjerker: "Time's up! Didn't she sob well?"

WORST LINES
Dredd (to mo-pad): "Stop, baby, stop!"

CATCHPHRASES
Dredd says "Dok!"

CONTINUITY & CROSSOVERS
None.

INFLUENCES & REFERENCES
The Sob Sisters sing a slightly altered version of 'Hey Big Spender', a song written by Cy Coleman (1929-2004) and Dorothy Fields (1905-1974) for the musical Sweet Charity (1966), it was made a hit by Shirley Bassey (born 1937). "Didn't she sob well?" echoes "Didn't they do well?" one of the many, many catchphrases of Bruce Forsyth (1928).

MISTAKES
Shrangri La is an odd spelling on the side of a mo-pad.

RETROSPECT
None.

NOTES
None.

CREDITS
Script: John Howard
Artist: Ron Smith
Letters: Tom Frame

REVIEW
Between the rampant housing shortage and the salacious reality TV, this strip shows that the cracks in Mega-City One run deep. Ron Smith's art is great and Dredd's investigation unfolds brilliantly.

Find Out Next Prog!