Orlok and Ulysses Sweet end this week, in a great issue. Oh, and Dredd and Death started beating the shit out of each other, so that's cool. Ulysses Sweet limped to a halt this week. Maybe this was aimed at more nostalgic folks who remember the character from earlier, but I really found the whole thing to be very quick and lacking substance. I'm not holding the series to a Dredd standard of seriousness, but it was just sort of odd to have one-fifth of every issue dedicated to something that was only good for a few chuckles. It's totally unfair to rip on Marshall's artwork, though, because it completely fits the motif of this series (and Marshall is a 2000 AD all-star) and comparing anything to The Order right now is a losing proposition.
That does take us to some broader praise for the anthology: the artwork in every series is a perfect fit. I spend so much time praising The Order and the immediately gorgeous style of someone like Staples that the work of dudes like Marshall, Goddard, and Lynch flies under the radar. Comics are an aesthetically diverse place. I really can't think of any other medium that attracts such a disparate grouping of styles and proclivities, probably owing to the fact that not everyone can make an animated television show, but anybody could draw a comic and just slap it up on a Tumblr page. I think this all belies one of the reasons that I nerd out so much about Burns' artwork: where the hell else in the year 2015 am I going to see somebody drawing such an excellent comic in that style? Nowhere. Dudes like Marshall, Goddard, and Lynch, by contrast, are more typical of the artwork in the pages of 2000 AD and so they're more familiar. But make no mistake, the reasons these styles are mainstays is because they do such a good job representing their respective worlds. Orlok is rendered raw and even grimy when it needs to be, Savage uses a clean, distinct style that frequently employs heavy shadows, and Ulysses Sweet is a damn mess of backgrounds that are incidental, waiting to be interrupted by talking heads, barrages of goofy captions, and Sweet's comically jacked-up face.
Two new series next week, so I'm looking forward to checking them out.
Writers: Various Artists: Various Price: £1.99 (Digital) £2.49 (UK) Release Date: 2/11/15 Format: Print/Digital Anthology