Prog #22: Judge Dredd Ain’t Got No Heart! (Mr Buzzz)

Case File

Dredd busts a “murder gang”, and gets a lead on their boss – Mr Buzzz. Mr Buzzz is a mutant who has come into the City for revenge for his treatment. After a fair amount of property damage, Dredd collars another perp.

Ol’ Stoney Face

Dredd considers taking 24 hours off a 40-year sentence recognition enough for information that will lead to another arrest.

Dredd also considers burning down an entire building, with who knows how many people inside and connected to who knows how many other buildings, a legimite continuation of his enquiries. You can’t make an omelette without firebombing a kitchen I guess.

The Big Meg

According to the issue’s first caption, “crime runs rampant on the streets” of Mega-City 1.

Mutants (or “muties”) were banned from the City due to their hatred of “ordinary people” because of their own “warped” nature. Social justice is not high on the agenda for the average citizen in 2099 apparently

The Law

The Public Health Act of 2087 apparently gives Judges the power to *immediately* burn down an entire building on a whim. That’s the kind of bureaucracy I can get behind.

We get our first mention of isolation cubes.

Creeps

Buzzz’s murder gang was holed up in an apartment in Sector 4. They unwisely take Dredd on, and the one surviving member of the gang gives up their mutant leader’s location.

Mr Buzzz has a head that is more than a little bat-shaped, but has no eyes. Dredd surmises that he is killing people out of revenge for being banished from the Big Meg. He makes a buzzing sound that acts like a bat’s radar, giving him the advantage in darkness. He’s disorientated by Dredd’s high-explosive bullets, and is taken into custody.

Rap Sheet

The surviving member of Buzzz’s gang gets 40 years. Dredd kindly knocks a day off for giving up Buzzz’s location. “One lousy day!” As the citizens observe, Dredd can’t keep the streets safe by being a kitten.

Mr Buzzz is headed for the cells as well for an unspecified time.

Resyk

Dredd quickly takes out 2 of Buzzz’s henchmen.

Verdict

I like the continuation of the world-building from The Brotherhood of Darkness, as we learn a little bit more about the place (or lack of place) of mutants in 2099.

Otherwise, apart from Dredd’s slightly alarming approach to public property and fiscal responsbility (“The City’ll pay.”), another simple “catch the crazy criminal” tale without enough characterisation of the main villain.

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