It’s another busy patrol for Dredd, dealing with some bored and unemployed citizens.
Ol’ Stoney Face
More time with Enforcer Dredd here, not causing as much chaos as last time at least. He specifically states that its not his job to care about the social problems that may be feeding these crimes – he just needs to lock them up.
Friends of Dredd
We get a look at one of the Fergee War Memorials that were put up.
The Big Meg (and Beyond)
We get a bit of a statistics dump in this prog! A quick round-up: Only 13% of the population of Mega-City One has employment; and 750 crimes are committed every day in Cityblocks (87 of them being major crimes).
It’s fairly clear that even by 2100 society has not responded well to the mechanisation of traditionally human roles. With far less to do, and crammed into giant skyscrapers, many citizens are committing crimes purely out of boredom. We actually see some citizens getting arrested tell Dredd they’ll just do it again when they’re out.
Leisure Counsellors are available to try and find things for the unemployed to do – examples include old-time dancing, arti-flower arranging, origami, alien spotting and party-giving. You can see why crime seems like a sensible way to spend your time.
I’m no sociologist, but it’s fairly clear that this combination of low-employment (which must be getting worse all the time) and harsh enforcement of the Law is a recipe for inevitable disaster for the Judges – and the City.
Our main criminal here is Arnold Short. He’s replaced as Caretaker of his building by a robot after 30 years on the job, and snaps – going “futsie”. He starts taking potshots at the street with a laz-rifle.
We also see some quick snapshots of other crimes: a robbery being committed by some bored citizens, and Mrs Fennemore using her can of “super-mace” on her Leisure Counsellor – and then taking his job.
Dredd shows “mercy” to Arnold Short, sentencing him to hard labour. Which is interesting, as aren’t futsies supposed to get medical treatment, not sentences?
It seems like a few of the burglars are shot down by Dredd, but it’s not completely clear.
An interesting little double “slice of life” diversion in these two progs. I didn’t like this one as much as Cityblock 1, but I do enjoy getting a bit more background on how Dredd’s world operates. The idea of low unemployment leading to more crime, which means more Judges and harsher laws is a very logical – and scary – premise.