Judge Dredd: Cursed Earth
Published by Rebellion
Deluxe Edition with restored colour pages
UK/Ireland £25.00; North America $35.00
Writers: John Wagner, Pat Mills
Artists: Brian Bolland, Mick McMahon
Letterers: Tom Frame, Peter Knight, John Aldrich
This is news many never expected to hear.
Four episodes of this classic story from Judge Dredd’s early years have never been reprinted.
The ‘Banned’ episodes featured several copyrighted characters and logos, some barely disguised but others clearly portrayed with their real-world names. Foremost among them were Ronald McDonald, Burger King and the Jolly Green Giant.
This is the most requested reprint from the 2000AD imprint. Three preview pages (including a larger version of the one above) are at the end of the article.
Progs 71 & 72 (1st & 8th July 1978) featured McDonalds and Burger King, brands that had died out long ago in Mega-City One battling it out. And when I say ‘battling’… The episode featured in the header image of this article is titled Burger Laws but together these two episodes are known as Burger Wars.
Progs 77 & 78 (12th & 19th August 1978) contained multiple copyright infringing characters alongside the Jolly Green Giant. These were all the creations of a character that was clearly based on Colonel Sanders. This story is known as Soul Food.
2000AD had always pushed the envelope but after publication it seemed they may have pushed a bit too far. An apology was even printed (I wonder if that will be reprinted in this collection).
The laws in the UK now include a Parody clause, something that has been in place in USA for decades. Even following the law change it wasn’t known if a reprint would happen as readers had no idea if any legal agreements were made between the then publisher IPC and any of the multiple copyright holders. Any such agreement would have most likely carried over to Rebellion.
I own these pages because I have the original comics from 1978, with my name written on the cover by the local Newsagent.
I know many fans will love to finally be able to read the full story.