“ Genre: Graphic Novels / Comics / Authors: Grant & Wagner / Book published 1998 by DC Comics „
In Dredd comics, there has always been only one ultimate super-villain and that is Judge Death! True, he has three compadres in Fear, Fire and Mortis but Death has always been the big hitter. Their background is a simple one......having judged all life to be a crime on their own world, The Dark Judges set out in search of other dimensions to inflict their own curiously morbid and ultimate Justice upon. Their mistake came when they travelled to Mega City One and their recent history has long seen them faced off against their old adversary, Dredd, and his sometime partner, PSI Judge Anderson; a psychic with powerrful abilities.
When The Joker discovers Death's left-over Dimension Belt in Gotham, he decides to put it to good use. Except....something goes wrong and though his body remains in Gotham, transported to Arkham Asylum by The Batman, it is his mind that roams free and travels the barriers between time and space to a city far, far in our future....
In Mega City One, The Dark Judges are being transported to a secure enviroment until they can be destroyed. But The Joker's newst goons soon hijack the transport and begin trying to break them out of their imprisonment. His intention...to let them loose on the world and hopefully bring them back with him to his own home-world and time! When one of The Dark Judges seizes control of the city's Deputy Chief Judge, Anderson ~ The Dark Judges main threat to existence ~ becomes a target and is forced to jump back to Gotham to warn The Batman and enlist his help. Injured, The Batman leaves her behind while he travels forward to meet up with his old adversary, Dredd, and hopefully protect the future, and his own time, for total obliteration!
This is as good almost as Judgement On Gotham and is the big story we were promised in Vendetta which felt just like a warm-up for this; the main event! The Joker has long been the favourite villain for many Batman fans and to see him teaming up with Death is, in many ways, better than seeing him team with Scarecrow! The story again moves at a terrific pace as old rivalries are temporarily forgotten in a bid to save two worlds from the midst of ancient and unstoppable evil.
Though many will feel this is a bit been-there-seen-it, (and how many times can The Dark Judges escape to threaten Mega City One for Gruds sake? Necropolis anyone?) I personally really like this despite it being a little old hat! The addition of Batman and The Joker gives this a new and original twist and, this time around, it actually feels as though the writers are trying to achieve something different with the characters!
Defintely one to check out then....and one of the better cross-over graphic novels!