There have been many Alien crossovers in the past taking on everything from Predator to Batman so its suprising that it took so long for them to come up against Mega City One’s finest. Naturally this put a great deal of expectation onto the strip before so much as a panel had been published. For the most part though Dredd vs Aliens is a resounding success.

Storywise its pretty much what you’d expect. The hatching of a single Alien quickly results in Mega City One becoming infested with the things, with the Judges left to try and put a stop to them.  However there is a lot more to the story than that, for one thing there is a very strong supporting cast here especially in the case of the Verminators. Called in to deal with what is initially thought to be a bug problem in a hospital they rapidly find themselves out of their depth as the Aliens pick them off one by one. With the deaths of some of their group we get a real sense of a genuine history and friendship between the Verminators. On the other side of the coin we have a very interesting villian in the disfigured Mr Bones. The problem with the Aliens is that they are very one dimensional, you can’t sit down and have a conversation with an Alien, they are just vicious killing machines. This is why the character of Mr Bones had to be a good one, to essentially give a voice and a motivation behind the Aliens. Having been disfigured by the Aliens acidic blood Mr Bones (genetically predisposed to evil) decides he will set them loose on Mega City One as revenge for his exile from the city as a child.

Theres a cracking good action story here to go along with the wonderful characterisation. Dredd battling an Alien on top of a train is exactly the sort of thing you’d expect to see in some big budget blockbuster and it is no less exciting here than it would be on the silver screen. Indeed theres a lot of cinematic scenes throughout this story which shouldn’t really be to much of a suprise considering the Aliens originated from the movies. We have flashbacks to the villians past, scenes of thousands of Aliens with their Human victims suspended from the ceiling, and epic battles between the Judges and the Aliens (including the robotic Judges previously seen in “Mechanismo”).

The art is by Henry Flint so you know its going to be good. As you’d expect we get to see plenty of Aliens bursting out of peoples chests as well as some very graphic scenes of Judges being dissolved by the Aliens acidic blood. Flint draws the Aliens on mass extremly well including a very memorable full page panel of the Aliens breaking into the Grand Hall of Justice itself.

As far as crossovers go Judge Dredd vs Aliens is easily one of the better ones you are likely to come across. Easily as good as it sounds from the title and always exciting it is recommended reading.

8/10

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