Originally published in 1978 in the pages of “2000 AD,” “The Cursed Earth” encountered legal trouble due to parodies of corporate mascots including Ronald McDonald, the Jolly Green Giant and the Michelin Man; depicted in a satire of American consumerism, as Judge Dredd traveled through an irradiated, post-apocalyptic middle America. As such, the stories “Burger World” and “Soul Food” were never included in collected editions — until now, thanks to a change in UK parody law.
“The most common question we have been asked at conventions over the years is ‘Will you be reprinting Burger Wars?’ It’s a delight, and frankly a relief, to be able to finally say ‘Yes!’ Our mission to make the entire run of Judge Dredd available has seen each volume become a bestseller throughout the last decade,” Ben Smith, head of books and comics at Rebellion Publishing, said in a press release. “In this special edition of ‘The Cursed Earth’ you’ll see pages from the legendary artists Brian Bolland and Mike McMahon, unseen for 37 years, in unparalleled quality.”
Illustrated by Bolland and McMahon, the stories collected in “The Cursed Earth Uncensored” are written by fellow “2000 AD” legends Pat Mills and John Wagner. Here are the official descriptions of both the “Burger Wars” and “Soul Food” stories, collected in “The Cursed Earth Uncensored.”
In ‘Burger Wars’, after World War III self-styled ‘burger barons’ had taken control of whole areas of middle America and were worshipped with religious zeal. Dredd and his comrades are captured and forced to consume burgers and shakes, only escaping thanks to the guards being fat and lazy due to too much fast food. They are then captured by the rival side and placed on trial for eating “the wrong kind” of burger.
In ‘Soul Food’, on their way through the Great Utah Dustbowl Dredd encounters the copyright infringing creations of Dr. Moreau-like scientist Dr Gribbons – including a Jolly Green Giant, a Michelin Man, and others – who drugs Dredd’s team in order to remove fluid from their nervous systems to keep his creations alive.
“Judge Dredd: The Cursed Earth Uncensored” is scheduled for release in July, with a $35 cover price.
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