DID YOU READ

25 random facts about Judge Dredd

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“Dredd 3D” hits theaters this weekend, bringing beloved British comics character Judge Dredd back to the big screen for an ultra-violent, action-packed adventure amid the post-apocalyptic urban chaos of Mega-City One.

Already earning praise from critics, “Dredd 3D” finally gives the eternally-frowning lawman the adaptation he deserves, and is likely to make more than a few audience members head to the comics shop to find out more about the character. Earlier this week, I gave you a brief introduction to the character and the world he inhabits.

Now that you’ve got the basics, here are 25 random facts about Judge Dredd that provide a little taste of the character’s rich history dating back to his first introduction in a February 1977 issue of the 2000 A.D. comics anthology.

1. His first name is Joseph.

2. Joseph Dredd has a brother named Rico who graduated ahead of him in the Academy of Law, only to become a criminal shortly after becoming a Judge. Joseph was forced to arrest him.

3. Joseph Dredd (and his brother, Rico) are both clones of the first Chief Judge of Mega-City One.

4. The name “Dredd” was chosen for Joseph and Rico Dredd by the scientist who cloned them. The name was intended to scare the residents of Mega-City One into obeying the law.

5. The character’s look was originally inspired by David Carradine’s character in the ultraviolent 1975 movie “Death Race 2000.”

6. Despite being the most popular character in the long-running 2000 A.D. science-fiction comics anthology, Judge Dredd didn’t make his debut until the second issue of the series due to delays in finding an artist for the strip.

7. Popular comic writers Garth Ennis, Grant Morrison, and Mark Millar have all written Judge Dredd stories for issues of 2000 A.D. anthology.

8. Judge Dredd’s full face in the current timeline of the comics has never been seen, though we’ve seen his face in flashbacks to his younger years.

9. Judge Dredd’s racial background also remains a mystery — so much so that certain artists drew him as an African-American character, while others drew him as a Caucasian. Since the series is printed in black and white, it never became an issue.

10. In the Judge Dredd comics, time passes at the same rate as the real world, with a year of comics matching up with a year in Dredd’s life. In the comics, Dredd is now over 70 years old.

11. The 1987 album “Among the Living” by heavy metal band Anthrax includes a song titled “I Am The Law,” which is based on Judge Dredd. One version of the album actually contains a picture of the band dressed as Judges.

12. Joseph Dredd first drew the attention of Mega-City One’s Justice Department when he was a cadet and assisted in the department’s assault on the White House and removal of then-President Robert Linus Booth.

13. Judge Dredd is known for his strict adherence to the law of Mega-City One, but he has resigned his post on several occasions when presented with perceived flaws in the Justice Department’s policy.

14. 2000 A.D. editor Pat Mills first conceived of the name “Judge Dread” as a character in an aborted horror comic, but later recycled the name — with a slightly different spelling — for John Wagner’s story about an ultra-violent police officer.

15. The 1991 miniseries Batman/Judge Dredd: Judgment on Gotham is the first of four crossover stories featuring Batman and Judge Dredd, and has the two characters jumping between Gotham and Mega-City One in order to take down criminals from both of their dimensions.

16. In addition to teaming up with Batman, Judge Dredd also battled the xenomorphs from the “Alien” movies and a Predator alien (from the “Predator” franchise) in separate miniseries.

17. In the 1986 story arc “Democracy,” Judge Dredd was tasked with disrupting a pro-democracy movement in Mega-City One that opposes the rule of the Judges, and his underhanded methods of sabotaging the movement serve as a reminder why he may be one of the most popular comics characters, but he isn’t always the most likable.

18. Judge Dredd’s gun is called the “Lawgiver” and can fire multiple types of ammunition, and is DNA-coded to only work in Dredd’s hand. If anyone else tries to use it, the gun explodes.

19. In addition to his regular adventures in 2000 A.D., Judge Dredd’s popularity also led to the publication of Judge Dredd Megazine, another sci-fi anthology featuring comics and text-based articles.

20. In a 2008 story arc, Judge Dredd was diagnosed with cancer of the duodenum, though the cancer was declared benign at the time.

21. “Shaun of the Dead” actor Simon Pegg is a big fan of Judge Dredd, and images from the 2000 A.D. series can be seen in many of the sets from his television series “Spaced.”

22. After several years patrolling the streets, Judge Dredd turned down the opportunity to become Chief Judge in an early story arc of the series, deciding that the streets were where he could best serve the city.

23. When we first meet Joseph Dredd in 2000 A.D., he lives in the “Rowdy Yates Block” of Mega-City One. All of the city’s massive blocks are named after famous pop-culture personalities, and Rowdy Yates was a character played by Clint Eastwood in the television series “Rawhide.” Eastwood’s character in the “Dirty Harry” movie franchise was one of the major inspirations for Judge Dredd.

24. Judge Dredd has saved both Mega-City One and the planet as a whole from destruction on several occasions, including an attack on Mega-City One by its Russian counterpart.

25. Judge Dredd has battled a darker, alternate-dimension version of himself who goes by the name of Judge Death on several occasions. The villain comes from a world wherein the Judges deemed life a crime, and seek to establish law by killing all living people.

“Dredd 3D” arrives in theaters September 21.

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New Nasty

Whips, Chains and Hand Sanitizer

Turn On The Full Season Of Neurotica At IFC's Comedy Crib

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Jenny Jaffe has a lot going on: She’s writing for Disney’s upcoming Big Hero 6: The Series, developing comedy projects with pals at Devastator Press, and she’s straddling the line between S&M and OCD as the creator and star of the sexyish new series Neurotica, which has just made its debut on IFC’s Comedy Crib. Jenny gave us some extremely intimate insight into what makes Neurotica (safely) sizzle…

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IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. 

IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. You’re great. We should get coffee sometime. I’m not just saying that. I know other people just say that sometimes but I really feel like we’re going to be friends, you know? Here, what’s your number, I’ll call you so you can have my number! 

IFC: What’s your comedy origin story?

Jenny: Since I was a kid I’ve dealt with severe OCD and anxiety. Comedy has always been one of the ways I’ve dealt with that. I honestly just want to help make people feel happy for a few minutes at a time. 

IFC: What was the genesis of Neurotica?

Jenny: I’m pretty sure it was a title-first situation. I was coming up with ideas to pitch to a production company a million years ago (this isn’t hyperbole; I am VERY old) and just wrote down “Neurotica”; then it just sort of appeared fully formed. “Neurotica? Oh it’s an over-the-top romantic comedy about a Dominatrix with OCD, of course.” And that just happened to hit the buttons of everything I’m fascinated by. 

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IFC: How would you describe Ivy?

Jenny: Ivy is everything I love in a comedy character – she’s tenacious, she’s confident, she’s sweet, she’s a big wonderful weirdo. 

IFC: How would Ivy’s clientele describe her?

Jenny:  Open-minded, caring, excellent aim. 

IFC: Why don’t more small towns have local dungeons?

Jenny: How do you know they don’t? 

IFC: What are the pros and cons of joining a chain mega dungeon?

Jenny: You can use any of their locations but you’ll always forget you have a membership and in a year you’ll be like “jeez why won’t they let me just cancel?” 

IFC: Mouths are gross! Why is that?

Jenny: If you had never seen a mouth before and I was like “it’s a wet flesh cave with sharp parts that lives in your face”, it would sound like Cronenberg-ian body horror. All body parts are horrifying. I’m kind of rooting for the singularity, I’d feel way better if I was just a consciousness in a cloud. 

See the whole season of Neurotica right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

The-Craft

The ’90s Are Back

The '90s live again during IFC's weekend marathon.

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Photo Credit: Everett Digital, Columbia Pictures

We know what you’re thinking: “Why on Earth would anyone want to reanimate the decade that gave us Haddaway, Los Del Rio, and Smash Mouth, not to mention Crystal Pepsi?”

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Thoughts like those are normal. After all, we tend to remember lasting psychological trauma more vividly than fleeting joy. But if you dig deep, you’ll rediscover that the ’90s gave us so much to fondly revisit. Consider the four pillars of true ’90s culture.

Boy Bands

We all pretended to hate them, but watch us come alive at a karaoke bar when “I Want It That Way” comes on. Arguably more influential than Brit Pop and Grunge put together, because hello – Justin Timberlake. He’s a legitimate cultural gem.

Man-Child Movies

Adam Sandler is just behind The Simpsons in terms of his influence on humor. Somehow his man-child schtick didn’t get old until the aughts, and his success in that arena ushered in a wave of other man-child movies from fellow ’90s comedians. RIP Chris Farley (and WTF Rob Schneider).

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Teen Angst

In horror, dramas, comedies, and everything in between: Troubled teens! Getting into trouble! Who couldn’t relate to their First World problems, plaid flannels, and lose grasp of the internet?

Mainstream Nihilism

From the Coen Bros to Fincher to Tarantino, filmmakers on the verge of explosive popularity seemed interested in one thing: mind f*cking their audiences by putting characters in situations (and plot lines) beyond anyone’s control.

Feeling better about that walk down memory lane? Good. Enjoy the revival.

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And revisit some important ’90s classics all this weekend during IFC’s ’90s Marathon. Check out the full schedule here.

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Get Physical

DVDs are the new Vinyl

Portlandia Season 7 Now Available On Disc.

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In this crazy digital age, sometimes all we really want is to reach out and touch something. Maybe that’s why so many of us are still gung-ho about owning stuff on DVD. It’s tangible. It’s real. It’s tech from a bygone era that still feels relevant, yet also kitschy and retro. It’s basically vinyl for people born after 1990.

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Inevitably we all have that friend whose love of the disc is so absolutely repellent that he makes the technology less appealing. “The resolution, man. The colors. You can’t get latitude like that on a download.” Go to hell, Tim.

Yes, Tim sucks, and you don’t want to be like Tim, but maybe he’s onto something and DVD is still the future. Here are some benefits that go beyond touch.

It’s Decor and Decorum

With DVDs and a handsome bookshelf you can show off your great taste in film and television without showing off your search history. Good for first dates, dinner parties, family reunions, etc.

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Forget Public Wifi

Warm up that optical drive. No more awkwardly streaming episodes on shady free wifi!

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Inter-not

Internet service goes down. It happens all the time. It could happen right now. Then what? Without a DVD on hand you’ll be forced to make eye contact with your friends and family. Or worse – conversation.

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Self Defense

You can’t throw a download like a ninja star. Think about it.

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If you’d like to experience the benefits DVD ownership yourself, Portlandia Season 7 is now available on DVD and Blue-Ray.