Mega-City Two: A Land of Confusion.
I love Adam Warren’s work. He blends the look and feel of Japanese Manga pretty seamlessly with American style comics, producing something that no one else is doing. I wanted to reference the Judge Dredd series in my art for today, and was recently introduced to a charming little girl at school that loves drawing, expressly in the manga and anime style. The two needs fused together into the piece that you see above.
It gives me a much deeper appreciation for the kind of effort which goes into the pencils and draftmanship, which is different than the expectations of Western style illustration. It’s looser, more abstract, with things being represented less than they are drawn. There’s an IDEA of a domes city behind the Judge, and there is an IDEA of an apocalyptic wasteland she is walking through….but the ideas are loose, are suggested by the illustration. For that level of complexity, it is definitely a kind of drawing that I want to continue to experiment with.
For those of us unfamiliar with the idea of Judges, or Mega-Cities…a Judge (or street judge) is a title held by law enforcement officers in “Judge Dredd” and other series which appear in the British comic “2000 AD”. In the fictional future history of the series, the role of “Judge” combines those of judge and police officer, thus avoiding long legal wrangles by allowing for criminals to be tried and sentenced on the spot. Since they overthrew the U.S. Constitution in 2070, Judges have also held supreme political power in Mega-City One.
Mega-City one is the East Coast of America, as one continuous city. It is separated from it’s sister city by the “Cursed Earth”, a radioactive wasteland full of mutants and other horrors. That sister city is called Mega-City Two, and is loosely based on stereotypes of California.
And now…you see where the metaphor is going.
Although we are very much in the process of “taking back” our school from mutants running rampant through the halls and so forth…that’s a process. Already, factions of teachers are starting to “wall in” their fiefdoms of order, to begin the process of attempting to regain ground by staking out their own areas. I’ve done that myself, more or less claiming my floor as a kind of “territory” to be kept separate from other groups.
What we need, though, is a central, consistent, and impartial force. Something that moves freely through the whole area, and enforces the exact letter of our six “non-negotiable” rules as outlined by “Safe and Civil Schools,” a program that the Darths paid for to put things in order.
In other words, we need a Street Judge like the rough lady above.
You would think that we had this, since we employ an amazingly large number of campus supervision aides (read as: “Security”). Sadly, these aides have little in common with the driven, motivated street judge above…if it were not for their bright orange vests, you might never even see the stealthy forms of our security detail. Rarely on hand, and rarely assisting in solving the problems of truancy and disorder, these Campus Aides seem to do little all day long. In fact, I wonder strongly, quite often, at where they might be, since I do a healthy amount of supervision myself.
Still…the “non negotiable” rules have become a THING for me. If the school is going to put up laminated posters about them, I am @#$% well going to see them enforced. Just today, I took an administrator aside and pointed to the poster while outline the things directly in front of us that needed to change. As I did so, I was pretty outspoken about being willing to hold anyone and everyone accountable to those rules…
…especially the administrators that wrote them, and paid for them.
Still…today is another day in the radioactive wasteland, without a hard as nails street Judge to tip the scales. Appropriately, in terms of content I will be screening several episodes of the Twilight Zone” to demonstrate the concept of the “twist ending”…and one of the will be “Time Enough at Last.”
Next Issue: At Some Point….a Team Up!