Judge Dredd… he is the law? (interview with Michael Molcher).
Here’s an interview with Michael Molcher by Andrew Sumner about MM’s new book on Judge Dredd… I am the Law!
When Judge Dredd first burst onto the scene in 1977, it’s safe to say that nobody could have predicted just how much his dystopian world would resemble our own. But as we look around at the state of society and law enforcement today, it’s hard not to see the parallels.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with Judge Dredd, he’s a character in a British comic book series set in the 22nd century. In this future world, the United States has been devastated by nuclear war, and the only thing standing between order and chaos are the Judges – a group of law enforcement officers who have the power to arrest, convict, and sentence criminals on the spot.
Sound familiar? It should, because we’re living in an age where police officers are increasingly being granted unprecedented powers to deal with crime and disorder. From facial recognition technology to predictive policing algorithms, it seems like we’re constantly finding new ways to give law enforcement officers the upper hand. And while we may not have Judges like Dredd walking the streets just yet, it’s not hard to imagine a future where such a thing might be necessary.
Of course, the world of Judge Dredd is far from perfect. In Mega-City One, the sprawling metropolis where the comic is set, crime is rampant and the Judges often find themselves at odds with the citizens they’re trying to protect. There’s also the small matter of the fact that they’re essentially judge, jury, and executioner all rolled into one – a concept that’s understandably controversial.
But despite these flaws, there’s no denying that Judge Dredd has been eerily prescient in its predictions about the future of law enforcement. From the use of drones to monitor public spaces to the rise of private prisons, many of the issues that the series grappled with decades ago are still very much with us today.
So the next time you’re feeling frustrated by the state of law enforcement in our society, take heart – at least we don’t have to deal with mutant gangs and rogue robots (yet). And who knows? Maybe someday we’ll all be living in a Mega-City of our own, where justice is swift and the law is absolute. Or maybe we’ll just keep plugging away, trying to build a better world one day at a time. Either way, we can always count on Judge Dredd to show us what could have been – and what might still be possible.