Si Spurrier, new master at Whitechapel, says:THE RULES:  INSTRUCTIONS: JUDGE DREDD

All righty then. Doesn’t come much better than this.

We’ve had our clowns, we’ve had our jungle-protecting sorcerers, we’ve had our gun-wielding primates. I think we can all agree it’s about time we sunk our teeth into some good old fashioned head-breaking uberviolent zero-tolerance epic future cop action, yes? With the kind permission of the splendid droids over at 2000AD, you’re about to get the chance to re-imagine the most iconic chin in British comics history. Here’s what we know: Dredd is an American law enforcement officer in Mega City One: a violent city of the future where uniformed Judges combine the powers of police, judge, jury and executioner. Dredd and his fellow Judges are empowered to arrest, sentence and even execute criminals on the spot. He was created by writer John Wagner and artist Carlos Ezquerra.  Those of us who know and love the character could happily add to that with days’ worth of affectionate waffle. We’d mention that the common interpretation of Dredd as a fascist is a horrible oversimplification, and for a character nicknamed “old stoney face” he’s in fact remarkably complex. We’d mumble about the gigapolis he inhabits – Mega City One – being a gloriously over-the-top cipher of the real-world, whose gibbering denizens are so thoroughly buzzed on the insanities of the Future that they need brutal and unsympathetic law enforcement to prevent Colony Collapse. We’d meander endlessly through our smugness regarding the genius of a character able to make readers root for him – even empathize with him – despite his stated belief that democracy is the worst thing that could happen to his town.

And then there’s the uniform.

Let’s keep the rest. Let’s drokk about with the look. Your mission is simple: You’re designing a character capable of upholding the law in a city-sized lunatic asylum. He or she is going to be wading in violence 24/7. He or she needs to be mobile, armed, flexible. He or she needs to represent the judicial system which created them, with whatever symbols seem most appropriate. In a world of frothing pants-on-head crazystomm, He or she is the law.

And, folks: WE CANNOT SEE HIS/HER FULL FACE. Trying to de-helmet Dredd is a bannable offence, in this fan’s opinion

Me: The judges are a team. I thought at the beginning that the question of hiding the face and their relationship to humanity poses questions: what if they’re AI? Or Robots? Too much Robocop? Alrighty then.