East Meg One
A judge of East-Meg One, drawn by Brian Bolland
East-Meg One is a fictional city in the world of Judge Dredd, the figurehead character of British weekly comic 2000 AD (comics). The concept of Soviet megacities ("Sov-Cities") was introduced in prog 50 of 2000 AD (1978), with East-Meg One being named in prog 128 (1979) and destroyed in prog 267 (1982).
Its sister city is East-Meg Two, first named in prog 270; the two have separate governments but were allied, as part of the Sov-Block. 1988's The Judge Dredd Mega-Special #1 said that the location of other Sov-cities was classified by the Block authorities; the "Dredd's World" map in the Mega-Special shows the Block covering the Warsaw Pact, most of China, the Korean peninsula, Mongolia, and Scandinavia, though most of this would be retconed later (with China said to have always been the rival Sino-Block).
East-Meg One was intended to represent the remnants of the Soviet Union, and was centered on what had originally been Moscow. During the 1980s, at the tail end of the Cold War period in real-time, the city was often portrayed as hostile to Dredd's home city Mega-City One. Its peak population was said to be 500 million people. The city had its own Judge System controlled by a Supreme Judge, who headed up the city's ruling Diktatorat. In their first appearance, they were noted for obvious attempts at cheating in the Lunar Olympics and brutality towards their people; in "The Apocalypse War", when discussing the potential death toll among their civilians, Supreme Judge Bulgarin asked "what have they got to do with it?" (Ironically, Dredd had a similar response to Mega-City One's own population)
Before the Atomic War, the city was called Moscow-St-Petersburg. It had become "East Meg" by 2080 at the latest.
The assassination of a Sov athlete at the 2100 Luna Olympics sparked off a brief war between the Sov-Cities and the lunar city Luna One; thanks to Judge Dredd, Luna One prevailed. In this story, it was said that warfare was now fought between selected teams of four and run like a sports match so the nations could avoid collateral damage. This idea would not be used in future Sov stories.
East-Meg One was involved in a cold war against Mega-City One, with Dredd once arresting an entire Sov battleship. This took a sinister turn in 1981's "Pirates of the Black Atlantic", where a psychotic pirate named Captain Skank hijacked MC-1 nuclear weapons and fired them at the city; in the final part, it turned out Skank was a robot under Sov control, a deniable way to strike at their enemy. Mega-City One made the Sovs aware that they knew about the deception and East-Meg One nuked one of its own sectors as repayment.
It was Supreme Judge Bulgarin who initiated the Apocalypse War after years of careful planning. Bulgarin was quickly killed off on the orders of his most trusted War-Marshal, "Mad Dog" Kazan, who succeeded him as Supreme Judge.
The war broke out between East-Meg One and Mega City One when forces of the former invaded the American megacity and quickly subjugated it, killing half its population of 800 million. Judge Dredd led a covert commando team into East-Meg One at the climax of the war, disabling its defences, and then personally pushed the button to launch the nuclear missiles that destroyed it. Numerous survivors and East Meggers who happened to be away from the city at the time of its destruction sought refuge in East-Meg Two.
There are a small minority of survivors living in the radioactive environment of East-Meg One's ruins, but the city officially no longer exists.
- 2000 AD prog 245
- Judge Dredd Year One: Wear Iron
- Progs 50 and 51
- Progs 128-129: "Battle of the Black Atlantic"
- Prog 200
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