Top critical review
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on 1 October 2014
While the conceit of a crossover with other stories from the originating anthology was decent enough - if appropriated from earlier UK comics such as the younger readers title Sonic The Hedgehog (not the Archie series) - the execution suffers from an unfortunate disparity between the individual stories that results in an uneven gestalt.
The main Dredd strand is strongly-plotted and manages to garner mileage from the usually unconvincing "Dredd is heavily injured" trope, while the Low Life section is heavily reliant upon coincidence and the readers' tolerance for the continuous accidental successes of its buffoon protagonist Dirty Frank, though this approach in itself is admirable as it requires tight plotting to maintain. The problem for me was the Simping Detective strand, which I found smug, unfunny, and often unbearable, and I found myself skipping the main character's narrative captions after the first few episodes and didn't miss a story beat because of doing so, giving me the impression that much of this plot strand was padded out more than it needed to be. I am also struggling to understand why the pun "Simping Detective" has been used on anything in the 21st century, as it ceased to be relevant about twenty years before the end of the 20th century - I know there's a running joke about 2000ad being dated and bought only by men in their fifth decades, but this seems to stretch the point a little too far.
Trifecta seems to have been very well-received even by outlets like Comics Alliance who as far as I can tell don't report on 2000ad at any other time, so I suppose a cynic might suggest that they were either grasping for content or were the subject of good PR work when they were gushing praise for what is in all honesty a work that's only about 50-60 percent good and not a patch on other Dreddworld epics such as the recent Day Of Chaos, which I gather this story is a sequel to of sorts. The overall lack of consistency would dissuade me from recommending this to any newcomers to Dreddverse stories when there are numerous versions of America or The Apocalypse War available, but I would give it a middling rec to those already familiar, as the format lends it a curiosity value that they might find charming.