|First appearance||2000 AD #68 (1978)|
|Created by||Pat Mills |
|Alter ego||Hollins Solomon|
Chief Judge Hollins Solomon is a fictional character from the Judge Dredd stories in the comic 2000 AD. His first appearance in the comic was in a flashback in #68, in the 1978 story The Cursed Earth. However his main appearance is in the story Origins (2006–2007), as a recurring character in a series of flashbacks.
The story Origins fleshed out Solomon's history. It revealed that Solomon was deputy chief judge serving under Chief Judge Fargo, and a far more politically minded man than his boss. When in 2051 Fargo made a suicide attempt which left him severely injured, it was Solomon's idea to fake a heroic death for him as a public relations move. Solomon succeeded Fargo as chief judge until 2057, when he became tired of the politics and handed the role over to[Judge Goodman. Originally Chief Judge of the United States, he became Chief Judge of Mega-City One in 2052 when the other mega-cities became autonomous and acquired their own chief judges. He founded Psi Division at the end of his term of office in 2057. Solomon was still serving as a senior street judge on the Council of Five during the Atomic Wars of 2070.
Solomon does not appear in any of the "present day" Dredd stories (2099 onwards), and has presumably died or resigned by this point. The Space Corps have a warship JDSS Solomon named in his honour.
Judgement of Solomon
Solomon is noted for his verdict in the war crimes trial of President Robert L. Booth, which became known as the "Judgement of Solomon." The story The Cursed Earth told of how President Robert L. Booth, the last president of the United States, initiated a global nuclear war in 2070 which left much of the world in ruins. In the aftermath, the constitutional government was overthrown and power was seized by the Street Judges (formerly an elite police force within the Justice Department). Booth was found guilty, but the judges were unable to decide what to do with him. Ordinary life imprisonment seemed too good for him, but they could not bring themselves to execute America's last president. It was Solomon who hit on the solution: a sentence of "living death" – suspended animation in a cryogenic chamber. Booth was sentenced to 100 years in suspended animation, buried deep within the vaults of Fort Knox. This inventive compromise sealed Judge Solomon's reputation for wisdom. (Writer Pat Mills named the character after the King Solomon of the Old Testament) Origins later confirmed that the intent of this was that future generations would sentence Booth properly with the benefit of hindsight.
It was later revealed in Origins that Booth – released early – found the Judgement laughable, rhetorically asking "was that supposed to be some kind of terrible punishment?" (When Booth was unexpectedly revived after thirty years, Judge Dredd sentenced him to hard labour for life, cleaning up the mess he had made of America)