While the theft and forgery of a valuable piece of art might not seem like a logical mission for James Bond, things become clearer in the second issue. James Bond #2 slowly rolls out why 007 has been dispatched and we learn it’s something much bigger.
Writers Vita Ayala and Danny Lore have made it clear what their vision of a good Bond story is. This isn’t the over the top action of Moore, Dalton, or Brosnan. This is a story that’s more of a slower build like the Bond of Connery and Craig. It’s also a Bond that’s a bit gruffer like Craig’s depiction. He’s not all that likable, so far. Ayala and Lore deliver some teases of the smooth character that can win you over. But, this is a Bond of little words and constantly thinking.
What’s interesting about James Bond #2 is the history of Brandy that’s unexpected. She has history with M, something that’s hinted and teased but not laid out yet. She’s not a former agent but there’s something that’s key to her current business and also something that keeps her on the side of angels. It adds something to the series and takes the slow build and plot and adds enough mystery to have you wanting to continue.
The art by Eric Gapstur is good. With color by Roshan Kurichiyanil and lettering by Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou, the issue isn’t one of excitement. The art team has the difficult task of making talking interesting. While some panels could be tighter in their focus, the art pacing is good. The latter half of the comic particularly brings with it some tension as Bond focuses on his mission. That tension is helped by the art. The earlier panels in the comic featuring wider open scenes work in a different way in the latter part of the comic. Instead, the wide-open rooms and halls, with little detail and items, make you wonder how Bond will sneak around as he has so little to hide behind and use.
This new volume of James Bond is an interesting one. It’s a slow build that’s intriguing in a noir/crime sort of way. This isn’t over the top action and fancy gadgets. The first two issues are good but the pacing might mean waiting for the trade or binge-reading will enhance the enjoyment a bit. It’s a slow burn that’s more reminiscent of a crime/spy prose story than anything else. Fans of Bond that’s not about crazy sets and implausible will enjoy this one.
Story: Vita Ayala, Danny Lore Art: Eric Gapstur
Color: Roshan Kurichiyanil Letterer: Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou
Story: 7.5 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.5 Recommendation: Read
Dynamite Entertainment provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review