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James Bond #11 Review

4 min read

james-bond-issue-11-coverThat poor Bentley!

Creative Staff:
Story: Warren Ellis
Art: Jason Masters
Colors: Guy Major
Letters: Simon Bowland

What They Say:
EIDOLON, CHAPTER 5: Eidolon have M and Moneypenny, in a remote safehouse, with no hope of backup, no aid on the way, and no sign of James Bond. Fear and paranoia and the collapse of governmental structure are in sight. Britain is going back to the Dark Ages and SPECTRE, finally, have won.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
As we near the end of the arc, and the series, the EIDOLON story picks up even more. We’ve had some good stuff happening in this arc and Ellis and Masters have been hitting it pretty good after the first arc didn’t quite capture the feeling I had hoped for. As we’ve seen before, Ellis knows when to get out of the way and let the visual storytelling take over and that’s a big part of this issue with the action that unfolds. I’ve praised Masters’ work before when it comes to the tension and gun fights, but this time around he gets to do a chase sequence with cars and that’s hard to do well in comics. Yet he once again just makes it look easy with the pacing and flow of it.

With the reveals that we had the last time around and the tension regarding it as the truth about MI5 came to light, watching the way it unfolds from here is pretty good. M and Birdwhistle certainly have the unwelcome front seat position for it but I love how it turns even worse with the arrival of Hawkwood and his goons to up the ante. It’s a proper standoff in the residence that’s made even worse when Eve and then Bond show up at different times. Ellis presents this with a couple of different time placement approaches to showing how it all goes down, some with Bond and Eve talking about working together, seeing Eve making her move to deal with the rent goons on the outside, and also clueing us into how it was all setup with the time in the car and the way Eve was sorta kinda hidden. It’s solid sequence of events but it’s a bit disorienting at first with how it plays out until you can connect it all.

The big part of the book that runs from there is an interesting one as we get Hawkwood, now the sole/main remaining member of EIDOLON with how he presents himself, making a run for it so that he can launch the bigger master plan. That’s a fun tease at the end but what we get before that is the aforementioned car chase. There’s not a lot of dialogue here outside of Hawkwood setting things up but it plays well with the chase as Bond grabs the Bentley and works to stop him. There’s not much in the way of plot as one would expect from a car chase but Masters simply sells it beautifully with what it does here in the flow it, some of the panel placement, and the fun little quirks such as showing the town sign twice with the second one starting to get riddled with bullets. The use of flow to showcase the movement is generally easier when it comes to superheroes flying around but Masters excels at vehicles and action sequences with this series and this installment is no exception.

In Summary:
With the next chapter bringing things to a close for the arc and this series, James Bond has definitely found its groove. There’s been a lot to like with what Ellis and Masters have done with this arc, especially in comparison to the first one, but I do wish they had taken a different structural design on the property so that the arcs were shorter and we had one-off issues that would delve into other areas of character, country, MI5, and so forth so that we had a more fully realized world and cast of characters. Still, the penultimate installment of this arc is strong and I imagine it’ll read wonderfully in a marathon setting.

Grade: B+

Age Rating: 13+
Released By: Dynamite Entertainment
Release Date: November 9th, 2016
MSRP: $3.99

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