(w) Warren Ellis, (a) Jason Masters, (c) Guy Major, (l) Simon Bowland
This well-designed hardcover edition of James Bond collects the first twelve issues that Dynamite Entertainment published in 2015. The “VARGR” and “Eidolon” story arcs, written by longtime British comic writer Warren Ellis, kicked off Bond’s return to comics for the first time since 1996. A very talented creative team of Warren Ellis (Transmetropolitan, The Authority) and Jason Masters (Batman Incorporated, Guardians of the Galaxy) set the stage for the epic return of this iconic character.
Ellis’s writing offers everything that a Bond fan would hope for including powerful and eccentric villains, deadly gadgets created by Q, international intrigue, and one smooth British agent in 007. The story in this omnibus begins with James Bond finishing a vengeance mission in Helsinki and then returning home to take over the missions of a recently killed 00 agent. Missions that will take him near and far to destroy a mysterious international drug trafficking ring while putting him in the cross-hairs of more than one foreign intelligence agency and possibly one of his own. Strange things are happening behind the scenes. Will James be able to stop them and live to take on another mission?
The visual skill of artist, Jason Masters, and colorist, Guy Major, add to the impact of Ellis’s stories. Masters’ design of James Bond is top notch, capturing the feel of the character without trying to make him look like one of the actors who played 007 in the movies. He is just Bond, no baggage from making him look like Sean Connery or Daniel Craig. The multi-page layouts of wordless storytelling masterfully show the suspense of Bond quietly maneuvering through sites where he is greatly out numbered and out gunned. Colorist Guy Major’s use of dramatic color changes in the panels where damage is dealt adds clarity and drama to a spy’s world filled with barely dodged bullets and expertly blocked blows. The reader always knows when a decisive blow is struck. Add to that, the occasional x-ray view panel to show what Q’s deadly creations are doing to Bond’s enemies and the reader has a clear and creative view of the action and the destruction happening in this espionage thriller.
This omnibus also has two art galleries in the back of the book. The first shows a glimpse into the creative process of Jason Masters with a gallery of his concept sketches for several of the characters in the stories. The second gallery contains reprints of all the alternative covers done for these twelve issues including works by Francesco Francavilla, Jock, and Glenn Fabry. James Bond: The Complete Warren Ellis Omnibus would make a great addition to any Bond fans collection or for any comic fans collection for that matter. Enjoy.