James Bond: Felix Leiter #1 –
Written by James Robison
Art by Aaron Campbell
Colors by Salvatore Aiala
Letters by Simon Bowland
Cover by Mike Perkins & Andy Taylor
Bond, not Bond. 007 has spent plenty of years in the spotlight, but his supporting cast was never really given the same treatment. At the same time, there are certain characters that Bond fans know, and one in particular that has been around since 1953. Dynamite brought back James Bond comics this past year, and now, we’re they’re giving us a story about one of his biggest American allies. So let’s head to Japan with Felix Leiter.
When this book starts we find out that things are very different for Felix. If you haven’t read the last James Bond comic, Vargr, I will try not to spoil that either but there are details I cannot avoid in order to talk about this book. Felix is trying to track down someone from his past that has wiped themselves completely off of the map. We do get a lot of details about their past and how they know each other. As a matter of fact, after a tense confrontation halfway through the book, we find out even more about that person. James Bond does appear in this book, but really just to let us know Felix’s current mindset. The end comes a bit out of nowhere and could completely change where the story is going. Like any good Bond story, however, it leaves you wondering if everything is somehow connected.
Felix Leiter has been around for a whole, and portrayed by many different actors on the screen. Even with that, I felt like it was a bit of a gamble to have a Bond book with so little Bond. As I kept reading, those fears were quickly put to rest. The setting that Robison creates here, and the internal monologue in the story from Felix, really leaves you invested in Felix by the end. There are so many characters that Ian Fleming created, and it looks like it’s about time that someone told a story that let them stand on their own. I also love how Campbell seemed to set the perfect scene to bring out whatever mood was needed at the time. There is also a beautiful page during a flashback scene that was very well done. Dynamite knows how to select the right creative teams to bring out the best in their classic character books, and this is no exception.
RATING: PULL / BUY