Synopsis: After a mission of vengeance in Helsinki, James Bond returns to London and assumes the workload of a fallen 00 Section agent. His new mission takes him to Berlin, presumably to break up an agile drug-trafficking operation. But Bond has no idea of the forces gathered in secret against him, the full scope of an operation that’s much scarier and more lethal than he could possibly imagine. Berlin is about to catch fire… and James Bond is trapped inside. Dynamite Entertainment proudly presents VARGR, the debut storyline in the all-new James Bond comic book series, as crafted by masterful writer Warren Ellis (Transmetropolitan, The Authority) and artist Jason Masters (Batman Incorporated, Guardians of the Galaxy).
Review: Dynamite have hired Warren Ellis and provided him with some TNT to tell an explosive story with ‘James Bond: Vargr’, which collects together the first six issues of the new ongoing James Bond comic book series.
Ellis with his reputation for being able to spin the greatest of war stories is an excellent choice to write James Bond, but this Bond is much more a relic of the cold war than the sanitised bond that we get in cinema.
This bond much like the early cinema outings smokes and drinks with the best of them. Yes you heard right. Bond lights up a few cigarettes throughout this story, but still manages to fend off the bad guys with out shortness of breath.
The action in Vargr is drawn by Jason Masters and its not pretty. Indeed the action is bloody, visceral and has an almost old school look to it that puts me in mind of some of the comics we were reading in the 70’s, but slightly better produced of course.
This for me is James Bond as it should be. Its a great compromise between the books and the films. I loved how Vargr tips its hat to ‘Dr. No’ and the book ‘Casino Royale’ in which Bond is being teased about his weapon’s size. His PP99 is referred to by one character as a prostitutes weapon. I’d always thought they used razor blades, but its shows you what little I know. The teasing could be lifted directly from the pages of the original novel, but in that story Bond carried an even smaller Beretta 418.
The story concerns Bond having to investigate a mad scientist who is creating great advancements in bionic limbs, but also contaminating street drugs with a deadly toxin.
The story is a brilliant intro to the world of Bond and Ellis doesn’t spare a moment for the reader to breath. The action is fast paced and the gadgets are fantastic, but understated. No invisible cars thankfully. But we do have bullets, which fragment to create eight exit wounds after they penetrate their targets.
The villains are also very classic old school bond. My favourite being the sexy assassin Dharma with the bionic forearms. She has two attempts at seeing off Bond.
Set in the present day. Vargr, brings us an old school brutal Bond in a modern day setting. And does so with great action and visceral artistic flare. I loved every page and have subscribed for more.