Synopsis: Bond is in over his head. What started as a “punishment” assignment has expanded into a world of international crime that Bond can’t wrap his mind around. Will 007 accept that the mission is too big for one spy, and seek assistance…or will pride be his downfall?
Review: The story arc wraps up with a bang and some brilliant action.
This issue gets underway with a brief flashback, which explains how Brandy Keys first met ‘M’, who managed to find her a more legal way to use her skills.
Back in the present James Bond and Miss Keys are in big trouble. While Brandy tries to retrieve a painting Bond is dishing out some fisticuffs to one of the bad guy’s thugs, but he is on the losing end. Miss Keys’s friend and accomplice has the task of creating a distraction, but it’s a distraction that is not good for the painting, which Miss Keys is trying to recover. What follows is a brutal series of fights as Bond and Keys with a little help manage to get out safe and accomplish their mission.
Eric Gapster gets to have a lot of fun this issue as Bond and Brandy Keys are forced to work together and take on a hulking great big oaf of a man in order just to getaway. The action is illustrated brilliantly as Bond and Brandy sort of tag team the guy into submission while in a very poshly adorned side room. It’s all frantic action in this issue with barely time for our heroes to breathe. And it is all drawn with a visceral glee by the artist.
This was a fairly good conclusion to the current story arc, but also an origin story of sorts for the partnership of James Bond and Brandy Keys, which is going to continue into the next story arc. As a long term Bond fan. I’m not entirely sure how I feel about his being partnered up for the long term, but I do like the partnership that has formed here in that Brandy seems very much like James Bond in that she is a rule-breaker, but unlike Bond, she is across all the details. Whereas Bond is always off the cuff in that he improvises a lot more than he plans. All I ask of the writers is this, please don’t have Bond and Brandy fall in love’. It never ends well when Bond falls in love.