Saturday, November 12, 2016

James Bond: Hammerhead #2 Review

Eaten, Not Stirred

Writer: Andy Diggle
Artist: Luca Casalanguida and Chris Blythe
Cover Price:  $3.99
Release Date: November 9, 2016
Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment
Review by: Christian Faulds

Listen to Christian's podcast HERE

*Non Spoilers and Score at the Bottom*

So James Bond is something that nothing else has been able to match in modern culture. It started out as a successful book series by Ian Fleming and then had a misstep as a made for TV movie by CBS. However, the movie rights did find their way eventually to Albert Broccoli and Harry Saltzman’s hands. They filmed with a budget of $1.1 million dollars Dr. No starring Sean Connery. They made back 59.5 million and since then in 1962 we have had James Bond films, even well after his creator's death in 1964. I am a fan to say the least. Of the Bond films the most because Ian Fleming's novels while terse are not engaging to me. So I was honestly curious what way this comic series would go, would they be the terse fantasy that Fleming wrote or the more action packed and at times farcical movies that I have come to love. Well let us dive in and find out.

We start off on the first page and panel seeing James Bond going through his evening ritual. Showering, dressing, checking his party invite, checking his gun. You know, the normal things one does before they have dinner with a international munitions maker. Bond then check in to the party that is happening in Dubai. It is cool looking scene with a giant shark tank in the middle, the Blue Pearl Aquarium is a must see in Dubai. Bond meets with Victoria who he met last issue with the titular Hammerhead ICBM launcher. She suggests a drink before they go off to meet her dad. Bond of course takes her up on this and orders a complicated mix drink like he would in the Fleming books. Victoria also orders what he orders then comments that this is the first proper drink she has had in this country other than tea. Bond says a witty retort about tea not being a proper drink. They have the classic Bond Girl and Bond tit for tat and they get very close almost kiss when. BAM. Her father yells at bond to “Get your hand off my daughter.”

Lord Hunt of course did this for kicks. He then remarks on his daughters competence thus affirming that she is a strong, independent, badass woman and thus a match for Bond. Hunt says “she could sell and anvil to a drowning man” and Bond remarks that he suddenly has an urge to hurl himself into water. They all three start making their way through the aquarium and make some small talk about selling to Arabs and that Hunt knew Bonds father and then FTOOM! A shot nearly hits Hunt but luckily Bond grabbed him before it did. They go behind the marble bar for cover and then FTOOM! Hunt gets shot through the head. Everyone starts panicking and Victoria can’t believe what just happened and Bond uses his...Walther? 

To shoot the sniper who is up on the catwalk above.
He checks out the snipers rifle and finds out that it used APHEX rounds. Victoria makes the comment that they should get out of there and Bond says no. That is what they expect them to do. He gives her his Walther and he takes the rifle and they go through the aquarium. They go through the underwater tunnel that goes through the tank so you can see all the fish. 

This is when they get jumped from behind by a mook. He addresses Bond by name and then tells him his mission has failed and to give him the access code to the MI6 mainframe and he will let the girl live. So why didn’t the guy shoot them both while he was behind them and they didn’t know. That bothers me but it does happen alot in action movies so… Anyway Bond does not acquiesce to his request and shoots the glass.

They all get swallowed up in the water. Bond uses this as an opportunity to start beating the living shit out of the mook while underwater. Which this whole page the art and colors are really neat. Bond takes them both up to the air so he can interrogate the mook. He gives the whole cliche I talk and I’ll die Bond says “In that order”. Then suddenly Jaws comes out and Bond puts the mook in the shark's mouth who chows down. Bond interrogates him while he gets chowed down on and he gives up the name Charybdis and pleads for help and Bond lets him die remarking “Bon Appetit”. Victoria is out of the aquarium and she asks Bond as he approaches her if he killed the guy.

Bond says “He bit off more than he can chew.” He then facial scans the guy he sniped and gets info on him. He is a mercenary. Victoria says that they used her father's own weapons against him and asks if he’ll find who did this and kill him. “Yes” he replies. “Good I’m going to help” are her words. They then go on her private jet to Yemen to find the lead they have since the guys were mercenaries from Yemen. They fly away and Bond comforts her the way he is best at...fuckin’.

In the Atlantic there is a chopper transporting something. The pilots are talking about getting some drinks. Then SHRAAMMMMM they get shot down into the murky depths. A drone goes down soon after and retrieves what the helicopter was transporting. A Nuclear warhead. BUM BUM BUMMMMM!!!

Bits and Pieces:

This was a really enjoyable issue if you are a fan of James Bond. If you like the Fleming books it has what made those books popular, if you like the movies it has great action and some good wordplay. Basically, this comic is all the best parts of a Fleming book accompanied with visuals that only a comic can provide. The only problem I can really point to is the same problem every action movie has with stupid mooks. So if you like the Bond movies or the Fleming books, or both pick up this comic.


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