Mike Szoke

I've been involved with the world of video games since I was able to sit in my dad's lap and watch him. Not long after that I started playing myself, and it's been a naturally growing passion ever since.

James Bond: Origin is an ongoing mini series published by Dynamite. As the name implies the story is a retelling of Bond’s origin as the world’s favorite fictional spy. The series is written by Jeff Parker and features art by Bob Q. The issue comes out January 16th, 2019.

Dynamite has released an array of mini series focusing on James Bond, most of which have been extraordinary. They’ve even released one shot stories expanding on side characters sich as M and Moneypenny. It’s clear that expanding on the 007 universe is an important task to them.

The Story So Far

We are five issues into this story and it still just feels like more build up. The main plot is really only now starting to unravel, which in general is kind of a bummer for a story. Five issues is just a little too long for an origin to reach its main point.

The story so far is about Bond’s time fighting the Nazis during World War II. He’s only seventeen at the time, so the gap between the Bond fans know and love, and the rookie that is young Bond is fairly large.

This issue focuses on Bond and the crew of Submariners having commandeered a German airplane, and their plans to unleash said plane on the enemy.

The Writing

The writing is just sort of average. It engages the reader and gets them through to the end of the issue. But it doesn’t do much more than that. There isn’t anything that lands particularly well. No humor or intense moments that help the reader feel what the characters are feeling.

It’s just average comic book dialogue that takes you from point A to point B. The writing is particularly disappointing when compared to Dynamite’s other Bond stories.

The story itself isn’t anything special either. It’s a boring World War II tale. Something I’ve never really considered existing before, as I’m deeply fond of that era for fiction. But this issue basically fumbles around. Even the most exciting moments fall flat due to the mediocre dialogue.

The Artwork

The issue features wonderful cover art by John Cassaday. It has multiple variants as well, all of which are stunning. The interiors on the other hand, can’t have the same said for them.

Unfortunately, the art is bad. It’s not horrible. More average than anything, and it gets the job done. It doesn’t necessarily detract from the experience but it fails to enhance it. The faces are a mess, there isn’t very much detail. The action is also kind of boring. And it just doesn’t possess the same kind of aesthetic that worked so well in previous Bond stories.

The best part of the pages comes from some usage of paneling that isn’t just your basic squares and rectangles all perfectly aligned. Even that is rather minor and rare for the issue itself. This still helped to elevate certain moments in the comic past the level of average that most other aspects either failed to reach, or barely met.

Final Thoughts

I wanted to like this issue. I loved the previous James Bond stories by Dynamite. But this issue is a large disappointment. Mediocre writing and art plagues and issue with a plot stretched too thin. It lacks all of the charm, quality, and uniqueness that has proven so successful in other Dynamite Bond stories. It instead survives on mediocrity. I would not suggest this issue to basically anyone but very seriously collectors. Not that it will ever go up in quality, but for those who like to have everything Bond. I would instead suggest you look into some of Dynamite’s other Bond series. Warren Ellis’ James Bond run in particular, was amazing.

THE GOOD
Gets The Job Done
Good cover art
Good cliff hanger
Okay paneling
THE BAD
Mediocre art
Mediocre writing
4.5
Poor

Review Summary

The issue is generally just mediocre. Most aspects are around or just below average. However, these aspects placed together, with nothing holding the issue up, really cause it to fall. Hard.

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