James Bond: Eidolon is James Bond at his best. It combines the brutality and realism of Daniel Craig with Sean Connery’s effortless charm and charisma. Ellis’s Bond rivals anything seen in the 24 (and counting!) movies. It will hook you from the set-up. Basically, Bond is trapped in L.A. with bodies piling up in both the U.S. and U.K. There are moles, double agents and awesome action sequences abound. There, are you hooked yet? Not quite? Okay, it’s written by Warren Ellis with art by Jason Masters. If the names Bond, Ellis, and Masters haven’t sold you, we might not be able to be friends.
James Bond has been entertaining audiences since the 1960’s, while managing to continually reinvent himself as the times changed. In James Bond: Eidolon, Ellis provides us with a modern-day Bond squaring off against an enemy that is grounded, combining real wit and strong female characterization. Make no mistake, Ellis is not trying to sell a character based off nostalgia, this iteration of Bond is engaging, fun and a worthy addition to both the Bond and action pantheons. While Warren Ellis comics are always worth the investment, so too is Eidolon. It combines more than enough action and intrigue to merit a purchase, combined with Ellis’ flair, this is a book that all can enjoy, and Vol. 1 VARGR, is not a pre-requisite for reading or enjoying this volume.
I’m impressed with the cover art that Dominic Reardon provides, it has all of the essential Bond elements with a heaping helping of white space to drive the eye to what matters. The covers especially stand out compared to the majority of the Big Two, Bond covers are elegant in their simplicity and help distinguish the comic on a rack.
Thankfully, the interior art is just as impressive, the colors are vibrant, the settings modern, and the action scenes are truly exhilarating. There is a sequence early on in the book when a foreign intelligence service is trying to grab an MI-6 agent and Bond jumps off a car and brutally attacks, then shoots the bad guy. The art stands out because it’s realistic, expertly drawn, and beautifully colored. Ellis smartly lets the art tell the story in multiple scenes, and the book becomes even more engrossing because of this decision. Masters nails the facial expressions to the big action scenes, warranting this title for your pull list.
The only quibble I have, and it is minor, is that Felix Leiter sticks out, and not in a good way. For a hardened CIA operative badass, he looks like a guy who would stand out in middle America, let alone a foreign country, which would negate his ability to accomplish the mission. Like I said, it’s a minor quibble over such a great book.
Ellis keeps the pacing of the story tight. There isn’t a lot of extraneous chatter, but the plot develops quickly and keeps you engaged as the revelations continue to drop. I also really like the villain, and was thankful that Ellis takes pride in developing characters and fleshing out motivations. I don’t want to spoil anything because this book is worthy of your attention, furthermore Dynamite is continuing to expand the Bond line with an ongoing Felix Leiter title and the next arc coming soon, so now is the time to jump on board.
I found myself reading the entire volume multiple times, as I couldn’t put it down. In the car (I wasn’t driving!), at night, and even at breakfast, I read and re-read this book to enjoy both the plot and the art. For me, the most compelling part is how realistic the dialogue is, it sucks you into Bond’s world and keeps you invested. As the Bond line continues to grow, I expect the characterization and plots to become progressively more intertwined, and there is no shortage of real world events for the creators to draw from and infuse into the modern series.
Buy this book. Seriously, buy this book. Fans of Bond will love James Bond: Eidolon, and those new to, or previously indifferent to Bond will be hooked. This volume is worthy on its own merits, but the writing and art are truly superb, and they are only going to get better. Let me know what you think below!
- Plenty of action, intrigue, and shots to the face
- Felix Leiter’s looks - I wouldn’t trust him with my sandwich, let alone national security