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James Bond: Hammerhead #1: Freud's Field Day

Written by Writrzblok on Monday, October 17 2016 and posted in Reviews

James Bond: Hammerhead #1: Freud's Field Day

So THIS is what the giant would be packing if Jack had entered his house in modern times.

Source: Dynamite Comics

Written by Andy Diggle

Art by Luca Casalanguida

Colors by Chris Blythe

Letters by Simon Bowland

In Caracas, Venezuela, James Bond tracks down intel stolen by computer hacker Saxson under orders of the mysterious Kraken. After coming upon a metaphorical and literal dead end, Bond is reassigned by M to "acquire intelligence" at the Dubai Arms Fair, to which Bond rephrases as "babysitting." Despite his misgivings, Bond arrives in Dubai and meets Victoria Hunt, daughter of Lord Hunt, CEO of Hunt Engineering. Little does Bond suspect, a third party has arrived and has a vested interest in removing him from the playing field for good.

James Bond is back and at it again, everyone. Kicking ass and taking names; or in this case, trying to take names as he searches for Kraken, yet another super-advanced Bond villain with a tentacle fetish and high-reaching, seeming omniscient abilities. It's a common trope for Bond, but one that seems tread-upon pretty firmly by previous tales. Anyone looking for variation or deviation from the usual fare might find this to be little more than set up for the same old song and dance. It's a good song with a nice beat, but one we've heard before.

Never let it be said that Bond stories, especially nowadays, were big on subtlety. The plot, by writer Andy Diggle, focuses on Bond's search for the elusive "Kraken;" a "radical anti-capitalist", according to the exposition half of the issue provided by M. From there, 007 gazes upon the gorgeous Victoria Hunt, daughter of Lord Hunt, whom Bond is sent to "acquire intelligence" on. Bond's near disdain for the, as he calls, "babysitting" job notwithstanding, he takes it, and everything else with the usual distance and/or aplomb.

If the first half seemed somewhat interchangeable with the words "British agent" and "007" taken out, then look no further than the eponymous "Hammerhead" railgun on display near the end of the issue. It couldn't have looked more like a gigantic Glock 9mm spot welded to the hood of a tank if it was pilfered from Galactus' personal firing range. While its firepower was not showcased in earnest, the design, rendered impressively by artist Luca Casalanguida slaps on the Camp stamp and it's something of a saving grace in an otherwise lackluster issue.

Speaking more on Casalanguida's art, it's nice that he captured the look of the Bond from the books rather than a rendition of one of the movie likenesses: black hair, scar on the face, slim build. Although there are some panels where it almost looks like Sterling Archer. Considering what Archer is a spoof of, it's not difficult to make the connection in a couple of panels. However, for the most part, the tone of the artwork is serious enough to where it's gone almost instantly.

If you're a fan of Bond, this introductory issue may seem right up your alley and I can recommend it easily enough. It's well within its wheelhouse and I don't see much variation or deviation from the standard. But then again, if it isn't broke, don't fix it.


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About the Author - Writrzblok

Jeff Gwinnup/Writrzblok is a comic book-loving, movie-watching, mac-and-cheese devouring Florida-born nerd who would like to write for a living one day. That is, if the inanities and stress of modern living don't kill him first. He's been reviewing/critiquing in either print or video form for almost seven years and shows no signs of stop- Wait, why is he writing in the third person? Who's typing this? WHO IS THIS?! GET AWAY FROM THAT KEYBOARD!
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