Connect with us
James Bond: Origin #11 Review

Comic Books

James Bond: Origin #11 Review

“You’re always playing two games.”

In this issue, we get to see James Bond learn another skill that will come to serve him well in the years to come. We get to see Bond learn to play cards, you guys.

Look, I know I’m exactly the right audience for this book. I’ve mentioned more than once in my reviews for James Bond: 007 that I’m a total sucker for a casino scene in a James Bond story, but I never expected to be just as excited by the origin of those scenes. While it’s expected that this story will follow Bond learning all kinds of spycraft and such, it never occurred to me what other kind of formative experiences we’d get to see the young secret agent go through.

Listen to the latest episode of our weekly comics podcast!

This was an issue that will be profoundly pleasing to fans of the character. It’s a clever twist to show the usually-capable Bond having to ask for a lesson in something, so it’s not as cloying as, say, “Where did Han Solo get his dumb dice that no one cares about?” It actually feels like important character development, not only for the man we know he’ll become, but also as an organic part of the story being told.

Bond learns that playing cards is just as much about reading your opponent as it is knowing the rules of the game, a lesson that will serve him well in the future. And yes, we do get a beautiful casino scene, which looks equal parts lavish and seedy. Using the different card suits as a plot point is also a clever move, one beautifully illustrated by Ibrahim Moustafa, who makes the act of turning over a single playing card look nearly as intimidating as someone pulling a gun on our young hero.

James Bond: Origin #11 Review
Dynamite Entertainment

However, the naivete of Bond is shown in other, more subtle ways, beyond him not knowing how to play rummy. At this age, he’s the kind of fellow who writes down a cheat sheet to make sure he doesn’t forget how to play a game. He’s cocky, but he’s not entirely confident in his ability to B.S. the enemy. He’s still very green, but it’s shown in ways that aren’t entirely obvious. He’s also much more forgiving and trusting than he would come to be, giving his old teammate the chance to do some good.

There’s a really strong read of Bond’s character and his desire to see things through, which I applaud Jeff Parker for including. It’s clear that the years will harden him, but there’s still some wide-eyed optimism present in James.

This was easily my favorite issue in a bit. It combined everything the series has been doing so well, simultaneously laying the building blocks for the man who will be 007 and providing us with plenty of action and humor.

James Bond: Origin #11 Review
James Bond: Origin #11
Is it good?
In what may be the series' best issue yet, Bond fans get to see the young spy learn a new talent that will prove crucial in his future adventures.
The character development for Bond continues to be impressive and feel organic within the story
The brief action scene is a rush, while the card games are somehow just as exciting

Join the AIPT Patreon

Want to take our relationship to the next level? Become a patron today to gain access to exclusive perks, such as:

  • ❌ Remove all ads on the website
  • 💬 Join our Discord community, where we chat about the latest news and releases from everything we cover on AIPT
  • 📗 Access to our monthly book club
  • 📦 Get a physical trade paperback shipped to you every month
  • 💥 And more!
Sign up today

In Case You Missed It

'A.X.E.: Judgment Day' #5 changes Krakoa, resurrection, and the future of the X-Men 'A.X.E.: Judgment Day' #5 changes Krakoa, resurrection, and the future of the X-Men

‘A.X.E.: Judgment Day’ #5 changes Krakoa, resurrection, and the future of the X-Men

Comic Books

EXCLUSIVE Marvel Preview: X-Men #15 EXCLUSIVE Marvel Preview: X-Men #15

EXCLUSIVE Marvel Preview: X-Men #15

Comic Books

New Mutants #30 New Mutants #30

‘New Mutants’ #30 is a charming love letter to the team

Comic Books

'A.X.E.: Judgment Day' #5 features a lot of heroes dying 'A.X.E.: Judgment Day' #5 features a lot of heroes dying

‘A.X.E.: Judgment Day’ #5 features a lot of heroes dying

Comic Books

Newsletter Signup