Review: 007: For King and Country #1 from Dynamite

Javier E. Trujillo reviews the first issue of Dynamite’s newest James Bond thriller, 007: For King and Country!

After the events of 007, James Bond is on the run from both Myrmidon and MI6! What has the former 003, Gwen Gann, gotten him into?

Writer: Phillip Kennedy Johnson

Artist: Giorgio Spalletta

Colour artist: Francesco Segala

Colour assistant: Agnese Pozza

Letters: Jeff Eckleberry

Main cover: Joseph Michael Linsner

Packager & Editor: Nate Cosby

Amazon UK |


003 absconds with an injured 007, all the while pursued by nondescript enemies. They make their getaway, but Bond slips into unconsciousness.

007 awakens to find a very-much alive 003, who had taken him to an old army mate who was a doctor. She explains how she faked her death and what has transpired whilst Bond was convalescing. Myrmidon has led a successful coup and is selling their services, privatizing war. In addition, they have leaked “evidence” that 003 and 007 have been double agents, prompting their government to order all other Double-Os to find and kill them.

Months later, Bond and Gann are living together, with Bond having grown a beard and become a frequent patron of a local pub called The Red Lion. A rather talkative man named Skip tries to make conversation, but an irritated Bond leaves, returning home with Gann to find an intruder.

Their uninvited guest is a former Myrmidon agent named Clark. She left the group yesterday when she discovered the nanotech Myrmidon uses has mutated, causing its soldiers to have psychotic breaks, seizures, and death. What’s worse, Fromm has developed a virus that carries nanotech that can disrupt the motor skills of the opposition. Clark believes Bond and Gann are the only two that can stop Myrmidon as they have people everywhere in all levels of government.

Their tête-à-tête gets interrupted by “Skip”, who starts shooting up the home. He’s actually the new 002 and he’s there to eliminate Bond!


Now that’s more like it!

With a high octane opening that recalls the transition from Casino Royale to Quantum of Solace, 007: For King and Country hits the ground running with a thrilling opening sequence! New series artist Giorgio Spalletta is a perfect match for the story, providing some sharp looking panels, imbued with a great sense of pace and energy.

When things quiet down, the mood is somber, reflected in the colouring by Segala. There is a dark orange glow to the sky outside, symbolizing how Bond’s whole world is burning. The transition to the story’s title felt very dramatic and Spalletta’s panel of Bond’s reflection as he looked out at MI6 HQ perfectly set the stage for what is to come in this series.

When we catch up to the former 007 months later, he has now grown a beard, making him somewhat resemble Sean Connery in The Great Train Robbery under Spalletta’s pencil. The ennui that hits Bond between missions has struck hard now that he is out of that life. Johnson completely relishes bringing that out in Bond, with the idyllic visuals a stark contrast to how he feels. Where the colour palette once suggested the world is on fire, now the backgrounds are painterly and serene, with no hint of the danger to come.

The plot that began in the last series, 007, is now coming to fruition, and it’s more horrifying than we were led to believe. Keeping things “a minute into the future”, Johnson wraps his threat up in nanotech and viruses, an invisible threat not just to the world’s security, but life itself. It’s been a while since the Bond comics have dealt with a potential catastrophe this big, but it all feels very grounded still at this stage of the story, rooted in Bond’s rather complicated relationship with Gann and his former lifestyle.

It comes to no surprise that “Skip” is more than he seems, being far more deadly than his annoying bar persona. Bond going rogue is a tired trope at this point in the zeitgeist, but Johnson makes it work for this tale, as 007 has now gone to ground for a significant period of time, cloaked in the ultimate failure of his last mission. Skip may not be the nigh-insurmountable threat that Rook was, but being a Double-O carries some weight and I look forward to the confrontation to come.

This issue is the much needed reform the James Bond series needed. Phillip Kennedy Johnson has already proven that he’s a great writer with 007, but now he has the slick visuals to match his story. Giorgio Spalletta makes for a perfect pairing, providing a dashing Bond, even when he has “let himself go”, and electrifying action. This is the Bond comic I have been waiting for-a gripping story and gorgeous art. Welcome back, Mr. Bond!

Buy online

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Javier E. Trujillo is a lifelong fan of all things 007. He can be reached on Twitter at @JaviTru.

The opinions expressed in the article are those of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of the website owner.

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