This is it, Bond fans! The culmination of Greg Pak’s epic Oddjob and Goldfinger storyline is finally here!
First of all, the opening of this issue is one fist pump moment after another, with James and his crew showing just how stubborn they all can be. In particular, Moneypenny’s characterization continues to be a high point of this run, with her sticking her neck out for Bond in more ways than one.
Meanwhile, the main plot of this issue offered a very interesting flip on Goldfinger’s plans from the original book and film. It’s still somewhat odd that another competing organization has been introduced so late in the arc, but it mostly pays off in satisfying ways here. It’s just that Goldfinger is significantly more interesting as an antagonist. Luckily, he’s still involved in this issue in a big way, and he’s easily more calculating and bloodthirsty than any incarnation of the character we’ve seen before.
The action sequence that dominates the middle of the issue feels like a classic set piece from the film series, particularly in the Sean Connery entries. There’s guys on gliders, Oddjob pulling off some wild ninja moves, and headshots a-plenty. It’s a hectic sequence, but Robert Carey’s artwork ensures that readers will never get lost in the movement. When I realized exactly what Bond and Lee had planned, I literally laughed out loud. It’s that satisfying of an action sequence, with so much being told to the reader without dialogue.
That being said, the wrap-up after that feels almost too tidy, like we’re missing a bit of how Bond gets where he’s going. Without spoiling anything, it certainly feels like there’s a solid issue or two of Bond tracking down a particular character that we don’t get to see. Then again, we’re almost used to James pulling off the impossible at this point. It’s nice to see him not struggle quite so much after all that he’s been through in this miniseries.
There are also a few moments of odd facial expressions from the characters, particularly from someone in the shower toward the end of the issue. It looks almost like they’re not looking at anything in particular, but are slack-faced. These moments are very few, but they stand out when compared to the lovely body language, determined grins, and sly winks from our characters glimpsed throughout the rest of the issue.
For the most part, however, this was a satisfying issue. The action was a lot of fun and our heroes got to do what they do best: disregard authority and save the day in style. It has me very much looking forward to whatever is next for James Bond.