• James Bond: Hammerhead #5

    James Bond: Hammerhead #5
    Released by: Dynamite Entertainment
    Released on: February 15th,2017.
    Written by: Andy Diggle
    Illustrated by: Luca Casalanguida
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    Moneypenny has her firearm pointed at the back of M’s head. If Victoria Hunt’s armed goons, currently surrounding her, don’t put down their machine guns, she’ll kill him. Hunt doesn’t need M, however. She’s already been ‘handed the keys to the country’ with the contract she just won. Moneypenny turns around to shoot her but she’s not fast enough, one of Hunt’s men takes her down. The Minister Of Defense chimes up to try and put a stop to this and gets a bullet to the brain for his efforts.

    Hunt tells M she’s going to be making some changes at the top and that she’s going to use him to cover this up. Since Britain no longer has control of its nuclear arsenal, she’ll whip London off the map and let KRAKEN take the blame. She’s going to ‘make Britain great again.’ A nuclear terrorist attack in London should be just what they need to convince their allies to go along with them.

    Meanwhile, Bond is alive and well even if nobody realizes it. Karim has flown him to where he needs to go and despite the risk involved in jumping from a low altitude, before you know it Bond is out of the plane with his chute billowing behind him. The men on the submarine, currently on the ocean’s surface, that he’s intending to land on don’t give him much of a welcome – guns drawn, itchy trigger fingers and all of that – until they recognize him. He basically hand delivers this British ship the missing nuclear code. The Captain fills Bond in on what the British military plans to do, but Bond knows Hunt will be expecting them. Given that she has hostages, stealth is the only option.

    Given that much of the fleet was overhauled by Hunt’s company, she’s able to override the H.M.S. Vengeance and initiate the nuclear launch system that this submarine contains. This happens just as Bond is about to get into a dingy to make his move. As the warhead launches towards London, Bond and a few others get into their boats and make an escape – while Hunt decides to do away with the evidence, meaning have the Vengeance blown out of the water. Bond’s got about thirty minutes to fix this, or London will be but a memory.

    The Hammerhead storyline started picking up the pace nicely in the third issue but here? The brakes are off. This issue has a lot of action in it but so too does it make clear Hunt’s intentions. Bond is often played for a fool but women have always been a weakness of his, and Victoria got him hook, line and sinker. She used him. And now that he knows that, well, it might be too late. While it seems unlikely that Diggle would actually let London get nuked in this comic, you never know. Either way, by the time we get to the last page of this issue, things do not look good for 007. Of course, he’s not going to let anything stop him – but how he’ll actually manage to pull this off, well, that definitely remains to be seen.

    Luca Casalanguida suits this series really nicely. It’s not particularly realistic but it is definitely atmospheric and there’s a really nicely defined sense of style to the look of this book. The action sequences – and there are a few really intense ones in this issue – have some solid impact to them and the whole book just flows nicely. A tip of the hat to Chris Blythe’s coloring work on this series as well, as it complements the thick line work that Casalanguida employs really nicely.

    Add another kick ass cover from Francesco Francavilla into this mix and this issue turns out to be another winner in Dynamite’s Bond series.