Wednesday, October 16, 2013

365 Comics...288: James Bond 007: The Man With The Golden Gun (2004)

I had thought all of the Titan collections of the Bond newspaper strips collected 3 stories each and hit around 110 strips apiece, but I guess they aren't so uniform, given that The Man WithThe Golden Gun runs 209 strips while the Living Daylights, the second of two stories in this collection,  is only around 80.

Golden Gun is not nearly as entertaining as the film, but what I find interesting about the strips is the continuity, how one Bond story carries into the next, how things that happened in earlier episodes carry forth.  The films are naturally more stand-alone in, and can't maintain the same sense of consistency.   Felix Leiter, for instance, reemerges in Golden Gun, with a hook hand and all after it got bitten off by a shark in Live and Let Die.  And Golden Gun kicks off with Bond having amnesia, believed dead after the events of You Only Live Twice.

The Living Daylights though is an utterly ridiculously executed story that finds Bond wallowing in self-pity over having to take out a communist sharp shooter who will be trying to take out their man as he crosses the Berlin Wall with valuable secrets.  As he's cooped up in a West Berlin hovel across from the extraction point over a three day period he begins to moon over a foxy blond cellist playing in an all-female orchestra that practices in the building the communist sharp shooter is to take aim from.  Obviously the blond is the Commie gunman, but this revelation takes Bond by surprise (did I mention he never even merts her?) and he hesitates on the shot to nearly catastrophic results.  Bond is so often a cad, I guess he's busy saving his chivalry for enemy women he's never met.

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