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Tag Archive: Permission to Die


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Felix Leiter. 

He’s James Bond’s American CIA counterpart, played onscreen by more actors than have played James Bond himself: Hawaii Five-O’s Jack Lord (Dr. No, 1962), Cec Linder (Goldfinger, 1964), Rik Van Nutter (Thunderball, 1965), Norman Burton (Diamonds Are Forever, 1971), David Hedison (Live and Let Die, 1973, and Licence to Kill, 1989), Bernie Casey (The Living Daylights, 1987), John Terry (Never Say Never Again, 1983), and most recently Jeffrey Wright (Casino Royale, 2006, and Quantum of Solace, 2008).  Leiter was a key player in six Ian Fleming novels–Casino Royale, Live and Let Die, Goldfinger, Thunderball, and The Man with the Golden Gun–where he drove a Studillac, which was a Studebaker with a Cadillac engine.

Leiter gets his first solo adventure ever this month in his own series, Felix Leiter, from Dynamite Comics.  James Robinson (Starman, Scarlet Witch) is writing the series with artwork by Aaron Campbell (The Shadow, Uncanny).  Issue #1 features a cover by Mike Perkins and Andy Taylor and an alternate cover by Gabriel Hardman and Jordan Boyd.  Leiter’s first appearance in comic books was in Mike Grell’s Permission to Die, reviewed here at borg.com.

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The new series finds Leiter in Japan, where he is pursuing Alena Davoff, a woman he has a close past with.  She happens to be a Russian agent.  He’s a detective since the loss of his hand and leg, but the CIA pulls him back into the mix with a Connery-esque Bond as Leiter pursues Davoff.

Check out a preview for Issue #1 of Felix Leiter, courtesy of Dynamite, after the cut.

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Prior to 1989 the only James Bond that ever made it to comic books were standard adaptations, like an early comic book version of Dr. No.  With the film Licence to Kill starring Timothy Dalton as Bond, writer/artist Mike Grell, known for his work on Green Arrow, Warlord and Jon Sable, was asked to create the adaptation.  Before entering the comics world in 1972, Grell had worked in the military as a member of the U.S. Air Force based on Asia.  According to stories he shared at a convention a few years ago, he served in several capacities, including intelligence work, which filtered throughout all his best comic book projects.  Each of his characters has a bit of James Bond in them.  So it’s not surprising that Eclipse Comics asked Grell to create a new Bond story in comic book form after his successful Licence to Kill adaptation.  Grell’s Permission to Die was the first James Bond graphic novel not adapted from one of Ian Fleming’s original Bond stories, and although Dark Horse would later license Bond for comic book stories, it is Grell’s that stands out as the truest to both the original novels and the films.

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