Lawrence collaborator, artist Yaroslav Horak continues to capture the dapper agent and his exotic world, though at times the slightly smaller size of the omnibus package (7-1/2 by 9-1/4 inches as opposed to the 9-1/2 by 11-1/ 2 trade size of your average Modesty Blaise collection) seems to lead to some line loss. The artist is particularly strong in his use of blacks and shadows, which adds to the strip’s overall tone of pulp seriousness. This is not your pop-colored James Bond (as we sometimes got in the movies) but a deadly serious secret agent man. If a few of Bond’s single-entendre quips fall flatter than they would in the flicks, that’s arguably truer to Fleming’s original creation.
Lawrence and Horak would continue to produce original Bond strips for the next six years: not as impressive a run as Peter O’Donnell’s “Modesty Blaise,” but still a testament to the character’s enduring appeal. Hard-core Fleming fans will most likely favor the first two omnibus sets, but I’m thinking many of ‘em will also count this snappy set as an enjoyable bit of Bondiana.