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  • BENJAMIN PERCY talks JAMES BOND #2, on sale in APRIL!

    BENJAMIN PERCY talks JAMES BOND #2, on sale in APRIL from Dynamite!

    BYRON BREWER: Two issues into James Bond in April, Benjamin, how does it feel to be adding to the literary legacy of 007?

    BENJAMIN PERCY: Especially when I think of that kid I used to be—sitting on the couch, goggle-eyed, watching The Spy Who Loved Me—or when I think of that college student, reading his way through the Fleming library—I can’t believe my luck. It’s a privilege and an absolute joy. My time at the keyboard doesn’t feel like work, but play.

    BB: As you just said, you grew up on Bond; it has been a highlight of your life. I know we are dealing with the Bond of Fleming’s novels in the comic, but in your writer’s mind if Black Box were about to hit the silver screen, who would be portraying the agent … maybe an old favorite (who doesn’t have one?) or perhaps a new actor on the scene?

    BP: If I were a casting agent, Tom Hardy would be at the top of my list. He’s got a pretty face and looks great in a suit, but he also comes across as a living weapon. He has the magnetism to steal all the attention in any movie he appears in—but…he’s also a bit of a kook and would have to tame his weirdness, control his eccentricities for the role.

    Clive Owen is another good fit. But really, there’s nobody cooler than Idris Elba out there. He’d be both a revolutionary pick and a perfect match for the role.

    BB: Kind of following the preceding question, writers always have voices in their heads (laughs) when doing franchise characters, or even reading. No matter how savage the Joker is portrayed, I always hear Cesar Romero from the 1960s Batman TV show. Who is your current Bond voice in Black Box.

    BP: I do a pretty mean Connery impression. Corner me at a con some time and I’ll quote Highlander, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Goldfinger. He’s the voice of Bond in my head, and I’ve read my scripts aloud while imitating him, I’ll admit.

    BB: Talk to us about Boothroyd (known as Q in the films). I love the lightheartedness he brings sometimes, but he is also a serious scientist and weapons developer. How do you see this classic Bond character?

    BP: Every story, like every song, needs balance. Peaks and valleys. Legato and staccato. Some light to offset the dark. Boothroyd is like a pressure valve. The light-hearted sparring between the two characters is a source of humor that balances out the tension. But there’s more to it than that. Bond has no family, no friends. Boothroyd is as close as it gets. The barbs that go back and forth between them are a front for a real fondness and loyalty that exists between them. Through his gadgetry and lectures, Boothroyd is ultimately doing everything he can to keep Bond alive.

    BB: Warren Ellis did some pretty cool things with Moneypenny. Will she be popping up in your Bond?

    BP: As long as Dynamite doesn’t kick me out the door, you bet. She’ll definitely play a major role.

    BB: In #2, Bond makes his way to Tokyo. You have been to Japan, I believe. What from your experiences there might make its way into this adventure?

    BP: When there, I felt happily lost in a maze, assaulted and mesmerized by the neon, the crowds, the clatter of pachinko parlors, the techno throb of karaoke bars. And there’s an interesting juxtaposition of the futuristic alongside the ancient. All of these elements will contribute to the aesthetic of the story. It’s a great playground for Rapha and Chris to draw and color.

    BB: Just a last word about the cover and variants of Bond #2: wow! Thoughts?

    BP: “Wow” covers it. I’m so damn impressed by the talent they’re bringing on to the project. I want to wallpaper my office with the art.