Who's your daddy? Is an odd question often used as a sexual reference. However it's also a question faced by a remarkable group of youngsters whose lives are about to be changed forever.
First a little background, espionage literature had long been dominated by one man, Ian Fleming and his most celebrated creation James Bond. It's from this work that we get to the Illegitimates. The parallels are so strong between the character of Bond and Jack Steele that the two could almost be interchangeable. I will try not reference 007 to much but it's going to be difficult as I love the Bond Books.
The opening of the first issue shows Steele in a number of vaguely familiar situations where the end results seems to be him in an embrace with a member of the opposite sex. In hindsight we now know these various entanglements resulted in unprotected sex. But if there ever was a reason to give someone a fake name and phone number being a spy is probably top of the list. Anyway fast forward to today and Steele is in a fight with a weaker albeit smarter adversary and their confrontation ends in one of the most gruesome single page images I've ever seen. The art team from pencils to ink and to colours should take a bow for the visceral nature of the image.
Enter our old friend panic as the military has lost their number one man. However a secret initiative called Sire is now being put into action. The focus of the plan is the illegitimate children of Jack Steele. These are a mixed bunch of characters and each gets a great introduction complete with a large picture of their respective mothers.
The initiative is a shock to all especially Miss Heatherpence the directors Secretary but more importantly this knowledge managed to leak out to Steele's enemy and that has the potential to throw the whole initiative into the fire.
This is a great take on an already established framework. I love the idea of consequences from the Spy genre. It always struck me that Bond's little swimmers must be on the blink as he never had children. With all those various women and being unprotected you would have expected him to have at least one child statistically shaking. I hope once the kids get together the story dues not fall into team bonding cliché but fir now the Illegitimates is looking like a great new spin in the Espionage genre.
The Comic is available in both print and digital from IDW. Follow this link for more details.