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As deadly as she is lovely, Modesty Blaise, the cult creation of best-selling author Peter O'Donnell, returns in this latest volume of classic comics from Titan In this edition, Modesty stars in the final three intrigue-filled adventures to be illustrated by Jim Holdaway: The Hell Makers, Take Over and The War-Lords of Phoenix Featuring an introduction by Max Allan Collins As deadly as she is lovely, Modesty Blaise, the cult creation of best-selling author Peter O'Donnell, returns in this latest volume of classic comics from Titan In this edition, Modesty stars in the final three intrigue-filled adventures to be illustrated by Jim Holdaway: The Hell Makers, Take Over and The War-Lords of Phoenix Featuring an introduction by Max Allan Collins (Road to Perdition, CSI graphic novels), along with an article by Modesty creator Peter O'Donnell and an exclusive, in-depth interview with O'Donnell, this latest addition to Titan's Modesty Blaise library is not to be missed


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As deadly as she is lovely, Modesty Blaise, the cult creation of best-selling author Peter O'Donnell, returns in this latest volume of classic comics from Titan In this edition, Modesty stars in the final three intrigue-filled adventures to be illustrated by Jim Holdaway: The Hell Makers, Take Over and The War-Lords of Phoenix Featuring an introduction by Max Allan Collins As deadly as she is lovely, Modesty Blaise, the cult creation of best-selling author Peter O'Donnell, returns in this latest volume of classic comics from Titan In this edition, Modesty stars in the final three intrigue-filled adventures to be illustrated by Jim Holdaway: The Hell Makers, Take Over and The War-Lords of Phoenix Featuring an introduction by Max Allan Collins (Road to Perdition, CSI graphic novels), along with an article by Modesty creator Peter O'Donnell and an exclusive, in-depth interview with O'Donnell, this latest addition to Titan's Modesty Blaise library is not to be missed

30 review for The Hell-Makers

  1. 5 out of 5

    Mervi

    A reprint of the Modesty Blaise comic strips 16, 17, and 18. This collection ends Holdaway’s MB comics. He died suddenly in the middle of drawing “the War-Lords of Phoenix” and Romero was selected to take over. Romero has a distinctive style and he makes Modesty even sexier than Holdaway. “The Hell Makers” starts with Willie kidnapped by a shadowy organization. They want to use him to put leverage on Modesty. This is a wonderful tale which (again) showcases the absolute faith that Modesty and Will A reprint of the Modesty Blaise comic strips 16, 17, and 18. This collection ends Holdaway’s MB comics. He died suddenly in the middle of drawing “the War-Lords of Phoenix” and Romero was selected to take over. Romero has a distinctive style and he makes Modesty even sexier than Holdaway. “The Hell Makers” starts with Willie kidnapped by a shadowy organization. They want to use him to put leverage on Modesty. This is a wonderful tale which (again) showcases the absolute faith that Modesty and Willie have on each other. It also includes one of the more eccentric, and entertaining, side characters ever on this comic. In “Take Over” Italian mafia tries to take over the British underworld. The strip starts with mafia’s men training a group of British thugs to rob a bank properly. Then inspector Brooke asks Modesty to look into several robberies which have been done very precisely. Modesty declines, stating that she isn’t Batman, on a crusade against crime. But later, when Modesty is in a bank, that bank is robbed by just such a crew. They kill the security guard who Modesty knows. Now, she and Willie make it their business to find out who is behind it and stop them. The short discussion between Brooke and Modesty makes it very clear who she is. Every adventure affects Modesty personally somehow. Even though MB strips are often marketed as “spy adventure” Modesty doesn’t work for any country. She gets involved when bad things happen to to people she cares about or some people from her past threaten her or people close to her. “The War-Lords of Phoenix” begins with Willie and Modesty in Japan, working out with a seventy-year old master of all martial arts, Kazumi. They talk about Kazumi’s granddaughter who is about to get married. On their way to the hotel, Willie, Modesty, and Kazumi see a woman get stabbed. She’s Kazumi’s granddaughter and the man who stabbed her is her fiancee! Of course, Modesty and Willie investigate. This is another great collection with O’Donnell at the top of his craft.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Bob Garrett

    The year 1970 proved an important one for the British comic strip MODESTY BLAISE. It was the year that Jim Holdaway, the series' original artist and co-creator, met an untimely death in his early 40's. His successor would have big shoes to fill...and would have to fill them quickly, as Holdaway left his final MODESTY story unfinished. I'll say more about that artistic succession, but first, let's talk about Holdaway. The vast majority of this volume's art is by him, as it includes his final three The year 1970 proved an important one for the British comic strip MODESTY BLAISE. It was the year that Jim Holdaway, the series' original artist and co-creator, met an untimely death in his early 40's. His successor would have big shoes to fill...and would have to fill them quickly, as Holdaway left his final MODESTY story unfinished. I'll say more about that artistic succession, but first, let's talk about Holdaway. The vast majority of this volume's art is by him, as it includes his final three - or, rather two and a half - MODESTY BLAISE stories, originally published in 1969-1970. I've praised Holdaway's work in my reviews of other MODESTY volumes, and his work here is as good or better as in any of them. American mystery writer Max Allan Collins, who provides the introduction, points to Holdaway's fluid line work, design sense (Collins notes that Holdaway particularly excelled at spotting blacks.) and panel-to-panel continuity. Personally, I've always especially enjoyed Holdaway's skill at facial expressions and how his characters have so much...well, character. He tends to use a number of close ups that especially bear this out (I swear that I can feel Modesty and Willie sweating during some tense moments) but not so many as to ever slow down the story being told. Who did ultimately feel those big shoes? A number of artists worked on MODESTY after Holdaway's death, but his immediate successor, Enric Badia Romero, drew more MODESTY BLAISE stories than anyone. Those reading Titans' MODESTY BLAISE volumes in chronological order will first meet him here, finishing Holdaway's last story. As a bonus, an essay by writer Peter O'Donnell provides context, describing the fallout from Holdaway's death and how Romero, a Spanish artist who then spoke no English, was selected to succeed him. As Max Allan Collins notes in the aforementioned introduction, all of Holdaway's successors are "chiefly guilty of not being Holdaway," but Romero is a good artist, and I enjoy his work, as well. Compared to Holdaway, I'd say that he perhaps utilizes a cleaner, sharper line and a somewhat more realistic style. It's not quite what Holdaway did, but it's still pleasing to the eye, and it's worth noting, I think, that Romero's Modesty is quite sexy. I've said enough about the art. Writer Peter O'Donnell was, of course, a constant throughout the series' run, and he delivers three more enjoyable tales here. I'm hesitant to provide detail on the plots, as I don't want to drop any spoilers, and as usual, O'Donnell serves up a number of twists - some of which many readers will see coming and some that might be more surprising. Throughout it all, O'Donnell manages to keep the formulaic tales feeling just fresh enough. He also clearly has affection for his characters and gives thought to their personalities and motivations. He does sometimes write moments that strain credibility but he always entertains, nonetheless. I've never been disappointed in his work, and I enjoyed it here, as well. In this collection, he provides a one-page introduction to each tale, and while these introductions are brief, I feel that they nonetheless enhanced my reading experience. Ultimately, then, MODESTY BLAISE: THE HELL-MAKERS proves yet another stellar offering by Peter O'Donnell and his artistic collaborators. That the collection includes the artistic transition from Holdaway to Romero makes it more historically significant than most MODESTY BLAISE volumes and worthy of attention. In short, then - this is a "good 'un."

  3. 4 out of 5

    Charles

    The lead story of this collection (“The Hell Makers”) reveals the power of the relationship between Modesty Blaise and her partner Willie Garvin. It is one of the best stories about this team of principled and extremely talented fighters. When Willie is kidnapped and heavily drugged to the point where he will quickly go insane, it is up to Modesty to risk her life to rescue him. There is no hesitation in her making the attempt, even though he is being held on a plateau that is supposedly access The lead story of this collection (“The Hell Makers”) reveals the power of the relationship between Modesty Blaise and her partner Willie Garvin. It is one of the best stories about this team of principled and extremely talented fighters. When Willie is kidnapped and heavily drugged to the point where he will quickly go insane, it is up to Modesty to risk her life to rescue him. There is no hesitation in her making the attempt, even though he is being held on a plateau that is supposedly accessible only by helicopter. Given her incredible resourcefulness, Modesty finds a way to ascend up the sides that have been polished like glass and with the assistance of an old-timer named Gus is able to quickly dispatch the people holding Willie. Her challenge then becomes finding a way to bring Willie out of his madness and the only thing that she can think of is to put her life in danger so that only Willie’s skill and return to sanity can save her. The second story is “Take-Over” and in it the American Mafia is attempting to take control of organized crime in Britain. They are ruthless and efficient and initially make great progress. When a string of brilliantly planned and executed robberies take place, Modesty is informed and asked to help. She declines, yet when her and Willie stop at a bank for a routine transaction, there is a robbery where the guard is killed in front of Modesty. Willie manages to take out all four of the robbers and this brings them into the battle against the take-over. Of course, even the professional mafia goons are no match for the skills of Willie and Modesty. The third story is “Warlords of Phoenix” and begins with Willie and Modesty in Japan working out with a master of the arts of unarmed combat. When the master’s granddaughter is stabbed by her fiancé, Willie and Modesty get involved in a battle with a criminal organization called “Phoenix.” Once again, the members of Phoenix consider themselves superior and attempt to conscript Modesty and Willie into the organization, where failure leads to death. It is no surprise that it turns out that the directors of Phoenix are simply not as powerful as they think and are no match for Modesty and Willie. In many ways this story is a bit silly and it lacks the power of other stories involving the two reluctant heroes. While the first story is one of the best, the second and third are just average or below, as their opponents lack the imagination and originality of so many of the foes that Modesty and Willie have faced.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Erin

    Modesty Blaise & Willie Garvin are still amazing, but Romero's illustrations just aren't as good as the Holdaway originals. Modesty Blaise & Willie Garvin are still amazing, but Romero's illustrations just aren't as good as the Holdaway originals.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Radclyffe U-Haul

    Modesty and Willie are like Mulder and Scully but more so.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Dave

    In The Hell Makers, Willie is kidnapped and goes kinda psycho as an attempt to bribe/recruit Modesty, and Modesty surprised by destroying the messenger off the bat. Fantastic strategy stuff, a thrilling Montana setting, a great offsider (with eagles!) and a resonant twist ending make this a MB highlight. Take Over refers to the mafia’s attempt to take over the dodgy London gangs, and with quite a clever twist. And The War-Lords of Phoenix is a 007dish story where our duo wind up in a ninja-like In The Hell Makers, Willie is kidnapped and goes kinda psycho as an attempt to bribe/recruit Modesty, and Modesty surprised by destroying the messenger off the bat. Fantastic strategy stuff, a thrilling Montana setting, a great offsider (with eagles!) and a resonant twist ending make this a MB highlight. Take Over refers to the mafia’s attempt to take over the dodgy London gangs, and with quite a clever twist. And The War-Lords of Phoenix is a 007dish story where our duo wind up in a ninja-like training facility, feigning co-operation with the megalomaniacal supervillains until they can escape. The is also the volume were Holdaway (awesome) became Romero (better). For my money, a great move. 10/10

  7. 4 out of 5

    K T

    Picked this up randomly from the library and loved it. Action hero girl! Really good inking! Hijinks and capers! Would be better of course if there were more action and Modesty were more badass, but with the nature of the strip as a 3-panel serial I can understand why it's mostly set-up and explanation. Lots of fanservice: pointy bras and hot springs visits. A good sense of fun. I was really surprised to when I looked Modesty Blaise up on wikipedia and discovered her relationship with her partner Picked this up randomly from the library and loved it. Action hero girl! Really good inking! Hijinks and capers! Would be better of course if there were more action and Modesty were more badass, but with the nature of the strip as a 3-panel serial I can understand why it's mostly set-up and explanation. Lots of fanservice: pointy bras and hot springs visits. A good sense of fun. I was really surprised to when I looked Modesty Blaise up on wikipedia and discovered her relationship with her partner is platonic. I had thought they just had some kinda progressive open relationship.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    One of the best so far!

  9. 5 out of 5

    John Arden

  10. 4 out of 5

    Linda

  11. 4 out of 5

    Jon Hansen

  12. 5 out of 5

    I.D. Roberts

  13. 4 out of 5

    Stacey Douglas

  14. 5 out of 5

    Alerte

  15. 5 out of 5

    Mike Burchette

  16. 5 out of 5

    Andreas Hansson

  17. 4 out of 5

    David

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jeremy Spaulding

  19. 5 out of 5

    Tina

  20. 4 out of 5

    David Kinnaird

  21. 5 out of 5

    Robin Gebhardt

  22. 5 out of 5

    Supriyo

  23. 4 out of 5

    Berilia

  24. 4 out of 5

    Jeannette

  25. 5 out of 5

    Alexander Shearer

  26. 5 out of 5

    Karl Hickey

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kathleen

  28. 5 out of 5

    Tom Meade

  29. 5 out of 5

    Max Worrall

  30. 4 out of 5

    Neil Campbell

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