James Bond postage stamps

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Proving once again the centrality of James Bond to contemporary British identity, the Royal Mail releases these stamps on January 8th, 2008, the 100th anniversary of Ian Fleming’s birth. If a sexist state assassin seems an awkward choice of cultural ambassador, Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neill present a more iconoclastic view of the super spy in the Black Dossier, the latest volume in their unfolding history of the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.

Good to see that the stamp designs above include the Pan paperback covers from 1963. (The other examples are the first editions from Jonathan Cape, the 2006 Penguin reprints and what appear to be a set of Seventies reissues.) A friend of mine at school had a collection of the Pan books and they remain my favourite Bond book designs, not least because they were some of the first book covers to strike me as being well-designed rather than well-illustrated. What the Flickr link doesn’t show is the die-cut holes in the Thunderball jacket which made the cover seem as though it was pierced by bullets, the kind of expensive production detail you rarely see on anything other than a bestseller.

And while we’re on the subject of Bond design, Daniel Kleinman’s superb Casino Royale title sequence is on YouTube.

Elsewhere on { feuilleton }
The book covers archive

Previously on { feuilleton }
Please Mr. Postman

4 thoughts on “James Bond postage stamps”

  1. The Black Dossier is an incredible piece of work although some of the more obscure references may be lost even on Brits. But that’s no problem, you don’t have to know where every character comes from.

    Nice to see the characters of Zenith and Engelbrecht in the book since Alan included them after he was sent the Savoy reprint editions I’d designed. Mike Moorcock has borrowed Zenith before now but this is the first time that Engelbrecht has appeared outside his own stories.

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