Recent magazine articles have mentioned that during the '60's, when James Bond movies ruled the box office and Bond merchandising lined the shelves, DC had an option to put out a James Bond comic book series -- and never exercised it.
But in fact, Bond was never as big an influence on '60's comics as was the TV spy show THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E. Nearly every comics company developed its own homage/ripoff of that show. The two best known examples are Marvel's NICK FURY, AGENT OF S.H.I.E.L.D. (which survives to this day, and resulted in both a David Hasselhoff Nick Fury TV pilot a few years ago and this year's appearance in the IRON MAN movie of Samuel L. Jackson as Fury); and Tower Comics' beautifully-illustrated T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents. This post from DIAL "B" FOR BLOG takes a look back at the latter feature.
The post includes a short autobiography by the Agents' principal artist, Wally Wood. Wood writes that his career ambition is to retire. That's poignant, because Wood never did retire; in 1981, at the age of 54, he killed himself.