KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE Comic-Con Panel Recap: Samuel L. Jackson Plays Eccentric Villain to Colin Firth’s Super Spy in a Colorful Bond Riff

     July 25, 2014


The last time director Matthew Vaughn adapted a Mark Millar comic, he gave us Kick-Ass.  Now the two are back together for another interesting-looking comic adaptation by way of Kingsman: The Secret Service.  The pic is a twist on the spy genre, as Colin Firth plays a veteran agent of the secretive Kingsman who is tasked with training a young prospect, played by Taron Egerton.  20th Century Fox presented some incredibly promising footage from the film during its Hall H panel at San Diego Comic-Con this Friday, giving audiences a taste of Firth’s prowess as a deadly-yet-fancy super spy and Samuel L. Jackson’s delightfully eccentric supervillain.

Hit the jump to read my Kingsman: The Secret Service Comic-Con panel recap.

kingsman-the-secret-service-comic-con-panel-recapPanel Highlights

  • Firth said he plays Egerton’s mentor, but in reality it was the reverse, adding he learned an immense about working on this kind of film from Egerton.
  • Jackson said he’s always wanted to be in a Bond movie, which is why he jumped at the chance to sign on.
  • Firth said the film doesn’t have a debt only to Bond, citing The Avengers and all manifestations of the spy genre as influences.
  • Unfortunately the Q&A was cut extremely short due to time overruns, so not much else was gleaned.


Vaughn was unable to make it to Comic-Con for the panel, but he prefaced the first clip by sending in a video introduction in which he was accompanied by Mark Hamill.  The clip was a scene from the opening of the film, in which Hamill plays a professor being held captive in what looked to be the Alps.  An action scene ensues with a very high body count and an assassin with razor sharp blades for prosthetic legs, after which we were introduced to Samuel L. Jackson’s villain character.  The guy is colorful to say the least.  Before he entered, his henchman had to cover up all of the bodies because he abhors the sight of blood.  Oh, and he speaks with a heavily affected lisp.

kingsman-the-secret-service-comic-con-panel-recap-samuel-l-jacksonThe next clip we saw was a scene between Firth and Egerton’s characters in a bar that showcased just how much action we’ll be seeing Firth getting into.  The answer: a lot.  Firth takes on a group of thugs that are taunting Egerton, and the scene was absolutely thrilling.  Vaughn staged the action with a strong visceral edge, using speed ramp-ups and strong sound effects to make the audience feel each and every blow.  Moreover, Firth’s fashionable umbrella doubles as a multi-tool weapon with which much damage is dealt, and his impeccably dressed character almost seemed like he had resorted to violence because he found the thugs to be rude.  He’s a spy, but he’s a fancy spy.

Finally we were shown a new trailer, though it was in a rough form so I’m unsure how soon it’ll be going online.  It opened with Firth and Jackson’s characters openly discussing Bond movies, with Firth noting that he always fancied the villains himself.

The Secret Service looks to be so much more than just a Bond riff, though.  It’s a sort of spy film, but it’s Vaughn’s spy film.  There’s a colorfulness to the tone, even though the violence is extremely graphic (someone got literally cut in half in the first scene).  In a moviegoing climate crowded with gritty, self-serious, or just plain dumb action, I really think The Secret Service is gonna be something special.  It’s big and fun, but it’s stylish and unique at the same time.  This one’s high on my most anticipated list.


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