James Bond, Out of Time

Fifty years in, the spy is ever less relevant — and still beloved. Why?

But despite the years washing over him and rubbing the edges off like a beach-lodged plate of brass, we continue in our adoration of Bond even though he shills for luxury cars, expensive watches and that goddamn beer. We adore him as a self-controlled, classy lone wolf trying to save a chaotic world from itself. His sacrifices and thankless derring-do prevent him from having a real life and real relationships, and we admire that. He is still, despite sociopolitical and cultural changes, an exorbitant ideal — our hero.

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My hero?  C'mon... Bond is not a hero figure.  The character is a brash playboy-come-killer-cop.  The movie series is an out-dated fantasy.  I made mistake of wasting time and money on this last edition and was struck by how irrelevant everything in the movie was.  We need more reality about the real criminals in our modern world.


When did the Observer merge with Belo?


I couldn't agree more, Rob M.  The ongoing fictional and real-life sagas of how the forces of light and darkness battle will always be intriguing.  The various styles of wrting, along with the technical innovations, and high-profile stunt choreography continue to entertain.

I'm a huge fan of this film genre.


I respectfully disagree.


The American anti-establishment James Bond is Jason Bourne.  Bourne is a whistleblower and a crusader against neoconservatives and extravagant projects in the name of national security.  The Bourne franchise tried to reinvent itself with a new lead, but the series will eventually die out, just like many anti-establishment movements.  That doesn't mean that none of its objectives were met, it just means there was a lot of fad involved with the substantive elements.  


Bond represents the establishment.  The establishment doesn't die.  It repackages itself.  It rebrands itself.  Sometimes it hides in the background for a while, but it never goes away.  Bond has taken the best parts of the Bourne series (and the Batman series), discarded the rest, and will continue on.


Bond is simply more evolutionary staying power than his competitors.  If you defend the establishment, and the establishment survives, the people survive.  While people sometimes criticize the establishment, ultimately, they fear they can't survive without it.


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