Twenty-one years I have been haunting this website, or earlier iterations of it, and in those years I’ve seen many things stated that, were I in the mood, would cause me to walk on stage and administer a slap. I would then say I was impersonating some tennis person, or something. Probably Boris Becker. Or Buster Mottram. No, actually, not he. Get my wife’s cake out of your fuppin’ mouth. It’ll melt yer lips.
Thought we might run another month-long game, a bit like the one in December last year, although the statements below, which have been posted hereabouts on this wasteland over the years, are perhaps a little baity, touch negative perhaps, and assertions rather than questions. I can’t say I agree with them all. Several I vehemently disagree with.
All of them interest me, though. How about you?
April 1: In terms of the snooping about and investigating and use of aliases, with its lengthy depiction of James Bond undertaking “spying”, A View to a Kill is most “spy film” in the series.
April 2: A Charles Gray style of Blofeld is obviously much more in the spirit of the novel OHMSS than the Telly Savalas version.
April 3: Every female character in For Your Eyes Only (including Sharon, but excepting Tula) is both badly written and performed. It is the worst roster of female role and representation in the series.
April 4: Not only should the DB5 be given a rest, but they could calm down the aggressive wristwatch selling (not least because Omega watches are vulgar).
April 5: Denise Richards is not the worst thing about The World is Not Enough by a long, long way.
April 6: if not using one of his novels, Raymond Benson should have been asked to write a Bond film; this would have been a better use of his storytelling strengths.
April 7: The only way forward now for the Bond series is to adopt the Codename Theory.
April 8: Barbara Broccoli can produce a better quality of film than her father ever could.
April 9: Given that she believes him to be Peter Franks and Bond knowingly encourages that belief, Tiffany Case does not give informed consent. Nor does anyone similarly engaging with “Saiiirr Hilary Bray, Baronet”.
April 10: Licence to Kill would be redeemable had it been M ordering the private vendetta (as in the short story For Your Eyes Only) with Bond, reluctant to obey, questioning the purpose of the (here it comes) Licence to Kill. The avenging Leiter angle doesn’t work; no-one cares. Least of all Leiter.
April 11: “Arriving in Iceland, and beyond” in Die Another Day is the better half of the film.
April 12: Colonel Sun had an interesting premise with the abduction of M, but utterly fails to do anything more with it and the book collapses.
April 13: Albert R. Broccoli is primarily to blame for Pierce Brosnan not being James Bond in The Living Daylights.
April 14: GoldenEye would be better regarded in hindsight had it been Brosnan’s only one. It said all that had to be said, and this undermines his other films as they simply don’t know what to do with him.
April 15: Crucify this: the received wisdom that OHMSS is faithful to the novel tends to overlook the fact that Diana Rigg is miscast.
April 16: Not one of the continuation novels is worth reading.
April 17: The nine films co-produced by Harry Saltzman are the best James Bond films, or at least the iconic ones. The rest make up the numbers.
April 18: If AmazonMGM is keen to exploit the IP and broaden the offering, 90-minute animated versions of the Fleming books is probably worth a try but there’s nothing else really worth doing. None of the other characters are interesting enough. This reality show travel game show thing… not convinced.
April 19: The “odd-numbered” films are patently better than the “even-numbered” films.
April 20: I shall not waste my days in trying to prolong them; I shall use my time. However, is No Time to Die simply a clear and direct ending with a shocking amount of timewasting leading up to it? Destination: fine. Journey there, though, is a total scribble. The material delivered by Spectre and No Time to Die doesn’t justify two films; should have been one. Same with Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace. The Craig films wasted both time and potential.
April 21: Brosnan and GoldenEye saved the series; it is a truth universally acknowledged. However, they were always planning to make another film after Licence to Kill. The threats seen off by Roger Moore - the failure of Lazenby, the indifference to The Man with the Golden Gun and the return of Connery/NSNA - were much more dangerous, had they prevailed. Roger Moore saved the series three times.
April 22: Never Say Never Again demonstrates a considerably higher level of competence by SPECTRE than most of the Eon films depict.
April 23: James Bond is the product of a frustrated public schoolboy terrified of women. It’s for adolescents refusing to grow up (at best), and its portrayals and attitudes clearly demonstrate this. Stay in your lane, Commander.
April 24: John Glen was the best director of James Bond films.
April 25: A Paloma spin-off is pointless. The character was clearly constructed to last ten minutes and there’s nothing else there. Dusting off the abandoned screenplay and scratching out the word “Jinx” and replacing it with “Paloma” does no-one any favours.
April 26: If a Bond film has a US location and/or a US leading lady, that’s advance warning that it will be a bit duff.
April 27: No Bond who has been in more than three Bond films has been in more than three great ones.
April 28: The use of its music in No Time to Die isn’t an embracing of OHMSS. It is a rejection of it.
April 29: Given that they’re now back in another creative rut of their own making, the most progressive news for the Bond film series’ 60th anniversary would be Eon selling up and someone totally new comes in. 60 years is a long time, they’ve done a lot of fun stuff but it might be time to go.
April 30: The Broccoli family aside, the Bond films represent nobody’s best work. Everyone has come from and/or gone onto better output.