Bond and you..Yes...YOU!


#1

In looking around the “new digs” I thought I’d create this. Back on the old boards we had a similar topic.

So, for fun and since there are some new folks joining us, feel free to share how it started for yourself in the world of 007.

I’m going to get to my own story, but that’s going to require a bit more time than I have at the moment.

Right then… Carry on!


#2

Splendid idea, Bryce!


#3

I was born in 1962, the year of the series’ birth. My Dad took me to see both Thunderball and You Only Live Twice upon release in theaters, but I don’t remember much other than the very opening of Thunderball. However, he took me again to the theater opening weekend for On Her Majesty’s Secret Service and I vividly remember that one! A few months later he took me to a double feature rerelease of Dr. No and From Russia with Love when I was in 2nd grade and that cemented Bond into my brain for the rest of my life; I was hooked! I have seen all Bond films in the theater since then and it continues to be an event for my brother and I to plan weeks in advance for our opening day traditional viewing for each new movie.


#4

I was born in 1982 so my earliest memories of Bond is watching them on TBS during their Bond marathons. I can remember seeing advertisements for The Living Daylight but it’s just bits a pieces of the Aston Martin using it’s gadgets in Austria during the car chase. The Moore films were my favorite.

If it was getting late my mother would make me go to bed but she did allow me to watch the pre-credit sequence of the next film before I had to go.

TBS was pretty much the place for Bond during the dark period of 1989 to 1995. I can recall seeing an entertainment news show airing a segment about Pierce Brosnan filming GoldenEye but I can’t recall seeing the trailers or tv spots before I saw the film with my family. GoldenEye was the first Bond I saw on the big screen and I was at the perfect age of 13 to have Bond warp my mind forever.

The first DVD I bought in 2000 was The World Is Not Enough. I read my first Bond novel in 2003 with Casino Royale. By a complete coincidence I read it on the 50th anniversary of it’s publication. It’s also the first time I read a book from beginning to end in one sitting.

At this point I’ve seen all the movies multiple times. I’ve read all of Fleming, save for The Spy Who Loved Me, which is on the docket, a number of Gardner and Benson and I have Solo, Trigger Mortis to get too. Several of the Gardner books and Colonel Sun have eluded my grasp but I will get to them.

I haven’t tackled the comic books yet but will do so in time.


#5

Hmmm, yes, a fine idea Bryce. I’ll post mine when I have the time to really give it some attention…


#6

I was born in '67. My earliest Bond memory was my dad watching Bond films during the ABC Sunday Night movie and hearing the great Ernie Anderson doing the voice overs for the intros (see clip below if you never heard him before, classic!). As I got older, I watched them with him and I was hoked!


#7

I was born in 1987 so my first cinematic Bond experience was Brosnan, in TWINE.

But, I was drawn to the films by chance, around the ages of 9 or 10- I think my dad was watching Octopussy one Sunday, and it was the “let the sport commence!” scene where Bond is pursued by Kamal Khan and his goons through the jungle.

I was gripped.

Who was this man, this legend, sprinting away through the undergrowth, taming tigers and telling snakes to “hiss off” , swinging through the trees like tarzan and then making his escape on a tourist boat?

“No m’am, I’m with the economy tour” - will always be my favourite line in the series as a result.
Octopussy is one of the more complex and underrated Bond films out of the lot- and it’s ludicrously good fun.

And now I’m a fan for life!


#8

My father had seen GOLDFINGER in the theatre but no other Bond after that. When THE SPY WHO LOVED ME was advertised on TV and I was interested he took me to see it.

That’s what started it all for me. Afterwards, I attended every showing of a previous Bond film near enough to my hometown in order to see them all. This was, of course, before the Bond films were shown on video or on TV. Cinemas at that time held Bond film weeks and showed every Bond film in chronological order, changing weekly. That was a wonderful opportunity.

And while my father unfortunately stopped to care about Bond (and me), I always will treasure the memories of seeing these films on the big screen, starting with my all-time-favourite TSWLM.


#9

Like many folks who grew up in the nineties, my introduction to Bond actually came from the Nintendo 64. As an impressionable five year old in 1997, the game was like nothing I had ever seen before. Since most of my immediate cousins were older than me I usually got to play the “big kid” games (as I called them back then) whenever I’d visit family.

GoldenEye was no exception, and I was hooked. I didn’t get a copy of my own until the “Game of the Year” edition was issued (which is still displayed on my shelf to this day), but Bond fever was already taking over.

Once I discovered it was part of a huge series I asked my parents if we could rent one of the films. Naturally, I went to GoldenEye. This must have been sometime in 1998 as I actually have vivid memories of standing in the “New Releases” section and looking at the Tomorrow Never Dies box. I truly miss the whole video store experience.

Anyways, needless to say I was hooked. Each time we’d go to rent movies I’d just pick another Bond film. Tomorrow Never Dies was probably next but I also remember Goldfinger and The Man With The Golden Gun being among the first I watched. You can imagine my excitement the following year when my dad took me to see The World Is Not Enough as my first Bond at the cinema! I even got to see it a second time on the big screen when the same cousin who introduced me to GoldenEye went to see it and took me along.

The rest is history. There’s a Bond family, but to my family, there was simply Bond.


#10

Cheers everyone! Great tales and history and kind of you all to share.

“Your reputation precedes you Mister Bryce…” - I’m planning some time this afternoon after I escape the clutches of the ‘real world’ to share my tale. For me, it began with the novels when I was five. I was sort of a prodigy reader. Took to reading and comprehension before I was four like a fish to water. So, there’s now 45 years of Bond fandom to cover… Which shall require (in true Fleming style) isolation, coffee and my own battered gunmetal cigarette case… and possibly some malt Whiskey.

Until then, on we go all.


#11

I first met Bond via the ABC Sunday Night Movie, back in the early 70s. No idea which one I saw first, but possibly Goldfinger. I remember going to school the next day and a friend said I’d missed out watching it on my folks’ black and white set, because in the scene where the crushed car is loaded into the bed of Oddjobb’s pickup truck, his color set showed Mr Solo’s blood oozing out of the block of scrap metal. Geez, kids are liars.

I remember the Sunday night ritual of watching all sorts of garbage films I had no interest in, in the desperate hope that the “next week” promo near the end would announce another Bond in the offing. When my brother and I embarrassed my parents by engaging in a very public altercation in town, the punishment was to not let us watch “Diamonds Are Forever” that Sunday night, and it scarred me for life. LOL

I was lucky to see any of them: my Dad was a Methodist minister with fairly traditional values. Before every viewing, he and Mom would sit me down and say, “Now, we’re going to let you watch this movie, but we want you to know we don’t approve of James Bond’s lifestyle.” By which they meant shagging strange women you’ve just met, of course: pinning people to trees with a spear gun or throwing them into snowblowers was fine.

Then came TSWLM on the big screen and there was no turning back.

Just as a side note, I’ve always been grateful to have come along when I did. With Sean on the telly and Roger on the big screen, I never had any trouble adjusting to the concept of multiple Bonds, whereas older fans often seemed unable to let go of the past and stop pining for Connery. At the same time, though, it’s interesting to note how “old fashioned” the Connery Bonds seemed to a kid of the 70s, when only a few years had passed. Those narrow lapels and Brylcreemed coiffs might as well have come from the Stone Age!


#12

I was 12, my elder brother wasn’t talking about Bond anymore but a girl I was sweet on was, so I thought I’d see what all the excitement was about - besides, I’d just seen a promo on TV about how “He’s back - and he’s bringing his own brand of excitement!” So off to the cinema to see what I’d been missing.
I know Diamonds are Forever takes a lot of flack now for being too over-the-top and not vengeful enough, but it was my first Bond and it introduced me to a whole new (fanciful) world where a guy could be invulnerable to thugs, irresistible to women and immune to the laws of physics and society. It was the first sexy movie I’d ever seen.
All through January 72 any pocket money I got went to the box office with that snazzy poster in the window. After that I saw Thunderball and You Only Live Twice in a double-bill at the same cinema, Dr No and From Russia With Love at the drive-in (I was underwhelmed, having seen their successors first) and OHMSS in a double-bill with DAF just before the release of Live and Let Die, which I’d been anticipating since seeing the preview article in Time Magazine, featuring a half-page still of the boat jump. Goldfinger I’ve only ever seen on TV.
Like DavidM, I was not upset by a change in lead (to me George Lazenby had worked fine) and to fill the time between LALD and TMWTGG I took to reading Bond according to Fleming. By the time TSWLM came out (after that agonizing 2 1/2 year wait) I’d read everything but the Authorized Biography. Even after 40+ years, my anticipation of each new film or book hasn’t diminished in intensity. I passed my obsession on to my son at about the same he started grade school.


#13

Being a 1990s child, I remember being at my grandparents house and playing Goldeneye 007 for Nintendo 64. The World is Not Enough (both the game and the movie) came not long after, for my enjoyment. My grandfather is a big 007 fan, and the marathons he watched helped me hooked. Bond movies are among the only times he attends a cinema. Thanks to 007, his other characters and his adventures, I became a film student and hope to make movies of my own, thanks to this great character.

In terms of reading, I have read the last three novels (Carte Blanche, Solo and Trigger Mortis), I enjoyed them all in different ways. I probably enjoyed Trigger Mortis the most because it felt old fashioned and I enjoyed reading about Pussy Galore again.

I could be more grateful that 007 has a never-ending cycle in various forms of media that we can enjoy for years to come!


#14

1973 - My dad takes me to the Odeon on Kensington High Street one afternoon (as a reward for having to stand outside the bookies for what always felt like forever) and I sit there with my box of Fruit Pastilles watching The Saint and the “hey that’s the captain on Voyage To The Bottom Of The Sea” race around in boats and flip cars. When the Rolex spins I’m hooked and that’s it. What are we now, 45 years later???

Found the books, and all the while watched the old ones on TV. Fortunate enough to say I’ve seen all of them on the big screen except DN - was lucky enough to go a NFT festival on London’s South Bank in the very early 80s and get to see GF and FRWL on the big screen. Also remember catching those double and triple-headers that would pop up in British cinemas in the 70s and 80s, specifically a OHMSS-DAF combo that did the rounds.

I’ve always believed that the films are adult entertainment, but if you’re 7 years old when you see your first, you do get to experience that slightly embarrassed thrill of being exposed to something that you get but don’t quite get. So I do understand it when the likes of Mendes talk about doing Bond for their son etc (understand, though not totally agree). If anything, when I watch a Bond film now I don’t want it to appeal to the kid in me, but I want the experience to remind me of being a kid again, perhaps.

I don’t follow DC or Marvel’s cinematic universe, though I’ve done my share of Star Wars, Star Trek, and Die Hards over the years, but I think if Bond is your first you’re never really anything other than a one-franchise fan.


#15

Well said.


#16

I love a lot of franchises but my holy trinity is Bond, Indiana Jones and Star Wars. One of the things that I really love about these three is the amount of overlap between them, both in front of and behind the camera.


#17

As an eight year old I saw Tomorrow Never Dies in cinemas, and I played the Goldeneye N64 game like an addict. I hired all the Bond movies out on VHS and watched them repeatedly. I was hooked. Say what you want about The World is not Enough and Die Another Day, but it was a really magical time to be a young fan. We had video game after video game coming out too. I couldn’t get enough of the danger, intrigue and class…and honestly still can’t. It’s still my number one franchise.


#18

I was a senior U.S. Navy Lieutenant at that time, damn I’m old. . .


#19

Have to add this: the Bond film scores were a major chance for me to relive the magic of the movies.

And - warning: old man talking again - at that time, one could feel lucky to grab an LP of the current Bond film (in my case: TSWLM as my first Bond score).

From then on I feverishly tracked down the previous Bond film scores which wasn’t easy at all since LPs rapidly went out of print. I pestered my local record score so I could look into their badly printed catalogues in order to contact the manufacturer, waiting months for a reply, often to get a letter: sorry, out of print.

Then I heard about one of the biggest record stores in Cologne, and finally my parents drove me there, and I actually managed to get old LP copies of GOLDFINGER, THUNDERBALL and DR.NO.

And then, when my family went on holiday in London I was treated to a visit to an HMV store - and I was able to get all the other previous Bond film scores on LP there.

This is probably what also kept my love for Bond films alive over three decades now: those melodies which immediately took (and still take) me back into my thoughts about the films.


#20

It’s funny you say that as I was just thinking the same today. Life makes it hard to sit down for a film or a book but very few days go by without some music.