Bond and you..Yes...YOU!


#21

By the way: do the German fans here remember the old editions by Scherz Verlag? They often featured black & white photos of naked women on the cover sleeve - good for a teenager like me who only bought the books for reading the story, of course.

I also remember I sent my grandmother out to buy a Bond novel (don’t know anymore which one) without knowing that this cover also featured a nude. She summoned all her courage to buy the book, as she later told my parents, but put a sticker on the “naughty parts” before giving it to me. Naturally, I was disappointed.


#22

Yes, those old Scherz covers…

The excellent site The Illustrated 007 has some splendid images of Peter Lorenz’ collection, highly recommend.

Just to illustrate what level of graphic detail we were used to in the 1970s…

But I must admit these covers with their minimalist approach and emphasis on odd detail lacking any connection to events in the book (aside those using film images) never failed to busy my juvenile mind back then. Few covers since had a similar impact.


#23

Ha! Wonderful, thank you!

And interesting that in my memory they were much raunchier. (But I remember now - it was “Im Geheimdienst Ihrer Majestät” which was censored by my grandma :joy:)


#24

So I have an interesting story on my road to Bond fandom. My first encounter with Bond was actually the James Bond Jr cartoon. I watched it pretty regularly and have vague memories of Jaws from that cartoon (who could actually talk). The first Bond movie I actually watched most of was Never Say Never Again, when was about 12.

It wasn’t until I was an exchange student in Japan that I went into full blown Bond fandom. While I was there, I learned to tie a tie, and wore a uniform everyday. The village I was in was small enough to ride a bike everywhere. One day, I was riding my bike to school, in my uniform, sunglasses and headphones on, and one of my classmates told me I looked like James Bond doing that. It suddenly clicked that I had really never watched any of them and went to the local video rental store and got all of the Brosnan films (GE, TND, and TWINE at the time). While I was there I also watched YOLT (appropriately enough) and became obsessed with Bond. I bought a wristwatch with a blue face that looked close enough to me to a Omega, and spent most of my spare time there playing the Tomorrow Never Dies PS2 game.

When I returned to the states, I continued watching more Bond films, getting into the Connery films and the Dalton films. I also started to read the original Fleming novels. I started with YOLT, which was so different than the film and very confusing, having neither read nor seen OHMSS. It wasn’t until I read Casino Royale that I was really hooked though. I didn’t see the Vesper twist coming and it gutted me. I started reading all of the Fleming books in order, and continued to watch the films, getting into more of the Moore films and OHMSS.

My first Bond film in theaters was actually DAD. I was excited by it at the time, but upon exiting the theater, I was disappointed. However when it was announced that the next Bond film to be adapted would be Casino Royale, I was thrilled since I still loved that first book, and couldn’t wait to see how everything would be adapted.


#25

Again, me too.
Between the used record stores for FRWL, CR '67 and YOLT, Eaton’s bargain bin for OHMSS and various other stores for the rest, I rounded up a complete collection of soundtracks (importing NSNA through the JBFCoA), ending with LTK - the last on vinyl. I held off collecting all the CD reprints until the expanded scores were all available.
In those dark days before home video, they were my ‘souvenirs’ of the films - along with the books and, eventually, the posters.
I’m sorry to say, I haven’t been all that impressed with the scores in Craig’s era; there’s too much going on to be able to follow the action in my mind they way I always can with a Barry score (or even the earlier Arnolds).
I still collect them, of course.


#26

Epic stuff here everyone. Agreed on the soundtracks. Big part of the down time between films and films airing on TV along with the books and home video. Happily, I’ve just found out that I can work from home tomorrow so I’ll finally have a chance to add my own tale to the rest of these. Lot of ground to cover. Cheers to all for the contributions.


#27

Speaking of soundtracks, I used to record the movies onto audio cassette tapes when they were on TV as a kid in the 70s. I would pause for the commercials. I was fortunate in that my Dad was a record producer and had what would have been a state-of-the-art cassette recorder at the time. I would play those tapes incessantly in the days before video. In fact, I committed them to memory so well that I still hear those edited for television versions and the momentary commercial break pauses and punch-ins in my head when I watch classic Connery movies on Blu-Ray to this day.


#28

I did that too! Although I never listened to them much - it was enough just to have the audio tracks.
Same with the videos: owning them frees me from the television schedule.


#29

Another audio cassette fiend, here. I don’t think I ever taped Bond, but I did get some “Batman” episodes. And you know what works almost as well without visuals as it does with them? The original Star Trek. That show was written almost like a radio show. Probably because they knew they couldn’t rely on the special effects.

Loved all the Bond soundtrack records, which eventually led to a lot of non-Bond soundtracks in my collection, as well. I started with LALD and I still remember the first time I played it, because it was on my grandfathers’ hi-fi system. He was not impressed. :slight_smile: I also remember being excited to get the MR soundtrack, but then on hearing it I thought, “It’s all so SLOW! I remembered the film being more exciting.” In the context of the film it’s perfect: only Barry would have the genius to score on-screen action with – counter-intutively – tracks that possessed such a majestic calmness. But for a kid trying to recreate in his memory the things he’d seen on screen, it was frustrating listening. Now that I can see the film whenever I want, though, it’s one of my favorite scores of the lot.

The Dr No soundtrack almbum still ranks as one of the most disappointing record purchases of my young life, though.


#30

1967 - Quite the year for 007. A first continuation novel was in the works. Sean Connery announced he was leaving the role of 007 during the production of his fifth Bond film and Columbia pictures was releasing a wild spoof helmed by five different directors and an ensemble cast of established actors and unknowns with the one Fleming novel and story they had the rights to. Meanwhile, in Seattle, Washington…

A 39 year old mother of two (already 10 & 13) boys and married 19 years to her handsome WWII USAF veteran turned businessman were informed of an impending arrival at the end of the year… and on November 25 weighing in at precisely 7.00 pounds, he arrived and was named for his maternal grandfather… The world of Bond fandom was to be changed… but not quite yet.

I was introduced to 007 by a lovely retired school teacher who was my regular babysitter at age five. Mrs. Mills was 70+, deaf in one ear, smoked Marlborough reds and taught me how to work a Zippo lighter and look a lady in the eye when lighting her cigarette as well as make an Old Fashioned. The PERFECT lady to leave with your five year old.

So, one evening sometime in early December of '72 it was my bedtime and when she went to read me my story, it was actually the last half of the last chapter and in four minutes, that was it. I had seen her reading a paperback and asked about it. It was the first and last time I ever said/asked “Who’s James Bond?” Within two years I had all but three of the books and then discovered that there were movies and that Bond was currently being played by an actor I recognized from “The Saint”.

Books, soundtracks, Corgi cars and the films. Aside from that space movie, my summer of '77 was spent at the movies seeing TSWLM repeatedly. Then along came RPG systems that were not played on consoles, but with varying types of dice, character sheets, gaming manuals and imagination and creativity. The best way to describe it would be interactive collective storytelling. Out of this came espionage related gaming which was called Top Secret from the same people that created D&D. Later a little company called Victory Games was granted the rights to use Bond stories. Hence, I needed a character.

Well, he couldn’t be 007 or named Bond…Buuuuuuttt…He could be a Double-O. As Fleming had lifted the name James Bond and being that the novel that introduced me to Bond was LALD, I took his alias. So, with the roll of a D10 (a ten sided dice) that came up 3, John Bryce 003 came about. I played the character from fall of '81 through early '98 in various campaigns but that drifted away. Then I took to writing and when I got referred to certain website (cough, cough, cough) in 2002…I needed a screen name…Hmmmmm…

I’ve attended countless Bond events and conventions, hosted three Bond events of my own and hosted premier parties for opening night screenings that are, as a few around these parts can attest, pretty damn legendary. Planning for more.

To borrow from Sir Roger in TMWTGG: “I think that’s all.”


#31

And that, ladies and gents, is how it’s done… :love_you_gesture:


#32

For me, I remember the point specifically when Bond entered my life.

As an impressionable kid, the new Nintendo 64 system was a gaming machine of the future. I had no real interest in virtual games up to about 1998. I was too busy a kid, playing in ant hills by day and building lego cities by night.

That is, until my uncle introduced me to his new Polish-born girlfriend and her two children. Her father, who barely spoke decipherable english, had gotten her son into the world of 007. Her son, who would become my best friend and cousin-in-law much later on, invited me over one afternoon to play this new game.

Mind you, I knew nothing of this. So, when I found myself in that upstairs loft among my cousin-in-law and a small group of his friends huddled around a small television, I was intrigued to say the least! As I approached the group, they all ducked and laughed. Not being in on the joke, I was the only one not to duck as blood drips filled the screen after a revolver shot rang out from the built-in speakers.

They would duck during the opening gunbarrell of GoldenEye 007, as just a silly thing children do. You always duck the shot and from then on, I was in on the joke. That game floored me… and I had to have the system and that game for Christmas the same year.

GoldenEye 007 was now all I knew of Bond, and I spent many hours invested in learning those single player levels down to the detail. This led to me stumbling upon the VHS copy of the film, and the rest as they say, is history!

Go figure.


#33

Thanks Arbogast. It’s not done yet and there are a lot more details and tales, but I have to save some things for the autobiography. However, for anyone here that’s read and/or enjoyed my fan-fic or articles, glad you have. For those of you I’ve met and talked shop with, always a pleasure and of you whom I’ve yet to meet, check with those who have crossed my path and let me simply say “Yes… It’s true… All and any of it.” No… Really. As the lovely Joyce Carrington 009 once said: “If it’s a casual or normal answer, that’s the lie. If it’s outrageous and unbelievable, that’s the truth and that’s 003.”


#34

I was nine in 1977 when my family took me to The Spy Who Loved Me. Then a second run theater ran a James Bond festival of double features where I saw Dr. No through Live and Let Die on the big screen. Not having seen The Man With The Golden Gun yet, that became my first book read (ironic since it had nothing to do with the movie and I wasn’t familiar with the YOLT novel.) Eventually, we all saw TMWTGG on ABC, but discussed our disappointment with it after. I saw every subsequent movie in the theater on opening weekend if not day (CR the exception.) Also lots of VHS rentals and copies. Obsesssive compulsion led to purchasing every officially released version and format (Letterbox, DVD, Bluray, even used Laserdiscs!) A second film festival gave me the opportunity to see CR’67 and TMWTGG on the big screen finally.

In an effort to get me to read, my mother bought me John Gardner’s Licence Renewed when it came out. It worked! I read each of his books upon release. In the summer of '84 I read all the Fleming novels. My English teacher that fall remarked on my improved writing and vocabulary! I’ve read all the Gardners and Bensons and movie novelisations, but haven’t been able to crack the subsequent authors despite buying the books. I did however re-read Casino Royale in 2006, and most of YOLT again (oddly the ending first.) I now have a bookcase dedicated to all Bond related publications.

For some reason, my dad wouldn’t buy me the Moonraker soundtrack, so I grew up with Marvin Hamlisch, Bill Conti, and George Martin as my first Bond soundtracks, and that was still fine with me. The soundtracks were hard to find on LP, and impossible on CD until they started re-releasing them in 1988 (?). I played The Living Daylights endlessly as a courier in summer of '87. FYEO was a particularly hard CD to get, along with Octopussy before their expanded releases. Then the 2002 remasters were a godsend!

In the 90s it became a fun but expensive hobby to collect the movie posters. eBay didn’t exist yet, but there were plenty of movie poster shops in L.A. Thunderball, YOLT’s C-style volcano poster, and TMWTGG’s villains poster remain elusive and expensive, but I think I have everything else. I’ve collected most of the video game releases, including the Atari 5200 cartridge, but only really played GE64, TND, 007 racing, and TWINE. Yet I don’t have the matching consoles anymore.

Bond has been an interesting hobby in that it’s a gateway to learning more about literature, music, film, food, drinks, art, politics, women and friendships in ways that other franchises aren’t as varied (Star Trek/Wars, comic book movies, etc.) Most of my other obsessions I’ve grown out of. I think this one I’ve stuck with because different things about it interest me at different ages of life (gadgets as a kid, girls as a teenager, evolving worldviews as an adult.) Movies I once hated I now love (OHMSS) and vice-versa (Die Another Day.) 007 comes and goes, but there’s always the promise that James Bond will return.


#35

My first consciousness of James Bond was playing Goldeneye on the N64 with a friend when I was 11 years old. However I did not become a fan until I was 14 years old when I owned the video game and console myself. I certainly hold the game and movie itself in high regard (perhaps I am guilty of my own nostalgia). To be honest I do not think that film was first Bond I ever saw. I remember visiting my local library a few weekends a month and I rented both Thunderball and Diamonds Are Forvever, so it could be either of those films.

What followed next was renting the Ian Fleming books that were available at that same library. I distinctly remembered how musty the books were, as if they were never been checked out for decades. I think I brought a few Fleming books to read at high school, but I don’t think I found another soul who shared my same Bond fandom until I became a registered CBn user in early 2004.

I bought all the films on VHS at the time (remember those awful covers?), bought 007 calendars, and had a 007-themed birthday cake (Ill find the picture and post it one day). I figured most things I was interested in as a younger person would have died out by now, but strangely my love for Bond thankfully has not.


#36

I decided against sitting down to write any kind of story about me becoming a Bond fan because it’s really no different than anyone else’s, but I did want to post a story…

About 15 years ago I was working in a grocery store while in college. There was a Filipino guy who started in the produce department who would never speak, he would always just smile at you and nod. He seemed very friendly but I assumed he didn’t speak very good English so I always just gave him a smile and a nod back and went about my day.

One day someone was asking me about Bond and asked what my favorite movie was.

“Dr. No,” I said.

From behind me I heard a voice say “Joseph Wiseman!”

I turned around and it was the Filipino guy, who not only spoke perfect English but was a HUGE Bond fan. Long story short, after years of bonding through “shop talk” I am now the godfather to one of his kids and stood with him when he became an American citizen. I don’t see him as much these days but I am always texting “Mathis” (as he is in my iPhone) all the newest Bond 25 news.

Oh and the names of his two boys?

Ian and Daniel :wink:

Now in true Bond fashion I can’t quite end on too happy a note, so there also is the story of the girl one day coming up to me at the same store who said “Hey James Bond.” “Why did you just call me that?” I asked. “I don’t know, the way you are, you just remind me of him.”

Thus began 5 years of hell that made me want pray for Irma Bunt to gun us both down.

Can’t win ‘em all, gents :beers:


#37

That, Arbogast777, is one hell of a story (both the good and the bad)!


#38

That’s a great point, I often wonder if Spielberg deliberately filled Last Crusade with Bond actors as a tip of the hat given the genesis of the project…


#39

My own Bond story is fairly typical, especially of the UK;
My first Bond experience was a DAF/LALD double bill in 74/75 ish that I don’t really remember much of…then fast forward to the summer of 77 and TSWLM which was a massive hit in the UK (and that space movie wouldn’t hit the UK til Christmas of 77); The first time I saw TSWLM at the cinema I liked it, but it didn’t immediately make me a huge fan
For some reason (I honestly have no idea why) I don’t remember seeing any other Bond movies on TV immediately following that (tho my Brother swears we sat and watched DAF on it’s British TV premier);
This is possibly because as a kid all I ever wanted to do at weekends and in the evenings was go out and play football (soccer) with my mates
However, Just about everything in my life changed in 1979;
I had become interested in music (through the charms of Debbie Harry and Blondie) and was slowly starting to gain a bigger interest in movies; so when Moonraker came out in the summer of 79 I was ready…and loved every second and from that point was absolutely hooked.
Goldfinger was the Christmas Day Bond film in 1979 and with the book tokens I received I went out and bought Goldfinger and Moonraker (those Triad versions with the girls and the enormous golden guns, so 70s!);
Live And Let Die got it’s UK TV premiere a few months later and for my birthday a few weeks after that I got another couple of books then through used book stores I tracked down the rest of the Fleming titles (usually in their 60s Pan paperback editions)
An ad in a local paper just before Christmas 1980 led me (and my Dad with some cash in hand) to a young guy in his mid 20s who was selling off his Bond collection; every OST up to that point (DN to MR) plus the 10th anniversary double album, several movie programs, a couple of books (inc the first printing of the John Brosnan book that became my bible) and a couple of quad posters.
I won’t lie; the guy was practically giving this stuff away and tho we were tight for money my Dad could just afford to get me the whole lot for my Christmas gift
I was ecstatic and that started off the collector in me.
Since, like many, I’ve seen every film on the big screen multiple times, bought them on VHS, DVD & BD multiple times each, bought multiple pressings of every album (I’m trying to complete a full set of Japanese pressings right now!), every CD release, multiple printings of each book and an extensive collection of posters, lobby sets etc that I’m pretty proud of

One thing I am interested in;
where did everybody see their Bond films when they were younger and where do you see them now?

For me it started at the Odeons in either Manchester or Bolton (closed in 82) except for FYEO which I first saw at the Ritz in Wigan;
I also try to see every Bond at the Odeon Leicester Square (made much more difficult by my moving away from the UK in 97); saw everything from AVTAK to CR there; QoS broke my run when it went off just 2 days before I arrived in the UK in December of 08;
I did however manage to see both Skyfall and Spectre there.
There is still something special about seeing the Bond films there.

Johnny


#40

To a degree I think yes but it’s mainly because they were using actors from the same talent pool. One need only look at the films made at Pinewood in the late 70s and 80s to see the same actors appear in Bond, Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and Superman film series.