Deathmatch 2022: Sideswipes - September 30

All of them and none of them to an extent, such is my position on NTTD. There’s almost something too "meta’ (if that’s the word) about the whole NTTD experience. Again, I enjoy the film but not half as much as the film it rips off (ooooh).

So, I’m going to go with Adamesque elements in the lair. Tildesly’s work (please correct me if I’m giving the wrong person the credit) is the best the series has done in “echoing” Adam’s peak creations. The moments that have appeared since MR have always felt somewhat short, aping the apex rather than actually coming close.

I really enjoyed Gassner’s efforts, but IMHO they were restricted by having to feel connected to reality. My QoS bias yells that there are sets in there that are up with Adam - the hotel at the climax for example, but they are still designed to be “real” places. Adam was never restricted by that - the Liparus and volcano are brilliant, but when you make yourself really thing about it, they couldn’t possibly “be.”

Safin’s lair falls somewhere in-between but those sets, enhanced by Sandgren’s cinematography, legitimate heirs to the best of Adam’s work (if you think GE’s control rooms are better, by all means yell yourself).

Put it is this way, some of the best things in the series have been equalled or outdone by competitors over the years. What has continued to stand tall is Adam’s work, matched only by his own (Strangelove etc).


For a fan I remain largely unimpressed by ‘callbacks’, references, Easter eggs and the like. I still think the series was at its strongest when such was used sparingly and didn’t carry half the weight of the production to incorporate. I’d argue the entire run of the films since GOLDENEYE would profit, had that ‘emotional baggage’ been avoided instead of emphasised.

Consequently, the articles above offending me the least are the Binder dots, the cigar and the safari suit since, except the dots, I hardly registered them. Ideally, this would be the level of self reference pursued from here on. I wouldn’t even mind a Bond film entirely without this - though perhaps by now it’s fair to assume this has grown into the DNA of the series now and cannot be extracted any more.


As one would say, good luck with that. The reality is that when the series re-starts, there’ll almost be no choice but to load up the callbacks, just in case someone worries “errrr, is this the same guy? Isn’t he dead?”

For better or for worse, the moment the series dumped the idea of straight up continuity, it seems the only creative way left to ensure that “everyone knows this is the same thing” are the “homages.” Which by the time you get to DAD, don’t even make much sense, either within the reality of the films or the series itself. Jetpack, DB5, pick your poison, they’re all entirely disposable moments completely extraneous to what’s going on.

For me, references to Tracy in both TSWLM and FYEO are much more effective than dots, the “Bond’s a relic” schtick of GE, or DAD which completely collapses under the weight of so many references getting in the way of the story, or passing off as story, I can’t still can’t decide which.

The ever-increasing “nods” simultaneously appeal to the sophistication of the audience, while insulting that very same presumed sophistication with the “don’t worry it’s the same series” vibe that too many of them give-off.

Good grief, have I just made the case that DAD and NTTD are one and the same at heart…?


Last thought - even NSNA found a way to make a reference, and it’s a series of one. But the “Bentley” moment was for me, a nice reference to the author, rather than EON’s unfortunate habit of homag-ing itself.

1 Like

I liked most of these things, if not all of them. NTTD clicked with me across the board in terms of premise and performance and my esteem only grows with time. High on my list are the title sequence dots, Safin’s lair and the Vantage. The identity card toss was a perfect reference to the past while putting a brand new spin on the concept, and the cigar is a deep cut for the fans which I don’t think causes any harm. One thing I wasn’t too hot about was the portraits of past Ms, due to the more overt continuity clash. But I don’t think it really matters all that much.


There have been WAAAAY too many callbacks/references to past Bond films over the Daniel Craig era. I wasn’t wild about it in Die Another Day, but that at least was a one-time thing (or so I thought at the time) as it was celebrating the series’ 40th anniversary. But then the Craig era kept on referencing past films even though he was a rebooted Bond.

Hopefully, the next 007 will be like the pre-Craig era’s Bonds and the filmmakers won’t have to feel like referencing so many (or any) previous Bond films because the new Bond will be a “regular” James Bond.

As for this poll’s question, I went with the identity card toss in Moneypenny’s office, which was a pretty cool thing to do; the portrait of Ms (even if Robert Brown’s Miles Messervy has no reason to be there); the Delectado cigar; Logan Ash does a Locque (although I didn’t like Craig dashing up the hill right after); and the overused Aston Martin DB5–but at least they gave it something to do and it had cool gadgets so I give it a pass here, but for the future it would be good to give it a rest.


For September 4:

Albeit stretching it bit with some of the choices below, favourite scene with Bond on a motorbike, or nearest available equivalent for the terrain.

  • Tricycle buggy thing escape (Diamonds are Forever)
  • Wetbike to Atlantis (The Spy who Loved Me)
  • Chasing Fatima Blush (Never Say Never Again)
  • Escaping and over the cliff (GoldenEye)
  • Helicopter chase (Tomorrow Never Dies)
  • Haiti sort-of-chase (Quantum of Solace)
  • Across the rooftops of the Grand Bazaar (Skyfall)
  • Various stunts around Matera (No Time to Die)

0 voters

I went with the chase across the rooftops of the Grand Bazaar in Skyfall. The whole chase and later fight aboard the train is one of the best pre-titles sequences–certainly the best of the Craig era. But the stuff with the motorcycles is exciting and really helps to jump start the movie.


I’m going to pick the two oldest and the two least spectacular. I love the tricycle buggy thing (what is this Harry, amateur night!) chase, with Barry’s music adding something completely off-worldly to the desert, mysterious men in helmets and visors and SC gritting his teeth and then looking ever-so-slightly ridiculous sitting on the thing.

And then the wet bike. Back then, wet bike’s were a “wow” accessory. From the bits in the bag on the sub, to the shot of Sir Rog riding with Hamlisch’s triumphant playing of the Bond theme - yep, other heroes just aren’t able to make those sort of entrances…


I was tempted to choose NSNA as the character’s first use of a “real” motorbike in a major action sequence, but it’s all somewhat ruined by (1) the lousy score (2) the vaguely “TV” feel to it all, (3) the (understandable) need to obscure Bond’s face with a helmet throughout and (4) NSNA not counting, anyway.

Bike sequences in the official series always end up frustrating me somehow. The GE sequence leads up to that “laugh so you don’t cry” transfer to the falling plane that takes the shine off the entire PTS. The TND bit flies in the face of physics and shows a basic lack of understanding of how helicopters even work…neither of which is new in action films but come on, suspension of disbelief has its limits. The SF chase has some great scenery but the bit where he deliberately crashes into the bridge wall so he can catapulted onto the train is insane, and not in a good way. The only reason he should think that would work is because he read ahead in the script.

I went with the Matera bit because (1) it looks great, (2) it doesn’t go on forever and (3) sooner or later I had to relent and give NTTD a vote for something.


I have a soft spot for Moore’s wet bike as it used to be a favourite moment with the audience at the theatre when the thing appeared assembled with Moore riding to the finale.

As action scenes go, the parts in SPECTRE and NO TIME TO DIE are probably amongst the best, setting the tone for what is to come.

I would indeed like a future Bond to use a motorcycle on a regular basis, even privately. It’s a fast means of transport for an individualist, without causing nearly the furore of the usual super cars that are the Bond staple. An expert can move it faster than a Porsche - but through bottlenecks and over terrain a Porsche cannot go. And for the opposition a motorcycle is a smaller target, harder to hit.

If the next Bond has to be set apart from previous incarnations, I’d give this some serious thought.


I hadn’t really thought about it, but of course a “wetbike” would’ve still been a new concept to many viewers in 1977. That scene has lost a lot of its punch over the years as everyone and his brother-in-law Billy Bob has had a crack at jet-skis, as opposed to lets say YOLT’s Little Nelly, which remains quirky and unique. It’s one thing to say, “Hey there’s this crazy guy with a self-made flying machine we should put in the next film” and quite another to say, “This product will be on the market by this time next year, but if we hurry we can be the first to use it.” The latter loses all impact a few years down the road.

1 Like

Yes, it’s probably the curse of THE SPY WHO LOVED ME that so many of its features have become ‘common’ - after a fashion - with time. The Seiko ticker tape is ridiculous today, the Æsgard jump pales in comparison with the tick-tock stuff basejumpers and flightsuit folks load up. And the wet bike is also pretty tame for modern tastes.

1 Like

For September 5:

When the film series comes back, this can be safely dropped i.e. don’t bother us with it:

  • DB5
  • M
  • Q
  • Moneypenny
  • Tanner
  • Leiter
  • Gunbarrel
  • “The/My name’s Bond, etc…”

0 voters

1 Like

Easily, it’s the Aston Martin DB5. It’s been used WAAAAY too much lately. We only saw it twice in the first 33 years of the series. Since 1995, we’ve seen it six (6!) times in 27 years–four times in the Daniel Craig era alone. It’s a great car and means a lot in Bond history, but it needs to be retired and put in the EON garage now, even if it did do great and memorable jobs in Skyfall and No Time To Die. Give some new cars a chance.


TND’s chase for me, hands down. It’s a great concept - handcuffed to one of the best Bond women and learning to cooperate with one another to survive. Arnold’s score is excellent, the sequence itself is lengthy and the jump across the rooftop is classic Bond stuntwork and underrated. I used to watch this a lot on VHS as a youngster. Pure entertainment.

Wow, that’s an interesting list.

The DB5 is an easy choice, given how often I’ve complained about it here. It’s a cool car, but at this point it’s become a crutch, a security blanket, Eon hedging their bets by trading on sentiment rather than letting their new Bond sink or swim on his own merits. None of the other Bond actors got to “stack the deck” this way and it’s a disservice to Craig to have made him do it. Let the next Bond put on his big boy pants and work without the training wheels.

I was surprised to see M on the list until I realized we’ve actually HAD a Bond movie without M and I liked it: FYEO. But as M’s followed by Q and Moneypenny, I suspect you may be getting at the frequent criticism (from myself and many others) that Bond relies too much on the “Scooby Gang” talking into his earpiece and giving constant advice when he’s on missions. I would certainly like to see a permanent end to that, but moreover I think dropping the MI-6 scenes entirely could make for an interesting “hook” to a Bond film. Have the film begin in media res, with Bond already on a mission, already in danger and cut off from HQ. Then we need to piece together where he is and what he’s doing, and he needs to complete his mission using his wits, guile and training without being able to “call home” or rely on gadgets, either pre-issued or shipped to him. It could even end with Bond going off to make his report (which we never see happen). Of course the problem is that here in the 2020’s it’s become almost impossible to imagine a situation where “calling home” isn’t as easy as borrowing a smartphone or walking into a cyber cafe. But maybe they could write in a reason why he wouldn’t WANT to, like maybe a suspected conspiracy within MI-6 itself. If you want to be totally ballsy, do this with the next film and introduce the new Bond without ANY of the usual crutches. Let us figure out who he is by how cool he’s being, and not because everyone’s saying, “Good morning Bond” and “Here’s your mission.”

Moving on…Tanner can go because he already wasn’t in most of them and even when he is, it makes no real difference to anything (sorry, Bill).

Leiter was a no-show for most of the series, as well. Jeffrey’s Wright’s relative prominence in the latter series was thanks more to his personal charisma than anything. If someone else had played him in CR, there might have been little reason or incentive to bring him back.

They’ve monkeyed with the gunbarrel enough: they need to hold onto something to “brand” these things.

I’d be entirely fine with dropping “the name is Bond.” With a few memorable exceptions, it usually feels shoehorned into conversations as nearly a non-sequitur anyway, and seriously who goes around in real life introducing themselves that way (aside from Bond fans)? It treads a fine line between “big moment” and fourth-wall-breaking distraction. Maybe a solution would be to follow NTTD’s precedent and have other characters say it each film: “We got him on the security footage…there! But who is he?” Villain sets his jaw: “His name is Bond…James Bond.”


:point_up_2: What @David_M says, everything.

I went with the Aston - but in fact I could do without all the elements above and still enjoy it. As for a reason why not contacting HQ: if he’s out there ‘taking care’ of somebody, today’s chances to leave a trail of CCTV footage, coms and the like is overwhelmingly against him. See that recent GRU op for example.

If Bond calls home it’s bound to show up somewhere. So coms with HQ should always happen by various cutouts or in an embassy’s screened communication facility. Make it harder for Bond to report and SIS to keep him on the leash. In terms of script it’s mostly exposition anyway. Give them a bit more reason to show don’t tell.

I do not know how to drive, so DB5 was an easy vote.


Might have done this one before but that wouldn’t make it an error; it’s a callback or an Easter Egg. That’s Eon’s excuse anyway.

For September 6:

Favourite Benson novel
  • Zero Minus Ten
  • The Facts of Death
  • High Time to Kill
  • DoubleShot
  • Never Dream of Dying
  • The Man with the Red Tattoo

0 voters