New poll (2020): Who do you want as the next James Bond?

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  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,964MI6 Agent

    I did misread that part of your post, somehow skipping the part about average height. My bad. But I do think it's a plus if the actor playing Bond is above average height in the UK. Tom Cruise is often used as an example of an actor who isn't tall who does very well as an action star. But I'm pretty sure his height is an issue when they're casting other actors and composing shots for his movies, issued they wouldn't have to deal with if he was 6'2''.

    I don't think there's any reason to take into account how realistic it is for a tall man to be a successful spy. There are so many unrealistic or even fantastic aspects of the Bond movies I don't think being too tall to blend in should be a worry.

    I think you're reading far too much into the movies when it comes to masculinity and etnicity. Do you seriously belive EON, the writers, the directors and Craig sat down and said "let's use this oportunity to make fun of white men"?

    And is the UK really a corrupt and dying empire? The empire died in the 1950's, so having Bond die for it in 2021 is a bit late. And if you look at corruption rankings I think you'll find the UK is doing quite well when it comes to corruption.

  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,964MI6 Agent

    I just looked it up. Transparancy International ranks the UK as one of the twelve least corrupt countries in the world. So the UK isn't an empire and less corrupt than most of the world.

  • Gassy ManGassy Man USAPosts: 2,972MI6 Agent
    edited October 2021

    I think the toxicity and corruption things are how they finally framed it.

    I don't think that's where they started -- Casino Royale, to me, was meant to preface what would be a return to the Bond universe more or less as it was in the past. It was just Bond rough around the edges at first.

    But Quantum of Solace started them down a different path. It's a much darker film than Casino Royale. By Skyfall, it was obvious all the standard adventures Craig's Bond may have had happened offscreen. We get the burnt out, damaged adolescent.

    If I had to guess, I'd say the idea of making Bond a deconstruction of the toxic White male is more Craig's doing than anyone else's. He wears the performative wokeness in a lot of interviews, and I suspect he's had a certain level of disdain for how Bond was portrayed in the past. I also think he's a realist in recognizing changing times. I'm not trying to discount Barbara Broccoli in all this, but without the star being onboard, I'm not sure it would have happened this way.

    Consider, though, how Casino Royale sets this all up. Vesper tells Bond up front his ego is his problem, and Bond's response is the traditional alpha male scoff. We expect this is exactly the sort of thing a prickly woman who doesn't know her place would say to Bond to try to put him in his place -- and that she will be proven wrong in the end just like the others. Then we're shown him doing the sorts of things that we would normally cheer for a toxic White male -- confidence, dominance, breaking the rules, and a level of privilege others either have to work for or never get at all. He rolls right over a small army of Black men and easily seduces the Greek wife of a Greek man he both cuckolds and kills, establishing his dominance. He fools around with married women with impunity as a matter of course, we're told. He even usurps his woman boss's computer password and breaks into her apartment. All standard operating procedure in a movie glorifying the toxic White male.

    But what does it ultimately get him? Manipulated by a dead girlfriend and the loss of the money.

    Further, he's haunted for the next 15 years by the memory of a woman, to the degree that he's stunted in his ability to move on with another. For all his swagger, he's emotionally fragile. If that alone is not a deconstruction of the toxic White male -- all bluster from unearned privilege on the outside, but inside an emotionally fragile child -- I don't know what is.

    Add this to how many times his Bond is either rebuffed by women or unable to seal the deal, and it's no longer the guy we knew. Craig's Bond is actually at his apex in Casino Royale while the rest is a downward slide into his demise.

    The UK may or may not in reality be a corrupt and dying empire, but that's not how Craig's Bonds present it. MI:6 is in constant turmoil, infiltrated by enemy agents, manipulated by traitors, unaware of any number of threatening organizations, and questioned by its own government. By No Time to Die, they're involved in clandestine efforts to develop horrible weapons of mass destruction, culminating in attacking an island outside British territorial waters and killing one of their own agents. It's not a particularly glorious representation and a pretty far cry from the competent and necessary organization present in the Connery and Moore films.

    One could argue a lot of this is present in the older series, too. For instance, MI:6 doesn't know about SPECTRE until Bond is captured by Dr. No, who then informs him. But the tone is very different. When Strangways and his secretary are killed, the response is immediate and professional. They dispatch one of their best agents to investigate. He soon uncovers clues that point him in the right direction, suspicious the whole time of everyone, including his driver from the airport. We know Bond will get to the bottom of things eventually.

    In Craig's Bonds, not only does he essentially stumble upon both Quantum and SPECTRE (in part because the boss he got killed had her suspicions), but it turns out it was all masterminded behind his back by his foster brother. He has no clue. This is just some of the ways in which Craig's Bond (and MI:6 as a whole) is caught off guard or, at times, even incompetent. MI:6 doesn't fare well either.

    We're so used to this presentation, we don't even stop to think of the contrast. In the 1960s, arguably with more conventional methods of investigation, MI:6 is still fairly aware of what's going on around them. In Dr. No, they know somebody is toppling rockets. It's just a matter of reasoning out through process of elimination who.

    In Craig's Bond, MI:6, with satellites and the Internet, have no idea Saffin has taken over an entire island complete with submarine pen and somehow has moved material on an industrial level to it so he can construct bioweapons to kill millions. Yes, the volcanic lair in You Only Live Twice was unknown to the British, too, but arguably the cooperation of a legitimate Japanese industrial concern, Osato, explains how over time something might be done under the radar. And clearly the limitations of technology result in MI:6 at best taking guesses in a wide range of territory.

    I don't think all of this was accidental. Some may have been due to sloppy and vague writing, but No Time to Die tries to reign everything in, tying all together. And in the end, Bond loses.

  • mynameisbond007mynameisbond007 Posts: 68MI6 Agent

    I think Dan Stevens would be terrific he was superb in the Guest, idris would have been great but alas he’s too old now, Henry Cavill would be my 3rd choice but there hasn’t been a bad Bond yet so I’m sure whoever gets it will do a great job

  • Miles MesservyMiles Messervy Posts: 1,762MI6 Agent
  • caractacus pottscaractacus potts Orbital communicator, level 10Posts: 4,002MI6 Agent
    edited October 2021

    @Gassy Man this is an awesome epic post. Elsewhere another poster called the new film something like "an assault on straight white males everywhere", which I thought over the top, Because I for one don't feel assaulted and recognise CraigBond to be a specific fictional character, not a representative for an entire demographic. But you've expanded this controversial argument with great detail, rigorous academic logic, and specific examples from the five films that are all up there on the screen for us to verify.

    I think the cited examples all play out as you say, and do add up to a consistent worldview much different from the ClassicBonds. Whether there is a political agenda to undermine (or in your words deconstruct) straight white males I think is more debatable.

    Just to pick one bit from your argument

    Gassy said:

    The UK may or may not in reality be a corrupt and dying empire, but that's not how Craig's Bonds present it. MI:6 is in constant turmoil, infiltrated by enemy agents, manipulated by traitors, unaware of any number of threatening organizations, and questioned by its own government. By No Time to Die, they're involved in clandestine efforts to develop horrible weapons of mass destruction, culminating in attacking an island outside British territorial waters and killing one of their own agents. It's not a particularly glorious representation and a pretty far cry from the competent and necessary organization present in the Connery and Moore films.

    Definitely MI6 and the British government are presented as more infallible and inherently trustworthy in the Classic Connery era films. Most analyses also explain this whole aspect of the Classic films as fantasy nostalgia, wish fullfillment for an audience who had lived through the collapse of the British Empire, at a time when headlines revealed actual Soviet moles infiltrating the government (Cambridge 5, Kim Philby, Christine Keeler etc). Le Carre and others wrote spy stories that were closer to what was actually happening, whereas Bond and SpyMania in general was acknowledged as fantasy.

    But the period where viewers could still remember the days when their country once ruled half the world is itself 60 years in the past, and the need for that sort of compensatory wish fullfillment is itself ancient history. So why tell such stories now? These 21st Century BondFilms do tell the story of a more fallible Intelligence Agency, mandated by a more fallible democratic government, in an age of rapid technological change and political uncertainty. And I posit that showing M making a mistake of this magnitude, and his hamfisted solutions to correct it, just makes for more interesting storytelling.

    Same with a more accident-prone Bond, who seems confused how to act around a woman. We already had 20 stories of the perfect superhuman anachronistic Bond, and even by Brosnan's era it all seemed stale: we already have the old good movies, why make yet more that superficially look the same but are so painfully forced? If we're going to tell yet more stories about this character and his fantasy world, how can we make these stories interesting rather than just keep remaking Thunderball? Exploring the characters' flaws and contradictions is one way to generate new interesting stories for a long running franchise, no political agenda required.

    _____________

    EDIT: I just realised this post and the one I'm replying to are in the Who do you want as the next James Bond? thread, which makes them way off-topic. But I think Gassy's post is so thoughtful and well-argued it should make as good material for further discussion, just maybe not here. Apologies to @Number24 for the digression.

  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,964MI6 Agent

    No reason to apologize. I think it was an excelent post.

  • Gassy ManGassy Man USAPosts: 2,972MI6 Agent
    edited November 2021

    Oh, wow, how'd this slip past me. Thanks for the kind words, @caractacus potts. Yes, in reply to your excellent post, I agree that making Bond and MI:6 more fallible has opened the doors to new story possibilities. I just wish they hadn't swung so far in the other direction. I truly do think it plays now like a more serious Get Smart. But it's all part of the deconstruction, which I suspect they think they're rather clever about, too.

  • Christmas TounesChristmas Tounes GloucestershirePosts: 164MI6 Agent

    Nicolas Cage would make a great 007, hope EON are reading this.

    1. Goldeneye 2. OHMSS 3. Goldfinger 4. TND 5. Octopussy 6. FYEO
    7. LALD 8. TWINE 9. Skyfall 10. AVTAK 11. CR 12. TLD 13. YOLT
    14. TMWTGG 15. Moonraker 16. TSWLM 17. Thunderball 18. FRWL
    19. Dr. No 20. DAF 21. LTK 22. DAD 23. QoS 24. Spectre 25. NTTD
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,964MI6 Agent

    Or perhaps I should reply in a more mature way?

    I don't think we should look for American movie stars in their fifties. British character actors in their thirties are probably more realistic.

  • SeanIsTheOnlyOneSeanIsTheOnlyOne Posts: 413MI6 Agent

    What you say about the way MI6 is described in the Craig era is quite relevant. I would even go further with considering it began with TWINE (M and her team seem completely overtaken by Elektra). Like if Ernst Stavro Purvis and Julius Wade had a motto to build their stories: "British Intelligence is no longer a reference, with moles and enemies who constantly stay ahead".

    I think it's much more complex than they imagine. There are new threats indeed and the world of espionage is supposed to evolve considering these threats, which doesn't necessarily means the different services are unable to respond to those issues. When I think about Olivia Mansfield and Gareth Mallory, I see incompetent people who seem totally unable to adapt and to learn from their mistakes, whereas Dench's portrayal of M in Goldeneye was superb and quite in line with both Fleming's work and Stella Rimington's tenure from 1992 to 1996 (thank you Michael France for this wonderful script by the way).

    So, if we take the time to think, we can understand running the 00 section is quite a burden given what is showed, and in some way, this deconstruction that started 20 years ago is perfectly transcribed in the Craig era. NTTD is just the conclusion of all this. Does it mean we all should approve this vision ? Absolutely not. Personally, I belong to the classic (nostalgic) fandom.

  • Gassy ManGassy Man USAPosts: 2,972MI6 Agent

    Ernst Stavro Purvis and Julius Wade, ha!

    Yes, I think attempts at showing any secret service as fallible has been happening for a while, especially in the U.S. since the Watergate era. In Bond, we could argue that there are hints of it going all the way back to Dr. No, when the driver from Government House is an assassin and Professor Dent is a No operative or On Her Majesty's Secret Service, where the young assistant to Bray reputedly was a Blofeld plant who almost gave the plot away in an apparently cut scene.

    The idea of a mole or double agent is a common trope in spy movies -- you see it all the time on TV in the 1960s, for instance, and in movies prior to Bond.

    What's different with the Craig era, though, is not just the amount but the degree of incompetence or, perhaps, setback. In some ways, it still surprises me that so few people see that Bond's nonsensical plan to return to Skyfall directly leads to her death -- which I thought was what Bond was supposed to be preventing in the first place. However, if one views this Bond arc where he often bungles his way through and ends up killed in the end by his own airstrike, then it all makes sense.

  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,964MI6 Agent

    When is the earliest IN THEORY we can hope for the next Bond actor can be made public? NTTD hasn't been released in Australia and NZ where the release date is some time in .... November, isn't it? Are there any other major markets where the movie hasn't been shown in cinemas? The DVD is out right before Christmas, just in time not to be a good gift. That's a sign, isn't it?

    NTTD has to be finished in the cinemas before a new actor can step forward. I know I'm being wildly optimistic here. I'm guessing BB and the casting people (what's her name again) has started thinking seriously about it, possibly even scribbling names om a list they lock into a safe every time they leave the room. Hopefully they'll start screentesting next year. If BB has a clear idea of whom she wants for Bond like she did with Craig, but unlike with Craig the other people involved like the idea from the start I think we we can get a name next year best case. What do you think?

  • JTBondJTBond Posts: 114MI6 Agent

    If I was in charge, which clearly I'm not, I would move quick. With a 6 year gap between Spectre and NTTD they should really be aiming for a November 2023 release for the next one. One would think during all of the delays a lot of the groundwork could have been completed to hit the ground running on the next one. Maybe announce the new Bond by April?

    I'm in the Henry Cavill camp. He would be a slam dunk commercial success for the franchise and I think would boost the market in the US.

  • Gassy ManGassy Man USAPosts: 2,972MI6 Agent

    Don't know except maybe because I recently saw The Batman trailer, but I have a strong feeling Robert Pattinson is in strong contention. I don't think they can follow the Craig era with a relative unknown, especially since No Time to Die is probably not going to do as well financially because it came out so late and then was further delayed by the pandemic.

  • James SuzukiJames Suzuki New ZealandPosts: 2,406MI6 Agent

    NTTD HAS been released in NZ.

    I have seen it 3 times in the cinema

    It came out on the 7th of October.

    Auckland and Hamilton have not seen it yet however, because they are still in lockdown


    “The scent and smoke and sweat of a casino are nauseating at three in the morning. "
    -Casino Royale, Ian Fleming
  • Royale-les-EauxRoyale-les-Eaux LondonPosts: 822MI6 Agent

    In my mind I imagine it will form the final piece of the 60th year celebrations. Why would they want to overshadow a lot of backwards looking nostalgia celebration with an announcement about the future...until the last moment? So whenever that calendar ends. Dec 2022?

  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,964MI6 Agent

    I think it's likely next year's calendar ends with December, yes. 😏

    I also agree that it's likely the next Bond actor is revealed that month IF they've signed on someone by then.

  • Royale-les-EauxRoyale-les-Eaux LondonPosts: 822MI6 Agent

    I think we all know those making these decisions run on their own calendar.

  • walther p99walther p99 NJPosts: 3,416MI6 Agent

    Whoever the next Bond is I just hope they're 6ft or over.

  • HowardBHowardB USAPosts: 2,751MI6 Agent

    Watch out for what you wish for, lots of 6ft or over geeks out there. 🙄

  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,964MI6 Agent

    It's inconcievable. I'm 6'2'' and who would ever call me a geek? 🤯

  • Christmas TounesChristmas Tounes GloucestershirePosts: 164MI6 Agent

    James Bond is dead

    'Bond will return'.. in his funeral for the pre-titles sequence of the next movie (probably 2027-2028) based on the new 'Double-O' books

    1. Goldeneye 2. OHMSS 3. Goldfinger 4. TND 5. Octopussy 6. FYEO
    7. LALD 8. TWINE 9. Skyfall 10. AVTAK 11. CR 12. TLD 13. YOLT
    14. TMWTGG 15. Moonraker 16. TSWLM 17. Thunderball 18. FRWL
    19. Dr. No 20. DAF 21. LTK 22. DAD 23. QoS 24. Spectre 25. NTTD
  • Gassy ManGassy Man USAPosts: 2,972MI6 Agent

    You'd probably be called a goon, lurch, or doofus first, but isn't Bill Gates the same height?

  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,964MI6 Agent

    No, not according to the all-knowing internet.😁

  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 21,964MI6 Agent

    🤣

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