Andrew Roberts: What Have They Done to James Bond?Roundup: Pop Culture & the Arts ... Movies, Documentaries and Museum Exhibits
Mr. Roberts, a historian, is the author most recently of "The Storm of War: A New History of the Second World War" (Harper, 2011).
James Bond, of all people, has turned metrosexual. "Skyfall," the 23rd movie in the genre—directed by Sam Mendes and opening in theaters Friday—has somehow turned the all-encompassing man's man into a kinder, gentler Bond.
There are still the casual killings and car chases, of course, but Bond has been shorn of that subtly menacing blend of sadism and political incorrectness that set him apart from Jason Bourne, Ethan Hunt and all the other identikit espionage heroes. By making Bond less personally dangerous, and even hinting at a bisexual past, the guardians of his brand are undermining precisely what has made that brand so special. This is all the more astonishing since the first 22 Bond films cost $1.55 billion to make but made $10.41 billion at the box office.
As a literary character in 12 novels by Ian Fleming, Bond first appeared during Winston Churchill's premiership. Now in his sixth silver-screen incarnation, played by Daniel Craig, he still has the capacity to thrill. But while mincing around in Tom Ford suits rather than Savile Row, with three buttons on his cuff rather than a gentleman's four, and drinking Heineken beer instead of martinis? Above all, can he long escape his upper-class background—schooling at Eton and Cambridge, service in the Royal Navy?...
comments powered by Disqus
- Rubio Surges Into Second In New Hampshire
- Branstad Says Cruz Ran ‘Unethical’ Campaign
- Christie Highlights Santorum’s Endorsement of Rubio
- Portman Comes Out Against Trade Deal
- Megyn Kelly Gets a Book Deal
- A Big List of the Bad Things Clinton Has Done
- An Unambiguous Sign Sanders Won Last Night’s Debate
- Still Friends at the End
- Quote of the Day
- Trump Still Leads as Clinton Slips
- Clinton Can’t Shake Image as Wall Street’s Friend
- Maddow Doesn’t See Sanders Winning
- Why Does the Media Still Shield Chelsea Clinton?
- Bush Jokes His Mother May Have Abused Him
- Rubio Closes the Gap in New Hampshire
- Transcribed Document: Soviet Politburo Discussed CIA Billion Dollar Spy Adolf Tolkachev
- Pentagon withholds Iraq War photos showing detainee abuse
- These Rebels Have Amassed A Library From Syria’s Ruins
- Was 1916 fire at Canadian Parliament set by German saboteur?
- United Nations Calls On U.S. To Pay African Americans Reparations For Slavery
- Juan Cole says America’s inclination to turn to the military started with Manifest Destiny
- History Jobs Drop
- Paul Krugman gives credence to Robert J. Gordon's pessimism about American economic growth
- Harvard President Drew Faust Condemns Free Tuition Proposal from Outsider Overseers Ticket
- Andrew Roberts says Trump is the Mussolini of America with double the vulgarity