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Tandra Page 1737, De-constructing Bond

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I’m sitting on my back porch looking out over the yard as the rising sun brightens the Eastern sky.

I was reading James Bond before the movies came out. I never really warmed to Sean Connery. Mebbe it was easier to accept Connery if you never read the books. I enjoy watching Connery on screen, but he never fit my image of Bond.

Ian Fleming never gave a detailed physical description of Bond, except to describe him in the first book, “Casino Royale”, as looking like a young Hoagy Carmichael. Hoagy Carmichael had been around for a while by then. I was familiar with Hoagy Carmichael as the old guy in the television western “Laramie”. Actually, Hoagy Carmichael is best remembered as a musician. His credits include the hit song “Stardust” for which he is justifiably famous.

Years later, when I sought out a picture of Hoagy Carmichael as a young man, I immediately thought that photo was the image I had always carried in my head of James Bond. Sean Connery looks nothing like Hoagy Carmichael.

Nor did I much care for the various quips screen writers put into Connery’s mouth. That again did not measure up to my image of Bond. I paid the theatre ticket price to sit through most of the “James Bond” movies and I enjoyed them well enough. I endured the first few movies in which Roger Moore played the part, but I soon abandoned the series and never looked back. By that time Bond was a poorly executed joke and I had no time to waste on Roger Moore. I understand the Bond Films were still big Box Office, but I held the minority opinion.

In the books, Bond’s primary enemy is the Soviets and the Soviet Espionage Organization. The movies went with a fictional world wide terrorist group, possibly in the hope of selling more movie tickets in Russia. The movies continued to deteriorate, but I did not care. I was not attending any longer.

When the movie, “Casino Royale”, came on screen, I went back to the movies lured by the promise that the franchise was taking Bond back to his roots. “Casino Royale” had its moments, but a another new actor had taken the role. Daniel Craig looked more a low class street fighter. Connery did not fit my image of James Bond, but he projected the arrogant class expected of the character. I could set through a Sean Connery movie. Daniel Craig could never be James Bond!

Making matters worse, the producers decided to remove from Bond everything that made him interesting. James Bond plays Baccarat; Daniel Craig plays poker, as though he thinks he is trying out for Matt Dillon in Dodge City. Daniel Craig is was so fundamentally transformed into “everyman” he had become boring in the extreme.

Now, from what I hear, the next James Bond is planned to be so sexually confused he cannot figure which rest room to use. Sean Connery might not have been the image of James Bond I carried in my head, but there was never any doubt he knew which rest room to enter. I expect the newly revised James Bond movie will do just fine without my attendance; it will have to!

“In the fight for Liberty, you will find the most intense opposition coming at you from slaves who are comfortable in their chains!”

“They’ll know where to find me,” -Rick Blaine, “Casablanca”

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