“Take the bloody shot” — it’s time to kill James Bond

Commander James Bond, 1968–2019

The Eon James Bond film timeline is quite simple: 1962-2002 and 2006-present. Daniel Craig is the only Bond actor to have a separate timeline to the other five who have portrayed 007.

George Lazenby’s Bond (1969) was the same character as Sean Connery’s (1962-67 & 1971). In the Australian’s only outing as 007, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969), it is drilled into audience that it’s the same person. The titles sequence shows clips from the previous Connery films, and the new 007 is seen looking through his souvenirs from previous missions, while we hear bursts of instrumentals of songs from these outings. An early draft of Majesty’s even featured Bond undergoing plastic surgery to explain the transition.

On to Roger Moore (1973-85) — still the same person. Bond’s marriage from Majesty’s is referenced in both The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) and For Your Eyes Only (1981). Timothy Dalton’s Bond (1987-89) was also seen to become unsettled at the unintentional reminder of his deceased wife, by Felix Leiter’s bride, Della, in Licence to Kill (1989).

All of these references work. It wasn’t until the twentieth Bond film, Die Another Day, where references went from happy nostalgia to being winced at. It was the 40th anniversary of the James Bond films. One or two subtle references would have been nice, but not 20+. Much like the CGI and corny dialogue, the producers should have reigned in the in-your-face nods to previous Bond films. Yet it’s still reinforcing the notion that Connery, Lazenby, Moore, Dalton and Brosnan all played the same character.

The slate was wiped clean with Craig’s debut film, Casino Royale (2006), and the proceeding films (2008-2015) have been a story arc. Daniel Craig’s Bond has never been married, unlike the other five. Craig is the only Bond we have seen having to earn his 00 status. Connery’s and Lazenby’s Bonds faced Blofeld, but he wasn’t 007’s foster brother. So why not kill Bond? It would complete Craig’s arc and be the perfect way to start a new timeline.

Connecting the next Bond actor with Craig’s Bond would be jarring. Killing 007 would give the producers a creative licence to do things that we’ve never seen before. A new chapter chronicling Bond’s childhood to his stint in The Royal Navy would be great. There’s potential to tell some interesting stories there: the death of his parents, his schooling years, his relationship with his foster parent and foster brother, Franz, who we were introduced to in SPECTRE.

This is the chance to make Bond go darker than ever before. The possibilities of who killed Bond and why are endless. It could be an explosive finale to Daniel Craig’s tenure James Bond.

It’s time to kill James Bond. But not for good. James Bond always returns.

“At any cost — any — Bond must die” — Dr. Kananga, Live and Let Die

Copyright © 2018 J W Emery Ltd. All rights reserved.

4 Replies to ““Take the bloody shot” — it’s time to kill James Bond”

  • Fully agree with you on this. The Craig era is already set apart from the previous 40 years, so killing his Bond would round that off nicely, and put it in it’s own self-contained world. Even if it is an ambiguous ending, questioning if Bond is actually dead or not, that would still wrap up Craig’s tenure nicely, and leave it open for the next lot (be it a new Bond, a new production team, or a new studio) to do with the property as they wish.

  • Nice article. I think most fans would be comfortable with killing Bond providing it doesnt mean killing off the franchise. We still want more films. I like the idea of making the Craig films a seperate story line. Gives the opportunity of exploring other areas of his life. The navy days could be good. How he came to the attention of the Secret Service as a potential recruit.

    PS. Thanks for running the group.

  • a fitting end….Craig killed the franchise. Before him, continuity mattered little. It was his desire to turn Bond into some Shakespearean tragedy filled with backstory angst and Bourne-like realism that charted a course that can’t be easily undone. From Connery to Lazenby to Moore to Dalton to Brosnan, the franchise was always about entertainment and you never looked back. Now its a comic-book franchise where everything has to tie together….see Marvel and the knots they have tied themselves in. I’ve been reading and watching Bond for 40+ years and can honestly say I could care less about the future of the franchise. And I never dreamed I’d feel that way. Thanks Daniel Craig.

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