Posted by: 4pack | October 12, 2008

“Ideal Shape” Update: Ian Fleming’s Original “James Bond” Was Not A Role Model

AS MUCH AS WE TREASURE 007 ON THIS BLOGSITE, THE ORIGINAL JAMES BOND WAS NOT IN IDEAL SHAPE NOR DID HE HONOR OUR MANTRA OF EATING WHOLESOME FOODS…HE REFLECTED IAN FLEMING’S TIMES IN THE 1950’S WHERE SMOKING AND DRINKING WERE THE NORM…READ VERY INTERESTING WRITE-UP BELOW….

 

http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/film/article4907816.ece

James Bond, epitome of style and rugged masculinity. Or is he? When Daniel Craig rebooted the role, purists congratulated the producers for returning to the darker, more complex character of the novels. So they had, to a degree. Yet they overlooked certain other aspects of the literary Bond. Perhaps wisely.

CAN BOND AFFORD HIS EXTRAVAGANT LIFESTYLE?

When double-0-ing, he’s on expenses. When he isn’t, he has to slum it on his salary, plus a small private income. Moonraker (1955) quotes the combined figure as being £2,500 a year, which in today’s money is about £43,000. Not surprisingly, Bond complains of having “not quite enough”, but how exactly can he afford “his comfortable flat in the plane-tree’d square off the King’s Road”, the vodka martinis and the annual service on his Aston Martin’s ejector seat? On tick?

BOND’S EATING HABITS

Bond kicks off each day with an artery-hardening cooked breakfast, courtesy of his housekeeper, May. When travelling, he insists on his own-recipe scrambled eggs. The short story 007 in New Yorksays this includes half a pack of butter and double cream. Otherwise, Bond subsists on “grilled soles, oeufs cocotte and cold roast beef with potato salad”.

He loathes fresh fruit and vegetables, spurning the BMA’s recommended five a day. Thunderball records him as being overweight, out of condition and with a blood pressure of 160/90. Most doctors would recommend lifelong medication.

BOND’S DRINK PROBLEM

He drinks at least half a bottle of spirits a day when off duty. In From Russia with Love, while flying to Istanbul, he puts away “two excellent Americanos”, two ouzos, two dry martinis and half a bottle of claret (a good 16 units). Astonishingly, on landing, he manages to walk down the plane’s steps unaided. Even on duty, he still likes a snifter or two. In Thunderball, he drinks a double bourbon, two double martinis and half a bottle of vintage Bollinger, then goes on a secret scuba-diving operation with Felix Leiter. How does he manage to swim in a straight line?

BOND’S SMOKING

Between 60 and 70 a day — a special Balkan and Turkish mixture. Assuming a 16-hour day, that’s one every 13 minutes. Such a compulsive, unhealthy habit doesn’t make for a rapid getaway. And, as these cigarettes have a rather distinctive, cloying smell, so too would Bond.

HOW ATTRACTIVE IS HE TO WOMEN?

Fleming describes him as looking like the pianist Hoagy Carmichael, albeit with a cruel expression and a 3in scar down his right cheek. No offence to the late Carmichael, but the man was never exactly a babe magnet. And in Casino Royale, Le Chiffre thoroughly mashes Bond’s scrotum with a carpet-beater.

IS BOND ANY GOOD IN BED?

Sadly, the station chief Kerim Bey, who informed Bond that he’d tell him about a unique Turkish technique guaranteed to satisfy women, is killed before he can impart the knowledge. So when, in From Russia with Love, Bond is secretly filmed having sex with Tatiana Romanova, Rosa Klebb’s minions manage to get the whole thing on just one reel. Assuming standard 8mm Kodachrome at 16 frames per second, that’s less than 4½ minutes, foreplay (if any) included. Few Bond girls ever hang around for second helpings, which could be significant.

BOND IS A CRUSHING BORE

His only interests, outside of smoking and drinking, are golf, cards and his vintage Bentley — he’s described as often daydreaming about tuning its engine. You probably wouldn’t want to be stuck beside the man on a long-haul flight.

So, the man of women’s dreams? Of M’s dreams, even? Not according to an anonymous MI6 spokesman: “Obviously, we can’t comment on exactly who we do employ, but I can say that the character described in the books would probably find great difficulty getting a job with us as a cleaner, let alone a field agent.”

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