James Bond, the British intelligence agent who first appeared on our screens back in 1962 in Dr No, is still smashing the box office today. There are few characters that have so successfully stood the test of time, and Bond is one of the longest-running continuous franchises ever. But why do we still love 007 so much?
- He’s a hero. James Bond is not afraid of danger. He embodies heroism for a lot of people (especially men), and this is very appealing. Bond’s heroics have a sense of freedom and power. He is self-assured, unapologetic, and confident. As humans, we all have a sense of self-doubt, but James Bond knows exactly who he is. We see Bond on the screen being very cool and confident. When measuring the success of Bond films, we can see why people like to watch him.
- He’s classy. Bond is different from other more rough-edged heroes in that he is elegant. An important part of the Bond character is his ability to wear a suit and his knowledge of cocktails. Bond is confident, knowledgeable and sophisticated. When the character was written by author Ian Fleming, Bond was infused with a uniquely British attitude, at a time when the Empire was crumbling. Bond is not just a man with a gun; he’s also a man with a perfectly tailored suit, a beautiful car, and the best drinks.
- He’s tech-savvy. One of the reasons we still love Bond for our movie nights is the gadgets. A lot of heroes brandish guns and high-tech cars, Bond is the true master of the gadget. At the time Bond was created, he was the first hero in pop culture to truly embrace technology. In a lot of sci-fi at the time, the tech was considered untrustworthy and dangerous. Bond is successful because of his technology, from jetpacks to submersible cars.
- He’s well-cast. Eight different actors have played James Bond, and each has brought their own mood to Bond while still keeping the essential character intact. Each actor has remained true to the classic mix of toughness and class that people love about the spy.
- He’s timeless. Bond stands the test of time because he has always been both of his time and above it. The core character of Bond is constant, but each actor and film adapts him to the time period, changing to meet the changing wants of the movie-going audience. Since Dr No, Bond films have changed a lot, from their starting point of adventure-spy films to being comedies in the 1970s, and the more gritty films of today. Bond changes for every generation.
The legacy of Bond is also part of his enduring success. The franchise stays popular, as the franchise has many values, such as trust, courage, and friendship, making the films stay forever popular and relevant. They are both old-fashioned, and completely timeless.
Which Bond is your favourite Bond? Which Bond film is the best one, in your opinion, and why do we still love 007 so much?