Oh Where, Oh Where Has My 007 Gone?

Bond 25 Lashana Lynch 007As Bond 25 continues filming, news items keep sprinkling out about the production.

While onset injuries, accidents, arguments, abandoned cameos and peeping toms running around at Pinewood Studios, the latest news items has eclipsed them all in making the world of Bond Fandom take a pause and react.

The announcement that Lashana Lynch will be playing ‘007’ in Bond 25 was a like a thunderclap over the heads of Bond fans, news outlets and casual moviegoers. Many headlines made it appear that Lynch would be the new 007 replacing star Daniel Craig.

The assumption soon got taken hold that James Bond is about to be gender swapped and the future of the Bond film series would be focused on Lynch. The James Bond that has been around for nearly sixty years would be no more and the series would get a ‘Me Too’ facelift and put a woman at center stage.

Hold your horses. That ain’t happening.

The simpler and less dramatic reality is that James Bond’s agent number 007 is being held by Lynch’s Nomi while Craig’s Bond has been in retirement.

With the end of Spectre, Craig’s Bond has left Her Majesty’s Secret Service to live in the sunset with Leá Seydoux’s Madeleine Swann. With Bond’s departure there has been left an opening in the double-O agent roster – that has been filled by Lynch’s Nomi.

Bond 25 Daniel Craig Naomie Harris Lashana Lynch 007So, yeah I guess technically you could say Lynch is the new 007 – but it’s not as dramatic a game changer as those initial headlines that flooded social media made it out to be.

With that cleared up, some Bond fans are still resistant with the idea of the famed 007 number being used by anyone other than James Bond. 

I’m one of them.

The number ‘007’ is synonymous with James Bond. It has been since his creation by Ian Fleming. Every Bond film would present the lead actor ‘As Ian Fleming’s James Bond 007’. The number has been used in promotion for the films. Products, t-shirts, posters, coffee mugs, advertisements, baby onesies have all used the ‘007’ number through the years.

It’s not unreasonable that there has been a feeling of sacredness about that 007 number by fans.

This move by Eon by giving a black woman the 007 agent number, in Bond 25 right now,  also strikes as a way they’re following in step the progressive, feminist, social political messages that so many film franchises have done in recent years. And many of them that have placed sending that message first and story and character came second. As a result the film product has suffered.

I have an uneasy feeling about this and the road Eon is taking. I don’t think Bond’s 007 number should have been reassigned or given to anyone – ANYONE.

I can’t think of any reason why Lynch couldn’t have been say 005 and they created a new character from scratch, rather than making her ‘007’ and using that as a shorthand or hook for the character of Nomi. 

I also can’t see how Lynch having Bond’s old 007 agent number could be anything vital in any kind of story. 

James Bond 007 logoWhether it works or not, Eon has just guaranteed a lot of attention about Lynch’s role. Talk about it has been nonstop since it was revealed. Not all of it positive. As you probably have seen reactions to the this news about ‘a new 007’ has run the gamut from praise to hate. 

For me, this news has become another item that has me feeling uneasy about what Bond 25 will be. It didn’t instill me with any confidence or enthusiasm for the film. As of now I’m feeling like this move of giving Lynch the 007 number is gimmicky and is being done with the sole purpose of making a topical social statement. It hasn’t reenforced to me that this Bond movie sounds really interesting and something that I’ve been waiting to see.

We will see how this plays out. But when we do finally get to see Bond 25 and if ‘007 Nomi’ ends up being a poorly written character and her being ‘007’ has no significance to the story and she could have just as easily had been ‘003’, and they needn’t have touched Bond’s ‘007’ number and stirred all this up, we’ll know exactly why they decided to do this and question whether it was worth upsetting Bond fans for it.

If you want more of my thoughts on this and Bond 25, you can check out my video I did where I rambled pretty long about all this….

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6 Responses

  1. RDittmar says:

    I have been dying to see your take on this, because your last video about the disappointments of SPECTRE was the first thing that popped into my head when I heard it. In all the news reports of this, the story goes out of its way to point out how Bond is going to hit on whats-her-name and she’s going to be all sassy and “Yo’ Mamma” at him and shoot him down. My first thought about that though was again that corner they’d painted themselves into. Is Madeline supposed to be dead and that’s what frees Bond up to hit on pant-suited naval commanders? That would seem to imply a pretty short grieving period over the woman who supposedly had him retiring from the Secret Service to live with in Jamaica low these past four odd years. It would remind me of nothing so much as the pre-credit sequence to The Spy Who Shagged Me when Austin Power’s wife blows up and he start dancing around because he’s single again.

    • HapAdmin says:

      Well, all these reports and rumors we can’t trust any of them. They could be doing something completely different than what’s being reported. I did hear one theory that Madeline will be killed in the pre-credits and then we make a four-year time jump with Bond living alone in Jamaica. I guess that would allow enough of a passage of time for him to be chasing after skirts again. But then I’m left wondering – why would Bond still leave the service if the only reason he left, Madeleine is immediately killed? Who knows? I’m very curious how they go about this because this seems like it will be messy with the Spectre baggage they’re carrying into this one.

      • RDittmar says:

        Since they’ve been threatening to call this movie Shatterhand for so long, there’s always been room for speculating whether they might use some situations from You Only Live Twice. Bond starts that novel drinking heavily and slacking off work and instead of getting fired, he gets reassigned to another section and is given a new code number – 7777. I guess some of that could still work in Bond 25 if Madeline gets killed immediately. On the other hand, Barbara Broccoli claimed Bond would start the film “enjoying” himself in Jamaica. That would be a pretty strange description if we learn he had gotten himself demoted and started drinking himself to death in the wake of the love of his life getting murdered, so as you say who really knows what they’re thinking at this point.

        For what it’s worth, I have to agree with you that Eon should have given up on all this obsessive continuity long ago and just tried to write a typical Bond movie. It’s pretty telling I think that Ian Fleming himself followed up Casino Royale with Live and Let Die and the second novel doesn’t reference Casino Royale in any way. Even in subsequent novels, mentions of Vesper are very few and far between and they’re usually so fleeting that you almost have to be a scholar of Casino Royale to even spot them. If the creator of 007 himself was entirely uninterested in continuity or “making things personal” for Bond, then why should modern day fans be.

  2. Jack says:

    “…and they needn’t have touched Bond’s ‘007’ number and stirred all this up.”

    I’m not all that stirred, but rather…shaken.

  3. Henry says:

    I love the idea for several reasons:

    1. Phoebe Waller-Bridge !!!
    2. Of course they replaced him. I was so bummed that they didn’t reveal Silva to be a former 007
    3. Having her be 007 puts to rest the (ridiculous) theory that James Bond is a code name for all 007 agents
    4. It really feels that Bond has been replaced at MI6. this isn’t another 00; this IS a replacement. And that should come with emotional implications (see #1)
    5. Bond will have something to prove. Or at least, fans will want him to prove he’s still worthy.

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