From dinner jackets and gadgets to casino plaques and a golden gun, the legend of James Bond has been preserved for ever in its archive, run by the peerless Archive Director Meg Simmonds. Nick Foulkes gets up close and personal with some of Meg’s precious relics to tell the cultural story of Ian Fleming’s ageless secret agent.
Scaramanga (Christopher Lee) and James Bond (Roger Moore) in The Man with the Golden Gun. (Courtesy of Eon Productions)

A highly contagious mystery virus with the sinister name Covid-19 originates in the heart of China. It spreads swiftly. Conspiracy theorists rush to the conclusion that a Chinese bioweapon has been unleashed on the world. With frightening rapidity the virus races around the globe. The death toll mounts. Stock markets tumble. Governments panic. Public order threatens to collapse. The world teeters on the brink…

Time for Daniel Craig — muscular upper body bulging through the close-fitting Tom Ford dinner jacket, and Omega watch glimpsed on the wrist — to perform a handbrake turn in the latest offering from the beleaguered British motor manufacturer Aston Martin and leap to the rescue. Hectic action ensues at casinos, on beaches, up mountains and in sundry exotic locations around the world; by now Bond’s air miles account must be so bloated it would be no surprise to learn that Greta Thunberg has put a contract out on him… A starting point for Bond No.26, working title ‘No Time to Fly’. With the help of a few nifty gadgets, a squirt of Q-department hand sanitiser, some breathtaking action sequences, and a script seasoned with a judicious sprinkling of MeToo-appropriate millennial witticisms courtesy of Phoebe Waller-Bridge, the day is saved. Order returns, stock markets soar, and the 25th James Bond film does not need to be postponed…


    September 2021


    Also read