When Alan Moore Talked About James Bond's Misogyny… In 1986

There has been considerable discussion after Cary Fukunaga, the director the new James Bond film No Time To Die, called that Sean Connery's version of the character was "basically" a rapist. Is it that controversial? It would hardly be the first time. Fukunaga asked The Holywood Reporter "Is it Thunderball or Goldfinger where basically Sean Connery's character rapes a woman? She's like 'No, no, no,' and he's like, 'Yes, yes, yes.' That wouldn't fly today." Bond executive producer Barbara Broccoli added "I think people are coming around – with some kicking and screaming – to accepting that stuff is no longer acceptable. Thank goodness. Bond is a character who was written in 1952 and the first film came out in 1962." Thunderball contains a scene in which Bond harshly kisses a nurse who has refused his advances., then that he will only keep quiet about information that could cost her job if she has sex with him. "I suppose my silence could have a price," he says. Bond then pushes her into a sauna and takes off her clothes, to her protestations. While in Goldfinger, Bond is seen to force himself on Honor Blackman's Pussy Galore in a haybarn, something that Ian Fleming saw as "curing" her of being a lesbian.

Which brought me in mind to Alan Moore's introduction to Batman: The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller and Klaus Janson written in 1986. Talking about fictional heroes with legacies, he wrote "As our political and social consciousness continues to evolve, Alan Quartermain stands revealed as just another white imperialist out to exploit the natives and we begin to see that the overriding factor in James Bond's psychological makeup is his utter hatred and contempt for women. Whether most of us would prefer to enjoy the above-mentioned gentlemen's adventures without spoiling things by considering the social implications is beside the point. The fact remains that we have changed, along with our society, and that were such characters created today they would be subject to the most extreme suspicion and criticism."

And that was back in 1986, the year before Timothy Dalton debuted as Bond. Alan Moore would go on to write Alan Quartermain in the League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen as well as introducing a version of James Bond, Jimmy Bond, as an antagonist to the League –  and Mina Harker especially. A confrontation that would have an impact on the entire world in future books…

When Alan Moore Talked About James Bond In 1987
The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen: The Black Dossier by Alan Moore and Kevin O'Neill

 

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About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
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