James Bond Is Objectively The Worst Action Hero
James Bond is synonymous with style, sophistication, and ultra-cool violence. But why? We pored over every movie in the franchise and made some shocking discoveries. Not only does Bond completely fail as a spy, but he also seems so comprehensively incompetent that it's amazing he can get dressed without strangling himself with his own pants. Let's shine some light on this widely ignored pattern with the following examples. Starting with ...
Early Bond Couldn't Fight At All
There's no denying that Bond's a suave killer, but until recently, the man flopped his way through fights like a drowning sloth. Sure, when you watch the close-quarters fight with Alec Trevelyan in GoldenEye, it seems like he knows what he's doing. But for 30 years before that, it was like he was trying to commit suicide in the clumsiest way possible.
In The Living Daylights, Bond reveals his terrible attention to detail when he squares off against a weapons merchant armed with a fancy rifle sporting a protective face shield. Our hero fires directly into the bulletproof hood, pauses, sees that it does nothing, and proceeds to empty his entire clip at the exact same spot. If he was a chimpanzee, doctors would say, "It appears this ape is incapable of learning, at least in the way you or I understand it."
In The Man With The Golden Gun, he gets locked in a waist-high bear hug with a sumo wrestler. Bond has full use of his hands, and could easily execute all manner of attacks. He chooses, from an infinite number of deadly options, to clamor down the man's back and grab two healthy portions of assassin ass meat.
He turns the ass grab into a strangely effective wedgie, but he's either too winded from five seconds of ass play or too busy crafting a witticism about crushed rice balls to notice the three-foot-tall French butler dressed like a satanic kabuki baby coming up from behind. James gets whacked on the dome with a trident and is dragged to the next scene. So to sum up, the world's greatest spy went into a battle against an unarmed man, grabbed his butt, and then got one-shotted by his 80-pound friend with no peripheral vision. In what possible situation does he win a fight?
You can find similar acts of stupidity through most of 007's early years, like the time he had an awkward knife fight against history's least aggressive stabber and exploded him like an over-inflated balloon. Or the time he swung on a vine while howling like Tarzan to "sneak" past a group of hunters.
And who can forget the time he stood around awkwardly to let a pair of henchwoman kick his ass while they practiced breakdancing?
Bond's Powers Of Deduction Are Surprisingly Terrible
There's no big differences between James Bond and your run-of-the-mill detective. Take away the guns, gadgets, karate, and crotch rot, and he's basically a gumshoe with a drinking problem. Unlike most detectives, however, James has an issue with quietly gathering information.
In Tomorrow Never Dies, Bond goes undercover as a banker to find a connection between media baron Elliot Carver and the sinking of a British ship. They meet at a black tie event, and the game of cat and mouse begins ...
... and lasts roughly one minute.
That's when James outright asks whether Carver's broadcasting satellites could "manipulate the course of governments, or people, or even a ship." Everyone immediately IDs him as a secret agent. He might as well have said, "Does anyone here know the evil satellite plan? I'm simply curious as a banker."
To be a good investigator, you should really know how to investigate things, which is something Bond never got the hang of. He's somewhere between "slow" and "very lucky sleepwalker." To see the worst of his deductive prowess, watch Die Another Day. In it, he takes an unreasonably long time to determine that the mysterious Gustav Graves is the North Korean colonel he fought in the opening sequence. He's unable to deduce the "shocking" twist despite being slapped in the face with evidence, like Gustav's connection to a DNA-altering hospital, the fact that most of his staff consists of the colonel's old buddies, or simply all the weirdly cryptic things he keeps saying. Bond is always 40-50 minutes behind every other character and the entire audience.
Then there are the two Bond girls in that film. One openly works for Graves and joined MI6 around the same time Bond suspected there might be a mole in the organization. Surprise! She's a double agent. The other kills a bunch of henchmen in broad daylight, then evades arrest by cliff-diving into a speedboat. Yeah, it turns out she's a spy too, you colossal jackass. For 55 years, Bond has literally never met someone who wasn't a super spy or supervillain, and he's been surprised every single time.
007's brain doesn't even seem to have the same life-preserving reflexes a toddler would have. In Dr. No, he grabs an electrified vent cover in his jail cell, never considering that the super genius holding him prisoner might have booby-trapped the obvious exit. He seems to be very famous, yet his idea of subtle is walking into a casino without a disguise and announcing his real name to everyone. And one time, this crazy fucker dove face-first into a spinning propeller blade on his own accord.
Bond Constantly Lets People Sneak Up On Him And Has A Glass Skull
Every hero needs a weakness. Unfortunately, Bond's is that he can never hear anyone behind him, and any impact of any kind to the back of the head renders him unconscious. Major villains and nameless henchmen alike take advantage of Bond's built-in design flaw using whatever's in reach. Seriously, you could take him out with a handful of pudding while wearing tap shoes.
Despite the huge problems it creates for James, he doesn't do a damn thing to prevent the exploitation of his cranial soft spot. He never asks Q for a pair of mirrored sunglasses, he never thinks to do an occasional spin ... Mr. Kidd and Mr. Wint in Diamonds Are Forever prove that any idiot can take out 007 by badly pretending to not be bad guys and waiting for him to walk right past.
Bond had to walk past them, so he knew they were standing there, but for some reason, he didn't bother turning his head before they put a new dent in it with a funeral urn. And if stealth isn't your brand of vodka, not to worry! You can be in his line of sight and walk right up and club him on the head like he's a peaceful islander greeting Christopher Columbus.
Over the course of his film career, James has been knocked unconscious at least 17 eyeball-dislocating times. Racking up this many concussions isn't something you laugh about over a martini. This type of head trauma leads to slurred speech, loss of cognitive functions, and loss of balance and coordination -- extremely bad symptoms for a super suave spy with access to the world's most advanced weapons. Although honestly, it does explain a few things.
Bond Keeps Leaving Deadly Gadgets In The Field
Bond often has to ditch his multi-million-dollar super cars with a gang of henchmen on his tail, meaning the trained killers chasing him now have access to an Aston Martin that fires surface-to-air missiles.
History has shown us all the fun ways spies and soldiers kept vital information out of enemy hands, from cyanide pills to shredding all evidence linking them to acts of espionage. And despite what the movies would have you believe, real-life spies are usually told to destroy their tech if they're in danger of being compromised. James Bond will drive his super car into an Avis and leave it for some random Kevin to find.
How is Bond allowed to throw away his killer toys like an erratic child? Is there a team of cranky intern spies that follows him around and disarms all his torpedoes and sea mines? He leaves laser watches lying around like they're iPhone chargers.
Here's a fun fact: During his career, 007 has been issued two guns that would shoot only after they scanned his palm, which was a great idea, because he lost both of them. They are investing in all this advanced technology just to keep people from using James Bond's misplaced weapons. And for what? His enemies already have their own guns, and any of them can take him out with a vase or a judo chop or a sturdy-thighed prostitute. Put a pass code on his dick if you want to help him do his job better.
Bond Can't Think And Drive
Bond is inarguably an alcoholic. Combine that with his many skull fractures, and you have a man who should definitely not be on the road. You might remember Bond's mission in The Man With The Golden Gun, wherein he learns that a female agent has been locked in the trunk of a car driven by professional assassin and kickass name-haver Francisco Scaramanga. Fortunately, Scaramanga has no idea he's being followed. Unfortunately, this is how Bond drives when trying to subtly tail him:
It doesn't go well. Bond is immediately spotted, and a wild chase ensues as Scaramanga playfully screws with him.
The villain finally escapes completely by executing a shocking maneuver that Bond can't follow: crossing a bridge.
But like in a lot of Bond sequences, James suddenly goes from ridiculously incompetent to outrageously awesome, and regains ground on Scaramanga by corkscrew-jumping the car over a river in arguably one of the sweetest goddamn stunts in movie history. So maybe we can forgive him for being a clown for the first ten minutes of that chase, but it's hard to do that when he does shit like this:
That's a scene from Goldfinger wherein Bond plows straight into a brick wall after a pair of angry headlights appear in his mirror. HIS MIRROR. The man is so confused by reflections that he takes a hard left turn while speeding down an alley. AN ALLEY. And God forbid Bond has to concentrate on a slowly parachuting assassin and the road:
Normally, we don't see 007 as a terrible driver because he "wins" nearly every chase. But if you stop paying attention right before he slams on the brakes and winks at the camera, you see that everything leading up to that moment is an absolute dumpster fire. If he was a 15-year-old girl with a learner's permit, Bond's driving instructor would call him "The drunkest fucking 15-year-old girl I've ever seen."
Bond Is Dangerously Spiteful Toward People Who Annoy Him
If you happen to trigger Bond's vengeful side by going after his friends or loved ones, be prepared to either be tossed down an industrial chimney or set on fire. And if you rudely mistake him for a hotel valet, he will take time out of bankrupting terrorists to wreck your car. He doesn't care what international crisis is unfolding -- James Bond does not take shit from service workers.
In Die Another Day, James watches a rich asshole pull a gun on a waiter. Later he craters the guy's face and dumps his unconscious (possibly dead) body into a wheelchair. He does all this in full view of a woman who has no reason to believe she isn't witnessing a murder, all because he needs a boarding pass to a private island.
They gave a license to kill to a man with the temperament of a jilted prom date. You don't even have to be a bad person to wind up on Bond's shit list. Just ask the cops from Live And Let Die. 007 burns down a drug lab and goes on a destructive boat chase that attracts a small army of police officers. Without identifying himself as an agent, he leads them all into a massive pileup and vanishes. It's only through blind luck that none of them die. He then doubles back to the cops who were trying to arrest him, but not to make amends or explain the situation. No, he does it to see their humiliated, frustrated faces after they find out he's MI6 and therefore cannot be arrested. Haha, fuck you, workaday civil servants understandably confused by the situation!
So to recap, Bond pulls rank solely to humiliate a bunch of guys he's never met, all because they had the audacity to risk their lives trying to prevent a war between drug dealers and a rampaging lunatic. You really stuck it to those assholes, James!
Due to his lack of a social media presence, very little is known about Quinton Darby. We believe that he is an immortal being who slithers into our dimension with the sole purpose of feeding his insatiable hunger for movies and excreting internet comedy articles for our enjoyment. Perhaps, with time, we can learn more about this mysterious creature.
It's easier to look like a spy than to be one, we guess. Try dressing like one to start.
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For more, check out 22 Unseen Repercussions Of The James Bond Universe and Why Sony Pulling The Plug On 007 Is The Humane Thing To Do.
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