James Bond May Have Been Named After ... A Church?
While we all wait for No Time To Die to finally be released via theaters or streaming or directly to Peloton bikes ...
... at least there's still plenty of archaic James Bond trivia for us to enjoy. For example, it turns out that the character famous for binge drinking, casual murder, and even more casual sex may have been named after ... a church?
Yes, there used to be a St. James Bond United Church in Toronto. While you might expect that the church would offer vodka martini sacraments and hymns that were just sick bass riffs, it actually got its name long before the Bond franchise was a thing. The church was an amalgamation of two other churches named after St. James and Bond Street, respectively.
So how could a random Canadian house of worship influence the creation of an English superspy?
Bond author Ian Fleming spent two weeks living in Toronto back in 1942 while attending Camp X, a super-secret spy-training facility just outside the city. Apparently, Fleming failed one of his big tests; he was given a loaded gun and told to kill an enemy agent in a downtown hotel. The "agent" was actually "a trained instructor who would disarm Fleming, ideally before being shot." Unlike his cold-blooded protagonist, Fleming "couldn't go through with it."
While in Toronto, Fleming lived on Avenue Rd., just down the street from St. James Bond Church, which he would have had to pass every day. Officially, Fleming claimed that the name "James Bond" was cribbed from the author of an ornithological reference book. But it seems like too big a coincidence that Fleming spent even a small portion of his formative spy years down the street from a building with the name "James Bond" prominently displayed out front.
The author of a book about Camp X believes that: "It was a subliminal thing, as he was at the camp and putting his thoughts together about this agent, that all these things came together." No word yet on whether any nude golden women or aggressive bowler hat men were hanging around the neighborhood at the time.
Top Image: MGM