Thursday, 6 January 2011

This Is BBC Bond

Because the BBC spends all its money on people like Bruce Forsyth rather than on trumpeting the amazing stuff buried inside its unfeasibly brilliant website, it falls to me to tell the world about the online Archive - specifically, the James Bond Collection.
The BBC Archive collects broadcasts from its 90 year history about various subjects and dumps them in a dusty corner of the internet for obsessive nerds to pore over at their leisure. The James Bond Collection is obviously its most exciting feature, the kind of thing that would give your basic Bond fan a week-long erection. I'm an advanced Bond fan so it only provided me with four or five days of uninterrupted tumescence but that was quite enough thank you very much.

There are currently fifteen separate radio and TV clips from between 1958 and 2008 in this collection, totalling over five hours of Bondeliciousness. And it's not the same old guff you've already seen on the DVDs - there are clips here even the most socially unstable geek (hello) probably hasn't seen before. Here are just some of the treats within:

Pillow-faced legend Barry Norman presents his report from Brazil on the production of Moonraker. Bazza's film opens with some fantastically politically incorrect close ups of bikini-clad tits for no reason whatsoever, before he spends far too long asking Roger Moore if this will be his final Bond (he went on to make three more), attempts to get interview blood from a stony Cubby Broccoli and awkwardly over-compliments Bond girl Lois Chiles. You could do that in the 1970s and still be a national treasure.

None other than Sean Connery introduces this historically interesting but actually quite tedious piece in which luxuriantly-moustachioed gun nut expert Geoffrey Boothroyd goes on at great length and in worrying detail about Bond's choice of shooter before blowing holes in a defenceless tin of tomato juice. Worth watching just to see Boothroyd point out the errors in Connery's bizarrely inaccurate introduction, and to boggle at Sir Sean's insistence on pronouncing 'Fleming' as 'Flemmen'.

Back Row: David Arnold (Radio 4, 2003)
I nearly popped a sprocket when I discovered this. First off, The Incredible Suit interviewee and hero Joe Cornish interviews The Incredible Suit interviewee and hero David Arnold, who demonstrates his encyclopaedic knowledge of Bond music history and explains his approach to scoring Die Another Day. Then the show asks a selection of experts what the next step in the franchise should be - Cornish proposes a micro-scooter chase through Bluewater shopping centre while Mark Gatiss suggests calling the next Bond girl Mahogany Wasp or Kingdom Come. Fascinating, funny and a genuinely exciting find.

All of which would be flambasmic enough but the BBC Archive has bags more stuff like this on just about every subject in the known universe. So the next time some whining imbecile complains about the licence fee, sit them in front of a computer, go to and smash their face repeatedly into the keyboard until they get the P key jammed in their eye.


  1. Amen.

    And a scooter chase through bluewater? Superb!
    My brother was thrown out of there in his late 30s for borrowing our mum's mobility scooter and doing donuts outside the Apple shop. Apple donuts, if you will.

  2. Bond detects an archive intrusion by a bloghead.

    Bond: Forgive me father, for I have been blogged.
    Q: That's putting it mildly, 007.

    Bond: Q, I'll need a new incredible suit. Someone stuck a knife through my coat.
    Q: They missed you, what a pity.

    Later in Westminster.

    Bond: Good morning, TIS. ACME pollution inspection. We're cleaning up the world, we thought this blog was a suitable starting point.

    TIS asks why Bond likes Bruce Forsyth.

    Bond: You forgot the first rule of media, give the people what they want!

    Bond takes TIS for a sniffter.

    Bond: Vodka Martini.
    Bartender: Shaken or stirred?
    Bond: Do I look like I give a damn?

    Bond asks TIS why he blogs.

    Bond: I think something is driving you. And I think I'll never find out what that is.

    Bond: (TIS and the others blog.) Can I offer an opinion? I really think you people should find a better blog to meet.

    (apologies to a bunch of Bond scriptwriters)

  3. A charming radio chat between Ian Fleming and Raymond Candler can also be heard.

  4. Fantastic, sorry I'd missed this post up to until now.

    The Barry Norman/Moonraker VT is gold: a caption explaining who Roger Moore is after he's been introduced three times and on screen for a minute; Richard Kiel chatting humourlessly about beds; and the somewhat ironic fact that Lewis Gilbert looks just like Ken Loach.