A couple of weeks ago I went to see the new James Bond movie “The Quantum of Solace.”
I dig James…it’s a guy thing.
Agent 007 represents everything the average guy wishes he could be and maybe that’s why we love him and eagerly anticipate his next adventure. For most men, all you have to do is take the “opposite” of who you are and apply it to James. James is smooth…James is dangerous…and James always gets the girl. James shoots better than you, punches harder than you, and fucks better than you…his voice sounds better than yours, his shit smells better than yours and if James Bond snored his snoring would lullaby women to sleep instead of irritating them all night like your throat rocket does. James Bond always looks great, always looks suave and clean even after casually strolling out of a burning lair, or a chemical factory, or some other “just been blown the fuck up by James Bond” type of shit.
I could take a bath in rose pedals, cinnamon, cran-apple juice, hydrogen peroxide, cucumber melon, watermelon and a touch of Angelina Jolie sweat. After my bath I could exit the tub and put on enough baby powder to resemble Michael Jackson, then rinse it off and then apply enough Baby Oil to be shiny enough to be mistaken for Jermaine Jackson. I could then jog downstairs to the mailbox and back, lift my sleeve to smell my underarms and still smell a little body odor escaping from under my arms. James Bond on the other hand, can fight 8 to 10 henchmen simultaneously in a dirty sewer while performing an colonoscopy on a skunk and still emerge smelling like Burberry Cologne; and herein lies the point, our fascination with James Bond is based purely on fantasy and the belief that we can be Bond-Like, when in reality, not even Bond can be Bond-Like.
Within the first 20 minutes of The Quantum of Solace, James should have been killed at least 9 times. He falls 7 stories during a fistfight and emerges “clean” without so much as a slight limp. After all these years of throwing punches and kicking asses shouldn’t James have developed at least a slight limp by now, or mild tendinitis in his knee…I mean damn…not even a little athletes foot? After all these movies couldn’t at least one chick shoot down his advances with a not so subtle, “Nah I’m cool.” Shouldn’t James have gotten a super secret agent message from M or Moneypenny letting him know that “the test came back positive and it’s definitely Chlamydia.” James Bond gets to do his job “his way.” He gets to drop bombs on whomever he feels like, he gets to tell intelligence agencies to kiss his ass cause he has “revenge to get,” and he never has to personally take responsibility or answer for his choices…damn…James Bond is sounding a lot like George W. Bush. Which brings me to my next point…
We have already established that Joe Sixpack or has no shot of being the next Double O Agent, yet despite the fact that Joe’s chances are slim, slim is better than zero, which is exactly the chance Jamal 40 Ounce has. A year ago on my weekly podcast I stated boldly that, “you will see a Black President before you see a Black James Bond.”
Unfortunately Sean Combs has yet to receive this revelation and someone neglected to send a memo to P. Diddy stating that while spending over a million dollars on an audition tape to be the first Black James Bond is impressive, the chances of us seeing a Black Bond in our lifetime is about the same as the chances of 2Pac returning to challenge Michael Phelps for the gold in the 100 meter butterfly during the next Olympics.
Don’t get me wrong, I am about as “power to the people” as a young brotha can be, but a Black James Bond or “Double O-Negro” simply doesn’t make any sense, and that character being played by Diddy makes me want to vomit. In the world of illegal weapons, economic espionage and other types of death dealing shit, a Ciroc Vodka drinking Diddy just seems out of place. Like could you imagine the trademark bar scene. Diddy glides to the bar in the best Sean Jean tuxedo money can buy. He removes his shades and the toothpick from the corner of his mouth and says, “I’d like a Martini, shaken not stirred…shake that…shake that…shake that.”
Ultimately I am all for the crumbling of many long established racial ideas and stereotypes. I think that it is a shame that in 2008 we still have “Jackie Robinson” moments where black people are achieving “first” status, however, sometimes it is better to leave things as they are and not have any first black “fill in the blank” for the sake of having them. Do we really need to have a Black James Bond? Shouldn’t we be smart enough to develop a new spy/action franchise where the character is already black?
We can base this new Double-O Negro on my life and experiences. He should be average looking and in need of a shave 3 days out of the week. He should look like he used to be in shape back in the day but hasn’t been to the gym in a minute, so as a result he uses his skills and cunning to keep from running more than 40 yards at a time. He should be smooth, but not smooth enough to “knock it down” on the first night, but smooth enough to knock it down after a dinner date and about 3 days of exchanging text messages. At the end of each movie we should see him applying for Workers Compensation benefits and the sequels should always begin when he returns to work after getting off disability. He should get pulled over for “Driving While Black” during the most inopportune times and he should have to show two forms of I.D. when checking into those posh secret agent Hotels.
Tell me that’s not intriguing…let Kanye do the score and we are looking at box office gold…or rather in this case…platinum.
Tony Price is a writer and producer of online content and the creator of the UrbanSpin network. He produces a weekly podcast and executive produces an entire network of blogs, audio and video media. His resume includes producing content for Planet Hollywood, Bodog, and the official podcasts for the Sony Pictures films, “Little Man, Stomp the Yard, and This Christmas.”