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 Did SKYFALL Occur *Before* DR. NO?
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randall 
"I like to watch."

NYC, USA

Posted - 04/06/2013 :  22:54:12  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
ATTENTION BOND FANS!


benj and I have been trading emails over this issue ever since he was here a couple weeks ago and I mentioned my theory. He was skeptical and remains so. So I thought I'd throw the issue out to the Big Brains of fwfr. Let me summarize the positions as briefly as I can.

randall: SKYFALL occurs before DR. NO because:


1) At the beginning of the first Daniel Craig film, CASINO ROYALE [his second, QUANTUM OF SOLACE, is a direct sequel], Bond has not yet been promoted to double-0 status in the b&w-flashback cold opening, and even when we arrive at the present day, it's clear this designation is new to him.

2) When Felix Leiter, here played by Jeffrey Wright, appears in CASINO, he has to introduce himself to Bond. In DR. NO, Jack Lord appeared to be Sean Connery's old friend. [Or am I remembering that wrong?]

3) At the end of SKYFALL, Moneypenny retires from field work, which we've seen her do the whole film, to a desk job in M's outer office. Yet in DR. NO, she's right there at the desk.

4) As SKYFALL wraps up, we have a male M, a young Q [remember that Q "later" gave up his position to John Cleese, who showed up as a late-middle-aged man], and a clearly experienced 007. Ready to go for DR. NO.

Note that it doesn't matter which actor plays any part. We're only talking about the characters.

benj: That doesn't hold up, because:


1) Why is Pierce Brosnan's M the same as Craig's? This wouldn't matter -- remember, no fair calling out a change in actors -- except that in CASINO, Bond [Craig] reveals that M is the first initial of a female name [he doesn't have time to blurt it out]. This is all fine until you remember that Judi Dench was also M "earlier," in the Brosnan era, by which time the female M should have been dead [c.f., SKYFALL].

2) How did the SKYFALL Bond unearth the GOLDFINGER car, complete with license plate? From a benj email: how come Bond has the car from Goldfinger (could be wrong on the specific film)- right down to the correct number plate- stored away in a garage if Goldfinger hasn't happened yet? Just to further kick holes in your theory, the car is thoroughly destroyed by the end of Skyfall, meaning, unless Bond has the car painstakingly rebuilt, it no longer exists by the time Goldfinger happens. Oh, and when Connery first got the car he was given it by Q- it wasn't already in Bond's possession.

3) As for Felix Leiter, maybe that's a code name to indicate the American agent, so each new "Felix" would have to introduce himself, and they just didn't show most of them.

benj thinks the producers of SKYFALL were trying to have their cake and eat it too by making parts of the story circular, in honor of Bond's 50th anniversary, but finding themselves unable to escape several little details.

But...what do YOU think?


P.S. The only reason I can even bring this up before a Bond-fan par excellence like benj is that I have spent the last few months watching each of the 22 Danjaq films in order. It was exhilarating, both to see changing fashion and technological sophistication [I felt like Rod Taylor in THE TIME MACHINE] and also to realize that there's a classic Bond formula, and as long as Eon can continue to deliver, this series still has plenty of room to run.

Edited by - randall on 04/06/2013 23:18:36

benj clews 
"...."

United Kingdom

Posted - 05/06/2013 :  00:25:26  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Oh, and another problem I thought of...

In Skyfall we're made all too aware that Bond is getting a bit long in the tooth. Which seems odd, when you consider he was just starting out merely two films prior (just how old and decrepid are MI6 recruiting their agents?), unless a decade or so has passed between Quantum and Skyfall.

Regardless, this would mean that if Bond is getting past it in Skyfall... quite how old and is he after the 20-odd films that follow THAT? And why isn't his advancing age mentioned again until the later Brosnan years?

Or are we also ignoring age as well as actor? (Which I don't think we can because, whilst the actor changing is an unavoidable problem of such a long running series, having a character not taking the hits as well as they used to is a conscious decision on the part of the storytellers)

My feeling is still that Danjaq wanted to go all Batman Begins on Bond but were worried they'd lose a lot of their fanbase if they officially said all the films prior were taking part in an alternate Bond timeline to the Craig Bond. Hence, they've reinvented/ reborn key characters but we still end up getting familiar motifs from the old films thrown in to show they aren't *really* throwing out the old films.
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randall 
"I like to watch."

NYC, USA

Posted - 05/06/2013 :  01:00:37  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by benj clews

Oh, and another problem I thought of...

In Skyfall we're made all too aware that Bond is getting a bit long in the tooth. Which seems odd, when you consider he was just starting out merely two films prior (just how old and decrepid are MI6 recruiting their agents?), unless a decade or so has passed between Quantum and Skyfall.

Regardless, this would mean that if Bond is getting past it in Skyfall... quite how old and is he after the 20-odd films that follow THAT? And why isn't his advancing age mentioned again until the later Brosnan years?

Or are we also ignoring age as well as actor? (Which I don't think we can because, whilst the actor changing is an unavoidable problem of such a long running series, having a character not taking the hits as well as they used to is a conscious decision on the part of the storytellers)

My feeling is still that Danjaq wanted to go all Batman Begins on Bond but were worried they'd lose a lot of their fanbase if they officially said all the films prior were taking part in an alternate Bond timeline to the Craig Bond. Hence, they've reinvented/ reborn key characters but we still end up getting familiar motifs from the old films thrown in to show they aren't *really* throwing out the old films.


Not old necessarily, just beaten up by [Moneypenny's] shot on the train. He's favoring that right-shoulder injury through the whole film, but that's a sniper's bullet, not arthritis. The SKYFALL bad guys do not beat Bond in foot chases by outrunning him, but by cheating.
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benj clews 
"...."

United Kingdom

Posted - 05/06/2013 :  09:02:42  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by randall

Not old necessarily, just beaten up by [Moneypenny's] shot on the train. He's favoring that right-shoulder injury through the whole film, but that's a sniper's bullet, not arthritis. The SKYFALL bad guys do not beat Bond in foot chases by outrunning him, but by cheating.



Well, I'll have to watch it again to get all the references to Bond's advancing age, but I'm pretty sure they're there. Not to mention that Bond actually *failed* his physical assessment- that can't be all down to a shoulder injury surely?
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randall 
"I like to watch."

NYC, USA

Posted - 05/06/2013 :  10:35:41  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The other thing we haven't mentioned that speaks against my theory is Bond's obvious affection for M, how grief-stricken he is by her fate, and the lengths he goes through to protect her [even though you can argue that she's treated him like shit the whole picture]. This implies a long, long relationship, which means lots of water under the bridge by the time of SKYFALL.

I think Q, M, Leiter, Moneypenny and the like are probably just "Easter eggs" thrown in for the anniversary, with no attempt to make them make sense. That's the lazy way out and provides fan fodder like this thread, but most people don't study Bond films intently enough to care. The vast majority of viewers are just in it for the popcorn.

Edited by - randall on 05/06/2013 10:37:06
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benj clews 
"...."

United Kingdom

Posted - 05/06/2013 :  10:53:41  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I realize this thread is in grave danger of becoming a nitpicking discussion but here's another problem, again with the car.

The car isn't just something Bond bought: it's a tricked up model- witness the machine guns and Craig's brief temptation to eject M. Needless to say, these aren't mods you get from the car showroom- the car must have been provided by a Q of some description. And yet Q has only just become Q!

So who did Bond get the car from?

EDIT: Further muddying the waters, now I'm reading the car was won through cards by Craig-Bond in Casino Royale. So, how did someone other than Bond manage to get a Bond car that shouldn't yet exist?
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ChocolateLady 
"500 Chocolate Delights"

Israel

Posted - 06/06/2013 :  07:26:46  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Who here has seen the US TV series Elementary? If you haven't, I'll just tell you that a man by the name of Sherlock Holmes is a recovering drug addict. He has a companion, one Dr. Joan Watson, helping him through his post rehab. He keeps busy by helping the NYPD solve murders.

The point is, everything in their 21st century world is exactly as it is in our 21st century world with the exception. That is - in their world, no one has ever heard of the fictional Holmes and Watson.

In the Bond films with Daniel Craig, we have much the same situation. In their world, when Casino Royale opens, MI6 has never had a 00 agent #7 by the name of James Bond before. In addition, M never had an assistant named Moneypenny before, and certain good and bad guys never existed before. Almost everything else is linear since Dr. No.

It isn't a perfect explanation, but I think it is the best one you can hope for.
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benj clews 
"...."

United Kingdom

Posted - 06/06/2013 :  11:34:41  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Agreed- so it's basically a reinvention of the character in everything but an official announcement.

And yep, it's like Elementary or, better yet, Sherlock- which is what Elementary *wishes* it could be.
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randall 
"I like to watch."

NYC, USA

Posted - 08/06/2013 :  15:50:05  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Similar thing goes for the US tv series BATES MOTEL, which has just finished a very successful first season. It's the prequel to PSYCHO, showing a high-school-aged Norman Bates [Freddie Highmore], living with his mom Norma [Vera Farmiga] as they take over an old motel just as news comes in that a big bypass will be built which will render it a backwater. Yet it's set in the present day, smartphones and all. And Norman is far from instantly ostracized: first coed impressions peg him as a dreamboat. It's just when things start to, uh, happen, that you begin to see the roots of what Norman will become, back in 1960, if you get me.

Carlton Cuse, a former showrunner for LOST, is intimately involved, and you can almost hear the snickering in the writers' room as they try to paint in the adolescence we PSYCHO viewers never knew. And by now, the creepy goings-on in BATES MOTEL's "present" are enough to keep us watching in its own alternate world.

Perhaps Eon just figured that we're all used to such icon-tweaking by now, so why should they bother dotting all Is and crossing all Ts?

Edited by - randall on 08/06/2013 16:00:50
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ChocolateLady 
"500 Chocolate Delights"

Israel

Posted - 12/06/2013 :  09:42:52  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I never watched it but isn't the TV series Smallville also the same thing? Young Superman growing up in 21st Century USA?
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Airbolt 
"teil mann, teil maschine"

somewhere

Posted - 23/03/2014 :  11:05:04  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I think that a Romulan vessel was involved at some point!
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