Movie Cliches – Bond Edition

Posted: July 9, 2012 by S. Trevor Swenson in Entertainment, Me & Mine, Observations
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

“Do you expect me to talk?”
“No Mr Bond, I expect you to die.”

There has been a James Bond movie marathon on TV the past few nights. I like Bond, but I think, as my late mother pointed out to me once, that James Bond movies are really a guy thing. The thing I really like about the Bond films (well, besides the sex, the cool gadgets,the cars, the Bond women, the violence and the theme songs) are the uber cheesy movie cliches. I wont get into the whole “who was the best Bond” conversation. I’m an odd duck. My favorite Beatles were Ringo and George and my favorite Bonds were Roger Moore and George Lazenby, Deal with it.

There are so many cliche statements in the Bond movies that I have simply been dying to say at some point in my life. Sadly, unless I win the lottery and become a professor/PhD, I wont have much chance to say these things. When I took my career aptitude tests in college, I missed International Super Villain and rated “Salesman” instead. Oh, I can say these great cliched lines…but they will be sadly lacking in conviction and validity. I would fail miserably at being an international criminal mastermind. I have no technical proficiency whatsoever. Toasters frustrate me. It would just be sad if I tried to record my demands to the UN Security Counsel, and the first 5 minutes would consist of footage of my looking into the camera, shaking it and saying “Is this thing on? Maybe I should send them a card with my demands, or a pick-me-up bouquet and a photo of me smiling a toothy grin pointing at the nuclear missile I just stole.

Here are a few of the cliches that I practice in my mirror, though I must admit it looked better when my white Persian cat Benny was alive and I could hold him. He was a good sport about indulging my little fantasies. It’s funny that Ernst Stavro Blofeld’s cat never started coughing up a hairball while he was explaining his master plan to Bond. “One moment Mr Bond…my kitty’s sick….Mr. Wint, do we have any paper towels?” There are just certain things that always seem to end up on the editing room floor in regards to the Bond films. Another one would be Bond suffering from occasional erectile dysfunction. “I swear this never happened before!” “It’s OK James, we can just cuddle.”

“I’ve been expecting you.” I never expect anyone. My M.O. is to forget people I’m actually supposed to be expecting, like pizza delivery boys. Bond villains don’t rush around last minute yelling at their henchmen and bombshell girlfriends. “Oh shit, It’s Bond! He’s early, dammit, Odd Job, empty the ashtray, Pussy Galore, are you really going to wear that? Oh come on, don’t cry now, it’s not bad, it’s just a little….. slutty. Straighten out the magazines and tell the Japanese chick I hired to make his martini and bring it in after I explain my plan in great detail…what’s her name? Miko? Mariko? Huh? Oh, forget it. Just tell her to bring the martini and to look…Japanese. Shit! He’s almost at the trap door. OK, change the big screen behind my desk from Weekend at Bernies to the SPECTRE emblem. No, NOT TV Land! Odd Job, there is a lint brush in my desk, clean your hat please. MOVE! I need to sit down. Do I look casual? Where’s my cat? Do I look like I’ve been expecting him? OK….shhhhhh here he comes.”

People always find me unshaven, in my boxer shorts and changing the kitty litter or watching The Golden Girls. Just try saying “I’ve been expecting you.” during such circumstances. Unconvincing.

“Seize him!” I don’t think a Bond villain has ever said this, but it’s certainly been said a few dozen times on TV and in movies. In order to yell this, one needs lackeys, minions or henchmen. I don’t have any henchmen. It was one of the things many of us had to cut down on when the economy tanked. This is one of the first things to go in a shaky economy. Dining out, entertaining, and henchmen. I’ve tried to get henchmen before, but it’s not easy on a waiter and students wages. I even put an ad on craigslist for henchmen, although I worded it carefully to sound like an internship. To date, it hasn’t panned out. In addition to finding henchmen and paying them, you need to provide them with uniforms. You can’t skimp here. I’ll be damned if my henchmen are going to be running around in old and altered Arby’s or Long John Silvers uniforms from the 70s and then hoping Bond doesn’t notice and goof on me.

“Take him away.” This usually followed “Seize Him!” My problem with this is the size of NYC living spaces. There isn’t anywhere for my non-existent henchmen to take my captives away to. Where are they going to go, my living room? My roommate would be less than thrilled. Bond villains don’t usually have roommate issues. “Um Goldfinger, do you have your share of the electric bill? Yeah well, the Con Ed people don’t care about your Fort Knox plan. Also,can you pick up some toilet paper? I bought the last pack. Oh, you have company. I’m sorry Bond? James Bond? Nice to meet you. Um, if you plan to torture him, can you please keep it down and clean up the blood? I have to work tomorrow. Anyone need to use the shower?”

I wonder if hiring a top notch, gay decorator could help with this. “OK, I’m thinking we move the laser cannon into the breakfast nook and cover it up with the throw I got at Barneys. Are you totally married to the idea of this emblem? I don’t know, it’s just so…1980s. I know you said you didn’t want any flowers, but really some iris’s would do wonders for your interrogation area in the living room. Trust me, they’re still butch.”

“You’ve fallen into my trap.” I’m not smart enough to set traps for people. I’ve babysat before and been outwitted by infants. Actually, I fell into their traps. “Drat…the disgusting diaper….foiled again!” Also, traps cost money. I’ve been to Home Depot and a good trap is going to run you a pretty penny these days. Skimping on a trap can be disastrous. Bargain rate throw rug trap doors don’t go with the Spartan minimalist motif of a hollowed out dormant volcano hideout. This one can also include….

“Everything is going according to my plan.” Nothing ever goes according to my plan. First of all, I lack the attention span for planning. I sit down and try to make plans, schemes and capers. I try, but after 10 or 15 minutes I will start flipping through channels or get distracted by something shiny or my cats antics. I dream of being a borderline anal retentive like my dear old mother, with lists of things I can cross off. I’ve tried the list thing, and it is satisfying to cross things off as you do them. Being an under achiever, I have to write down the most ridiculous everyday minutia so I can cross things off and look like I actually got something done. Wake up. Check. Pee. Check. Make coffee. Check. Drink coffee Check..This is when I slow down and start skipping things on my list until “Go to Bed”
Maybe if I could afford some henchmen, then they could make plans for me. It has become a true chicken-egg situation. Perhaps if I kidnapped some professor’s beautiful virginal daughter I could force him to make plans for me. I do live close to Columbia and NYU. Something to think about.

“…. Not to worry…I have prepared for this (contingency.)” This is a continuation of my lack of prowess in the planning department. In order to have contingency plans, one has to have original plans. I will say I am very fond of the word contingency and the term contingency plan, which may actually be redundant…like “True Fact”. Who knows? I also like the word redundant, so I wanted to slip that one in there. My version of a contingency plan when things go awry is to scream “Oh, crap!” followed by crying or temper tantrums of varying degrees. It must be satisfying to have contingency plans.

“According to my calculations” Hahahaha Have you been reading a single thing I’ve written? Movie villains have super sleek power point presentations. Professionally made scale models. Things like that. Me? I can barely manage stick figures.

“I should have killed you when I had the chance.” That half-assed, overly elaborate death trap seemed like a good idea at the time, and just shooting you seemed, oh I don’t know…boring. I have to admit Bond was a good sport about this. It’s tough to refrain from saying “Yeah, kinda sucks to be you huh?” (In an English accent of course.) I know that Roger Moore and Sean Connery could cock one eyebrow for emphasis. I’m frankly amazed the varying Bond villains never lost their cool and shrieked “And knock off that eyebrow crap!!!” I know I have always been jealous of the one eyebrow trick. It seemed a shoe in for meeting women.

Bond’s double entendre laden banter with the esteemed Miss Moneypenny is possibly the best known case of cinematic sexual harassment. Just once I’d have loved for her to knee him in the groin and deadpan “Do bite me Double Oh Seven, you interminable pubescent tease. M is ready for you.” Miss Moneypenny deserved better than MI 5’s biggest Himbo.

During the editing process of this piece I realized that my comedic license has fallen short in terms of Bond continuity and accuracy. I have no doubt I will be taken to task by my dear friend Ruprecht, who is Bond Villain in his own right in the musical journalism set.

  1. […] of things I have been dying to say at some point in my life. I visited upon some of these in my James Bond Cliches piece. I just thought of another one today while sitting in Casa […]


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