Queen of Bond: The Ultimate Bond Girl/Woman
In thinking about women in Bond movies (and if I get round to reading them, the books), deep tribute has to be paid to her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II who joined Daniel Craig’s Bond for an Olympic mission in 2012.
From the beginning we (the audience) are thrown off kilter. Bond arrives in a non-Aston black cab, skitters Corgis and casually dashes up the grand staircase of Buckingham Palace.
Brilliantly Bond is ushered in to.. the Queen. Just as Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was willing to take tea with Paddington Bear, so she is happy to join Bond for a helicopter ride across London! Having attended atleast three Bond movie premiers and visited the set at Pinewood Studios, Her Majesty also knows a thing or two about being a Bond girl. Although she is definitely a Bond woman here!
Glamourously engrossed in her writing, our hard working Queen cheekily ignores Bond (who has his eye on the clock) until he coughs. Here is the wow factor — it really is our Queen in this performance and not a look-alike! Where are they going? Clearly the Corgis want to go too!
Hovering over a smattering of patriotism and London landmarks, we honestly want to believe that Her Majesty truly is jumping out of a helicopter with Bond. Perturbingly for Bond, even statues can come to life — though they do not pose a threat! (Too many Martini’s, shaken not stirred, here?!!)
It’s a long journey — we go from bright sunshine to sunset through Tower Bridge. Given that it’s a short journey from Buckingham Palace to the 02 — what were Bond and Her Majesty doing all that time — did they have to copy Licence to Kill and divert to take care of some business?
Getting the thumbs up and after a rekkie from Bond, Her Majesty enthusiastically jumps, followed by Bond, from the helicopter and parachutes (Union Jack bedecked) into the 02 stadium. Magically and with perfect timing, the Queen appears a few moments later in the stadium, in the same outfit to well-deserved applause. Very The Spy Who Loved Me!
Except ofcourse she didn’t — but we wanted to believe that Her Majesty could and should parachute with Bond into the Olympic stadium, two upstanding hard workers to protect and defend the nation. Such myth making — that we want to be true. I love Her Majesty’s trying not to giggle as she leaves the Palace with Bond and the skittering Corgis which are clearly Bond’s lifelong anathema. Although the Queen was often criticised for not joining the modern culture of smiling and gurning, here we see her deep sense of fun and humour behind the seriousness as well as her great dignity.
At the moment, many of us want to pay tribute to her late Majesty by saying ‘Nobody Does It Better’. Other regal Bond women, Dame Judi Dench’s ‘M’ or Dame Shirley Bassey’s Bond songs definitely seek the challenge the crown here!