RE: RARA-AVIS: Four for The Fifties

From: Robison Michael R CNIN (
Date: 02 Jan 2003

Bill wrote: Miker, I read the Fleming novels long, long ago, so my memory of them is pretty dim. But isn't CASINO ROYALE the one where the villain tortures Bond by having him sit in a cane-bottomed chair (with the cane removed) and whapping his tender parts with a carpet beater? The line I seem to remember is something like, "Kiss it good-bye, Bond."

******** That was the one! Hurts just to think about it. Although Fleming writes "entertainments" (I think that's the term that Graham Greene used for his own commercial ventures.), he's still a good writer. I liked this:

"Then he slept, and with the warmth and humour of his eyes extinguished his features relapsed into a taciturn mask, ironical, brutal, and cold."

A bit theatrical, but effective. There's never been a Bond that looked more the part than Sean Connery. Roger Moore and Pierce Brosnan are too cute.

And although Bond is just as likely to speak in a pompous, affected manner, he does have his colloquial moments:

"What the hell do they want to send me a woman for," he said bitterly. "Do they think this is a bloody picnic?"


"Yes, dammit, I said 'was'. The bitch is dead now."


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