What the hell just happened? After a two-month mission infiltrating a volcano in Japan, Brendan, Nathan and James return to face their most puzzling mission yet: the inexplicable and sporadically entertaining dumpster fire that is the 1967 film Casino Royale.
In this Very Special Holiday Episode, we right one of the greatest wrongs in the history of the Bondfinger franchise — Richard’s exclusion from our commentary on Casino Royale (1967), which is a film that Richard knows and loves and a film about which has many hilarious and insightful things to say.
We’re finally back, and we’re taking a break from either recording commentaries on the David Niven Casino Royale or simply not podcasting at all, in order to release a commentary on the first ever appearance of James Bond on screen: a live television adaptation of Casino Royale, first broadcast on American television in 1954.
In 1991, MGM brought to the small screen a 65-episode series called James Bond Jr, in which James Bond’s nephew James teams up with a forgettable bunch of Saturday morning cartoon sidekicks to defend democracy against a forgettable array of Saturday morning cartoon villains. Or some shit. Stop hassling me.
In 2017, Brendan, Nathan and James decided that it would be a good idea to watch an episode of that series and discuss it. And that discussion has languished for months in a forgotten corner of Dropbox.
This month, Richard leads a bumbling troupe of trainee Secret Service agents on a mission to retrieve a top-secret chemical formula. But Brendan faints after his first martini, James keeps accidentally giving the formula to enemy agents, and Nathan is altogether too enthusiastic about disguising himself as a dancing girl. Which is why there’s nothing left for us to do but Carry on Spying.
This month, we go back to Richard and Brendan’s first love — 1960s spy-fi classic The Avengers. Brendan has taken up knitting, James is achieving better living through self-help books, Nathan is wondering why Graeme Garden left his computer here, and Richard is relaxing in a leotard and a giant birdcage. Watch out, everyone: it’s The Girl from Auntie.
This month, we head back in time to 1965. While James Bond is in the Bahamas enjoying some painfully slow underwater harpoon fights, Harry Palmer (Michael Caine) is having a much more prosaic time spying for the Ministry of Defence, trying to locate a kidnapped scientist. That is, until the psychedelia kicks in.
This month, we’re watching The Persuaders! Season 1 Episode 17, Five Miles to Midnight, in which TV’s Roger Moore and sometime lady saxophonist Tony Curtis team up with Joan Collins to smuggle some guy out of Italy, accompanied by a series of excellent jokes written by Terry Nation.
And in the process, we answer the age-old question, “What did Tony Curtis call Joan Collins during the production that got her so annoyed?” Over and over again, I’m afraid.