�F**k Me, James�

10.18.2006

By Mark Simpson

Bond is blond! He's smooth! He works out! He doesn't have any eyebrows! He kissed a guy!

Ever since English actor Daniel Craig was cast last year as the U.K.'s most famous spy'and the face of the world's most successful, longest-running blockbuster brand'the British popular press and Bond fanboys have been up in arms, shrieking about his unsuitability for the role.

They complain about all sorts of supposed failings, including that he required coaching to handle a gun and play poker, and that he snogged another male on film (as Francis Bacon's lover in Love Is the Devil and also in Infamous). Apparently, you see, he's 'not manly enough' to play cinema's most famous action hero. Essentially, they've got their off-white tighty whities in a twist because Bond has gone metrosexual.

Things got so bad that Craig's breezy Northern working-class father had to step up to defend him: 'It's all cobblers,' he said, head-butting the 'unmanly' charges in the face. 'Daniel is a hard lad,' he reassured the anxious Sunday Mirror. 'You wouldn't want to meet him in a dark street.' Which is funny, since I know a few men who would follow him down a dark street, but no matter' 'When he was younger he would play with a toy gun like any other boy.' But Craig's father needn't have risen to the bait. The panic about Bond's metrosexuality is actually a worry that, after decades of treading tedious water in a tuxedo, Bond might become relevant again; a worry that he might'call out the guard!'become sexy again.

Sean Connery, the first actor to play Bond, is almost universally regarded as
the definitive Bond'and as a result the definition of virility for a generation. Connery is, after all, a byword for manly. Unsurprisingly, his hirsute, hard, and unquestionably hetero name is constantly and reverently invoked by those bashing the smooth blond Bond boy for being rather faggy (though Connery himself has given Craig his endorsement).

However, there is something that needs to be pointed out here, like the pleasing bulge of a Walther PKK semiautomatic in a Savile Row trouser pocket: The early Bond movies were thrillingly perverse, shockingly sexy, and not a little queer. This will traumatize millions, but the original James Bond, by the dingy, stringy-vested, 'no sex please it's bath night' standards of early 1960s Britain was something of a metrosexual, albeit a latent one (he's a secret agent, after all).

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