TAKING IN THE SITES / SREENATH SREENIVASAN
With a Film Due, Homage to Bond. James Bond.
Monday, December 15,
The latest installment of the James Bond series, "Tomorrow Never Dies,"
reaches theaters this week, and Bond mania -- building through weeks of
incessant marketing -- is bound to reach fever pitch. The World Wide Web
offers sites aplenty for true Bond aficionados as well as the merely
MGM/UA has two sites aimed at fans impatient for the new movie. One is
the unsubtle www.tomorrowneverdies.com, filled with trailers, photos,
movie-related information, a Bond role-paying game and links to
that have made deals to have their products featured in the movie.
The other is a disappointing "Official James Bond Home Page," which
seems nothing more than a brochure to sell Bond-related merchandise.
"The Web's amazing -- the tremendous amount of Bond sites out there
cover all things Bond," said John Cork, a director of the Ian Fleming
Foundation in Burbank, Calif., an organization dedicated to preserving
legacy of the author and his most famous creation. "The best part is
most of the best sites are made by fans."
The foundation's site features the Web magazine "Mr. Kiss Kiss Bang
Bang" (Mr. Fleming is said to have described his novels as being of the
"bang-bang-kiss-kiss variety"), and updated information about the movies
and other aspects of Bond lore. It has a set of frequently asked
about James Bond, along with the answers. (Among them: "Just who is this
James Bond guy anyway?" and "Some of these actors look awfully old. When
were they born?")
While the perception is that Bond is popular mainly with males, one of
the best starting points for Bond sites is run by a woman. Kimberly
a fan in Chicago, started her site in December 1994 and has since built
fan following of her own.
"I was not much of a Bond fan until Pierce Brosnan took over," Ms. Last
said, referring to the actor who assumed the role of the dashing spy in
"Goldeneye," the last Bond film. "But now I really enjoy putting
everything I can find in one place."
Her site, James Bond, 007 OHMSS (On Her Majesty's Secret Service), has
some obvious resources (a profile of Mr. Brosnan, for example) and some
not-so-obvious ones (the lyrics of most Bond movie songs). One section,
the Literary Bond, has extensive information about Bond's creator and
authors who continued the series after his death. Ms. Last also has an
exhaustive set of links to other Bond sites.
Another comprehensive fan site, Nuvs' 007 Shrine, is a tribute to James
Bond. The site, which is run by Navin Jain, a college student in
uses plenty of multimedia resources and also something rare in the world
of Bond sites: negative comments about the newer films. A fan in Britain
who saw a press screening last week reported on the site that the new
movie was "not a Bond film but a 90's parody of a Bond film."
A more detailed negative look at the movies is available at the James
Bond Movie Faults site, which is dedicated to finding "all the faults,
blunders, mistakes, bloopers, errors and flaws" in the films.
A serious approach to the subject of Bond is taken by a Web magazine,
Her Majesty's Secret Servant. It includes articles, interviews and some
Guns, cars and gadgets all play important roles in the series, and most
sites feature a section on them. One site, run by a high school student
Ireland, has details on the toys that make Bond tick.
And anyone who nearly flunked out of school because of a Bond
obsession, or just wants to obtain college credit for their interest in
the character, should look up the site of Eastern Caribbean University
the island of St. Kitts, which offers Bond studies courses over the
Internet. Among them are "Geo 30071: Economic Geography of Bond Films
Their Impact on Countries," "Bus 30074: Marketing of Bond Films
Worldwide" and "Eng 300710: Comparisons of Bond Films/Novels."
Those who think they know their Bond trivia can test themselves at
Quizland's Bond site. It even provides rankings of the top scorers among
recent players. Sample questions: What rank does James Bond hold? (Royal
Navy commander). What children's book did Ian Fleming write? ("Chitty
Chitty Bang Bang").
Copyright appears to be something easily ignored in the world of Bond,
as most of the sites contain photographs and articles that are obviously
taken from elsewhere and are often not credited. Almost every site seems
comfortable acquiring such material.
Fans who want to go beyond vicariously enjoying Bond in movies and
books can check out the Commanders Club, the site of a group "dedicated
the preservation and celebration of the lifestyle of a Scottish peasant
named Bond, James Bond." Members of the San Francisco-based group dress
in tuxedos, go to casinos and pay attention to their "007 Day Planner,"
which marks Bond dates and anniversaries. The first listing: Jan 4,
the birthday of a Philadelphia ornithologist named James Bond, after
Mr. Fleming named his character.
A site that includes an extended discussion of the late ornithologist
is run by William E. Kelly, who reports that Mr. Bond's widow wrote to
to say that her husband had always resented the invasion of his private
life through the "theft" of his name by Ian Fleming.
"He wishes he could be left alone to do his work, which means
everything to him," she said, "and put 007 behind him."
"WHERE TO GO"
TOMORROW NEVER DIES OFFICIAL SITE
MGM/UA'S BOND PAGE
IAN FLEMING FOUNDATION
KIMBERLY LAST'S JAMES BOND, 007 OHMSS
NUVS' 007 SHRINE
JAMES BOND MOVIE FAULTS
QUIZLAND'S BOND TRIVIA QUIZ
BOND GUNS AND GADGETS
JAMES BOND COURSES AT EASTERN CARIBBEAN UNIVERSITY
HER MAJESTY'S SECRET SERVANT
THE MYSTERY OF GOLDENEYE (James Bond, ornithologist)