Bond…James Bond. In song

A few years back, the James Bond franchise hit a wall.  The current actor playing the James Bond role had obviously played himself out, it appeared, to both audiences and the producers of the films.  Realizing they needed to make a change, the producers of the films decided to go in another direction and bring us a more “serious” Bond.  They wanted to make the stakes higher and minimize the “camp”.

The result, 1987’s The Living Daylights introduced audiences to Timothy Dalton’s James Bond.

Alas, box office history wasn’t made there nor, especially, in the second and last (and, IMHO, pretty terrible) Timothy Dalton Bond film, 1989’s Licence to Kill.  Though its hard to judge and I may well be “mind-reading” here, I nonetheless had the feeling Timothy Dalton knew this second Bond film was a dud.  His performance throughout was pretty dull and he looks to be having a terrible time before the cameras.  It hardly came as a surprise, therefore, that he didn’t return for thirds.

Strangely enough, history essentially repeated itself afterwards.  The next Bond, Pierce Brosnan, certainly looked great in the role of James Bond.  However, I found his films to be…mediocre.  Though I saw all of them, I’d be hard pressed to give you details of any of his films…other than the first, Goldeneye, which I consider the best of the lot.

So when Pierce Brosnan was let go, the producers of the Bond films once again decided to “go serious” and brought in Daniel Craig. Unlike the Timothy Dalton experiment, their fortunes were rewarded this time around even as history repeated itself in other ways.  Like Timothy Dalton, the first Daniel Craig Bond film, 2006’s Casino Royale, was pretty damn great.  The follow-up, 2008’s Quantum of Solace…wasn’t.  In fact, I think I enjoyed Licence to Kill a little more than Quantum…though at least Daniel Craig remained more interested in his role here versus Timothy Dalton.

Which is my very long winded way of saying that I’m curious to see the new James Bond film, Skyfall.

But am I the only one who thinks Adele’s theme song for the movie is…pretty terrible?  Don’t get me wrong:  Her singing voice remains a pure joy to hear and, on the surface, getting her to sing the theme song to a Bond film seemed a total no-brainer.

The problem, in my humble opinion -and, no, I’ve haven’t sold quite as many of my own albums as Adele has! ;-)- is that they put “Skyfall” and words that rhyme with it a little too much into the song.  It’s just a little too much, IMHO.

What are my favorite Bond theme songs?  Three immediately spring to mind:

Goldfinger by Shirley Bassey.  Perhaps what Adele was striving for?

Then there’s the rockin’ Paul McCartney “Live and Let Die”:

Finally, loved Carly Simon’s “Nobody Does It Better”.  Really liked the way she subtly threw in the movie title, “The Spy Who Loved Me” within the context of the song.  Pretty much the opposite of the way Adele has Skyfall a little too pronounced in the song’s lyrics.