As the hunt for the next Bond continues, a key figure in the book world says the movies just aren’t on par with other major franchises.
Author Charlie Higson, who launched the Young Bond series in 2005, is shaking and stirring things up in the 007 universe, saying that the franchise has lost its way and that the best Bond movies now feature a man who goes by Hunt, Ethan Hunt.
Speaking with The Times, Higson gave his thoughts on what he thinks is the best Bond movie…and it’s not even a Bond movie. Citing one key gripe, Higson explained, “They overcomplicate him…The best ‘Bond films’ now are the Mission: Impossibles. There is no inner life, it’s just, ‘Woah! Look at that building — I’d love to climb it and blow things up.’” That might be oversimplifying Ethan Hunt (just a bit), but Higson does hit the proper point: sometimes we just want to see action–and lots of it–on the big screen. Obviously this is a huge draw for many Mission: Impossible fans, who want to be wowed by the next insane stunt that Tom Cruise will pull off.
Building off of this, Higson also blasted the most recent Bond movie, 2021’s No Time to Die, criticizing its mandatory sequential watching. “I went to see No Time to Die with my oldest boy, Frank, who is 30, and he said, ‘That felt like a Bond film made by people who are embarrassed to make a Bond film.’ You had to watch two films in advance to know who such and such is and you think, ‘Oh, fuck off with that.’ Make it a new mission each episode and let him be Bond.” He added, “Guns, cars, a supervillain and a woman. M, Q, Moneypenny. 007 is a fantasy figure who solves things with a fist and doesn’t overthink.” We’ll have quite a wait to see how the next string of movies will be handled, as producers are still trying to track down their next 007, leaving a lengthy lull.
That Mission: Impossible only has around a quarter of the installments as the Bond series shows not just how strong those films are (it is, along with John Wick, the best action franchise going), but also just how strongly Higson feels about how easily a character he respects (or used to) can be ousted. Of course, it took a lot more than the Jason Bourne flicks, once touted as the next Bond movies, to do so.
What do you think of the Young Bond author’s thoughts on current Bond movies? Do you think Mission: Impossible has replaced it as the go-to spy franchise? Give us your take below!