A New, Progressive James Bond

Pulsing beneath the action in Quantum of Solace is the narrative of a nontraditional James Bond willing to “defy the white-tie set” and act “more Michael Moore than Roger Moore” by risking his livelihood to save a Bolivian leftist regime, writes Juan Cole, president of the Global Americana Institute. Past Bond films were less right-wing than the Ian Fleming novels, assigning villainous tasks to far-reaching terrorist organizations rather than individuals, Cole writes; however, in Quantum lies a Bond “at odds” with the United States, one who harshly questions “the way the wealthy and powerful in the Bush era casually overthrew (or tried to overthrow) foreign governments in the global south to get at the resources they coveted.” The mission to rescue the Bolivian government is paralleled by the quest for vengeance of Olga Kurylenko’s character, equating her personal task with a more global one. Coles writes that he hopes “President Barack Obama can adopt the sort of policies that can get Bond back on our side.”