007 fans and the three wise monkeys

The “three wise monkeys”

Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil

That’s an old saying and one that provides a useful understanding of a lot of debates among James Bond fans. The three wise monkeys provide the template for such debates, rather than actually tackling the issues in any meaningful way.

On message boards, Facebook, Twitter and other outposts on the Internet, 007 fans assert and argue their points of view. (TITLE HERE) is a perfect example of Ian Fleming, dark and brooding. Try to point out that Ian Fleming’s originals included a villain with two hooks instead of hands or a lackey who killed people with a hat? Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil.

(ACTOR’S NAME HERE) is the best Bond of all time. Try to point out (NAME HERE)’s interpretation of Bond is contradicted by (IAN FLEMING TITLE HERE)? Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil.

(MY POSITION ON JAMES BOND) is (SUPPORTED BY ALL/MOST/A PLURALITY OF BOND FANS). Try to point out any evidence that might contradict that claim? See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil.

If you disagree disagree (WITH MY POSITION) then you are (A HERETIC/HATER/IGNORANT). Point out any factual error? Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil.

Truth be told, there are few, if any, scientific, comprehensive surveys of 007 fans that would include a margin of error or detailed methodology. So, rather than criticize how 007 fans overlook facts/aren’t consistent in their own arguments, keep in mind that perhaps the most amusing version of the Three Wise Monkeys was the Nairobi Trio, was devised by comedian Ernie Kovacs, who died 50 years ago — the same year the cinema 007 made his debut.


2 Responses

  1. Deb Lipp does a superb job of fan-specific research in her title, The Ultimate James Bond Fan Book. She delves into this specific type of wishy-washy relativism with the Bonds, for example, looking at hundreds of fan responses to show how Tim Dalton is very loved by a plurality of rabid fans, and equally hated by another segment of fans. Fascinating stuff.

  2. Stop reading the message boards – then you too will ‘see no evil’

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