So Adele done her one. It’s alright. But let’s imagine an altogether different number: the perfect Bond song.
Darkness. A bulb swings, and flashes of light illuminate the room. You can hear a dripping sound and heavy breathing. Someone is sat on a chair. That someone is bond. James Bond.
The synthesized tone of a trumpet plays a lonely tune, as the video flashes back to the night before. Bond, James Bond is sat in a limousine, checking the cuffs of his sleeves. It’s a nice jacket and suit in general. Probably expensive, but we can’t be sure. The camera zooms to the shadowed face of the driver as the neon lights of Tokyo or London shine across the reflection in the windscreen. One bright light reveals the driver – It’s a woman! A SEXY WOMAN DRIVING THE CAR! She smirks, sexily.
A cacophony of trumpets and strings transports us back to the glistening eyeball of 007, tied up and muddied. A drum beat slowly shuffles in the background, and we see the rope round his ankles and wrists, wrapped tight to his flesh and the wooden chair. A figure walks towards him, covered in shadow.
The busty vocals of a glistening brunette – chubby, sure but suave and angelic in tone – pierces through the empty room, as strings gently suspend chords below her words “He’s always sitting in danger // Always planning the route of attack”
(really goes for that last syllable, like a snake attacking vermin)
“if you see him, you’ll never…// safely turn round your back”
The building orchestral sounds suddenly pause. One single violin twirls from high notes into a meshy low sound, and the casio keyboard’d trumpet signals the return to their increasing gallop.
Bond is remembering the time he killed a Russian by suffocating him with a pillow, and stealing his rifle, before taking a security card from his back pocket. Suddenly he’s on a bike (motor), readjusting his tie, while a woman pleasures (we assume) his nipples (the assumption here being that he is enjoying her fingers playing with his nipples, not that it is his nipples she is touching – this is never in question, but the hardness of his nipples suggests either enjoyment or a chill). The woman, sat behind him and in black leather scuba gear looks like a sexier Lucy Liu, only younger, but clearly she’s seen in the world. He punches her (she was about to slit his neck with a knife, but this isn’t shown in the music video/trailer) and Bond drives off into a street market, leaving her limp body for dust.
“from brazil to Paris and Ber-lin // he swallows his guilt like a pill”
Bond eats something. It could be a tracking device, it could be a piece of cheese on a biscuit (or something equally classy, maybe pate) it might even be a chewing gum or a wafer from confession.
“balancing swagger and guilty sin // he’ll always settle his bills”
It does look like he’s in a church, but it could be a posh restaurant/hotel or equivalent. But it’s probably a gadget of some kind. He turns to camera and catches our eye.
SUDDENLY the synth drums kit kicks in, and with an über solo that would make a rattle-snake blush. The camera quickly pans through his face and into the chamber again, only his head is underwater in extreme close-up, before wrestled out by his assailant. They are water boarding him, hard.
From between his cut and now dripping face, Bond smiles, which quickly turns into a yawn, and asks of the as yet unidentified assailant “is that all you got?” (this requires some lip reading skills, but the YouTube comments seem to suggest it is either this or he is asking “is there cider on the yacht?” which few are willing to believe) spitting spit onto the floor and suddenly looking stern.
“He’s not just a man, nor…” (do do do doo do dooo dooo goes the brass) “do they call him straight DANGER” (the film is called “Danger Never Knocks”, but he doesn’t change his name to Danger, nor is there some sort of scene where he knocks) “but when you open your door… // he looks like a POWER RaaaANGER” (her voice vibrates in this last note, the phenomenal range in her lungs quite literally staggering, thankfully overcomes any embarrassment from her disastrous attempts at lyrical accomplishment – in a song which for the first time in her career she insisted that her songwriter take a back seat in the metaphorical vehicle of her career)
While we see panning shots of clouds, we are presented with the bridge: “if you’re lucky you might catch a moment, you may see him out and about… gliding, and riding; running and spying, frisking and fisting his foes (you would not believe the length of discussion this lyric caused, but regardless of studio pressure, the line remained) “and still no-one knows…” (mysterious chord)
The music seeps into an instrumental section which starts slow, but builds the tension, with trumpets playing over the strings playing the “duh… duh… DUH…. DUH…” bond motif with aplomb. You can tell they’ve done this bit before. This is the conductor’s favourite bit when they were in rehearsal.
During the interlude, having suddenly revealed that Bond is falling from the previously peaceful sky, and just as it looks like he’s about to hit the floor, it cuts back to the torture room.
Bond is looking angry now. He may be tied up, but he’s the fucking boss. “Where are the tapes” (nb could be “Why are there apes?”) Sweat pours down his temple, down his neck and along his nape, the camera catches, in the reflection of the drop, a distorted glimpse of the assailant, clearly a WOMAN (is it the driver from earlier…?) as it drops, and lands on bonds wrist. We see the rope has been untied, or cut as Bond’s watch had a pin in it, or something like a piece of glass in his palm which he could use.
BUM BUM BUDDA BUDDA BUM
The spy, clearly Bond, stands to confront his prison guard. The chorus returns, as, shocked, the guard falls back onto the floor, and Bond shines the light of the bulb (from the beginning) on the shadowy figure. A close up of her mouth makes, lips puppet the lines of the song as they are sung: “He isn’t but a man // he’s ‘aint called danger”
It pans out for the shocking reveal: THE PRISON GUARD IS THE SINGER. SHE’S BEEN SINGING THE SONG WHILE TRYING TO TORTURE BOND. Even she looks shocked.
The final lines of the song now reflect the diva’s face in the bruised eye of bond “You’re looking the wrong way // he’s in the rove ranger” (utterly dire again, far worse than before, but honestly her voice is wonderful here – and meant that she got a heavy discount on a new car as part of the deal).
The entire orchestra punch and hit with every syllable for the final moments in the song, slowly
“It’s BOND, JAAAMES BOND”
The final note is held as the orchestra just goes full throttle here, we’re talking losing it completely and all the notes are playing at once it seems, A’s, F sharps, an E
in the mix, couple of g’s on a bassoon (until now entirely silent for the song, and even one of the synth drums plays a C flat (rare but you do find them occasionally) all just yammering at once in a violent, but emotive conclusion to the piece, that seems to last an age, but in reality only lasts in the youtube video for 7 minutes.
She falls, dead.
He walks away, and drops a rose.
It floats down and lands on between her buxom breasts.
Not a dry eye in the house.