When the new 007 movie, No Time to Die, is released in the spring, get ready for plenty of Bond retrospectives. This will, after all, be Daniel Craig’s last appearance in the most iconic movie role of them all. Bond is the man who’s inspired a dozen clichés. Women want him men want to be him was the original, and of course nobody does it better as Carly Simon told us in the 1970s.
Bond has been a style icon for more than half a century. How have those styles held up against the ravages of time? Let’s take a look at each of the actors who played Bond and see who are the real style icons among them.
The original Bond is the yardstick by which all others have been measured. His acting chops go without saying, but given that he was playing Bond in the swinging sixties, surely he’s going to struggle to cut it from a style perspective in 2020. The remarkable answer is that Connery’s Bond has, by and large stood the test of time. Even if these days you are playing roulette at Cherry online casino as opposed to Monte Carlo, it’s Connery’s image in those opening scenes of Dr No that is still evocative of classic casino style.
With only one movie to go on, we never really got to know George Lazenby as we did the rest. But there were some hits, as well as misses, in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. The cream suit and pink shirt combo was just the right blend of sophistication and daring. But as for the ruffled shirt under the dinner jacket – well, the less said about that the better.
Moore looked truly at home in the archetypal Bond tux and bow tie. It was when he dressed down that things started to go wrong. Those wide ties and patterned sports coats were a 1970s fashion that has not aged well. They make him look more like a slightly embarrassing uncle than a debonair secret agent.
Dalton’s Bond was arguably the closest portrayal to Ian Fleming’s original vision. He wore all the right clothes in his two Bond outings, but always looked a little awkward in the tuxedo and dress shirt. It was as if he would be far more comfortable in combat fatigues.
Brosnan showed us a more human side to Bond, and that was also reflected in his style. For the first time, we saw 007 as a genuine trendsetter in smart casual attire. Die Another Day might not be a classic from a plot perspective, but it showed that Bond can definitely do casual, yet sophisticated.
Craig has an effortless style about him that is reminiscent of Connery. Quite how well those short shorts he wore in Casino Royale will stand the test of time remains to be seen, but in the famous tux or those sharp Tom Ford suits in Skyfall, Craig’s style icon credentials are beyond doubt. Whoever follows him will have a tough act to follow.