For this inaugural entry at Double-0 Aficionado (Part 1), it felt appropriate to highlight some of the blogs and podcasts that have inspired me to try my chance at blogging about Bond. While this is a gesture some might deem wiser to fit into the article stream further down the road when a new site has picked up steam, I’m of the school of thought that there is never a bad time to spread the double-0 love around as much as possible. There are some terrific contributors to the discussion of 007 across the internet, and their efforts deserve recommendation and praise.
Blogs and websites
Of the blogs and websites I visit, Spy Command, MI6 (also known as MI6-HQ), The Suits of Bond, and The Bond Experience have me regularly return for the quality and depth of their coverage.
MI6 is widely regarded as the leading website dedicated to all things 007. It’s been around for several years already and even boasts its own magazine that ships worldwide, MI6 Confidential. Having access to Bond alumni involved in the production of the pictures both in front of and behind the camera as well as individuals currently working on the series certainly helps MI6 leap frog over everybody else and land at the head of the pack. News, reviews, quality analysis, MI6 has everything a Bond fan needs to remain up to date regarding James Bond in all its facets and on all platforms. Frankly, and it’s somewhat disappointing to write this, MI6 is superior in quality and variety than the official Bond website, 007.com.
Spy Command is more blog than official website, balancing news updates with astute commentary. Not being affiliated in any shape or form to official branches of the 007 licence allows Spy Command to offer honest opinions that swing in both directions, calling out the franchise and its decisions when deemed appropriate. Blog posts are updated quite regularly (a week doesn’t go by when at least 3 articles don’t go up). Better still, while 007 constitutes its bread and butter, Spy Command stays true to its namesake by sharing posts and opinions on a variety of spy-related properties, both current and classic. Mission Impossible, Man From U.N.C.L.E., Hawaii Five-O, these and many more are discussed whenever noteworthy information develops.
The Suits of Bond is a different beast altogether. The name alone is a giveaway as to what the favourite topic of analysis is. It goes without saying that if clothing styles, both modern and classic, are not one’s cup of tea, then Suits of Bond’s appeal will be null, but anyone with even a cursory interest in the subject would do themselves a favour and visit the site. Quality, precise writing makes every article not only an enjoyable read, but an informative one as well. The brands, the aesthetics, the good and bad occasions (and climates!) to adorn said styles, The Suits of Bond is king of the heap as far as 007 style is concerned. What’s more, the site shares the spotlight with what Bond’s allies and antagonists sport too. The lone downside is that, as the site is run by only one man, there is nary any info on the styles of female clothing in 007 films. Being a man myself, it’s not as though I need such a guide, but I’d be curious to check the qualities of a female-oriented version of Suits of Bond if there is one out there.
The Bond Experience
Run by Dan Zaritsky, The Bond Experience is a more ‘hands on’ version of The Suits of Bond. While the operation has a website, I would say its driving force is its YouTube channel, which uploads new videos at least a couple of times per month. In reasonably simple, 5-10 minute episodes, Zaritsky shares videos of his impressively wide collection of 007-related clothing, the idea being that by wearing what Bond wears, we get to live a 007 moment from a particular film, hence the ‘Bond experience’. What’s really neat is that Zaritsky is extraordinarily well connected with the actual makers of clothing featured in the films, as well as talented tailors and artists that create replicas virtually identical to the authentic products. This is a YouTube that not only talks up Bond clothing, but tries it out for size too.
Check out The Bond Experience on YouTube.
Next: the podcasts.