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Friday, October 05, 2012

50 years ago this month two great archetypes were born

Was on Five Live just now talking about the 50th anniversary of the first Beatles single and the first Bond movie and why they both continue to fascinate us. After I'd hung up the phone I remembered what I meant to say.

In his excellent 1964 book Love Me Do the American journalist Michael Braun suggested that one of the reasons they made such an impact on the London media was that they were "new kind of people". They were bright, sardonic, sharp without being educated and apparently possessed of a special secret known only to the four of them. In a way they were a template for the way every group has sought to behave ever since.

 You could say that in playing James Bond Sean Connery also presented the world with a new kind of person. Proud, sensual, cruel, sardonic, upwardly mobile and good at games, his Bond was a world away from the hero figures who had stalked British films in the forties and fifties. In a way he's been a template for the way every action hero has tried to behave ever since.

Maybe that's another reason they both endure.