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Bond & Beyond

A new podcast dedicated to the world's favourite secret agent. Every fortnight, Alex Boucher and James Batchelor delve into the world of Bond - not just the films that made him famous, but the original novels, video games and the many, many other characters inspired by him.
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Bond & Beyond
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Nov 20, 2020

Following the fun we had with our Ranking The Bond Songs episode, we attempt to rank something even more challenging: the villains.

Alex Shaw of the School of Movies podcast - and author of the New Century Multiverse series - joins us to weigh up each Bond villain's plot based on how dangerous (or not) it is to the world.

Some want to start a war. Some just want to make money. Some want to start a war to make money. But all are off their rocker, and now we have definitively ranked how villainous they truly are.

If you want to spoil the results for yourself, you can check out the final list here.

Want to share your thoughts on our rankings? Email via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. Or you can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Nov 4, 2020

Following the sad news of Sean Connery's passing, Alex and James pay tribute to the man who defined James Bond for so many people.

We reflect on his varied career and some of his best roles, the quality of his performance as James Bond, some of his most iconic moments, his surprising final turn as 007 and more.

Want to share your thoughts and memories of Sir Sean? Email us via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. Or you can find us on Facebook (just search ‘Bond & Beyond’), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Oct 14, 2020

Alex and James are joined by Richard and Nia Setters – our first Bond fan couple. 

The Setterses talk us through a particularly important coping mechanism for the COVID lockdown: a James Bond marathon. Every Monday night, they have watched a Bond film - from Dr No to Spectre. 

We discuss the highs and lows of the series, their thoughts on the best and worst Bonds, and an intriguing alternative form of marathon: Curry Bond.

If you want to email us, you can do so via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. You can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Oct 10, 2020

Alex and James are joined by friend of the show and regular guest Gez to discuss the terrible news: No Time To Die has been delayed. Again.

Bond fans now have to wait until April 2021 to see 007's 25th outing, so in the meantime we kill about 40 minutes of the five-month extension to our wait by discussing: 

The Billie Eilish No Time To Die music video. The experience of going to the cinema during a pandemic. The Bondness of Tenet. The passing of Diana Rigg and Michael Lonsdale. Rumours that Tom Hardy or Henry Cavill could be the next Bond. Our worries for Bond 26 and the series' 60th anniversary. And many other things.

If you want to email us, you can do so via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. You can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Sep 3, 2020

With what is likely to be the final trailer for No Time To Die now availabe, Alex and James share their thoughts on this tantalising glimpse into Daniel Craig’s last outing.

Tune in for a lot of excitement, a little apprehension and probably more speculation than is healthy give the trailer is less than three minutes long.

Want to share your thoughts on the trailer? Email via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. Or you can find us on Facebook (just search ‘Bond & Beyond’), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Aug 5, 2020

James, Alex and special guest Sam attempt the unwise, perhaps the impossible: ranking the Bond title songs from best to worst.

Setting themselves a strict(ish) time limit, our triumvirate picks apart each and every Bond anthem, weighing them up against each other as well as how well they stand up today. Some choices were easy, others were hard and heart-breaking.

If you want to spoil the results for yourself, you can check out our final rankings here. This also includes the listener rankings as gathered via Facebook and Twitter (Thank you to everyone who took part).

Want to share your thoughts on our rankings? Email via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. Or you can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

May 20, 2020

Following our look at Bond elements appearing in animated and family films, James and Alex turn their attention towards TV.

Once again, we're not discussing straight up Bond parodies or homages such as Archer, Chuck or Alias. Instead, we're looking at specific moments that pay tribute to film's most famous spy and unpack the elements of the Bond formula that people most instantly recognise.

Join us for a journey that takes us from Friends and Frasier, through Alan Partridge and The Muppets, via THAT Simpsons epiosde, and even a long-lost sketch where Roger Moore performed as 007 almost a decade before Live and Let Die.

Think of one we've missed? Email via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. Or you can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

May 1, 2020

Alex and James look beyond Bond to see how 007 is honoured, referenced and even mocked in animated family films. 

Given the series' history of 50-plus years, it's no surprise that hallmarks of the Bond films appear in other movies but which key ingredients of 007's outings do people draw from?

Our rambling discussion takes us from The Incredibles to Spies In Disguise, through Avengers and Bolt, and even to films as random as Monty Python's The Life Of Brian.

Think of one we've missed? Email via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. Or you can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Mar 23, 2020

Hello, remember us?

James and Alex are back with a short announcement: we're hosting a watch party, where we all gather on Facebook to share comments and thoughts on a classic James Bond film as we watch at the same time.

We are starting (as Cubby's Law dictates) with Dr No, the 1962 big screen debut of Ian Fleming's superspy. We'll be pressing 'play' at 9pm GMT on Wednesday, March 25, 2020, and you can join in the fun right here: https://www.facebook.com/events/852079118641361/

And, since it's been a while, we fill the rest of the episode by just chatting about Bond, including a few more thoughts on the now-delayed No Time To Die. 

Looking forward to watching where it all began with you all on Wednesday.

If you want to email us, you can do so via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. You can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Dec 6, 2019

Alex and James share their thoughts on the first trailer for Daniel Craig's upcoming finale, No Time To Die.

Was it everything we wanted for a trailer? Were we wrong about our previous predictions, and how many potentially new wrong predictions can we make from just two minutes of footage?

Listen in to hear our first impressions of the trailer - and why not share yours with us, too? Email bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com, or find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond') or Twitter (@BondBeyondPod). 

You can find all previous episodes at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com. 

Nov 21, 2019

Earlier this year, Alex and friend of the show/semi-regular guest Gez attended a Secret Cinema showing of Casino Royale. Shortly after, we recorded this episode… and now we can finally release it.

For those not in the know, Secret Cinema is an event where attendees engage in a roleplaying experience before watching a special presentation of the film on which it’s themed.

Everyone who attends is sworn to secrecy - you even have your phone locked away - so this episode has been locked in the Bond & Beyond vault. With the event now over, it’s safe to declassify our discussion and reveal what really happened at Secret Cinema’s Casino Royale.

If you want to email us, you can do so via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. You can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Sep 27, 2019

Seven James Bonds went to Casino Royale...

Alex and James review what is quite possibly the worst film ever to feature James Bond (albeit in an unofficial, parodical capacity). We discuss the absolute mess that is 1967's Casino Royale, a comedy film in which the real 007 (apparently) and a bunch of fellow agents sharing his name and number try to save the world.

'Save the world' sounds vague, we grant you, but that's because it's honestly difficult to work out what this film is even about. Listen in to enjoy our thoughts on unconvincing Scottish accents, remote control ice cream vans and robot grouse drones, Ronnie Corbett's pacemaker, cartoon radiation burbs and a UFO invading London. Yes, really.

If you want to email us, you can do so via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. You can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Aug 29, 2019

We're back with our latest episode full of your message. This time, it's all centred around our (semi)recent Desert Island Bond episode.

We asked you to choose the 007 film, novel, soundtrack, song, video game, gadget, vehicle, girl and Felix/Not Felix you would want if you were trapped on a desert island - and boy, did you deliver!

(Please not this episode was recorded *before* EON announced the new title for Bond 25. We'll be discussing that and more on our next episode)

If you haven't already sent in your Desert Island Bond choices, please do: the email is bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com.

You can also find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Jul 17, 2019

Picture, if you will, being stranded on an island -- like Crab Key without the Dragon tank/luxury villain's lair. To sustain you in our loneliness, you have a few items and characters from the history of Bond. Which do you choose?

Alex and James discuss their desert island picks when it comes to film, novel, game, soundtrack, song, vehicle, gadget, Bond girls, Felix/Not Felix and more.

We'd love to know your choices, and perhaps suggestions of other categories. Drop us an email via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com and we'll read out as many as we can on the next episode.

You can also find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Jul 4, 2019

We're back (again!). Alex and James are joined by long-time friend of the show and semi-regular guest Gez to dig through our inbox and share your thoughts on that awkward Bond 25 reveal. 

Given our lengthy absence (sorry again!), new information has come to light about Daniel Craig's final outing, including film locations and the director's choice of composer (much to James' composer).

We also talk about Killing Eve, the possible directions from Rami Malek's villain and the return of Madelaine Swann, the potential for a Felix (or perhaps Felicia) Leiter spin-off, plus thoughts on whether Bond will ever be a woman. 

If you want to email us, you can do so via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. You can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

May 2, 2019

Following last week's much hyped 'reveal' of Bond 25, James and Alex dust of their mics and discuss how the whole affair, er, left them wanting.

With no title and only minor plot details revealed, much of Bond 25's production seems up in the air. Does this worry us? Who do we think each of the new cast members will play? And why, oh why did it take EON Productions a full 20 minutes to say very little?

We discuss all this and more, including (yet again) the debate as to whether the next James Bond should be a woman.

We'd love to know your thoughts on the reveal and your hopes/fears for Bond 25. Drop us an email via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com and we'll read out as many as we can on the next episode.

You can also find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Apr 6, 2019

Bond & Beyond is back, with a very special, slightly experimental episode. Bookending our break nicely, we return to A View To A Kill - but this time we're on location in San Francisco.

Having flown out for a work trip, Alex and James met up to visit some of the most iconic locations from the film (well, two of them with a good view of a third).

We start at City Hall, scene of the great fire and beginning of the city-wide car chase, and end up at Fisherman's Wharf, where anyone with a hankering for soft shell crabs might get some top secret info on mad scientists thrown into the bargain.

We discuss how the locations have changed and how well EON Productions made use of this famous city.

If you want to email us, you can do so via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. You can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Sep 1, 2018

And so we finally come to the last Bond & Beyond review for 007's cinematic adventures (until they make more of them).

James and Alex go through every detail of Roger Moore's final outing as the iconic British spy, from the questionable use of the Beach Boys to Max Zorin's on-brand choice of explosives and his eye for a bargain when it comes to Plot Tables.

We waste an hour in France with horses, meet an Avenger (not the Marvel kind), pick holes in the geography of the San Francisco car chase, and spend far too much time thinking about that iceberg submarine. We also struggle to contain our fear of Grace Jones and our love for John Barry's penultimate Bond score.

As you'll hear at the start of the episode, the review unfortunately also contains an audio glitch, for which we apologise. We promise it shan't happen again.

And as you'll hear at the end of the show, this will be the last Bond & Beyond for some considerable time - but fear not, for like Bond himself, we will return.

If you want to email us, you can do so via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. You can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Aug 22, 2018

As we prepare to take a break from the podcast - panic not, Bond & Beyond will return - James and Alex dust off the last few emails and messages we've received.

These address hard-hitting questions, like the ones posed to Mythbuster Matt about Never Say Never Again's urine fight, or whether we actually do any research for this show.

APOLOGY: There seems to be a slight audio problem with this episode where our voices suddenly drop an octave for a few minutes at a time. It only happens twice before 17m23, and after that it's our normal voices. We tried to address this but our efforts just made things sounds worse!

The audio is improved for View To A Kill, which was recorded immediately after this episode.

If you want to email us, you can do so via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. You can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Oh, and be sure to check out Maarten Vande Wiele's excellent Octopussy comics here: https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/octopussyinstagramstory/

Aug 4, 2018

Alex and James take a look at the unofficial Bond film and Sean Connery's final silver screen outing as 007. Borne out of a legal dispute between Thunderball director Kevin McClory and everyone who actually made Bond film, Never Say Never Again is a beat-for-beat repeat of Connery's fourth adventure - in some way better, in other much worse.

Listen in as we discuss Bond's challenging mission of... er... going on a diet, two of the nuttiest villains he's ever faced, the wonderful Pat Roach, a Blofeld who enjoys his job too much, a forgettable soundtrack, and the completely unjustified appearance of Mr Bean.

Jun 2, 2018

With EON Productions finally announcing both a distributor and a director, it's time to start speculating about Bond 25 (again).

Trainspotting and 127 Hours director Danny Boyle takes the helm, meaning we can expect a very different Bond film compared to 007's previous outings, but that's just the beginning of our questions.

How will Craig end his era of reinvention for the franchise? Will Christoph Waltz's Blofeld turn up? Will Boyle push for a jukebox-style soundtrack? Will there be time-hops? Will James Bond be revealed as a codename? Will Bond die? How upset will Alex and James be if that happens?

And once all that madness calms down, we have the latest messages from our incredible listeners - including the latest scientific insight from Mythbuster Matt.

May 16, 2018

With apologies to Gobinda.

Bond & Beyond finally gets round to reviewing one of Alex's favourites, and perhaps a hidden gem among Moore's various outings as 007 - and no, that's not a jewellery smuggling pun.

Alex and James discuss the strangely perfect mix of camp and complex, where a film that is ultimately about James Bond disarming a nuclear bomb while disguised as a circus clown somehow manages to marry excellent villains, surprisingly strong female characters and a lot of cheesy gags together.

Listen on as they discuss a plot that's so convoluted the villain can't keep up, the remarkable nature of sari stunts, questionable child-targeting merchandise and crocodile submarine logistics. Oh, and somehow forget the henchman's name all the way through (sorry, Gobinda).

If you want to email us, you can do so via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. You can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Mar 22, 2018

Alex and James are joined by British composer Richard Jacques – best known for his work on countless video games, including 007: Blood Stone.

Recorded in his own studio, this episode discusses what gives soundtracks that Bond-like quality, Jacques' own experiences (and various direct connections) to the franchise, and the art of making music for video games.

If you want to email us, you can do so via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. You can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Feb 22, 2018

Alex and James are once again joined by author and Bond fan Mark O'Connell to discuss Sean Connery's (sort of) swansong as Ian Fleming's 007.

Once again recording in a secret (and absurdly professional) location, we discuss Diamonds Are Forever - perhaps the campest, definitely the Vegasest Bond outing to date.

Listen in as we celebrate Tiffany Case, argue about Plenty O'Toole, groan over the Moon Buggy chase, delight in the laser-in-space plot and generally delve deeply into this all-time classic. 

If you want to email us, you can do so via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. You can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

Feb 7, 2018

Alex and James are joined by very special guest Mark O'Connell, author of Catching Bullets: Memoirs of a Bond Fan.

Recording in a top secret location (hence the much better sound quality), we grill Mark about his earliest experiences with 007, his thoughts on the Craig films and where they might be heading, changing attitudes towards the series and his fascinating family connection to the filmmakers themselves.

If you want to email us, you can do so via bondandbeyondpod@gmail.com. You can find us on Facebook (just search 'Bond & Beyond'), Twitter (@bondbeyondpod) and all our episodes are at bondbeyondpod.tumblr.com.

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