Fearing that the end of the Cold War was approaching, Fleming in the 1960s replaced SMERSH with SPECTRE – a vast international terrorist organisation headed by criminal mastermind Ernst Stavro Blofeld.
But the spectre (pardon the pun) of the Cold War always loomed large in this era.
Sometimes it was heavily implied that SPECTRE was being hired by the Soviet Union (On Her Majesty’s Secret Service) or China (You Only Live Twice) to wreak havoc on the West, while in many of the films it acted as a third party in the Cold War by playing the two sides off against each other.
No matter how far-fetched the storylines, the novels and the films were always rooted in the geopolitics of the time.
Not so with Craig’s films, which recycle SPECTRE and Blofeld (this time played by Christoph Waltz) but have none of the high stakes backdrop.
After a complicated plot over four films, we found out in Craig’s last outing, 2015’s Spectre, that…