Sunday, June 18, 2023

Summer of '83

This summer sees two important James Bond 40th anniversaries. The first is the anniversary of the Roger Moore Bond film Octopussy, released in June 1983. I loved Octopussy when I saw it that summer and I still love it today. It will always be one of my favorite James Bond films. Remember when Bond movies provided fun and fantasy? Long live Octopussy!

Unfortunately, we never got a proper tie-in edition of Fleming's Octopussy and this was before the resumption of the novelizations (with the exception of these). As with For Your Eyes Only, the closest we came was a Marvel comic book adaptation written by Steve Moore with art by Paul Neary. The FYEO adaptation was published as two standalone comics, a paperback book, and a magazine. For Octopussy we just got the magazine. But you can bet I snapped it up and still have it. 

But there was another Bond release that summer that had me just as excited. John Gardner's third 007 novel Icebreaker was released by Putnam in April in the U.S. and July in the UK. Boy, was this a different James Bond from the movies! I admit at the time I didn't fully appreciate Icebreaker as it felt a little too different, not just from the films, but from Gardner's first two books that stuck closer to the Bond formula. But from day one I loved the title and idea of a largely snowbound 007 adventure set in the Arctic Circle. With subsequent re-reads, Icebreaker has become my favorite Gardner book and one of my favorite continuation novels in general. Long live Icebreaker!

Happy 40th Anniversaries to Octopussy and Icebreaker. For me these were both All Time Highs.

1 comment:

  1. I loved "For Special Services", but I really loved "Icebreaker". I thought Gardner really hit his stride with that one. Kept picturing a 40-ish John Wayne as Brad Turpitz. And I still have that Marvel adaptation of "Octopussy" kicking around somewhere. The artwork in it was vastly superior to their version of "For Your Eyes Only" a couple of years earlier.


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