Wow that's bizarre! ^ 2006 Bourneish, then the blaxplotation. Not what Fleming had in mind! I hate to say, I've never even seen a Bond book much less read one and I am a very avid reader. I feel bad for fans who started with the books and see how misconstrued the literature has become. It's like Starship Troopers-the book and movie are two very different enities!
I haven't done it yet, mainly because I'm waiting for them all to be available on Blu-Ray. However, it promises to be fascinating.
As for the books, or perhaps Bond himself...
There are several distinct "Bonds."
The Original (Nobody Does it Better) -- Bond of the Fleming novels (including Amis's Colonel Sun
and Faulks's Devil May Care
). He's written pretty consistently throughout as the same guy.
The First Movie Bond -- Connery and Lazeby's portrayal. Closer to the novels, but still distinct. Lazenby is probably the closest of all the Bonds to the novels.
The 70's Bond -- Roger Moore
The 80's pseudo-reboot books -- John Gardner's official continuation took the classic 50's-60's character and transported him to the 1980s. While Gardner's intent was to use the character as he appears in the Fleming novels, he's too heavily influenced by the camp and action extravaganza of the 70's Bond, so we get a whole 'nuther character.
The Return to the Roots -- Timothy Dalton's portrayal. Although Robert Brown's M is not the definative Admiral Sir Miles that we got from Bernard Lee (and there's some thought that he's still playing Admiral Hargreaves from The Spy Who Loved Me
(movie) ), this is the classic Bond from the novels in the end of the Cold War. Dalton nails it in both outings.
Special Effects, Ignoring Physics, and Mustache Twirling Villains: The Brosnan Years -- It's kind of like taking Fleming's original, making him a "pretty boy," and then reliving the 70's Bond with better clothes and better Sci-Fi.
The Raymond Benson Novels -- His books take the Brosnan Bond, Judi Dench's M and tries to write Fleming's character in the 21st Century. "Thank you! Next, please!"
As much as Bernard Lee didn't care for how cranky Fleming wrote M, and didn't want to play him to that extreme, Lee's M is exceptionally close to what Fleming wrote, and is certainly the definitive M.
No one quite knows if Robert Brown played the same man or a new M in his tenure, but he doesn't strike me as Fleming's Admiral Sir Miles Messervy.
Judi Dench, the third M, is clearly a new character.
Any movie Bond fan should
read the original novels. You can find more here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Bond_(novels