James Bond Has No Time for China
The final James Bond outing for Daniel Craig, “No Time to Die,” also marks a notable milestone for Bondian geopolitics
The franchise just completed a five-movie arc with a single lead actor, and amid all the globe-trotting and intrigue, you would barely know that China existed.
In fairness, the Cold War-era Bond movies were not obsessed with Russia, serving up stateless supervillains rather than Soviet adversaries in many of his outings.
China’s absence from Bondworld is part of a general absence in American cinema.
The Asian pop culture that has increasing influence on America is mostly Korean and Japanese, while China — despite all its power, despite our economic intertwinement, despite its crucial role in our political and now our public health debates
As a consequence, its relationship to American ideological debates is fluid, fraught and strange.