Licensed to Blecch: Mad Magazine's James Bond Parodies
The new James Bond movie Skyfall has been out for a few weeks now, grossing nearly $789M worldwide and getting a healthy 91 percent on the Tomatometer. That's a damn shame, too, because it means that hundreds of critics were denied the opportunity to write "Skyfall? More like Skyfail, amirte?"
Under normal circumstances we could count on Mad Magazine to pick up that particular slack, but oddly enough, it hasn't spoofed a Bond film for 30 years, and it only did three full-length parodies before quitting.
Maybe it's because the Bond movies are pretty much comedies to begin with -- yes, even the oh-so-gritty Daniel Craig ones -- and it's tough to make fun of a movies that don't take themselves seriously in the first place.
But let's look at the Mad Bond parodies that do exist!
"007: A Mad Musical," Mad #94.
The first Bond parody appeared in mid-1965 when there had only been three Bond films -- Dr. No, From Russia with Love, and Goldfinger -- but rather than spoofing any of those films directly, Mad spoofed the genre, and in the form of a musical, because why not? They would later do more direct musical parodies of Star Wars and The Lord of the Rings.
The running joke in the movies and the parody alike is that Bond is a huge pussyhound, and they nicely capture what a suave sonofabitch Sean Connery was back in the day. (Technical note: For most of these, you can click on them to see a bigger, easier-to-read graphic.)
I could do without the cross-dressing humor, but to repeat what I said regarding the transphobic jokes in the Alien parodies -- those were different times, they had to come up with hundreds of jokes every month and sometimes they got lazy, yadda yadda yadda. It is what it is, and I ain't gonna angrily tweet about it or go back in time and glitterbomb The Usual Gang of Idiots.
In any event, here's the original "Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin'" sung by Hugh Jackman in a recent Broadway revival:
And, hey! A Mad Zeppelin sighting!
"8 'James Bomb' Bomb Movies," Mad #165.
Mad didn't bother with James Bond movies again until 1974, when it was overwhelmingly obvious that the series wasn't going away. In order to get up to speed -- and because the post-Goldfinger Bond films were samey enough that they didn't really warrant individual attention -- they crammed the first eight movies into a single feature, treating each film with the respect it deserved. Which is to say, none.
From 1962's Dr. No ...