My daughter and I spent the day together. I asked her where she wanted to go after dance this morning, and she said “The museum with the PEZ dispensers.” Meaning the Geppi Entertainment Museum. The highlight (for my daughter) was the gift shop; of course, she got a PEZ dispenser. The GEM gift shop had a box of trading cards, a buck apiece. My daughter saw how much time and attention the Golden Boy got with his windfall of inherited baseball cards (the most ugg-moe of which can be seen ratchear. Scroll down.) and wanted a slice of that sweet, sweet paternal attention pie. So, for a buck, what the hell. Among others, we got a pack of James Bond cards, and a pack of Elvis cards.
The James Bond Cards
I won’t lie to you. I really wanted a Roger Moore card. I’ve had my fill of Roger Moore bashing, as persons online weigh in with their dumb opinions. When I was a boy, I was a Sean Connery man. Sean Connery was ahead of his time, an actor with a serious slab of gym muscles. Nowadays, that’s every actor. You can’t even go to a diner in Hollywood and see dudes from MadTV without noticing that they, too, are ripped to shreds just so they can meet the bare minimum quotient of photogeniality and thereby play stunted child-men. Whereas there is no modern analog to Roger Moore. A gentleman who plays a child’s idea of a grownup and never, ever brings up such boring goddamn topics of conversation as diet and workout regime. Really, I just wanted a banal factoid of Sir Roger’s life illustrated in the Topps ‘Baseball Guy’ style of the 70’s and very early 80’s. Like this:
But I did not get a Roger Moore card, dammit. Here’s what I did get.
“Tatiana Romanova was drafted by the Russian Ballet but slated for AA reassignment when a late growth spurt made her too tall. KGB general manager Woot Hacken picked up her option from Moscow and traded her to Istanbul for a bootful of fezzes.”
Look, if you remember this character’s name, lobby to have it put on a milk carton.
Oh, sweet Jeebus. More bilge from Tomorrow Never Dies. Lane Myer’s math teacher from Better Off Dead is a highlight, though. Still a shitburger!
Speaking of shitburgers, I’ve always had a soft spot for The Man With The Golden Gun. Stephen Hunter tried to warn me in the Baltimore Sun‘s TV Week supplement’s capsule reviews back in 1986, but what can I say? I was 12 and totally sold on Lebanese belly dancers, redneck car chases, John Barry’s score and Lulu’s theme song. Britt Ekland is about the least interesting thing about this movie.
FINALLY, A LIVE ONE! It’s Tevye the Milkman, who teams up with 007 in For Your Eyes Only to fight Cossacks and the brown shit that gets on your teeth from smoking too much. Havenu shalom aleichem, Mr. Bond!
The Elvis Cards
If the James Bond cards were underwhelming, the Elvis cards are almost beneath mention. Almost. Here’s the three that are almost interesting.
The Suspicious Minds 45 sleeve and fun factoids. I’m just annoyed that Suspicious Minds was the King’s only post-Comeback #1. Kentucky Rain didn’t go to #1? That’s a damn shame. Certainly, Kentucky Rain was plenty popular; I first encountered it when it was a staple of country radio in the late 70s, and stayed there til the ‘Urban Cowboy’ fad was replaced by the ‘New Traditionalists’ movement and then found a new home when ‘Oldies Radio’ popped up on the FM dial.
Elvis: That’s The Way It Is is sad in a post-mortem way. We watch Elvis begin to get quite full of himself as he rakes the TCB Band over the coals, rehearsing album filler like Patch It Up. Feh.
An Elvis fat suit. The flip side mentions that EAP busted the ass out of these karate drawers on New Year’s Eve 1975. “And then Hamburger James cut the cheese!”