10 James Bond Franchise Traditions & Tropes Bond 26 Must Drop



  • Bond 26 needs to retire tired conventions to keep the franchise feeling fresh and avoid predictability, just like Godzilla movies need new elements.
  • Bond 26 should drop tropes like villains with facial disfigurements and the “Bond girl” trope to inject realism and depth into the series.
  • Bond 26 must find a balance between darkness and silliness, marrying the lighter tone of earlier films with the gravitas of the Craig era.



While the James Bond franchise has a lot of well-worn tropes that fans want to see in every outing, Bond 26 does need to retire some of the more tired conventions of the series. It can be tough for a franchise that’s been running for decades to keep its formula feeling fresh. While Godzilla movies aren’t much fun without some giant monster action, a kaiju offering that just revisited all of the franchise’s most famous moments could easily feel redundant and predictable. Similarly, viewers won’t flock to the umpteenth superhero movie if all it offers is another retread of familiar plot points.

The James Bond franchise will inevitably struggle with this issue whenever Bond 26 is released. Bond 26 will see Daniel Craig’s version of 007 replaced by a new actor and this change will likely also result in the series altering its tone. The James Bond movies usually use the arrival of a new actor as a convenient chance for the series to get lighter or darker depending on the trends within blockbuster cinema at the time. Pierce Brosnan’s debut movie Goldeneye heralded the arrival of a more self-aware Bond, while Craig’s first 007 outing Casino Royale was a darker, grittier take on the super-spy tailor-made for the post 9/11 era.

10 Bond Villains With Facial Disfigurements

No Time to Die- James Bond- Lyutsifer Safin

Much like how Craig’s take on Bond needed to inject some relative realism into the series, Bond 26’s new super-spy needs to drop some of the franchise’s less welcome tropes. For one thing, the series needs to stop relying on facial disfigurements as a way to mark its villains as monstrous, evil people. This mean-spirited trend was still alive and well in No Time To Die’s Safin, Spectre’s Blofeld, Skyfall’s Silva, and Casino Royale’s Le Chiffre, meaning this cliché is long overdue a break.

9 Bond 26 Can Properly Drop The “Bond Girl” Trope


No Time To Die did successfully drop the Bond girl trope, as only one of the significant female characters whom the spy interacted with was his romantic partner. 007 didn’t sleep with every woman he met in the movie, meaning characters like Nomi and Paloma got a chance to play roles that amounted to more than disposable, short-lived love interests. However, Bond 26 still needs to cement this approach. After all, Bond was already in a relationship with Madeline Swann before No Time To Die’s story began, so he could be back to his tiresome old tricks once Craig is replaced and the franchise’s timeline is reset.

8 Carrying Over Supporting Actors For A New Bond

Custom image of Q talking and James Bond staring in No Time to Die

Previous James Bond eras never recast M, Q, and Miss Moneypenny when 007’s actor changed. That won’t work in today’s market as viewers can now ask why the supporting characters haven’t addressed the fact that their co-worker is suddenly an entirely different person. Blockbuster franchises now have so much internal continuity that they sometimes feel like very expensive television shows, meaning Bond 26 can’t simply change its hero’s actor and keep the rest of the cast. Unless the death of Craig’s Bond is acknowledged in-universe, a new supporting cast is necessary.

7 A Tone That’s Either Too Dark Or Too Silly

An image of James Bond sitting on a bike in Quantum of Solace

So many Bond films are too dark or too silly, but Bond 26 can no longer afford to swing too far in one direction or the other. After the darkness of Craig’s movies wore thin by the end of No Time To Die, Bond 26 needs to find a proper balance between both extremes. The campy elements of Spectre felt out of place, but Paloma’s perfect No Time To Die role proved that the James Bond franchise does still know how to make fun, lightweight action-comedy in the 2020s. Now, Bond 26 must navigate marrying this lighter tone with some of the Craig era’s gravitas.

6 Blofeld As The Overarching Villain

Split image of Blofeld in Spectre and Safin in No Time to Die

Especially after No Time To Die killed off Christoph Waltz’s iteration of the character, the James Bond franchise doesn’t need to bring back Blofeld any time soon. For one thing, he is one of the earliest and most infamous examples of the “scarred villain” trope mentioned above. For another, the revelation that he was Bond’s secret relative in Spectre was comically misjudged. If even an actor as charismatic as Christoph Waltz couldn’t make Blofeld work in a contemporary movie, it is time to retire the character for a while.

5 Bond 26 Doesn’t Need To Be Set In The Present Day

James Bond lighting his cigarette in Dr. No

The Bond franchise is over 60 years old, meaning it wouldn’t be unreasonable if Bond 26 was a Dr. No remake. However, this would only be possible, along with a lot of other intriguing story possibilities, if the next installment wasn’t set in the present day. Technically, there is nothing tying the James Bond franchise to the present. Plus, a nostalgic 007 adventure could be a lot of fun, and one that could allow Bond 26 to offer something fresh and unexpected.

4 Q Fitting Bond With Overly-Goofy Gadgets

No time to die Q James bond

Not only did Q arm Bond with an absurdly silly gadget as recently as 2015’s Spectre, this tool then provided the movie with its most unlikely twist. Q’s gadgets can be relatively grounded and feel fitting since Bond is a spy and relies on new technology to stay ahead of his enemies. However, these can also be a little bit ludicrous and, particularly in darker 007 adventures, comically out-of-place. There is a reason that No Time To Die director Cary Fukunaga originally considered retconning Spectre’s ending twist, and it is because a wristwatch bomb doesn’t fit in the same fictional universe as Vesper Lynd’s tragic death.

3 Killing Off Love Interests For Cheap Drama

A collage image of James Bond and Vesper Lynd in Casino Royale

Speaking of Vesper Lynd, even the critically acclaimed Casino Royale was guilty of playing into one infamous Bond trope. Killing off the character’s love interests for cheap drama is a weak storytelling ploy that no longer feels surprising or even interesting, as well as one that the series needs to drop. While Casino Royale got away with this twist, it is only because the movie’s dark tone was such a radical departure for the series. Bond 26 needs to be more fun, which means fewer dead love interests.

2 The Classic Bond Villain Lecture

James Bond Raoul Silva in his MI6 prison cell in Skyfall

Even Skyfall’s relatively recent Silva gave a never-ending speech that dragged the movie’s action to a halt. While Bond villains lecturing to the spy during the movie’s climax is a beloved motif throughout the franchise, the gag is so old that it was spoofed in The Simpsons and Austin Powers almost thirty years ago. At this stage, at least one villain would have learned not to give Bond a chance to formulate an escape plan.

1 007 Falling For Double Agents

Judi Dench as M Daniel Craig as James Bond and Ben Whishaw as Q

Every version of Bond has been hoodwinked by at least one collaborator who turned out to be a double agent. This twist makes the super spy look a little incompetent and the sheer amount of times that it has happened throughout the franchise doesn’t exactly help his case. As such, Bond 26 should do something truly revolutionary and offer viewers the first version of James Bond who isn’t constantly falling for obvious lies.