Thursday, December 27, 2012

James Bond and drum corps, a blast from the past

I promised the following in the conclusion to It's the drum corps apocalypse!
If there is any other combination of topics that would compel me to blog, it's the combination of James Bond and drum corps.  Trust me, I've found that already, along with an eight-year-old article I wrote describing the performance.  That will fit right in with the monthly theme of Work, as I wrote that for Drum Corps World.
Time to follow through, first with the relevant passage from my review Cavaliers win as drum corps returns to Canton.
As heralded by their warm-up, “An All-Time High”, The Cavaliers (62 B, 18 FP, 11 PP, 36 G, 4 DM) earned their highest score of the season so far at Canton as they continued their adventurous and debonair ways. Their “007? show contains many light-hearted and entertaining details related to the James Bond theme, beginning with the guard miming the MI6 agent’s handling of his PPK revolver.

The individual brass players being chased from set to set as he “escapes”, continues the theme, and finally, the game of “Spy vs. Spy,” where two brass players play as they “shoot” at each other across a rank of sopranos.

And all of those are before the first standing ovation! The musical interpretations dominate the second part of the show, with “Hovercraft” rocking, while it evokes a trademark Bond exotic location, [and] “Tomorrow Never Dies” taking turns being eerie, lyrical, and intense.

While the big gimmick move from the past three years is missing, there is a relatively big drill move along the back sideline one minute before the end of the show. I won’t spoil it for you—you’ll have to watch for yourself.

It is, however, reminiscent of some of their moves from the early 1980s. Although the ending seemed to be missing something, it was still enough to earn the Green Machine a second standing ovation and a sweep of every caption and subcaption over the only other remaining all male competitive junior corps.
Here are two videos of the show.  Like the last two entries featuring drum corps, the first one is an unofficial one of a complete performance (ETA, as I expected, it was taken down, so I am replacing it with New Zealand Girl Reacts to 2004 CAVALIERS DRUM CORPS 007 PERFORMANCE!! — a video that might just stay), while the second is an official teaser promo, which means it will remain up even if the first is taken down.  See if my description of the show has held up over the intervening eight years.

In honor of the 50th anniversary of the James Bond film 'Dr. No,' here is a clip from the 2004 The Cavaliers show '007.'
As for why James Bond would be on topic for this blog, consider the following two ideas.

First, this blog is about science fiction as much as it is about collapse.  In that vein, the James Bond movies, even more so than the books, qualify, as they are really science fiction films set 20 minutes into the future.  As science fiction, the films both celebrate the latest technology and explore in a very escapist fashion a current technological, scientific, or even environmental issue that is a source of societal anxiety.  Keeping that ambivalence in mind while watching a Bond film makes it a more intellectually interesting experience, at least for me.  See if it works for you, too.

Second, Bond has averted the near total extinction of humanity at least twice, as well as defused other situations that could have resulted in World War III several other times.  Because of these 'good deeds,' he qualifies as an honorary Crazy Eddie.  That alone makes the films worthy of discussion.

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