fbpx

The Jewish James Bond Already Knows His Villain

In the spirit of Passover, what will make this Bond different from all other Bonds is that Aaron Taylor-Johnson is . . . Jewish.
[additional-authors]
April 22, 2024
Aaron Taylor-Johnson attends the Madrid photocall for “ACQUA DI GIO” By Giorgio Armani at Matadero Madrid on March 07, 2024 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Aldara Zarraoa/Getty Images)

No sooner had the name of the actor who will inherit the iconic role as the next James Bond been announced, Bond’s obligatory evil nemesis was simultaneously revealed—but in a most unexpected way.

That’s never happened before in the tabloid-frenzy when new blood is brought to the Bond franchise. In a Bond movie, the villain is always second banana, sometimes even behind the Bond girl.

Seven movie actors have played 007 since “Dr. No” premiered in 1962. In the intervening years, 27 films, spanning the Cold War and today’s cyber wars, showcased how espionage, glamour, gadgets, derring-do, casual sex and post-coital wit produced a winning cinematic formula.

But the transition from Daniel Craig to the latest iteration of the world’s most beloved secret agent would be different. Yes, he will still speak with a British accent. The lethal license to kill remains. Bespoke Savile Row suits will yet again survive all those fight scenes and stunt work. And the vintage Aston Martin DB5 might even make a cameo.

But in the spirit of Passover, what will make this Bond different from all other Bonds is that Aaron Taylor-Johnson is . . . Jewish.

That’s right, world: this Bond had a bar mitzvah—in Great Britain! Be prepared: At some point in the movie, he’ll request Manischewitz, “shaken, not stirred.”

And what of this installment of the franchise’s villain? Who, this time, will go to such elaborate lengths to outmatch the spy who has proven to be such an impervious and clever foe all these years?

As soon as Johnson-Taylor, speaking off-script, mentioned that he was Jewish (an interviewer observed that his scruffy, bearded look resembled that of a Hasidic Jew, to which Taylor-Johnson acknowledged that he, in fact, belonged to the Hebrew tribe), a Jew-hating public outcry from pro-Hamas, anti-Israel agitators announced that they planned to boycott the franchise.

The villain, this time, is a disturbingly worldwide supply of  jihadi henchmen in waiting. Jew-haters are now the most suitable bad guys straight out of central casting. Whether it be in mosques or on the campus green, the script has been flipped. Bond is the new stereotypical antihero, while terrorists have received a superhero’s makeover.

We’re doomed.

Ironically, the actor Rami Malek accepted the role of the villain in the last Bond film under the expressed assurance that he would not be playing an Islamic terrorist. Today, he would have nabbed the lead part.

Past is always prologue when it comes to hostility toward Jews.

Will a world filled with antisemites be enough? Talk about taking BDS to extremes. It once more reveals the pernicious lie behind the violent protests taking place on the streets of major European and now American cities, and the hijacking of universities by nefarious professors and their nincompoop students. This most recent moment of global antisemitism is not a response to Israel’s war in Gaza. Past is always prologue when it comes to hostility toward Jews. Palestinian “civilians” are merely a convenient pretext to validate rabid antisemitism run amok.

The Bond blowback, and the resurgence of shameless anti-Jewish hate, has nothing to do with Palestinian statehood. We’ve seen this movie before: “Global Intifada!” and “From the River to the Sea . . .” are just more chantable revisions to Hitler’s “Final Solution to the Jewish Question.”

How does the casting of Taylor-Johnson as Bond prove the point? While Hollywood Handsome, he doesn’t resemble a rugged, sun-kissed sabra, no luminous Zionist pinup.  His fiery detractors have no reason to suspect that he has ever visited Israel, much less supports the Jewish state’s just war against Hamas. He’s not married to a Jewish woman; no synagogue in London has claimed him as a lock for High Holiday services.

For all Hamas fanboys know, Taylor-Johnson will be as invisible as Elijah this Passover, possibly eating posh pizza in Covent Gardens—forsaking the bread of affliction, and dayenus to Daniel Craig.

It matters little that the new Bond is still MI6 and not Mossad. He’s a Jew, and that’s enough to warrant cancellation. To be Jewish nowadays, anywhere, is to be Israeli—and to be held personally responsible for civilian deaths in Gaza.

Bond movies already came equipped with their own politically incorrect baggage. In the progressive left’s regressive anti-colonialism, Great Britain is the poster-nation for imperialism. And Bond is no imams’ or mullahs’ golden boy. After all, he’s a compulsive womanizer, conspicuous capitalist, godless infidel, degenerate gambler, and remarkably poised drunkard.

Devout Muslims probably always had a James Bond boycott in effect. Are those who answer the call to morning prayer, and demand that their wives cover themselves like mummies, even film fans? Many students have long soured on the debauched 007, given all those DEI protocols that have cursed our culture with tedium and conformity.

And now to make matters worse, jihadi wannabees have discovered that James Bond is a Jew! Taylor-Johnson’s blood makes their blood boil.

To make matters worse, jihadi wannabees have discovered that James Bond is a Jew! Taylor-Johnson’s blood makes their blood boil.

None of this should come as a surprise. Over the past several weeks there has been a barrage of boycotts—ostensibly due to Gaza, but the connection to Israel’s vanquishing of Hamas is tenuous, at best. A theater in Philadelphia cancelled the screening of an Israeli documentary that had nothing to do with Israeli politics. The proffered reason: fear of violent demonstrations, and the charge that showing the movie would make the theater complicit in Israel’s crimes. A similar action was taken in Hamilton, Ontario.

Various tour dates for the Jewish rapper Matisyahu were cancelled in the San Francisco Bay Area. Jewish art installations were shuttered. Jewish and Israeli businesses and restaurants have been targeted in New York, Philadelphia, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Over the past two weeks, college presidents at Columbia, Yale, Northwestern and Vanderbilt universities, and Pomona College, have had violent anti-Zionist protesters arrested, suspended and, in some cases, expelled for a number of incidents including occupying administrative buildings, obstructing police, uttering racist remarks, and inviting a terrorist to campus. At Columbia, protesters threatened Jews by promising that every day will be October 7. Some screamed, “We are Hamas!”

In the United Kingdom, half the publishing industry is now refusing to market the writings of identifiably Jewish authors.

In the United Kingdom, half the publishing industry is now refusing to market the writings of identifiably Jewish authors. Apparently, the new James Bond, even in his home country, is being treated with the same ignominious contempt. “Live and Let Die” suddenly has a new meaning.

Speaking of British Jews, football legend David Beckham proudly attests to his Jewish ancestry. One can only imagine what would happen to the Beckham brand had he not yet hung up his soccer boots. And as for Daniel Craig: Luckily, he got out just in time. He’s married to the Jewish actress Rachel Weisz. The rabble of shameless Jew-haters, today, would just hate that.


Thane Rosenbaum is a novelist, essayist, law professor and Distinguished University Professor at Touro University, where he directs the Forum on Life, Culture & Society. He is the legal analyst for CBS News Radio. His most recent book is titled “Saving Free Speech … From Itself,” and his forthcoming book is titled, “Beyond Proportionality: Is Israel Fighting a Just War in Gaza?”

Did you enjoy this article?
You'll love our roundtable.

Editor's Picks

Latest Articles

More news and opinions than at a
Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.

More news and opinions than at a Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.

More news and opinions than at a Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.