Sunday, November 09, 2008

The Law of the Quantum of Solace

I was just reading a recent copy of the Gleaner. There is a farming slump on, and the potential for a downturn in the banana sector. I read the sports standings as well, as I follow the Western Basketball Division Frutra/Oasis Purified Water Development League.

The Gleaner, Jamaica's newspaper, is referenced in several of Ian Fleming's James Bond novels. The Bond of the books spent much of his time in the Caribbean. Fleming's short story, "Quantum of Solace," is collected with short stories "From a View to a Kill," "For Your Eyes Only," "Risico" and "The Hildebrand Party" in For Your Eyes Only. The title "Quantum of Solace" comes from a line of dialogue in the story.

The story, less than 20 pages long, is set in Nassau, the Bahamas, and is a story within a story, told by Nassau's Governor to James Bond following a dinner party.

I actually find the back story to this short story rather fascinating, though it is not explored. Bond happens to be in the Bahamas because the US Coast Guard is onto arms smuggling out of Miami to Castro's rebels in Cuba, so bases have been set up in the Bahamas and Jamaica to facilitate the arming of the Cuban rebels. Bond is there to stop it, and while in Nassau its Governor entertains Bond with an odd tale about the fate of a marriage.

And in the telling of this sordid tale the Governor uses the phrase "The Law of the Quantum of Solace."

The Law of the Quantum of Solace states that relationships can withstand many things -- infidelity, crimes, disease. But there is a point wherein civility no longer exists, and one person in the relationship does not care if the other is alive or dead. It becomes a matter of self preservation at that point, for the other.

Whether or not the new new Marc Forster film has anything remotely to do with Fleming's short story remains to be seen. But perhaps the essence of Governor's Law will remain intact. We'll find out on November 14.

4 comments:

Rick said...

Vicki has been demanding a date night for the opening of this one. I am looking forward to it as well.

Todd said...

I may actually catch this one BEFORE it hits DVD.

Steve said...

I'm really looking forward to the new James Bond. I think Daniel Craig's Bond is a fresh look, long overdue. I guess he's the "Obama" of Bonds. I've watched a few of the old bond on my On Demand channel...some good, some bad. I think this new Bond harkens back to the Bond of Connery. Stylish, with a certain wildness to his character with none of the silliness of Moore.

Can't wait.

Caryn said...

Steve - I don't know if Craig's bond is the Obama of Bonds or not... but he is certainly the HOTTEST of Bonds, speaking from the female point of view. Obama - not hot.