Thursday, 4 May 2017

Former Enemies

Former enemy Tanaka decries Britain to Bond. There is no equivalent conversation in Poul Anderson's Dominic Flandry series. The equivalent would be if Flandry survived until after the Fall of the Terran Empire and then discussed it with a Merseian who would accuse the Terrans of throwing away their Empire. And, as it happens, SM Stirling compared the Merseians to classic Japanese in a comment on a recent post. See here.

Other examples of former enemies are here and, after the collapse of the Klingon Empire in the Star Trek films. I can usually rely on remembering more after I have started to write a post. This is a breakfast post, to be followed by a drive into the country. The weather is good in this province of the future Terran Empire.


  1. Kaor, Paul!

    It's been a VERY long time since I read YOU ONLY TWICE, but I can't help bu wonder if the Japanese intelligence chief, when harshly criticizing Great Britain, was testing how James Bond would react. Bond, after all, in his way, did care about Queen and country. And I think Tanaka was approving when Bond pushed back.

    I think the closest we see an analogous conversation between Aycharaych and Dominic Flandry is in Chapter IX of A KNIGHT OF GHOSTS AND SHADOWS. Aycharaych had been talking with Flandry and said near the end: "My friend, too play a satanic role. How many lives have you twisted or chopped short? How many will you? Would you protest me if the accidents of history had flung Empire rather than Roidhunate around my star? Or if you had been born into those humans who serve Merseia? Indeed, then you might have lived more whole of heart." The Terran responded: "Anger flared. "I know," Flandry snapped. "How often have I heard? Terra is old, tired, corrupt. Merseia is young, vigorous, pure. Thank you, to the extent that's true, I prefer my anomie, cynicism, and existential despair to counting my days in cadence and shouting hurrah--worse, sincerely meaning it, when Glorious Leader rides by."


    1. Sean,
      Yes, Tanaka tests Bond and applauds his response. Bond proves that he is "elite" by accepting the assignment to kill Shatterhand/Blofeld.

    2. Kaor, Paul!

      Actually, what I recall was how badly Bond fell apart after his wife was murdered. The assignment to Japan was not originally, I think, meant to have anything to do with killing Shatterhand/Blofeld. It was M giving Bond one last chance to prove he could still do good work. Bond, at that meeting with M, had planned to accept early retirement, because he was ashamed of having let down M and the Service. He was surprised at being given a real assignment.