Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Sir Roger Moore - An Endearing Bond

Today we witnessed the passing of Sir Roger Moore, at the ripe age of 89 years. As the media notes, this marks the first death of a Bond actor.....but, for me, Roger Moore was so much more than 007. He was one of the most manly and charismatic personalities since Errol Flynn leaped onto the big screen. Not to mention he was devilishly handsome. 

I think what appealed to me most about Roger was his stately bearing. He was a gentleman in an age of very few gentlemen. Tailored suits, the finest cuff-links, impeccable hair...he always dressed for the occasion. Sometimes that occasion was yachting on the Riviera, other times hosting a race in London. If one was to look up the word debonair in the Webster's dictionary "Sir Roger Moore" should be the definition. It was like a real baron, no - a prince - took time off from his royal duties to try acting for a lark, to have the pleasure of entertaining the masses. And what pleasure he gave us! 

From his awkward first films in Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer swashbucklers ( oh, but was he dreamy in spite of his acting! ) to his television success playing heroes such as Simon Templar aka The Saint, the roguish cowboy Maverick, or the English aristocrat Lord Sinclair ( The Persuaders ), Roger Moore always slipped into his characters like they were custom-fitted gloves and generously shared his true personality with his audience. He was marvelously witty ( his books will tickle you to death ) and quite modest considering he had absolutely nothing to be modest about. Self-deprecating wit was what he was famous for, with quotes such as this : "If I kept all my bad notices, I'd need two houses."
And then there was Bond. Roger Moore was my favorite James Bond. Always was....at least, ever since I was a youngster and watched A View to a Kill ( 1985 ) with my father and my sister every summer. It was, and still is, a family favorite. Years later, I discovered that Moore was 58-years old when he played in that film, his last performance as Bond. I never knew a 58-year old could be so exciting. 

But in spite of all these wonderful traits, the most impressive quality of all about Sir Roger Moore was his large heart and his zest for living. 

"Teach love, generosity, good manners and some of that will drift from the classroom to the home and who knows, the children will be educating the parents."


Moore succeeded Audrey Hepburn as the goodwill ambassador for UNICEF, a position which earned him his knighthood. Moore considered his work with UNICEF to be the most rewarding thing he ever did, and for nineteen years he used his celebrity status to open doors for the betterment of children's lives. 
Indeed, this man was a true gentleman...humorous, compassionate, modest, dashing, and - dare I repeat myself? - so devilishly handsome! 

I miss you already, Roger. 

6 comments:

  1. A wonderful tribute. Just thinking about Roger Moore, his rakish screen presence and his charitable works, makes me smile.

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    1. I would have liked to have met him in person. Roger Moore was quite talented BEHIND the camera as well, and he directed a number of The Saint and The Persauders episodes.

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  2. A charming commentary on an equally charming actor!
    He is my favourite Jamesie too!

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    1. I'm glad to hear that! Moore brought humor to 007 which really increased the film's entertainment value.

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  3. On screen and television, he was--as you wrote--the epitome of the classy gentleman. He was my wife's favorite 007 as well and I think THE SPY WHO LOVED ME and FOR YOUR EYES ONLY rank among the best of all Bond films.

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    1. Rick, your wife has good taste in Bonds! I agree with your selection of top 007 films, but would add Octopussy, too. That film is non-stop action/adventure.

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