The Truth Behind James Bond’s Shaken Martini?

by Screedler on April 3, 2014

This may explain why James Bond was seemingly bulletproof.  A study published in the BMJ concludes that 007 was a problem drinker, and most likely had the shakes.  They really make the case and it is worth reading the whole study.

Objective:   To quantify James Bond’s consumption of alcohol as detailed in the series of novels by Ian Fleming.
Design:   Retrospective literature review.
Participants:  Commander James Bond, 007; Mr Ian Lancaster Fleming.
Main outcome measures:   Weekly alcohol consumption by Commander Bond.

Methods:   All 14 James Bond books were read by two of the authors. Contemporaneous notes were taken detailing every alcoholic drink taken. Predefined alcohol unit levels were used to calculate consumption. Days when Bond was unable to consume alcohol (such as through incarceration) were noted.

Results:   After exclusion of days when Bond was unable to drink, his weekly alcohol consumption was 92 units a week, over four times the recommended amount. His maximum daily consumption was 49.8 units. He had only 12.5 alcohol free days out of 87.5 days on which he was able to drink.

Conclusions:   James Bond’s level of alcohol intake puts him at high risk of multiple alcohol related diseases and an early death. The level of functioning as displayed in the books is inconsistent with the physical, mental, and indeed sexual functioning expected from someone drinking this much alcohol. We advise an immediate referral for further assessment and treatment, a reduction in alcohol consumption to safe levels, and suspect that the famous catchphrase “shaken, not stirred” could be because of alcohol induced tremor affecting his hands.


JB infograph

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Felix Leiter April 9, 2014 at 12:32 am

Alcohol consumption may have contributed to Bond, James Bond’s famous crash in Casino Royale but he also was avoiding the hapless Vesper Lynd, who was bound and lying in the middle of the road. Bond also took copious amounts of benzedrine.


2 Carrie Kaffer April 3, 2014 at 6:59 am

This is fabulous! Poking a little hole in the glorification of alcohol! And in a way that is funny and memorable!! Thanks for posting this!!


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