James Bond and S & M
A whole generation of women discovered S & M with Fifty Shades of Grey. But fans of the Bond franchise know the kinky sex delivered by Fifty Shades author EL James pales when compared with the heat and violence of the Bond franchise.
The Bond movies have always had an element of sado-masochism, the love-hate see-saw play of good-bad men and women – and from what is known about their creator Ian Fleming’s life it seems the reality was if anything stranger than the fantasy.
Spankings A Fleming Feature
Fleming’s biographers have shown convincingly that for Bond’s creator sex and cruelty went hand in hand. The first Bond got written largely thanks to the magnetic attraction between Fleming and his beautiful aristocratic wife Ann Charteris – an attraction fuelled by physical violence as well as emotional cruelty.
One of Fleming’s biographers wrote: “Those who were lucky enough to visit Goldeneye, Ian Fleming’s Jamaican retreat, could never understand how the Flemings went through so many wet towels.
“But those sodden towels were needed, literally, to cool their fiery partnership, used to relieve the stinging of the whips, slippers and hairbrushes the pair beat each other with – Ian inflicting pain more often than Ann – as well as to cover up the weals Ian made on Ann’s skin during their fiery bouts of love-making.
Sex and Cruelty Hand in Hand
“In Fleming’s books – as in his life – sex and cruelty went hand in hand, and sex and cruelty never go out of fashion.
“This cruelty even infected his marriage. In public, his wife Ann was a beautiful, sharp-witted aristocrat.
“In private, she soaked up the pain the abusive Fleming caused her – physically and mentally – and then gave some of it back. Had Ann not been in Fleming’s life, the James Bond novels might never have been written.”
Fleming was a womaniser when he met Charteris – already married to a peer with one of the longest ancestries in Europe – but when her husband was killed fighting in the Second World War in Tunisia she went on to marry the fabulously wealthy press baron Viscount Rothermere when Fleming failed to step up to the occasion.
That didn’t stop Fleming and Charteris carrying on a flagrant love affair which shocked even Noel Coward, one of Fleming’s Jamaican neighbours.
She wrote to Fleming in 1947 after a few days together: “It was so short and so full of happiness, and I am afraid I loved cooking for you and sleeping beside you and being whipped by you… I don’t think I have ever loved like this before.”
You’ll Pay – Fleming to Wife
Their relationship thrived – thanks to their fierce physical fights. When Ann left bruises on Fleming, he would warn her that “all this damage has to be paid for some time”, and so it was.
“I long for you to whip me because I love being hurt by you and kissed afterwards,” Ann wrote to him. “It’s very lonely not to be beaten and shouted at every five minutes.”
When the Viscount finally tired of being cuckolded Fleming married a pregnant Ann and from there it was all downhill for their relationship if not his writing career.
Sex On The Brain
Casino Royale, the first Bond book, was written he said to keep his mind off the “horrific prospect of a life spent in happy matrimony.”
(Interestingly the scene where Bond has his testicles crushed in a ‘torture chair’ is retained in the 2006 version with Daniel Craig as Bond.)
Both were unfaithful to the other as they struggled to maintain some sort of togetherness.
“No one I have ever known had sex so much on the brain as Ian,” recalls his friend Mary Pakenham (later Lady Longford).
His London flat was full of books about flagellation: men and women standing over each other with a whip.
To a guest who showed any interest in them, Fleming would remark: ‘I say, are you getting a kick out of that?'”
- Quotes from Ian Fleming by Andrew Lycett published by Weidenfeld.
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