James Bond’s Walther PPK w/ Firearms Expert, Tom Whiteman

Podcast Episode

James Bond’s Walther PPK w/ Firearms Expert, Tom Whiteman

Today we talk with a weapons expert, Tom Whitehall of Legacy Collectibles – all about Major Boothroyd’s weapon of choice for James Bond!

 

James Bond!  Weapons! Berettas!  Walther PPKs, Silencers and more!  Today we talk with a weapons expert, Tom Whiteman of Legacy Collectibles – all about Major Boothroyd’s weapon of choice for James Bond!

Join Tom and Dan in a fun talk about the most famous Bond weapon, the Walther PPK!

In this podcast, we discuss some of the guns from James Bond movies, including:

  • The Walther PPK
  • Walther PP
  • Gyrojet
  • Barettas
  • How caliber affects a gun and it’s power
  • Suppressors (Silencers)
  • And more …

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Getting the Walther PPK

Getting the Walther PPK

Bond fans know that often Bond uses a Walther PPK pistol as his main weapon.   In Dr. No, we learn he was using a Beretta.  But, in this scene, M informs him that he will no longer use the beretta, but a Walther PPK, which the CIA swears by.   The person giving Bond the PPK in this scene is Major Boothroyd.

In real life, Ian Fleming got a letter from a person named Geoffrey Boothroyd, a British gun collector firearms expert, who was a fan of his work.  He suggested to Fleming that a Beretta is not the right gun for Bond, and ultimately recommended the Walther PPK!   Fleming, as he so often did, named Boothroyd in the movie after this real person.   A Beretta (a .25 caliber) has far less stopping power than a Walther PPK (a .32 caliber).  Bond used a Beretta 418, which was really a problem for Bond in the book, “From Russia With Love,” which was published the year before “Dr. No” was published – 1957 for “From Russia With Love”, and 1958 for “Dr. No.”   In the movie Dr. No, it was a Beretta m1934 more than likely.

Walther PPK Stopping Power

There is some controversy about which has more stopping power.   An argument has been advanced that the Beretta M1934 9mm Short round is better than the Walther PPK which chambered a 7.65 mm round.    But if you own the Ultimate Edition of James Bond 007 DVD sets, Volume 4 has Dr. No.  On the special features extras disc, there is a piece featuring Geoffrey Boothroyd setting the record straight on this!  He prefers a .44 Ruger Magnum, but it is large – too large to carry in a shoulder holster.  So he settles for the Walther!

But the producers and writers, sticking to the “Dr. No” book, decided to take the Beretta away in the first movie, Dr. No.  Here they are referring to an incident (the silencer of the Beretta catching in the in Bond’s clothing which almost got him killed) in the novel “From Russia With Love.”  “From Russia With Love”  was published before “Dr. No,”  but which movie will come out AFTER Dr. No.   EON Productions and their staff took liberty with sequential incidents from the books as they moved them to the movies.  Not always in order!

Destructor Bag Foreshadows Mission: Impossible Self-Destructing Messages

We have also noted at the beginning of this clip, M tells Bond he is going to Jamaica, and that he will send the documents he needs to the airport in a “destructor bag.”  This is the first we have seen in any spy movies the use of a destructor bag – sound familiar?   The Mission: Impossible TV series started in 1966, and as we all know if you remember the series or the Mission: Impossible movies now, the mission begins with a recorded message, that says “this tape will self-destruct in five seconds.”  Here is the origin!

Again, since this is the first Bond film, we are learning a lot about Bond.  Note here Bond says he’s used the Beretta for 10 years – so there is a history we do not know about.  And now, Bond has the weapon that we are all familiar with – the Walther PPK – and this is where and when he gets it!

 

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