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Is James Bond Really Dead? No Time To Die Ending & Fan Theories, Explained

Laura Sanders


Is James Bond Really Dead? No Time To Die Ending & Fan Theories, Explained

Fans aren't happy about the way No Time To Die ended and now various theories have developed about where James Bond will go from here. Needless to say, this article CONTAINS SPOILERS.

No Time To Die is the 25th film in the James Bond franchise and Daniel Craig's fifth and final 007 venture. Here's how to watch the Daniel Craig Bond movies in order.

Craig is the longest-serving James Bond actor, having been in the role for more than 15 years - and he's made millions doing it. We always knew it would be an emotional goodbye to Craig, but fans were taken by complete surprise when his character died at the end of No Time to Die.

"I haven't ever been this mad about a movie before! That's the last time the Bond franchise will get a dime out of me," one disgruntled Reddit user wrote in a discussion about the ending of No Time To Die.


"I'm still trying to get over M's death," said another.

But another wrote: "I felt that this was the most powerful way to end the Craig era... A true hero's tragedy."

No Time To Die ending explained


The final scenes of No Time To Die see Bond set out to shut down Safin's biolab before the disease gets out and destroys the human race.

Having rescued Madeleine and his newly discovered daughter Mathilde and put them on a boat to safety with the new 007 (Lashana Lynch), Bond stays behind to open the silo doors to Safin's (Rami Malek) lab so that the nuclear missiles can enter and destroy it.

He leaves Matilde with his jumper to keep her warm and says to Madeleine, "I need to finish this, for us." After a heartfelt kiss goodbye, Bond heads back into the plant to ensure it's destroyed.

Having opened the silo doors, Q and M give the go-ahead to the navy to fire the missiles, which gives Bond nine minutes to get off the island. But as he runs downstairs to make his escape, the silo doors close and he has to head back to open them again.


Unfortunately, he's met by Safin in his poison garden on the way and a scrap in the pond causes the strange vial we saw Safin wearing earlier smash. The vial, we learn, contains the manmade disease which has been programmed to kill Madeleine. Bond and Saffin become infected with the incurable disease, meaning Bond will never be able to go near Madeleine or Mathilde again, because coming into contact with them would kill them.

Bond shoots Saffin dead and then races up to open the doors again, but upon realising he'll never be able to be with Madeleine or his daughter again, accepts his fate and radios them to say his final goodbyes. He opens the doors and the missiles strike the plant, killing Bond in the process.

So yes unfortunately, there's no doubt that James Bond dies at the end of this movie.

Is James Bond really dead?

James Bond in No Time To Die. (Credit: 007.com)
James Bond in No Time To Die. (Credit: 007.com)

It depends on your interpretation really. Daniel Craig's James Bond is definitely dead. But during the end credits, there is a hint that James Bond will return. So how can that be if he was blown to smithereens at the end of No Time To Die?

"This version of Bond dying doesn't mean the character will be dead forever. It just means Daniel Craig is definitely never coming back," said one Reddit user. "I don't see Craig's Bond as a character who's lasted six decades. He's just Craig's Bond, the character has five movies, that's it."

James Bond Fan Theories


Of course, some want to believe that James Bond survives the missile strike on Saffin's island, but if that's too far fetched to believe, here are two of the most common theories:

1) James Bond is a code name given to whoever happens to be agent 007

The theory: This would give the producers the freedom (or already has done) to have another James Bond in the movies, as the name is just a code name and is assigned to any 007 agent.

However, there are flaws in this fan theory, as one Reddit user (@r/thegeneral400) has explained.

"James Bond is recognized by Felix Leiter as James Bond. This means that either Felix Leiter knows who he is despite changing appearance, or the CIA also has this silly idea," they wrote in a thread called 'Disproving the fan "theories": James Bond."

"Of course, the biggest proof is in Skyfall when he literally goes to his parents' graves and their name is Bond. Also his old friend addresses him as James," they added.

Daniel Craig and Judi Dench in Skyfall. (Credit: 007.com)
Daniel Craig and Judi Dench in Skyfall. (Credit: 007.com)

2) Daniel Craig's Bond movies serve as prequels to the Sean Connery era

The theory: We're heading into Marvel Cinematic Universe territory with this next theory, which suggests that the Craig era movies are prequels to the Connery movies, allowing a continual path to the original 20 films. A slightly different theory suggests that Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace take place before the other Bond movies, then Skyfall, Spectre and No Time To Die.

However, the same Reddit user has found evidence that this doesn't add up. "James just achieved 00 status in Casino Royale and is a seasoned agent by Skyfall. In Dr. No, it is implied Bond is a relatively new agent. He is threatened with going back to standard intelligence duties, something not even considered in Skyfall."

So, is James Bond really dead? The verdict: Daniel Craig's James Bond character is dead, but James Bond may not be. As mentioned, the end credits say that "James Bond will return," but the only people who know how at this moment in time are the Broccolis.

No Time To Die
James Bond

Featured Image Credit: 007.com

Topics: TV and Film, Daniel Craig, James Bond

Laura Sanders
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