Does Judi Dench's M (both of them) have a drink problem?

gumboltgumbolt Now with in-office photocopier
Firstly, I assume most observers regard Judi Dench as having played two separate characters as M (or the same character with alternative time lines) in her Brosnan and Craig era films. But what these two characters/alternative experiences have in common is a fondness for a drink. M is often seen drinking at work, sometimes seemingly rather early in the day or at inappropriate moments. I think she drinks at work in every movie (apart from her 4 seconds in SP) and I think there is a clear implication in Skyfall that she may have a problem. Mallory, in his first ever meeting with her character, pours her a drink without having one himself. She heads home in SF and the first thing she does is grab for a drink. She writes Bond's obituary in the office with a glass and bottle by her side. In TND she drinks in the car when briefing Bond! In TWINE she drinks during the day (the boat chase restaurant scene suggests it is lunchtime) and she certainly has a few in DAD (maybe just to get her through the movie, to be fair). And in CR and QOS she is seen with drink to hand or nearby (it was her whisky Bond guzzled down in Italy - why on earth did she have that with her there?!). "Good morning. My name is M... and I'm an alcoholic." (Cue supportive group applause). Any thoughts?

Comments

  • BondJasonBond006BondJasonBond006 on fb and ajb
    edited November 2016 Posts: 9,021
    Very good observation. Yes it's puzzling.
    The drinking is another clear indicator, by the way, that this talk of her playing two different characters is utter nonsense.
    Some people just can't admit that the reboot idiocy was a total inconsistent failure.

    I am doing statistics on Bond and I have the when does M drink and what on my short list.
    I have done nail polish colour of Moneypenny for the thread so it can't get more ridiculous :))

    I think it is a heavy burden to be the head of MI6, especially being a woman and in TND there is some pretty clear sexism towards her.

    She works 24/7 which can be seen in various films.

    She worries about Bond in various ways too, all the time.

    Of course she is drinking. Who wouldn't.
    Is she an alcoholic? Hardly.
    She has it under control, but she is an addict. She couldn't just stop drinking.
    It's a means to make it through the job which is almost her life.

    Sadly the writers decided to make her an idiotic, weak character in Skyfall, only to have her killed without sense.
    They must have hated her quite a bit.

    It was the undeserved end for a wonderful character that only an actress like Judi Dench could play so brilliantly that she is in fact the strongest character in the Brosnan and Craig era, even stronger than Bond himself.
  • MaxCasinoMaxCasino United States
    edited January 2019 Posts: 2,185
    Now I really see where the inspiration for Malory Archer obviously came from.
  • Posts: 613
    No. They're just English.
  • Agent_99Agent_99 enjoys a spirited ride as much as the next girl
    Posts: 2,681
    No. They're just English.

    My tutor at university had a big bottle of gin on display in her study at all times. She was a little like Judi's M, come to think of it.
  • ThunderfingerThunderfinger The Lazenby Pit
    Posts: 42,469
    Must be the job. Look at Mallory in NTTD.
    Bond: "My God, you re thirsty!"
  • Posts: 469
    Collecting bottles and having them on display isn't necessarily a sign of alcoholism. Some people drink occasionally and like them as decorative pieces.

    The person with lots of bottles on display could be someone who drinks rarely, and drinks at a slower rate than they buy the bottles at. Whereas someone with no bottles could be a full-on alcholic with empty bottles in the garbage.
  • Agent_99Agent_99 enjoys a spirited ride as much as the next girl
    Posts: 2,681
    M16_Cart wrote: »
    Collecting bottles and having them on display isn't necessarily a sign of alcoholism. Some people drink occasionally and like them as decorative pieces.

    The person with lots of bottles on display could be someone who drinks rarely, and drinks at a slower rate than they buy the bottles at. Whereas someone with no bottles could be a full-on alcholic with empty bottles in the garbage.

    True. Someone asked me semi-seriously if I was an alcoholic, looking at my drinks cabinet. No mate, if I was I wouldn't be capable of having all these half-full bottles around.
  • mtmmtm United Kingdom
    Posts: 9,115
    I did always think it's quite funny that she can't get through a car journey without keeping herself topped up in TND :)
  • KenAustinKenAustin United States
    Posts: 226
    In character as M: I'd say she has no less a drinking problem than anyone else would whose job it was to constantly send people to their deaths, whether agent or villain. I'm sure there could easily have been a PTSD-type diagnosis upon retirement, had she made it that far.

    If you're talking about real life, I don't know her that well LOL
  • j_w_pepperj_w_pepper Hamburg, near the Atlantic Hotel
    Posts: 6,092
    Agent_99 wrote: »
    M16_Cart wrote: »
    Collecting bottles and having them on display isn't necessarily a sign of alcoholism. Some people drink occasionally and like them as decorative pieces.

    The person with lots of bottles on display could be someone who drinks rarely, and drinks at a slower rate than they buy the bottles at. Whereas someone with no bottles could be a full-on alcholic with empty bottles in the garbage.

    True. Someone asked me semi-seriously if I was an alcoholic, looking at my drinks cabinet. No mate, if I was I wouldn't be capable of having all these half-full bottles around.

    By extension, does that make the (first) Judi Dench M's predecessor (whether he was Sir Miles Messervy or the former Admiral Hargreaves) an alcoholic because he "kept some cognac in the top drawer", rather than on display?
  • Agent_99Agent_99 enjoys a spirited ride as much as the next girl
    Posts: 2,681
    mtm wrote: »
    I did always think it's quite funny that she can't get through a car journey without keeping herself topped up in TND :)

    That's just the Brosnan effect. Look at General Ourumov.
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