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Bourne vs. Bond: CIA vs. MI6

Updated on August 20, 2020
Jason Bourne (Left) and James Bond (Right)
Jason Bourne (Left) and James Bond (Right)

Jason Bourne has defeated everything that has come his way. He brought an entire section of the CIA to its knees. James Bond has saved the world at least 25 times and proved that he is the most superior fictional secret agent in history. However, let’s take a good look at the two secret agents one on one. There may be a different explanation for which one is the better agent and the one that you wished you had on your team. Today we will explore the different agents backgrounds through several different aspects in order to determine which agent, should they go head to head would have a better resume.


Bourne in The Bourne Ultimatum (2007)
Bourne in The Bourne Ultimatum (2007)

In case you are not aware James Bond’s missions are always world saving, at least it seems like they are. Bond’s villains are always hell-bent on world domination. He rarely requires help except for his femme fetale of which he has hundreds over his many films and novels. Bond himself is one hundred percent dedicated to the mission and his country from the beginning to the end. His missions are not at all like a Mission Impossible, he is assigned to them and never has the opportunity to turn them down. Jason Bourne is dedicated to his missions, however, we do not here anything about Jason Bourne during his time with the CIA instead we see the CIA target him multiple times. His story begins in the films as landing in the Mediterranean Sea near Marseille. He failed a mission in order to arrive at the point in which the story begins. Bourne is an exclusive agent that does not operate on a basis of being told to bring someone in or stop someone. He is sent in when the situation requires someone to be killed off. Bourne was considered the best of the best in the CIA. He strictly operates as an assassin and going through his file he appears to have only failed once. His missions do not require saving the world at all. He is a fixer of a situation that the CIA may have caused but diplomacy did not work at all.


Bond in Dr. No (1962)
Bond in Dr. No (1962)

James Bond has only two things on his mind in his quest to complete his mission, queen and country. He is able to complete his missions with the license to kill authorization afforded him by the Queen and MI6. He possess very little to no morals when it comes to what he does on his missions. He sleeps with beautiful woman who often provide him with information as to how to complete his mission. While doing this he is not afforded the luxury of feeling and being emotional. In fact, we do not learn anything about Bond’s past until the release of Skyfall (2015). He has only loved one woman ever and she was killed through no fault of his own. As a result, he never shows emotion when working on a mission. Yes, he is afforded the comfort to joke around in his films sometimes but for the most part he stays the course and completes the mission returning to flirt with Eve Moneypenny. As compared to Jason Bourne there is a similar mindset. Bourne himself had a relationship in the past with fellow CIA operative Nicky Parsons. Nicky however disappears from his life following what happens in Marseille. Losing his memory caused him to lose his sense of morality as well. Bourne spends all of the franchise trying to recover his memory and find the people responsible for trying to terminate him. With his story the support for him is unquestionable. The CIA did wrong by attempting to exterminate him and by saying he went off the grid following his failed mission. However, it is identified in The Bourne Ultimatum (2007) that he chose to enter the “Treadstone” program. It is not Jason’s fault for ending up in the predicament, all he wants to know is why what happened to him happened. In regards to his morals further, he only ever really knew one person in his post-dementia state. Marie Kreutz, his love interest in the Bourne franchise, had an intimate connection with Bourne which made her life exciting but also tragic as she met her end through an assassination. After her death, we see Jason Bourne lose all sense of reality and love. He in fact appears to loath himself and his skills but never gives up until he learns the truth about what happened to him.


Bond in No Time to Die (2020)
Bond in No Time to Die (2020)
Bourne in The Bourne Identity (2002)
Bourne in The Bourne Identity (2002)

Bond is skilled fighter but appears to always need a weapon or tool of some kind to complete the mission and kill the villain. James Bond is a skilled shot and an expert at hand to hand combat. These skills have benefited him into completing his missions in some of the most dramatic ways possible. He is also an expert and knowing his covers are one of his best skills. He is always a convincing con-man when it comes to learning information. He is never actually seen interrogating people but instead is seen just being suave and cool as a cucumber. Jason Bourne wins the category though in hand-to-hand combat and weapons. Bourne is a skilled improvisor and in completing his mission he can practically use anything to harm those that choose to harm him. Just to name a few, Bourne has used a magazine, pen, book, knife, wire, and more. His most valuable weapon that he possesses is his brain. He is always able to think out of situations. Like Nicky Parsons mentions in The Bourne Supremacy (2004), “They don’t make mistakes” referring to the “Treadstone” agents. He behaves like a computer knowing multiple languages and talking to the CIA while right across from them. He does not do it for the prestige but rather for the sense that he wants them to know how close he can get to them. Bourne is the superior agent in this category though because he missions do not often require much conversation but his skill in making an assassination look like a suicide.


Jason Bourne and James Bond’s resumes stack up well for each. Each a notable character in espionage literature and in film, together they could make a great team, however for the sake of argument they are against each other. James Bond is more personable and Jason Bourne is more stoic. Their skills, morals, and missions all stack up in favor of James Bond. Bond is the better and more regarded spy of the two. He has a 100% completion rate and earns more acclaim not just from the United Kingdom but from the United States as Felix Lighter appears to help Bond on several of his missions. Jason Bourne though has the advantage in fighting and bringing down an entire agency. The CIA was not a perfect agency even in the fantasy world of the Bourne franchise but they are not shown in a positive light in these films either. Terminating Bourne was their biggest mistake as they trained him and he uses his skills against even their best assassins. If compared though Bourne is the man for the job if it is to exterminate and Bond is the man for the task if the goal is to gain information. So it is up to you to decide which agent you would want to complete the mission.


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